Your customers are now spending a massive proportion of their time online – Nielsen estimates that close to 50% of US smartphone users visit their social networks every day. This means that brands have an opportunity to engage with them by publishing not just ads, but relevant content.
Oher than display ads and native advertising (think Facebook sponsored posts and Twitter’s promoted tweets), these are the broad options:
Pick a story that is in sync with your brand positioning on a popular site and sponsor it. Unilever’s Project Sunshine on Upworthy is a recent deal in this area.
Not banners ads but things like Forbes BrandVoice posts and Buzfeeds’s listicles
This is storytelling about areas that your brand is associated with. It is really creating entertainment or educational content and this is the hardest of all your options. You must create content that can compete with other entertainment and educational options. That’s why there are so few successes in this field. Notable are the hair-raising stunts on RedBull’s Youtube channel and the American Express forum for small business.