Brands must look for emotional connection and shareability, says Buzzfeed

Hernandez says content should fit into one of five categories: inspiration, identity, helpful tips, capturing the moment, and humour

Brands looking for authentic audience and social engagement must produce content that triggers an emotional response then get out of the way of interaction, according to Buzzfeed’s executive director of international strategy.

Speaking at the Mumbrella360 conference in Sydney today, Keith Hernandez said brands should be thinking on a personal or “human" level in order to interact with consumers. As an example, he said Buzzfeed posts fit into one of five categories that all trigger an emotional response: Inspiration, identity, helpful tips, capturing the moment, and humour.

“Capture the zeitgeist,” he said, referring to a post by a collaborative post from ING regarding the recent Federal Budget, and what it means for the Australian public. “Make it a social commentary about sharing with friends and real interaction, so it's not just about the content.”

Hernandez stressed the importance of sharing as the metric of success, and said 75 per cent of Buzzfeed’s website traffic comes from links posted on social media.

But while brands need to be inserting themselves into the conversation, it’s important to know when to step back from the story, he said.

“Nobody wants to be best friends with a brand... so start the conversation, and then leave it alone,” Hernandez said. “Tell a great story and then get out of the way.”

He also noted how brands still don't think big enough when trying to reach social audiences, claiming “social is local and global... the Internet is universal” and that if “publishers are thinking global, brands should too”.

Buzzfeed has begun working with brands to developed custom social videos, with most averaging over a million views. Hernandez said the success is in its shareability.

“If the audience openly acknowledges content as an advertisement or sponsored content but it's funny or interesting enough to share, that's a success,” he claimed. Examples of popular custom videos include Purina's Cats guide to taking care of your human and GE's Are you a visual thinker?

Another avenue brands are taking is via Buzzfeed quizzes, which recently started taking off via social media, said Hernandez. Volkswagon used this to its benefit with a recent What breed of dog are you? quiz campaign where consumers could compare different cars to different dog breeds.

Popular HBO series, Game of Thrones also created a quiz entitled How would you die in Game of Thrones.

The common thread is the human connection, he said.

“Be human,” Hernandez added. “Use the litmus test, and ask yourself: Would I share this with my friends?”

Brands share their content marketing tactics and success

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Why 2017 will herald a resurgence of values-based marketing

It doesn’t take long for predictions to become predictable: The rise and rise of Facebook; advancements in analytics; the normalisation of chatbots; personalisation, programmatic, automation, authenticity… The prediction that’s missing from these lists is that in 2017 we will witness a resurgence of values-based marketing.

Jacqueline Burns

Founder, Market Expertise

Why customer experience driven growth is set to take off

Our overall brand perceptions are invariably shaped by our experiences. And loyal customer relationships can be severed in moments by a negative service interaction.

Consistency and conversation: How branding and advertising can work better together

Advertising and branding are two of the most visible outputs of marketing, which is why getting them right is so important. However, too often the line between branding and advertising becomes blurred. This means advertising activity can be out of sync with brand, resulting in poor results for both functions.

Dan Ratner

managing director, uberbrand

Someone needs a swift kick up the bum for such an idiotic idea.

random

​Why a degree is no longer enough to get you hired as a skilled marketer

Read more

The frequent flyer programs are the new profit machines for airlines all over the world, as they have morphed to be mass marketing machin...

Steve@iFLYflat

Velocity frequent flyers program strong performer in mixed half-year for Virgin

Read more

Hi Jennifer, thanks for sharing these info regarding the digital marketing trends.I've created a related video to this topic, would you m...

Fabio Carry

Predictions: 17 digital marketing trends for 2017

Read more

Great news. Marketing automation can be very useful for companies at various stages of development. With so many tools out there it's bet...

Ben

How HBF rolled out marketing automation in eight months

Read more

I read a report that the business sector in Australia as a whole have yet to fully harness and see the proactive change that predictive a...

Alex Martin

Report: Predictive analytics, IoT, machine learning battle it out for marketing dollars

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in