How did Sainsbury’s and Maltesers get it so right?
Here’s a takedown of Morrisons and HSBC, a lot of love for Sainsbos and Maltesers, and some bits for you to think about when you’re commissioning branded content.
Write for the right medium
Video has the power to carry more feeling and connection than any other medium, but not all brands grasp this opportunity at the early stages of content development. Instead, video ideas are born out of the same marketing DNA as an email, a white paper, a blog post.
It genuinely feels like Morrisons and HSBC wrote an email from their CEO and decided to turn it into a video.
On the flip side, Sainsbury’s and Maltesers let video do it’s a unique thing. With space to breathe, tone, rhythm and playfulness come to the fore, and the brand experience becomes magnetic.
Say no to “should”
Covid content is tricky business, it’s serious after all right? Brands should be serious.
We should probably use some sombre piano music, we should probably write lines like “we’re all in this together”, and we should probably avoid anything too bold or creative.
The problem with this, is that when brands follow the creative path of least resistance, the content misses the potential to connect with a viewer at all. This is why this video exists.
Instead, Maltesers made space for humour, and Sainsbury’s delivered energy and pace, zagging against the zig and creating brand standout and a welcome distraction in a landscape of samey samey content.
Leave room for the viewer
Both Sainsbury’s and Maltesers said very little in the way of messaging, and in their boldness, they invited the viewer into their world and gave us the freedom to spend time there.
When branded content is heavily structured and saturated with strategic messages then there is no room left for the viewer to take an active role.
Brands that get out of the way and let feeling and tone be stronger than language and messaging have unlocked the superpower of video. When brands step out of the way, the viewer writes the lines for them in their head and forms positive brand associations.