Content Marketing and branded content: who wins the ROI battle?

70% of buyers agree that they want to know more about a certain product or service through valuable content rather than by means of traditional advertisement. The fact is that today, the pillars of every digital strategy orientated to create visibility and brand image aims to strengthen the symbiosis between branded content and content marketing. But really, do we know which one will win the ROI battle?

What is branded content?

Inside marketing departments, it is allowable to believe that branded content and content marketing are two ways of naming the same thing, but this trend is changing, since despite following the same objective they are two different types of content.

We have spoken about content marketing many times, so I assume you already know how it works. In a nutshell it’s a series of actions based on the generation of valuable contents with the objective of attracting potential clients through messages capable of satisfying businesses…ok.

On the other hand, branded content is sponsored, paid, with a clear difference from traditional advertisement: those contents must be published in places which add value to the message. For example, if we are runnning a campaign with an online shop for bike accessories and we want to create branded content, we have to buy ad space on a blog about bikes.

What are the main differences between content marketing and branded content?

The main differences between content marketing and branded content can be summarised in 3 main points.

  1. Content marketing is a global and unified strategy while branded content is a technique used inside the content marketing strategy itself.
  2. Content Marketing bases its efficiency in the message, while branded content bases its effectiveness in wrapping up the message.
  3. Content branding is pointed to generate short term leads, while content marketing looks into generation long term sales.

content marketing roi

Who wins the ROI battle?

Before getting into deep waters it’s necessary to analyse the objectives and threats of digital marketing in 2016. According to HubSpot’s State of Inbound 2015-2016 report, let’s take the following aspects into consideration:

  1. 60% of the objectives of a company that aims to climb the internet ladder are focused on increasing qualified and segmented leads, the conversion of business opportunities and client loyalty.
  2. The main KPI that marketing directors want to push is ROI
  3. SEO is Inbound Marketing’s main lead generator
  4. Companies with a higher ROI push: corporative blogs, organic traffic and content enlargement through social media.

On the other hand, radio, TV and press have lost efficiency which is allowing content marketing and branded content to assess the following issues:

  1. Banner blindness: The click through rate of display adverts worldwide is 0.1%
  2. Engagement through email marketing: click through rate is hovering between 1.5% and 4.79%.
  3. The impossibility of measuring ROI in traditional media.
  4. Fragmentation of customer service. 77% of TV audience are using other devices.

With all of this information ask yourselves: who will win the ROI battle? I’m afraid it won’t be so easy!

What you would have learned indeed is that these are two strategies that can work separately. My advice: to increase the ROI of your digital strategy, trust content marketing and branded content. Analyse the results and get conclusions.

Because what ain’t measured can’t be improved

Despite this, if you are looking to implement these strategies in your company, click here and an expert in these campaigns will get in touch to assess your needs.



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