Why you need native content (and why you've probably already used it)

IMG_4288
We’ve all heard the running joke about the marketing man who couldn’t stop making up buzzwords and phrases. As such we’ll spare you the repetition.
Right now it seems like you can’t move for ‘Native Content’ and ‘Native Advertising’, two all-newly coined concepts in marketing that technically stretch across everything from print to TV, radio to online, and can work wonders for every business in every industry under the sun. Of course there is a punch line- much as you may assume otherwise- in that we’ve always had variants of these models.
Ultimately the terms refer to anything so long as it’s content, and has been produced in order to promote a brand or company message, but within the context of user experience. Native Advertising would be a company blog, produced in house in the hope of cementing a position as thought leader. Native Content would be a paid for article written by a website’s editorial team that looks to inform readers about an issue, whilst also trying to promote a corporate message.
Branded videos, blogs, Facebook Groups and more could all fall under either umbrella heading, depending on how we choose to use them. In any instance, when knowledge is shared as a means to raise a corporate profile, without simply resorting to advertising and salesmanship, then this could be seen as a native approach- the advert or content sits right within its surrounds. Think newspaper advertorials, and you’re pretty much there. The focus being on the establishment of trust between consumer and business first and foremost, a bond upon which hopefully a relationship is then built that will see one selling to the other for the rest of their lives. It’s a theory wherein loyal custom is the Holy Grail, a notion many people have agreed with since the beginning of commerce.
We’d put money on the fact that by now you’re probably recognising this practice in your own workplace, otherwise there’s a chance you would already be out of business. If people weren’t responding to standardised advertising alone 20 years ago then they certainly aren’t going to start any time soon, given the media literate age we’re now in. As such, those who want to thrive tomorrow should consider a lesson learnt from the past- be that in marketing, PR, advertising or any other type of corporate communications; to engage with the public, you need something they want to engage with.