Not to offend you, but is what you sell boring? It’s okay! Not everyone can be Disney and pimp princesses or Google and make self-driving cars. What’s not okay is if your content is boring. You might be scratching your head wondering how to connect the dots between your mundane products and engaging content. However, it’s easier than you might imagine.
To get you started thinking in the right direction, here are three tips to help you produce cool content no matter what you sell—or what aspect of your business you’re promoting. The key is imagination, letting go of traditional norms, giving your audience what they want, and staying true to your brand in the process.
Don’t Do Ordinary—Do Extraordinary
In our day, we’ve worked on a number of brands, from Disney to the ASPCA. But it’s not all glitz and glam. We’ve also helped build cut-and-dry brands from the ground-up like Obrella, an insurance broker. So how did we make insurance fun and enticing? By thinking outside the box.
Instead of writing a typical awareness campaign or content piece about why insurance is important, we thought about what the audience would respond to. We thought about what would stick out amongst the competition. We ultimately decided to tell a similar story but in a different way—with puppets to liven things up and show off the features of Obrella’s website and brand.
While you never want to fall victim to the whole “baby and puppy” gimmick (a.k.a. using cute and endearing things that have no relation to your brand just to get attention), there are so many ways to create something fresh and funky out of anything.
Rethink Your Voice and Tone
It’s not about just about what you say, it’s how you say it. If you’re selling bulk paper clips for instance, you can either say, “Hold your papers together with metal paper clips.” Or you can say “Clip it real good.” It’s a silly example, but think about alternative ways to talk about your products and services that are both new and interesting for your customers.
The new British Airways safety video is one of our favorite content pieces that demonstrates ingenius delivery of a basic message. If you’ve flown, you know you usually tune out when the flight attendant puts on the mask—forgoing the information that could save your life in an emergency! It’s honestly amazing when you think about this piece of content that’s gone unchanged for decades; it’s been so boring that people don’t even want to watch it to save their own skins. Fortunately, airlines have finally caught on to the glazed over eyes and short attention spans and have changed their strategy.
While you might not have the budget for a star-studded promo video or piece of content like British Airway’s, you can take their inspiration and run with it. This British Airways video is smart because it’s not only used on airlines as a functional safety video, but in a marketing/PR stunt of its own—getting them tons of free press and elevated brand awareness. Think about your products, what they do for people, and how you can turn that basic function into something interesting and amusing.
Think about What You’d Want to Read, Watch, or Spend Time Doing
If you’re not sure how to make your content interesting to your audience, ask yourself what you’d want to see from a brand like yours. The saying, “you never really know someone until you walk a mile in his/her shoes” is true. Put yourself in the position of your ideal customer and deliver what they’re looking for.
Consider a different implementation of your information like a quiz, survey, or larger content piece. Think about a social campaign that could engage your customers on a whole new level. Mainly, don’t just think about pushing your product or service, but topics your audience is interested in.
Cotopaxi, a company specializing in adventure gear, has done this well. Instead of just selling products, they’ve created a hashtag and engagement series on Instagram where fans and customers can post photos of them in their Cotopaxi gear. This develops a sense of community, takes the brand from a thing to an experience, and integrates itself more into the lives and lifestyles of their customers.
At the end of the day, most things are boring until you make them interesting. Think long and hard about your product or service and what it’s currently giving customers and expand on that. Life’s too short to push out boring content—or pedal a boring brand. With a bit of brain power and a lot of fun you can give your customers the engaging content they’re searching for.