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The future is purpose-driven content marketing

The Content Marketing Association estimates content marketing accounts for 20% of global marketing spend - and that's set to increase.
Source: © Deyan Georgiev  Purpose-driven content marketing is the future
Source: © Deyan Georgiev 123rf Purpose-driven content marketing is the future

This doesn’t surprise me. Millennials and GenZ have changed the face of purchasing by aligning their spend with brands that have a purpose and a story. We’re looking for emotional, sustainable connections. and content is the best way to communicate brand purpose.

Slower burn approach

Commercial content goes beyond product and price; it’s not about selling a product or a service – it’s about communicating a sentiment or emotion through content that is useful and relevant to the user.

Brands willing to forgo a hard sell in favour of a ‘slower burn’ approach reap the benefits of loyal, highly engaged communities.

I see this first-hand in my world: two recent, concurrent campaigns for a banking client yielded average times of page of 28 and 26-minutes respectively for long-form written content – truly astounding in our cluttered attention economy.

South African brands should have even more impetus to invest in content campaigns.

As a nation, our storytelling traditions are rich and robust, and our content campaigns’ higher-than-average engagement times suggest local audiences are willing to invest their time – and valuable data – in content campaigns.

The next big thing for content marketing

Purpose-driven content marketing is key for 2022 and beyond.

I can’t stress this enough: audiences are wise to virtue signalling and greenwashing. Inauthentic or misleading marketing campaigns are a waste of everyone’s time.

Instead, invest in content that uplifts the reader and does good for local communities. It’s not just the right thing to do – it makes business sense.

Research shows 42% of surveyed millennials said they would deepen their relationship with brands that positively impact society or the environment.

Just this month WAN-IFRA’s Adspace24 won Best in Africa in the Best in Show at the International News Media Association's (INMA) 2022 Global Media Awards, for City Press & ABSA Money Make Over.

All of those campaigns were purpose-driven, with content that either uplifted local communities or the reader themselves.

About Jerusha Raath

Jerusha Raath leverages a decade's experience as a journalist and editor in her role as head of Adspace Studio.

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