Andy Jackson, brand director, Haymarket Consumer Media Asia, Singapore, spoke at FIPP’s Digital Newsstand Forum today (15 May) in Bangkok, Thailand, about the evolution of brands from advertisers to media owners.
Jackson used a case study from Australia, in which Haymarket eventually created a new business unit, to illustrate how commercial relationships between publishers and core clients are changing.
“Some clients don’t want to buy ads any more,” said Jackson, “they want to be part of the fabric of the content of the brand. Are you prepared for the day when your biggest clients don’t want to buy ads from you any more?” He used Haymarket’s football brand, FourFourTwo, as an example, and said that its biggest advertisers wanted to be weaved into the content of the brand, and it was the job of the magazine’s editorial team to achieve that.
“We’re really good at football content,” said Jackson, “so we took the step from being a media owner selling ads being a content provider for brands’ social channels.”
“Content has never been more important, but it’s not just traditional publishers creating it now. Think of it as custom publishing on steroids! It’s effectively the new custom publishing, but it’s multi platform. Our relationships go much further with brands than they ever have done before.”
The step taken was a successful one, but was “too compromising” to keep doing it under the FourFourTwo umbrella, according to Jackson. The company therefore created Football Republic, and communicated to their clients that creating content for them was now an official option.
Jackson’s critical considerations:
- If the content is not authentic and credible, don’t bother. This is not a mag special edition or a supplement – it’s real integration with your client’s business.
- Set realistic objectives in realistic time frames
- Know what you’re looking to measure and how
- Know the value of a customer
- Know the value of a brand evangelist
- Look beyond the data for signs of success
- Steady flow of content and interaction
“To achieve this, you need more expertise in the area than your core clients, and probably have to be number one in the market to have these conversations,” concluded Jackson.