How Challenger Brands Can Achieve Mass Cut-through

How Challenger Brands Can Achieve Mass Cut-through

28 November 2022 |

Media and Advertising Industry

It’s that time of year again; Summer’s coming, Taylor Swift has launched yet another album and mass-market brands like Disney and Apple have already started releasing their 2022 Christmas campaigns. It’s often during these peak advertising times of the year, that brands start asking themselves, “how do I achieve the same level of cut-through, without the budget of the mass-market brands of the world”? This week we delved deep into alternative audience strategies that can help up-and-coming and challenger brands drive strong audience engagement and cut-through.

The Rise of the Dedicated Audience

One particular audience approach on the rise is contextual targeting across online content publishers (eg; Pedestrian, Broadsheet, Its core premise centres around understanding where a user is in real-time, and reaching them when they’re actively leaned-in. Whether it be a timely, branded content article on Broadsheet, or a native ad across SMH, distributing your brand’s content across publisher sites can be a highly effective tactic. AU consumers spend 58% of their online time on content sites and apps (Deloitte 2022), so there’s a highly addressable market to tap into here.

One of the main reasons contextual targeting and branded content is so effective is that these publications have been able to tap into their database’s passion points in ways many brands aren’t able to. This creates an affinity with users, leading to highly engaged, leaned-in consumers, which we’re coining as dedicated audiences. This is why many brands see up to 2x higher CTR from targeting via online publishers. 

Content Integration is a related concept, referring to the creative strategy of getting your branded content in front of these “dedicated” audiences and can include sponsored content, display, native etc. We’re in a digital era, where consumers are becoming increasingly sceptical of how they’re being targeted. This means brands need to find more seamless ways to promote their offering to audiences. A recent Taboola study revealed that users are 18% more likely to purchase from a brand if the ad felt native to the content page they’re viewing. This highlights the major opportunity content publishers pose for brands, allowing for more transparent and natural ways to reach and connect with consumers.

Increased  Brand Uplift Via Content Publishers

Advertising investment in Content Partnerships is projected to grow 5x by 2025. This is a growing audience strategy that is proving to be highly beneficial, in particular for challenger brands seeking more effective audience penetration.

In fact, a Nielsen study revealed that Brand recall is 59% higher across content publishers vs. other standard digital channels. And users are 14% more likely to seek out further content from a brand after being exposed to their publisher’s content. 

This highlights how impactful this type of marketing can be for brands. And it doesn’t have to be expensive either. Niche publishers can be more affordable, and offer equally qualified audiences and high engagement, with less competition. 

So, What Brands Should Consider Content Partnerships?

In my opinion, brands that could benefit the most from this type of strategy, are challenger brands struggling to achieve high audience penetration. This usually affects brands in highly competitive product categories, making it harder for media spending to have an impact. 

Challenger brands will benefit from exploring niche content publishers. By tapping into dedicated audiences, they’ll achieve a more significant uplift across brand and engagement metrics.

So if you’re a brand struggling with audience cut-through, or want to know more about how this type of audience strategy could benefit your business, reach out to our ADMATICians today.