You may hear the term sponsored content often discussed when it comes to marketing, but what exactly does it mean? Sponsored content is essentially paid content – articles, videos, infographics, social media and more — hosted by a trusted media publisher, such as Postmedia, and promoted through that publisher’s channels.
The content is typically produced by the publisher’s in-house creative team in collaboration with the client. It’s crafted to provide an editorial-style experience for readers, so it’s not interruptive, it matches the form, feel and function of the rest of the site. The idea being that readers are more receptive to advertising when it’s in a format that they know and love.
You might also know it as advertorial. The key difference is that we never want sponsored content to feel self-serving or like a sales pitch. Sponsored content needs to provide value to the reader, whether it’s through a good story or useful information.
Every month, Postmedia’s Content Works team partners with advertisers across Canada to create impactful content that combines our expert storytelling with their marketing goals to create content that resonates with readers. Here’s a selection of the best content partnerships we created with brands last month.
City of Saskatoon
The City of Saskatoon Utilities & Environment Department turned to Postmedia Content Works to invite residents to explore the solar energy potential of their homes using the new interactive MyHeat Solar Map. The article explained how to use the map, which instantly reveals the cost of installing solar panels at their location, the number of years until payback, available incentives, and the financial and environmental benefits. The story also shares the positive experiences of two homeowners who chose to go solar.
To celebrate Ottawa’s varied list of cultural hotspots and fun activities, Ottawa Tourism has designated more than 110 festivals, attractions, restaurants, tours, cafés and other points of interest as ‘Unofficial Museums’ and given them special museum status. We celebrated these Unofficial Museums by designing an engaging interactive quiz where readers can determine their vacation style and find out which Unofficial Museums they should visit this summer. By creating an interactive experience, we were able to engage readers and introduce Ottawa’s hidden gems in a fun way.
This campaign was tied to the launch of Medtronic’s latest version of its insulin pump, recently licensed by Health Canada. This latest iteration of the MiniMed provides automated insulin delivery through an advanced algorithm that helps compensate for missing carbs, which simplifies the multitude of decisions required to manage life with diabetes. As the pump wasn’t commercially available in Canada at the time of publication, the challenge was to find users who obtained the updated MiniMed in other parts of the world. Fortunately, the client found two Canadians who use the pump. We were especially pleased to include 19-year-old Anna Reid, as one of the advantages of the new pump is that you can access the new technology remotely – easy for a Gen Z!
Logan Health, a private health clinic in Montana, wanted to attract interest from Albertans who would pay for medical procedures in the US. We focused on a retired nurse from Calgary who was waiting for public care. After two falls while waiting and with no clear direction on when she might have surgery, she went to the US and had the procedure done in a week. We suggested speaking with a past patient because experience has shown readers connect better when they are reading about a real person’s experience.
See the content here: Calgary Herald x Logan Health
Vins de Pays d’Oc
The client’s goal in this campaign was to highlight several wines from the region that are now available for purchase at the LCBO. To achieve this, Content Works wrote an article about the best white wines for the summer, when people are looking for a refreshing drink to enjoy at a picnic or on the terrace. We interviewed a well-known sommelier in Ontario who was able to shed some light on the different notes and flavours that can be discovered in the showcased white wines. The article was also an educational piece on IGP certification, the characteristics of wine from the region, and what makes the Pays d’Oc area different from other wine regions.
For more examples and to learn about working with Postmedia Content Works, visit www.postmediasolutions.com/solutions/content/.