Using Sponsored Content in Your Marketing to Drive Traffic

Sponsored content isn’t new. In fact, it’s been around since 1917 according to Merriam Webster. Everyone does it knowingly or not. Just about everything you read online, in a magazine, or products you see on Instagram, are paid for in one way or another.

Let’s take a realistic look at what sponsored content really is and how you can use it in your marketing strategy.

Gone are the days when market fish and a bottle Rosé could secure you a full-page editorial or online article. Banner ad revenue is at an all-time low, currently sitting at around $4USD per thousand impressions. Publishers have been forced to look at additional revenue streams.

There is a lot of value in content placement and publishers want to be remunerated for this value. Buying an ad to get editorial would full under ‘paid content’ aka sponsored content.

Instagram influencers touting latest products have all been remunerated in one way or another. Be it money or free product.

The reality is sponsored content is everywhere and it takes many forms. It’s time to embrace it and use this marketing technique to your advantage.

Instead of email blasting out a press release and hoping for the best, focus on value-adding content. Offering unique articles to publishers is almost guaranteed to get you placement. You’re making the editors job easy and offering some sort of remuneration for publishing it shows that you value them.

Offering unique articles to publishers is a simple marketing technique that anyone can do. You just need to write an article that educates or inspires the reader. What value can you offer? Draw from your experience or offer insights that others wouldn’t have.

For example; you’re a bike shop launching a new electric bike and you want to create some awareness in the market. Writing an article on “Latest technology powering electric bikes” would be something many bike or lifestyle related blogs would publish.

Instagram is another great tool for deploying sponsored content for awareness. Using influencers you can reach specific cohorts of your market. Influencers create good awareness as well as social proof. Paying influencers in money or product is standard for a sponsored content post.

While sponsored content isn’t just advertorial. You know, those editorial pieces that are heavily focused on a product or service. Stay away from creating ‘spammy’ advertorial. They give sponsored content a bad name.

Pushing your articles out to media can be very difficult. However, there are tools to make it easy. Contento is a web-app that allows you to offer your articles directly to registered publishers. It removes the whole out-reach process and makes content placement ridiculously easy. Plus it doesn’t cost any more than going direct.

Sponsored content isn’t just spammy advertorial. It’s a technique you should be using in your digital marketing strategy. It’s simple and effective at getting awareness into your desired audiences and creating social proof for your brand.

Learn more about sponsored content here.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.