How To Make Your Brand Stick Like Bubblegum

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Becoming the name on the tip of everyone’s tongue may be a bad thing if you are an awkward teenager, but not so much if you are a brand competing for market share and the hearts of consumers. It’s called brand awareness and it’s what every brand wants, but so few have.

Brand awareness is directly tied to success in most cases. Think about the most successful brands you love. Nike? Coca-cola? These brands have become household names, but they didn’t get to be that way by going for the hard sell the entire time.

Many brands get this wrong. They constantly reach out with sales-esque tactics. Cold calls, bland advertising copy, and countless product pitches might get you some recognition, but it will never get you over the brand awareness hurdle. What you really need to do is stop spamming and work on providing value to your audience. One way to do this is through the use of sticky content.

Sticky content is a type of marketing collateral that is bite-sized, similarly themed, regularly sent, and usually has some sharing-friendly aspect. Take the “Elf Yourself” campaign from Office Max. In this campaign, users were asked to upload pictures of themselves and friend or family. The faces in the uploaded pictures were then put on elf bodies and made to do a little holiday dance. This fun, interactive experience had nothing to do with their product or brand, but it gave people value by way of humor and enjoyment. The final aspect of this campaign that made it so wildly successful was that it was inherently sharable.

elf yourself sticky content
Another great example of sticky content is Old Spice’s “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” commercials. These commercials, while still about Old Spice’s product were funny, similarly themed, and regularly delivered. People loved them! By tapping into our love of humor and need for entertainment, Old Spice succeeded in greater memory recall, getting them that much closer to their brand awareness goals. In fact, I bet when you think of Old Spice you think of these commercials. This, my friends, is a sign of a fantastically successful long term brand awareness play.

Old Spice man sticky content

Now, you may be thinking, “But I don’t have the resources these brands do. How can I ever compete with what they’ve come up with?” And while you may not have access to all the goodies these brands have up their marketing sleeves, you can still harness the power of sticky content. It just takes some creativity.

At Zembula, we use sticky content to drive brand awareness all the time. I will give you two specific examples of ways we leverage sticky content that you can copy at your company, no matter what resources you have available.

First, our newsletter is a huge part of our brand awareness strategy. We chalk it full of entertaining, fun tidbits of information like office product reviews and hot buzzwords, and then send it out to our subscribers on a monthly basis. We don’t take this as an opportunity to pitch our product, rather, we use it as an opportunity to show our personality. It is almost never completely serious. Once we even reviewed a cardboard Tardis that was the centerpiece of our office. Want to see what we are talking about? Subscribe to our newsletter.

Second, we regularly send our audience entertaining content. This often takes the form of fun, interactive experiences that we build in our platform (but you can be entertaining in a number of ways like a blog post, in an email, or on social media.) The experiences we send out usually feature fun visuals, or a trivia question. This not only shows the diversity of our product, but also gives them a memorable bite-sized piece of content. Check out the two examples below. (Click on the image to interact)

Zembula heart sticky contentZembula Unicorn sticky content

See, good brand awareness isn’t just for the big dogs; you can play too! You just need to be creative and willing to put your personality out there. In the end, having a good brand awareness strategy will get you much, much farther than spamming, or solely pitching your product to an annoyed audience on repeat.