When Publishers are your content partner and how MSN and Hyundai did it
MSN are one of the biggest audience websites in the UK. There is something though a little debatable to its value as a media website and their reader figures could be said to look good because of search and Hotmail... Who are we to say.
Anyway, we at The Peloton are great believers in brands partnering with media companies to produce commercial content that gets the sponsors message across whilst also giving the users something good to read/watch/interact with. Media Companies are undoubtedly the experts in their field and know their audience. Most importantly they have perceived independence... No matter how good a brands own developed content, they will have to work really hard for the ear of the recipient.
MSN have had a content solutions team in place for many years (as have most clued up publishers). They have recently released this...www.newthinking.uk.msn.com. Sponsored by Hyundai, it is part of MSN's challenge to get their user to think more and challenge themselves which handily fits with Hyundai's strapline New Thinking, New Possibilities. They have used excellently produced video (the best example of this that we have seen yet) blogs, a New Thinking widget, a Hyundai competition area... All sorts. They also add to the mix Kevin Spacey, Joseph Fiennes, The world land speed record holder and footballer Ian Wright amongst others.
It's great. MSN allowing a sponsor to work with their resources in a very creative way. The reason why we are a little stuttering in our recommendation is this. 99.9% of B2B marketeers will not have the budget for this. This is no doubt a minimum £500k bill going to MSN once they have reached their targets.
However and hear this loud and clear. Publishers are staring at the fact that the days of high display advertising revenues are over. The media companies who cater for your market will be able to offer something like their version of Hyundai's and MSN's New Thinking. Only they will be looking for cost a tenth of the US behemoth.
Publishers are having tough times. Now is the opportunity to use this to your advantage.