The Importance Of An Audience-Led Creative Strategy

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This article is an excerpt from the second instalment of our ‘How To Win’ Series titled “How To Win On OTT: Strategies For OTT Sports Broadcasters To Drive Revenue & Results”. To download the Playbook in full, please click here.

We believe creative is the art that brings science and data to life.

Great creative is built on a foundation of intelligent, data-driven learnings and insights.

For OTT providers, having a strong grasp of cultural and behavioural shifts will enable a more bespoke and targeted approach.

Whether you’re designing creative and visual assets like short-form video content or crafting punchy messaging and copy, intelligence is the key to serving powerful messages that will resonate with a given audience.

Developing an audience-led creative strategy.

To spark large-scale engagement, you’ll need to develop an audience-led creative strategy. This means producing with an audience-first outlook. Since your audience will vary in their online behaviours, location and demographics, so must your approach to engaging them.

With an audience-led creative strategy you will be able to speak to your target audience wherever they may be.

For OTT providers for example, it’s likely that your target audience spends their time across multiple platforms, with every platform having its own variance of algorithms and formats for serving content and advertising.

The level of personalisation required must consider aspects such as the specific audience segment that you’re targeting, the platform the user is on, the device they are using, the time of day, the location they are based in and the language they have their profile set to.

A one-size-fits-all-approach may work if you have a killer event like a pay-per-view that everyone is talking about, but when it comes to creating consistent growth month-on-month, it is essential to develop your creative in accordance with the components listed above.

When it comes to format selection, we like to combine a mixture of video for awareness marketing and static creative when the audience is closer to making a purchase. This is simply because after your audience has been inspired with a high-impact video that has hopefully delivered the emotional component, they’re now going to be looking for the rational aspect, such as the price and the terms – thus ready to make a purchase. Your job is to make the purchase decision as efficient as possible by simplifying the message.

Also remember this crucial – but sometimes ignored – point: your OTT platform is aiming to sell video content, so your marketing should utilise video to show a glimpse of what to expect from within the platform. Lean on the best of your video archive to draw new users in.

The Importance of Copy.

Copy often gets overlooked in the creative process. Why? Many feel that while design requires skill to produce, we are all capable of putting a few words together.

Don’t be fooled here.

Use a specialist copywriter. Copy is just as important as the visual element, and sometimes even more so.

When it comes to developing engaging copy, we look at a combination of both rational and emotional vocabulary, also known as talking to the head and the heart.

Let’s look at a couple of examples of how this could play out in an advertisement.

A rational ad might look and sound like:

“Buy your pass now and watch the latest MMA fights”

While an emotional ad could look and sound like:

“Your only destination to watch the biggest fights in the world’s fastest growing sport”

There is no right or wrong here, but by referencing the fandom and the exclusivity of the product, you’ll be tapping into the passion of the audience.

Utilise engaging copy to communicate both rational and emotional messages, and maximise the impact you have on your audience.

In summary, it is crucial to devise an audience-led creative strategy and tailor each message that you want to produce to the specific audience you want to engage.

This includes variables like geolocation, language, demographics, and user behaviour. 

Ensure you don’t overlook copy, and utilise it in an engaging way to communicate both rational and emotional messages to maximise the impact you have on your audience.

At WePlay, we’re a new kind of sports marketing agency, combining a blend of data and analysis, strategy and consultancy, creative production, and media planning and buying to engage global sports audiences and convert them into paying subscribers.

If you want to equip yourself with the tools, tactics and techniques needed to increase awareness of your OTT product and service, acquire new customers and boost retention, download our Playbook ‘How To Win On OTT: Strategies For OTT Sports Broadcasters To Drive Revenue & Results’ here.

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