The Strategist picks the day’s most relevant and interesting stories about the world of content from around the web. Here’s what you should be reading today:
Best in Branded Content
The best branded content from last week included campaigns by Mini Cooper and Newscastle Brown Ale, according to a list posted by Social Media Today.
While the beer company introduced an app that puts funny captions on Facebook photos, Mini Cooper collaborated with “the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) to teach three dogs to drive.
The dogs were then put to the test in front of a live television audience. SPCA has said that the stunt was part of an initiative to prove that dogs from shelters are not second rate pets.”
Mobile Ad Spending Up 180 Percent from 2011
Lauren Indvik of Mashable writes that by the end of 2012, mobile ad spending will clock in at $4 billion. That’s a 180 percent jump from 2011.
Facebook is a large chunk of it — it accounts for $339 million of the total, while Twitter generated $134.9 million in mobile ad spending. Google, however, is number one. Its share accounted for 56.6 percent of mobile ad spending this year.
Content Marketing and Guns N Roses
Jason Miller of Marketo writes how content marketers should be more like Guns N Roses (really). Marketers need to set their content apart by making it different and by doing the unexpected.
“The element of surprise is a terribly underrated technique that can make your content stand out from your competitors, while at the same time exposing it beyond your initial reach and audience,” he says. Of course, the marketing needs to be visual. Think: Infographics, Instagrams, and videos.
Participant Media’s New Channel
The New York Times reports that Participant Media, the production company that created “Waiting for Superman” and “Food, Inc.” would be introducing a cable channel.
Founder of Participant, Jeff Skoll, said that the goal of his company “is to tell stories that serve as catalysts for social change. With our television channel, we can bring those stories into the homes of our viewers every day.”
It’s going to include original programming along with documentary screenings. Brian Henson, Meghan McCain, and Morgan Spurlock are set to be involved.
Traits of Great Writers
Demain Farnworth of CopyBlogger writes about what traits remarkable writers have in common.
They know how to punch up content and fix it where it falls short. They can clearly express opinions and have the ability to rewrite until a piece of work is perfect. Amazing writers know how to bring characters to life, close blog posts, tap into emotions, and, basically, solve problems.
Play Branded Games for Real Prizes
ClickZ reports that PuzzleSocial, an app on Facebook, is providing prizes to winners of its games. The prizes will be sponsored by brands. The first company to jump in on this is Embassy Suites, which is offering a trip to Florida.
Michael Shashoua writes, “That puzzle required solvers to enter words from clues that are all about information concerning the hotel chain, and was displayed as a ‘full canvas takeover,’ adding the sponsor’s logos and information to the screen surrounding the game.”
Measuring the Benefits of Content Marketing Podcasts
Brian Massey of Content Marketing Institute reports on content marketing podcasts and how to measure their effects on strategy.
If a podcast is worth it, it will be directing traffic to the company website and converting visitors to customers, subscribers, and/or leads. Podcasters can also use Feedburner, which shows how many people subscribe and what episodes get clicked.
Sites like Libsyn, Blip.tv and Blubrry host podcasts and will give detailed statistics on how they are doing.