Marion Breuleux, Managing Director of ISM and founder of ABILWAYS DIGITAL , participated this year in the unmissable event Nigerian Email Database in the tech world: the SXSW 2019. She detected several new marketing trends to integrate into your strategies. In this article, we’ll take a look at 2 major trends that can transform the way you produce content: brand utility and empathy. The end of the golden age of content has not yet arrived, but producing content without thinking about its usefulness to your customer will soon not work. This article gives you the keys to remedy it. Discover: This observation is the result of a fundamental societal trend: the move towards more reasoned, or even reduced, consumption. Consumers, ever more informed and enlightened, are now seeking to better choose the brands they trust by validating the real benefit provided by their product or service.

Thus, the strategies advocated by brands such as “greenwashing” are no longer tenable at the risk of falling victim to “backlash” marketing. Keeping false promises is now bad for your brand. So instead of trying to tell stories, brands should first and foremost find meaning in their products. The story will then come naturally. As part of your brand content strategy, the first question to ask yourself is: “what use can you bring to your customers?” “. The notion of “brand utility” will then follow. Indeed, we see a certain saturation in the face of storytelling which would only exist for itself. Brands often forget to give it purpose and depth. Without real anchoring, storytelling has, so to speak, no longer meaning or added value for the customer.

How to detect the real usefulness of your product for its customer?

What is the brand utility? The brand utility combines functionality, usefulness and enrichment with the promotion of a brand. To determine it, it is imperative to refine your insight and your customer knowledge . Indeed, the whole secret lies in the change of posture made: not to be centered on your brand but on the contrary, to adopt the point of view of your client. You have to put yourself in the latter’s shoes to understand how to value the usefulness that your product can bring to it. The brand utility therefore responds, in a viral and free way, to a need – it does not seek to create new characteristics for your solution. It is a medium-long term approach because it does not have an immediate commercial character.


This approach supposes showing, as a first step, altruism towards your client. Above all, it allows you to instill in your client an attachment to the brand and to appear as a trusted partner or even a facilitator of their daily life. How to detect the real usefulness of your product for its customer? To answer this question, one of the keys is to empathize with the needs of users: What are the “stones in the shoe” (pain points) of my customers? What questions do my customers ask themselves when consuming my products? Tesco has thus set up “relax lanes” for people who are not in a hurry. This anti-skip the line aims to limit the stressful situations of certain people such as the elderly or disabled when going through the checkout. Finding your brand utility can therefore sometimes turn out to be counter-intuitive.

How to produce useful content?

Customers are not predictable. The only solution to bring out ideas that are as unexpected as possible is to go out and meet them with empathy and talk with them. No more personas that profile an idealized client onto whom our fantasies are projected, instead make empathy cards. Personas are useful but they present the risk of locking clients into segmentations and typologies of behavior. This is also the case for data which, like a filter bubble, circumcises our customers in characteristics that have already been communicated. By such practices, we risk missing the unexpected and the new. On the contrary, we must rather succeed in surprising our customers, in generating and offering them the unexpected!

If data is essential, it is above all necessary to know your customers by going to detect and understand their behavior with empathy. This makes it possible to avoid certain biases, to identify the usefulness of the brand and to create added value by promoting it properly. How to produce useful content? To succeed in producing content that is useful to its customers and that is not just a product to support your brand content strategy , you have to be interested in the ecosystem in which your product operates. Weber® understood this very well by creating its “barbecue academy”. Real institution in the world of the grill, it was at the beginning only guides who shared barbecue advice such as the necessary utensils, the type of lighting … Their success finally gave birth to a real academy with its own page web.

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