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2 Lessons in Bold Content – and 1 in Following the Leaders

A former print publication sizzles back to life as a digital community. Instagram decides to zig when everyone else is … already zigging. And a dating app brings a hit back to the future in service of the hot vax summer.

Kraft Heinz cooks up support for creators

Kraft Heinz abandoned its branded What’s Cooking print project a few years ago. Now, it’s launching an innovative digital platform called What’s Cooking.

The site’s home page says it’s for “the home cooks, restaurant lovers, chefs, and everyone in between.” That description sounds a lot like every cooking-focused outlet on the internet. But What’s Cooking adds an unexpected ingredient to the recipe-site mix – it’s a community for cooking content creators, complete with coaching from a celebrity chef and marketing support.

Creators who apply and are accepted to the community can build their own sites within the platform to post and share their recipes and video content. Top Chef alum Edward Lee has signed on to help the creators and share his own content, which is live on the site and its associated TikTok and Instagram accounts.

WHY IT MATTERS: Kraft Heinz made an interesting choice to go from a branded print publication to an unbranded digital community platform. It’s not even a disguised attempt at product promotion – many of the recipes available now exist without naming any ingredients by brand name. This shift shows the mega-brand recognizes the power of building an audience of chefs, home cooks (and eaters) – and may find it more important to its business than pushing its brand name and products.

.@KraftHeinzCo boldly chooses audience building over product promotion on its new What’s Cooking digital platform. Read about this and other #ContentMarketing examples via @CMIContent. #WeeklyWrap Click To Tweet

Instagram turns heads with confusing announcement

Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, took to Twitter to proclaim that Instagram is no longer a photo-sharing app. In the video post, he explains that the No. 1 reason people use Instagram is to be entertained and points to the popularity of TikTok and YouTube. He then lists four areas of change coming to the Facebook-owned platform: creators, video, shopping, and messaging.

That tweet got 1.6 million views with 8,300 quote tweets (excluding subtweets), mostly critical of the changes or current customer service problems. That’s 0.5% of total viewership.

Here’s how professional photographer Mike Olbinski responded: “I watch basketball for entertainment but that doesn’t mean I hope they change it to baseball or show me video clips during games or suggest other sports. Such weird logic.”

WHY IT MATTERS: As a brand content marketer, you may be excited to see the Instagram changes because they give you more options, including (yet) another platform for your videos. Though, if you liked the photo focus, you probably aren’t. More importantly, what does your audience think? Watch your Instagram analytics closely to see how they respond to your content and how they now interact on the app. Do they appreciate images just as much? Did they respond to a video you posted? Adjust accordingly.

Instagram would have benefitted by analyzing Adam’s script more closely. Saying people want to be entertained on Instagram does not mean they no longer want to use a photo-sharing app. If Instagram’s analytics say that, why wasn’t that detail shared in the announcement? Otherwise, just like Adam says, it sounds like Instagram is simply following behind the leaders TikTok and YouTube.

.@Instagram announced it will bravely … follow in the video footsteps of @TikTok_US and @YouTube. #Content creators and users are scratching their heads via @CMIContent. #WeeklyWrap Click To Tweet

BLK backs that thang up to promote COVID-19 vaccines

Juvenile reworked a popular old song to reach a new audience for a brand with a fresh message for its potential customers.

BLK, a dating app for Black singles, commissioned Juvenile to transform his popular 1999 song Back That Thang Up for a new audience. The new track, called Vax That Thing Up, encourages people to get vaccinated against COVID-19, as Rolling Stone reports.

Juvenile teamed up with Cash Money’s Mannie Fresh who appeared in the original song. No Limit’s Mia X joined the new venture too:

WHY IT MATTERS: Nostalgia works. Though this song is over 20 years old, the new version has a current feel and a fresh twist. That’s a great way to appeal to an audience of younger and older fans. The topic isn’t just a do-good message from the brand. It’s relevant to their target audience – vaccination is likely a critical issue for most people using a dating app.

.@MeetBLK and @JuvieTheGreat tap a 90s hit to remind people to #VaxThatThangUp. @CMIContent says it’s a great example of choosing a cause that matches your mission. #WeeklyWrap Click To Tweet
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 Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute