Findings With Clients Including Orville Redenbacher’s Demonstrate That Branded Content Is More Effective at Reaching Mobile Users and That Authenticity and Creativity Are Critical

Mode Media today released survey results commissioned from research company Nielsen, which reveal a series of best practices and key takeaways for branded content creation. These findings — some of them unexpected — will benefit any marketer engaged in or considering branded content creation.

Mode commissioned Nielsen to understand how branded content, such as Mode’s Branded Story product, drove brand impact across a select group of advertiser campaigns on mobile and desktop platforms. The study was conducted using a sample of 2,400 women aged 18-44 who viewed native branded stories on

Various Mode Media clients including ConAgra’s Orville Redenbacher’s participated in the study. To see the Orville Redenbacher’s campaign that was executed in partnership with media agency Spark SMG, click here for screenshot and PDF of content.

Highlights from the research include:

  • Branded content is more effective at impacting purchase intent for mobile users versus desktop users. Mobile users showed a greater intent to purchase the brands they were exposed to, at 24% compared to 19% of desktop users. Mobile has an advantage over desktop in driving purchase intent because it provides timely, personalized content wherever people are, with the ability to inform and influence ‘on the spot’.
  • The high brand scores and content likeability findings showcase the potential for natural and immersive brand experiences to improve brand metrics without being excessive or forced.
    • On average, branded stories were perceived as: 76% interesting; 70% exciting, 66% natural, 34% excessive and 31% forced.
  • Natural and immersive branded experiences can improve brand metrics without being excessive or forced.
  • On average, consumers are spending almost two and a half minutes with each Branded Story. That’s as much time with branded content as editorial content (according to Mode Media internal research), and 8x more time than with traditional rich media advertising.
  • On average, respondents were 21% more likely to purchase the brands to which they were exposed, with less established consumer brands testing as high as 41% purchase consideration increase upon native ad exposure.
  • Respondents enjoyed the sponsored branded story content and are likely to view more. On average, 81% of respondents indicated that they enjoyed the content. Additionally, 75% are likely to view additional sponsored stories, and 63% would share the content with others.
  • On average, Mode’s Mode Branded Story boasted 81% content enjoyment and 77% brand recall. The effectiveness survey comes one year after Mode’s Branded Story advertising product launch at the 2015 IAB Newfronts.

“The one-two combination for branded content success is to combine interesting, helpful, and good ideas with gorgeous creative and credible delivery,” said Dan Lagani, Mode Media President and Chief Revenue Officer. “This study proves that branded content, such as Mode’s Native Branded Story, is an elegant way for marketers to engage consumers authentically and at scale, while providing valuable insights to marketers seeking to roll out their own branded content campaigns. This is particularly important when reaching millennials, who put a premium on authenticity and creativity, and are inspired by people they can relate to.”

“We see great opportunity in reaching our consumers with better content that does not disrupt their experience but enhances it,” explained Heather Dumford Marketing Director, Media, for ConAgra. “This research from Nielsen is a great step in illustrating that branded content offers precisely that. Mode Media¹s Branded Story offers a particularly effective implementation of branded content that we are happy to have had as part of our approach this year for Orville Redenbacher’s.”