What exactly is branded content? Is it the same as sponsored content? What about advertorials and content marketing? And more importantly, how do you get into it?
Branded content can be lucrative work. Not just because it (usually) pays better than some editorial work, but because it can often come as part of a bigger, longer-running project or be regular. And if you form good relationships with commissioning editors of branded content, they may come to you when there’s a new project.
But for some, it remains an elusive industry. So we’ll be unpicking exactly what it is by talking to three (a fourth hopefully to be confirmed) truly expert voices in this fields. Whether it’s writing advertorial copy for customer or consumer magazines or working on specific campaigns, we’ll discuss the skills involved, how they differ from editorial writing, and find out more about the industry.
There’ll be a Q&A at the end so please do feel free to ask. You can also email [email protected] if you want to send questions in advance or suggest points to raise in the main discussion
Ross Clarke – writer, lecturer and content marketing consultant
Ross is an award-winning food, travel and wine writer, part-time lecturer in magazine journalism at Cardiff University, and a content marketing consultant. He has more than 10 years’ experience as a writer and editor for titles such as BBC Travel, National Geographic Traveller, The Independent, and The Sunday Times. A specialist in content marketing, he has led the teams responsible for the global digital and social media channels for brands such as British Airways and Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group – overseeing the launch of digital magazines and editorial websites, Instagram innovations, WeChat magazines, branded podcasts, voice tours and many more activations.
Sarah Jewell – commercial features editor, Guardian Labs
Sarah Jewell is commercial features editor in Guardian Labs at Guardian News and Media. She edits branded content and specialises in education and health but also covers travel, culture, lifestyle, business and more. he has also worked at the Independent and the Times and written for education and parenting magazines.
Dan Linstead – head of branded content, Immediate Media
Dan is a writer, editor and content strategist who has worked across advertising, consumer magazines and contract publishing for the past 20 years. He was editor of Wanderlust magazine for six years (2006-12), where he commissioned hundreds of travel features, oversaw a major redesign, and appeared regularly on TV and radio (and at innumerable press events, awards dos and live shows) as a travel pundit. He then moved to Immediate Media in Bristol, where he leads the branded content division creating member and supporter content for clients including WWF-UK, English Heritage, the RSPB, RYA and Boundless. Their magazines include three of the top 10 leisure and lifestyle magazines in the UK by circulation.
Rosie Fitzgerald – special features editor, Wanderlust
Rosie Fitzgerald is the special features editor at award-winning travel magazine Wanderlust, where she has worked for almost four years. Rosie is responsible for the commissioning, creation and management of all commercial partnership content across the print magazine, the website and Wanderlust’s social media channels.
Meera Dattani, events director and chair, BGTW
Meera is a freelance travel journalist, co-editor of online travel magazine Adventure.com, and co-founder of the Unpacking Media Bias newsletter.