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Your weekly digital marketing matchbox to kindle creative content.

January 17, 2019

Dear readers,

Welcome to The Spark!

We never thought writing about the world of social media could feel too small — but as all digital marketers know, there's far more to the industry than Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. That's why we're so excited to introduce our new and improved weekly newsletter that dives deeper into the world of content and digital marketing.

The Spark will feature everything you've come to know and love about our 60 for Social Newsletter and so much more. Each week, we'll curate the top digital and content marketing, social media, and SEO news, tips, and trends you need to know. Our goal is to be your trusted go-to source for staying in the know and getting inspired.

We can't wait to deliver the latest content and digital marketing updates to your inbox every Friday.

If you have any questions, reach us at

Now read on, and kindle your creativity with this week's news.


Cracking the Code With Co-Branded Content

Hot take for 2020: Content isn’t king. Hear us out: Companies invest mad money on creating original content pieces (like videos, blogs, and e-books) that, all too often, just aren’t engaging enough to be worth the spend. This is where co-branding content can help brands work smarter, not harder. Sponsoring or co-branding content (research reports, webinars, etc.) is an opportunity to combine your business’s market strength and brand awareness with another’s — improving customer bases, customer loyalty, brand image, and perceived value for every partner involved. So we’d raise that content should be less king, and more of a Harry and Meghan situation — co-branded partners on a less traditional path, seeking to engage and bring something great to their audience.

Channel Your Curated Content

As TikTok gets bigger, the content pool becomes, shall we say, vaster — encompassing videos with wholesome dance challenges to posts featuring downright disturbing (and sometimes even illegal) activity. Fears of running alongside distressing videos have discouraged some brands from advertising. To combat this, the video app is considering a feed specifically for curated content that would display selected original videos from popular TikTokers and publishers. This approach goes against the app’s original algorithm, but it’ll give marketers better peace of mind as they penetrate the platform. It’s still in the works, but if all goes according to plan, TikTok will soon sport a brand-safe stream to keep your marketing efforts away from trouble.

Can’t Spell Gre(A)t Customer Serv(I)ce Without AI

We’ll be honest, customer service reps don’t have the easiest (or most coveted jobs), but times are changing. The customer service field is evolving to something more heavily tech and analytics-driven to help drive profit and build customer loyalty. With a little help from our friend automation, customer service teams now have access to powerful consumer insights they can use to proactively interact with any customer. Sound a bit like something you’d expect from just your marketing team, right? Not anymore. As the conversational marketing trend grows, marketers should work closely with customer service reps to ensure messaging and brand voice consistency across all platforms. Because at the end of the day, the name of the game is making customers happy, and we’re all on the same team.
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It’s As Easy As 1, 2, 3.29 Million

2020 is the year to make it count — “it” being yourself. That’s because the United States Census Bureau is kicking off the decade by conducting its decennial national census. (That updated demographic data is great for all of us marketers.) But of course, the 2020 Census has much a much bigger purpose, as it can have an impact on the livelihood of millions of Americans. We won’t dive into the politics of it, but the census affects how billions of dollars are allocated for public services across the country. Clearly a big deal — which is why the U.S. Census Bureau is spending $500 million in a campaign to spread the word and raise awareness for all Americans to be counted. 

The “Shape Your Future. START HERE” campaign will run through the end of June and will include more than 1,000 pieces of print, social, digital, radio, and TV content from 13 different agencies. With a target audience of the entire country, more than 10 languages (from English to Polish to Mandarin) are used in the PSAs to teach households the ways they can be counted. And through multiple storylines, characters, and plots, the PSAs aim to speak to a variety of cultures and lifestyles. As marketers, we should continuously strive to make diversity and inclusion a natural component of campaigns — and while many brands won’t face a target audience of this size, the Census Bureau’s massive multicultural and far-reaching effort is an example of inclusion marketing done right.


Copyright © 2019 Tier One PR, All rights reserved. Tier One Partners is a national, full-service PR, digital, and content agency that helps challenger brands redefine the meaning of value in their industries through innovation and inventiveness. Specializing in consumer, technology, digital health, financial services, and clean energy, Tier One delivers measurable programs that help companies demonstrate market leadership and meet key business objectives through a unique approach powered by senior talent. For more information, visit

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