Tuesday January 21st || by Tammy Blythe Goodman

matt wurst

Last Tuesday, Taboolars were visited by Matt Wurst, head of content and communities at 360i, an award-winning global digital marketing agency with clients such as Oreo, Oscar Mayer, Kraft, Proctor & Gamble, Bravo, HBO, and AARP. One of the first things that Matt pointed out to us was that his agency has a lot in common with Taboola.

“Content is at the core of what we do,” he said.

Wurst shared his excitement about leading a team of storytellers. 360i’s digital strategy, regardless of the client, always involves a process of building relationships, understanding and listening to their core customers, and developing a content plan that will speak to their target. To do this, they often use analysts to uncover specific data for their clients.

For example, Oscar Mayer was not necessarily known for their bacon. Bologna, sure but bacon? Not so much. 360i’s analysts quickly discovered that “bacon” is actually one of the top keywords searched for on the Internet, even more so than Angelina Jolie, and “bacon” is actually mentioned online every 12 seconds.  So, they created a plan around promoting bacon and “The Great American Bacon Barter” was born.

“The Great American Bacon Barter,” was a social media campaign in which one man (comedian Josh Sankey) traveled from New York City to Los Angeles with no cash or credit cards – just bacon. The campaign invited ordinary people from around the country to participate in Josh’s journey in real-time via Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. As you can imagine, it was hugely successful, generating over 336 million earned media impressions (!), putting Oscar Mayer on the bacon business map.

Another example Wurst presented involved America’s favorite cookie: Oreo. Charged with transforming Oreo from a kid-friendly cookie into a treat that everybody of all ages will love, 360i developed a creative content campaign to reinvent the cookie which ranged from Facebook and Instagram posts to carefully crafted tweets and yes, that Super Bowl commercial. It’s undeniable that Oreo has changed the way brands create content in more ways than one, and the future may belong to brands that are able to communicate with their undiscovered, targeted audiences via storytelling.

Although social media has obviously helped 360i promote their content, Wurst added that they “cannot succeed without paid media.” He stressed, “It is impossible to cut through this clutter… it’s distracting us from the content we want to see.” If all of the world’s content online was 5 lanes of traffic and it’s rush hour, “paid media is our HOV lane to our destination.”

Special thanks to Matt Wurst for sharing his insights. For more digital anecdotes, follow Matt on Twitter @mwurst.

Join the conversation! Tweet us @Taboola and tell us how you think digital marketing and content work well together.

Tammy Blythe Goodman

Tammy Blythe Goodman is the Marketing Communications Manager at Taboola in New York City. She has over 10 years' experience in the mobile industry and also has extensive experience in public relations and video games.