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Create stories, not ads
Create stories, no ads
Published June 10, 2022
560 words… 4 min read
⚡️ Big idea: It’s easy to fall into the trap of creating content about a product, but you’re better off making content that’s great on its own terms, with or without a product.
❌ Typically, creators think about branded content like this:
  • Brand X wants me to create a Reel
  • I’ll make a Reel about Brand X’s product
✅ Let’s do this instead:
  • Brand X wants me to create a Reel
  • I’ll make a Reel in my niche and tell a story and include Brand X’s product in my story
You’re making the product fit around your content, not the other way around. Your job as a creator is to find a way to organically include the product in your story.
People love stories, not ads.

Good examples of storytelling

We’re proud to say that these are posts that our users made for Kale matches.
📈 Using trending sounds to tell your own story
This creator made a video about their evolving relationship to food and included Unreal Snacks as a feature in their story, not the main character. Unreal Snacks organically fits within her powerful narrative.
What made it great: She used a trending sound (good for getting her video in front of new viewers) and wrote a compelling caption (good for telling a story).
Just look at her comment section. People resonated with this content on a deeper level. They’re not affirming the quality of the product placement, they’re affirming the story.
👩‍🏫 Using your expertise to educate others
This creator used her expertise as a health & wellness extraordinaire to teach others how to make delicious cookies for Mother’s Day. Unreal Snacks was the feature in the larger tutorial on how to make cookies for mom.
What made it great: She met the content demands of a holiday, used a trending sound, but ultimately relied on her own expertise in her niche to deliver an awesome video.
If a new viewer saw her Reel and tapped into her profile, they’d see that her feed is filled with content in this niche. If they’re interested in that niche, this creator just earned a new follower. Notice that they didn’t follow because it was a great ad for Unreal Snacks.

✍️ Takeaways

The bigger picture
During a creator strategy coaching session, one of our creators asked me: “what’s my goal as a creator beyond getting brand deals?”
I told them that they should create content that they personally love and reflects their niche. The money will follow.
  • Why this matters: No one follows a creator because of their brand deals—they follow because of their content, personality, and niche.
  • Let’s recap what we learned
    • Make the product organically fit around—or within—a story that only you can tell.
    • Use trending sounds, challenges, and holidays to get new viewers, but don’t rely on them. Rely on your niche, instead. That’ll attract quality followers.
    • Your followers love great stories, not ads. Approach your branded content with that filter.
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