What's the point of advertising if your audience doesn't know it's your brand doing it?
If you're like me, you've never heard a single Jason Derulo song (except that one about trumpets). But, also if you're like me, you sure as hell have heard of him. His brand is salient.
And it's salient because - unlike what the majority of content-marketers would have you believe about your own brand - he isn't ashamed or embarrassed to put his name on his work.
In an era where pop music is an homogenous sea of sameness - like the established market categories we work on - this goes a long way in keeping his brand (Jason Derulo) mentally available.
How advertising works (including content marketing) is pretty simple: Get your brand noticed, remembered and, as a bonus, liked.
The only real variable is immediacy - time and ability. But, whether one click to purchase, or years later in the case of cars, your advertising has to, at a bare minimum, achieve some familiarity.
If your brand wants to acquire new customers, the very first thing you have to do, before anything else, is get said non-users to know it exists.
If your brand wants to get lapsed or existing users to buy you more frequently, the first thing you need to do, before anything else, is refresh their awareness of it.
Especially when you're spending your finite budget on reach; not to mention production. It's common sense. And here's the evidence from Karen Nelson-Field's book, Viral Marketing:
“We found no evidence that an obvious brand presence hampers sharing, nor that it restricts your ability to achieve high arousal positive emotional responses. The popular notion of the need for a low-profile approach is a myth.”
So when marketers and populist adpeople tell you: "Don't brand because it puts people off watching your content", simply say: Jason Derulo (see video above for appropriate intonation).
Because if he can do it and enjoy more number-ones than any of us would be comfortable knowing, It's probably good enough for your brand, too.