Lauren Drell knows what you think about branded content; she’s read the studies. That awareness of what will and won’t turn readers off in this tricky sphere drives her editorial decision-making.
She’s had a lot of time to think about what works, having been of member of the team since 2009, when the department was called sponsored content. For our latest So What Do You Do feature, Drell spoke with Mediabistro about how Mashable, and her department, have changed since she arrived:
When I started, we did not want to do any integration; it was sponsorship of editorial content. I always said, ‘Our readers are going to rebel against it,’ and while we’ve now gotten a little more comfortable with some integration, the branded content we create is never about the brand. There might be product placement, but we’re never going to be touting the brand itself.