Content marketing can be a very successful marketing tactic when done correctly, and more and more companies are employing it every day. There are many different types of content that can be used in content marketing campaigns, but sometimes, businesses struggle to create content that sticks with customers and search engines.
When creating content pieces for content marketing use, it is important to consider both the topic of the content and also the type or format of the content you are producing. Be sure both align with your customers’ needs. For example, a short video may work great for one target audience, but a comprehensive whitepaper may speak to another audience better.
When brainstorming content marketing ideas, ask yourself the following questions:
- What questions do customers frequently have about our products or services?
- What information can I give to my customers that positions my business as a leader in the industry?
- What content does my audience want or need to make a decision?
By answering these questions, you will start to uncover what content is useful to your customers. Now, it is your job to provide that content to your customers, keeping keyword research in mind, in a format that is engaging and easily digestible.
However, there are several types of content many organizations seem to avoid. Consider the following types of content that you probably aren’t creating currently, but you should:
If you’ve done keyword research about your products or services, chances are you have come across data that shows people are searching for cost and pricing information.
People are always going to search for pricing and won’t make a decision until they find out. However, many businesses are afraid of creating content disclosing price and cost, assuming consumers expect exact pricing. Conversely, that isn’t the case most of the time.
You don’t have to specify the exact cost of a product or service in your blog post or on your landing page that discusses pricing. Instead, just address it by including a range or indicating an estimate. The truth is, you need to provide your customers this information. You will gain a huge competitive advantage if you are the only one in your industry creating content around pricing.
Other types of content that consumers use to make purchasing decisions are comparisons and reviews. Again, some companies are concerned about creating content that compares their products to a competitor. However, if you can position your product or service to come out on top, does it matter that you mention your competitor’s name? Not really.
Think about the last time you shopped for a TV, car, phone, etc. You probably looked for reviews or comparisons. Maybe even searching for product 1 vs. product 2.
People want comparison and review content, so it is your job to create content featuring your product or service that will be found by potential customers. Otherwise, you risk your competitors creating content in which their product or service outperforms yours.
3. Free Guides
Free guides and whitepapers may require more of an investment than other content types, but are worth the venture in many industries. Free guides and whitepapers work well in marketing situations where one of your key focuses is to drive leads to your website, or build your email list.
Create free guides or whitepapers that can aid customers without giving away your business’ proprietary processes, and give it away for free. Just require a name and email address in exchange for downloading the document. Don’t ask for too much information, as that may deter people from downloading the document.
Then, use collected email addresses to grow your marketing list and nurture those leads. Be sure your free guide or whitepaper offers great worth, as a low-value piece can discourage downloads, as well. The best part about this type of content (almost any type, really) is that once it’s produced and put online, it just keeps working for you for years to come.
Interviews are a very simple way to provide great content to your audience while simultaneously positioning yourself as an expert in your industry. Interviews can be video or text-based — both are easily consumed by consumers.
Start by reaching out to experts in your field and discuss moving forward with either a video or text-based interview format. For video interviews, schedule a time that works for both parties and record via Google+ Hangout or even Skype.
For text-based interviews, consider sending the interviewee 10-12 questions and ask him/her to answer as many as they are comfortable with. When finished, you have a blog post. By interviewing experts in your field, you become an expert as well, as your website provides expert information.
Believe it or not, creating video content is not as hard as you think, and it’s always getting easier. Between Google+ Hangouts, the ability to record Skype and webinar sessions, and almost everyone having access to some sort of video recording device, creating video content can’t get much simpler.
As previously mentioned, video interviews make great content pieces. Be sure to record webinars to repurpose them into video content. Also, don’t be afraid to shoot your own video. Use a smart phone camera or invest in a more serious camera and create video content about your products, services, team members and anything else that would be beneficial and interesting to your audience.
The key with video is to just jump in and start filming. You might leave a lot on the cutting room floor, but it will never happen if you don’t start filming.
In summary, there are many different types of content you can generate for your content marketing campaigns. However, it is crucial to consider the above types of content that can truly set you apart from your competition. These types of content are often overlooked by businesses but can provide customers with the information they need and are searching for. If you provide it – you win!
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land.