Content marketing has cemented itself as a major part of companies’ marketing strategy, especially in the B2B world.
It’s an impactful way to build brand authority and help collect and nurture leads.
It’s also time-intensive, and there are a lot of ways to go about it. Here are seven types of content marketing and how they can benefit your business.
7 Types of Content Marketing You Can Use to Boost Engagement
Not every business needs every type of content marketing. Just because something is out there doesn’t mean it’s right for you.
Ultimately, your strategy should consist of channels that work effectively for your business. If you’re not seeing any traction with a particular type, consider sunsetting it in favor of something else.
The most obvious and commonplace of content marketing. Blogs are ubiquitous in pretty much every space – for virtually any topic, there’s a blog about it out there.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t throw your hat in the ring. Blogs are valuable – that’s why everyone does it. If you do it right, blogging can be a great way to increase organic traffic, build your website’s SEO, and boost brand authority to boot.
Blogging takes time, though. To make sure it’s worth spending your time on, you should bear a few things in mind:
- Follow SEO optimization best practices
- Choose topics relevant to your business and your audience
- Spend effort writing solid posts that have real value
Google is a ruthless and cutthroat arena. In order to compete with the big names in your industry, you need to play the game right, but once you build a strong strategy (and some clout), you can get your posts ranking well.
People love videos. Video content is engaging and interesting, and can convey information rapidly. It’s a bit harder to get rolling with video than with a blog, for example, but it’s definitely worth it.
It’s also a very flexible medium. You can create a wide variety of content beyond just a traditional advertisement. Instead of just posting a blog, try setting up a camera in front of a nice background, and talk about your blog’s topic.
Then take that transcript and use that as the body of your post’s content.
The barrier to entry isn’t very high – depending on what you want to do, you might be able to get away with a smartphone and a tripod.
On the flip side, the sky’s the limit with video. You can go so far as to put together a green-screen room complete with great equipment and put out polished, pro videos.
Don’t like being on camera, but have valuable content to talk about? Consider a podcast. More and more companies are jumping on the podcast train.
All you need is a decent microphone – I recommend a decent entry-level USB microphone like a Blue Yeti, or an Audio Technica AT2020+ USB, to get you started. Podcasts with poor sound quality won’t get many listeners, so it’s worth picking up something that will deliver a good signal without much fuss.
The other thing, in terms of tools, is recording software. There’s free software out there, like Audacity, that can get the job done. If you’re on a Mac, you’ll have GarageBand, which generally comes bundled for free on the system.
As an added bonus, GarageBand has a great “narration” preset you can toss on your recording to get a nice, solid sound without needing to know much about the details of audio effects.
Podcasts are a great way to build your authority and reach a different audience. You can drive traffic to your other channels this way, too, using mid-roll ads.
4. Case Studies
Case studies are useful for marketers in general. Gating them behind a form gives you a way to collect leads, and they’re very valuable as part of a nurturing strategy as well.
A good case study underscores how valuable your product or service is, especially if the company in question is similar to your target audience.
For example, if you’re sending an email lead generation campaign, it’s a whole lot more persuasive if you can say “here’s a case study about how <company in the same industry as the reader> used our product to get X result, and I think we can get similar or better results for you.”
They’re a great tool for adding some clout to your marketing, regardless of channel, by backing it up with real-world results.
5. User-Generated Content
It never hurts to see what people are saying about you. Search social media platforms for keywords around your brand and see what comes up. If someone’s posted something cool or funny that relates to you, share it!
Not only does this create direct engagement with the person who created the content, it shows that you’re actively paying attention to what people are saying about you.
Everyone likes a good meme, right? Using memes is a fairly new evolution in content marketing, and it can have a massive impact on how people perceive your brand.
If you do it right, you can generate lots of buzz and engagement. Savvy marketers are using memes to great effect on social media – Hulu’s Twitter account comes to mind here.
Memes can be a double-edged sword, though, which I talk about in the “Pop Culture References” section of this post on B2B content writing.
Whitepapers are a great way to establish yourself in a more technical arena. These long-form content pieces are typically more dense, and tend towards being more dry and factual.
Where most content marketing tends to be more casual and conversational, even when it’s something valuable like a blog post, whitepapers are often more formal in language.
Writing an in-depth paper on a technical aspect of your industry can do wonders for your authority. The trick is to write them in a way that’s informative, detailed, and not painfully dry.