Content is the fundamental building block of the internet as a whole and any brand’s online presence. The purpose of producing content for your business is to increase visibility and ensnare your audience’s attention so you can gently massage them into your action funnel. So many companies have such a narrow view when it comes to their content marketing strategy that they’d have been better off foregoing it completely.
Word Agents, on the other hand, understands the importance of empathizing with a demographics’ point of view. Not every user on the net wants to read blog post after blog post, nor is that always the appropriate medium for your product or service. Below, we will guide you through a vast array of content types that can entertain and inform your users while easily impressing your brand into their minds and persuading their hearts that your business is right for them.
Without further ado, in no particular order…
Blog Posts – Use your blog for informal topics written in a casual voice to report news about your industry or your business. Tell of your achievements, events, opinions, announcements, and more. Keep these in production to let your client-base know you’re on top of your game and always moving forward.
Magazine / Journalistic Articles – This is your opportunity to increase your reach. By producing longer content filled with images, graphs, and more, you can achieve a higher rate of social sharing and link acquisition. Don’t forget to use a story arc, use descriptive language to inspire imagery, and speak with a more formal tone of authority and inquisitiveness. Be succinct but intriguing.
Product Reviews – Introduce your current or potential customers to your own product line and service offerings. Keep it realistic by mentioning both pros and cons. By choosing your words carefully, you can build trust on a very subtle level that can be very persuasive.
Press Releases – Sometimes events occur that justify an announcement bigger than a blog post. Press releases can alert high level and relevant news sources of your happenings, which will then report this to their own readership. Be careful when including backlinks to your website. Use only brand anchors or URL anchors to avoid over-optimization penalties in the search engines.
Guides – Many people search the internet for information on how to perform some action through their own efforts. This is very “warm” traffic because many realize in the process that they’d rather just pay someone else to fix their problem. This is where your guide comes in. By showing your expertise and using calls-to-action, you can easily obtain new customers.
Newsletters – Hopefully you are capturing as much contact info for your current and prospective customer as possible. Sending out physical or digital newsletters is a great way to repeatedly impress your brand upon your audience while warming them to your presence in their lives. This is a great chance to report news related to your business and industry, provide tips and tricks, offer coupons, and more. Use analytics data to determine the optimum frequency and times to mail your contact list.
Ebooks – There are few greater ways to increase your reach and revenue than with Ebooks. You can sell them directly for increased profits or use a free PDF download as a hook for signing up to your mailing list. Consider including hyperlinks back to your website within the file.
White Papers / Research – Too many companies regurgitate information. Be on the cutting edge by reporting your own research findings. This will increase confidence in your brand. With clever marketing, being the first to break this original news can very beneficial to your brand’s visibility online.
Testimonials – Consider dedicating a page to testimonials or tastefully slipping them into other pieces of content. You can obtain these by explicitly asking your customer’s to report their experiences. Don’t fall for the temptation of falsifying your own testimonials though.
Case Studies – Nothing is more interesting than real data concerning your products and services. Validating the power of your brand is very easy through longitudinal and latitudinal studies that prove the efficacy of your offerings. Be sure to include many graphs, tables, and pie charts.
Lists – By compiling, organizing, and summarizing vast amounts of info for your users, you can offer massive value in a short period of time (much like this very post). Research has shown that starting your content’s title off with a number such as “177 Ideas” or “Top 9 Concepts” produce a very high click-through-rating to your article.
FAQ’s, Q&A’s, Glossary – Introduce newcomers to the industry by clarifying concepts, explaining jargon and acronyms, and answering any questions they might have using this type of content. These articles can become pillars for your business that continue to gain links and social shares for you over the years to come.
Industry Resources – Brainstorm all of the angles that an interested user may approach your industry and gather a list of the top resources to help them along their way. Many may leave momentarily only to return to your business to help them achieve their goals. By actually linking to your competitors, you can alert them of your contribution and coerce them to brag about it to their readership, which will then become your readership.
User Generated Content – Producing content consistently can be a chore for any business, but your customers can help by leaving blog comments, forum posts, and micro-blogging posts on social media for you. You don’t always have to wait for them to take action. You can ask or you can even seed the conversation with your own accounts. Use this method on your own properties and others around the internet to attract more traffic to your website.
Micro-blogging – Using social media can be beneficial, and even more so through micro-blogging about current events. Send employees out to conferences and events and have them post what’s happening with time stamps to the various social media sites that allow micro-blogging such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
Infographics – Summarize an aspect or your entire industry or business by producing a highly educational graphic image. Few other graphic types can attract as many links, social shares, and traffic as these long, vertically designed pieces of content.
Slideshows – This type of content allows the user to interact slightly, keeping them engaged as they absorb the content you’re providing. Perhaps you gave a presentation at a conference or want to walk your customer through a specific sequence of events. Don’t miss the opportunity to use this type of shareable and easily accessible content.
Graphs & Concept Visualizations – As a standalone piece of content or dispersed in other types, visualizations of data can grab user’s attention and keep them involved in your website for longer portions of time. They also impart a sense of authority and trust, since few others tend to take advantage of this content type.
Image Quotes – This type of content is quick to produce and endlessly scalable. They are perfect for social media, particularly Facebook and Pinterest, where they demand very little time to consume and inspire “likes, shares, and repins” with the click of a button. They may not convince people to buy, but they are great pieces of the funnel that can draw attention and raise brand awareness more than many other types.
Memes – Using meme graphics to rouse laughter or provoke thought is priceless. Like image quotes, these are perfect to increase brand awareness. You will find these most useful on websites such as Reddit and Facebook. Consider static images and animated GIFs.
Cartoon Strips – Drawing comic strips can be easily done by you, an employee, or an outsourced artist and can bring much attention to your brand. Make sure they are funny and tasteful and you’ll make waves on social media easily.
Podcasts – Countless people spend hours commuting to and fro daily. Take advantage of their downtime by providing content they can consume in the car, on the train, or anywhere else where they are stuck with only their smart phone or a radio.
Interviews – Find prominent members in your industry to interview. The amount of insight provided, the inspiration given, and the information revealed makes these pieces of audio very valuable to your listeners and thus your business. You can also embed them into your blog and provide a transcript.
Out-Loud Articles – For every worthwhile post you create, your company can hire a voice actor to read the posts out loud so your customers can listen along as they perform other tasks in the car, at home, or at work. This convenience factor will not go unnoticed by your readers.
Commercials – Create entertaining and persuasive pieces of video art in the form of commercials to use as advertisements for your products and services. Sharing them on Youtube and Facebook, even with paid advertising, can increase your bottom line very easily after optimizing your campaigns.
How-To’s – Much like the written guides mentioned above, teaching people how to perform an action and solve a problem will often be reciprocated by them hiring you to do it for them. More complicated tasks should be performed on video to remove any confusion the user might have while consuming this content type.
Narrated Slideshows – Any time a presentation is given, an audio recording should be captured as well so it can be converted into a listen-along slideshow. These can be imbedded on your site and uploaded to the countless video sharing websites to capture more traffic.
Webinars – This type of video content can be combined with chatrooms, message boards, and live-streaming events to create a highly interactive experience for your users. There are very few other opportunities to create extreme cliffhangers, calls-to-action, and product offerings than webinars.
Video Blogging – Unlike webinars, in which your users must tune in at a specific time, video blogging can be consumed at any time. Many readers enjoy the more intimate experience of viewing a person speak over reading the written word. Capture this portion of your audience by creating original content or recapitulating your written blog content.
In-The-Field Journalism – If an event is occurring locally, or a large event is happening on the national level, send a team member out with a camera and provide an overview of the event, interview attendees and speakers, and allow your users to experience the event through the eyes of your business. Always remind them of your services and products tastefully throughout the transmission. Consider watermarking the video with your logo and web address as well.
It is easy to feel overwhelmed by the breadth, depth, and time resources demanded by the list above. Don’t sweat it at all. Word Agents is here to help. We are ready and more than capable of helping your brand move into and stay in the limelight. Whether your goal is to brute force your way to the top with large quantities of content or produce a few highly polished pieces to accompany your elite promotional strategies, Word Agents can free your hands and minds from the stress and concern. This is what we do, so you don’t have to!
Your motto for your content strategy should be to “be everywhere at all times.” These 30 types of content will help your company achieve this goal and produce immeasurable positive benefits over the long-term as awareness of your brand continues to grow. Combine these methods with retargeting and your current and future buyers will never forget you.