It’s easy to get stuck in a rut with content marketing, churning out posts on your blog but never trying anything new.
Blog posts are just one type of content you can produce, though – use our handy list (and these examples) as inspiration.
Many of these examples are ones that we’ve shared recently in the Weekly Optimiser and our monthly newsletter. Make sure you’re on the mailing list (put your email address in the box in the right-hand sidebar) and have our RSS feed for lots more great examples of content marketing in action.
#1: Blog posts
We’ll start with this basic – and important – type of content marketing: writing blog posts. We’d go as far as to say that if you could only create one type of content, this should be it. (You could create a blog post in just two hours per week.)
- Rich Snippets: The Now-You-See-Them-Now-You-Don’t Phenomenon (Rich Benci, Search Engine Journal)
- Why “Simple” Websites Are Scientifically Better (Tommy Walker, ConversionXL)
Pro resource: 26 Tips for Writing Great Blog Posts – Debbie Hemley shares a great blogging tip for every letter of the alphabet on Social Media Examiner.
#2: Guest posts
A guest post is a blog post that you publish on someone else’s site. Normally, you’ll get a short “bio” with a link back to your own blog / site / sales page (or whatever else you want to link to). Your post should be useful and informative, not self-promotional.
- 100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work (Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant, guest posting on Copyblogger)
- How to Double, Triple or Quadruple Your Writing Speed ... Today! (Martin Stellar, guest posting on Firepole Marketing)
Pro resource: The Ultimate Guide to Advanced Guest Blogging – Moz digs deep to break the guest posting process into actionable steps.
Images may get shared on Facebook, pinned on Pinterest, or even reposted on other blogs. They can get an immediate reaction or have a “wow” factor that a blog post, full of text, lacks. Images could be anything from an inspiring photo with a great quote written across it to a graph of some key statistics in your industry.
- The Marmite page on Facebook makes great use of images
- The Freelance Freedom comic
Pro resource: 4 Tips for Making Visual Content Go Viral – and Benefit Your Business – in-depth advice from Dan Tynski on the Content Marketing Institute blog
An infographic is information presented in graphical form. It might include tips, do’s and don’ts, statistics, key facts, a checklist, graphs, or almost anything you can think of. Rather than producing this in-house, you’ll probably hire an outside firm to work on it for you.
- How to Increase Your Twitter Engagement by 324% [Infographic] (Neil Patel, QuickSprout)
- Goldilocks SEO: The Thin Wedge of Profitability Between Apathy & Spam (SEOBook)
Pro resource: How to Create an Infographic in an Hour or Less [5 Free PPT Templates]
Some potential customers would much rather watch a video than read a blog post – and YouTube videos often rank highly in Google (which owns YouTube). The main drawback of video is that to make it look really professional, you need to invest in quality hardware (camera, mic).
Pro resource: Why Video Content Marketing is the Next Big Thing – this post answers key questions about video marketing and offers useful advice based on B2B company Block Imaging’s experiences, plus links to extra resources .
You might not think of testimonials as a form of content marketing, but they’re a very powerful way to convince a prospect to buy. By quoting real-life customers (especially those willing for you to use their full name and even photo), you build real trust in your product or service.
Pro resource: How to Get More Testimonials and Reviews – by Asking – our post guides you step by step through the process of getting more testimonials from your customers, with handy tips and ideas.
Lots of people enjoy podcasts rather than (or in addition to) blogs, subscribing to shows through their phone and listening to them on the go. Podcasts can also be a great way to go deeper into a topic and allow you to bring on board expert guests.
- BlogcastFM, where Srini Rao interviews big names in the blogging world.
- The PRN Podcast from Joe Pulilzzi and Content Marketing Institute.
Pro resource: How to Start a Podcast – Pat’s Complete Step-by-Step Podcasting Tutorial – this is a huge guide by Pat Flynn that covers pretty much everything you could want to know.
#8: Ebooks or guides (downloadable)
Longer than a blog post, a free, downloadable ebook or white paper is a great way to give prospects a truly valuable piece of content. You can ask for their email address before giving them the ebook, or get them to join your email newsletter first – see #9.
- Our free guides, currently including Attention-Grabbing Titles and Reputation Management.
- An Introduction to Pinterest for Business (Hubspot)
Pro resource: The Essential Guide to Writing an eBook & Sharing it With the World – this post by Jeff Goins is fairly compact but packed with useful information.
It’s easy to forget the humble email when it comes to content marketing – but emails are still a crucial type of content. An email newsletter, full of useful information rather than sales pitches, is a great way to keep your brand alive in the minds and inboxes of prospects and existing customers.
- Our newsletter – if you want to see how we do it, just sign up in the sidebar.
- The Moz Top Ten – inbound marketing news
Pro resource: Mailchimp's Guides – begin with "Getting Started" and "Common Rookie Mistakes". We use MailChimp to deliver the Zen Optimise newsletter.
#10: SlideShare presentations
In case you’ve not come across it before, SlideShare is a huge site full of PowerPoint presentations – think of it as YouTube for PowerPoint. With lots of graphics and minimal text, these are a popular and easily-digested format for content. (Tip: edit any presentations you’ve delivered live so that they make sense without any further information.)
- How to Tell Your Story in 2014 (The Right Way) (Gary Vaynerchuk)
- Content Marketing Playbook: 24 Epic Ideas for Connecting with Your Customers (Content Marketing Institute)
Pro resource: How a Webinar Presentation Generated 10,000 Slideshare Views in 1 Week (DNN) – an inspiring post full of great advice for your own SlideShare presentation.
Of course, there’s a lot more to content marketing than simply picking a type of content to create (though that’s a good start). If you’d like some help and support, check out our new content marketing course – details below.
Content marketing course
Our content marketing course follows on from our SEO introduction and SEO intermediate courses, and is suitable for both SEOs and content writers. It’s a day long course packed with everything you need to know about content marketing, covering strategy, development, promotion and outreach – with plenty of hands on exercises and lots of examples. You can get the full details (and book your place) here.