Find innovative and creative content marketing ideas for all your digital marketing channels in this ultimate cheat sheet.
Content marketing is intended for the consumer. It’s content that is created, generated, and distributed for readers seeking information, potential buyers, interested parties, and prospective clients.
Content marketing can take on many forms, so having a cheat sheet in your back pocket to pull ideas from when you feel like you’ve said everything there is to say on a particular topic is crucial to your long-term success.
Discover a few new ideas or find out how to get started with this comprehensive content marketing ideas cheat sheet.
What’s the Purpose of Content Marketing?
Contrary to popular belief, the focus of content marketing is NOT meant to be used to solely sell products or services. Providing answers to a prospective customer’s questions and queries, and offering solution-based content to help them solve a problem is the objective.
The long-term goal of creating the content is to connect with your target audience in a genuinely authentic way.
Then and only then will the business experience a cost-efficient increase in revenue by way of sharing industry-specific knowledge and information with prospective customers.
A study by Semrush, with more than 1,500 marketers from various countries revealed that B2B and B2C companies and even non-profit organizations all know content marketing helps with moving customers along the buyer journey, primarily at the beginner stages.
Strategic content marketing can help you achieve these top-of-funnel business goals and more:
- Generating more quality leads (79%)
- Driving more website traffic (75%)
- Improving brand reputation (57%)
- Improving customer engagement and loyalty (47%)
Semrush also surveyed companies and organizations about their content marketing challenges and discovered 34% struggled with finding ideas for creating new content.
The first step in creating content is to consider which modes of distribution will be most effective for your marketing plan. A few of the most popular types of content marketing used by businesses include the following:
- Blog posts
- Social media posts
- Email newsletters
- Case studies
- White papers
To master the content marketing game, you must exercise your creativity with out-of-the-box thinking, be daring enough to be innovative, as well as have the foresight to expand your reach by diversifying the types of content you produce.
Innovative Content Marketing Ideas
Here are four innovative forms of content marketing to incorporate that will help you step outside the box to boost your campaigns and achieve your marketing goals.
Visual content is image-based.
A few examples include infographics, charts, memes, and photos.
Why use visual content as one of the effective content marketing ideas? The majority of Internet users do not want to invest their time solely in reading. Often they just do a preliminary scan to know if the page has the information they need. Therefore, combining text with images will likely encourage them to complete reading. Use high-quality, relevant, and interesting images to capture their attention. Try to use your own photos because it is more cost-efficient and more personal.
If this is not possible, photo-sharing sites can provide free vectors and images, including Pixabay and Unsplash. You may use them as-is or create memes and infographics from these images to make them more interesting for site visitors.
Live Streaming Video
Live streaming has changed the way businesses communicate with their target audience. It allows brands to build a personal connection with them through face-to-face interaction. This style of interaction makes the audience feel included and, at the same time, excited to participate.
Therefore, adding live streaming to your content marketing plan can help convert viewers into customers as you encourage them to make a purchase. In a survey by Marketing Land, 28% of the more than 1,000 decision-makers in the creative and digital marketing industry expect to invest in live streaming.
Additionally, as the audience shares your live videos on their social media channels, (on average 48% do this), they bring in their families, friends, and even acquaintances into the fold.
So, what should you share? Connect with your followers by doing a live session of a product or service demonstration, and giving industry-related tips to show skills and subsequently build trust.
Ubermetrics defined voice-activated content as auditory content delivered through voice-activated technologies, such as smart speakers and smartphone assistants.
As consumers now switch to voice interfaces to find, compare and buy products, or services, voice-enabled content can be considered one of the effective content marketing ideas. It can open windows of opportunities to capture consumer attention, improve engagement, and encourage them to take action.
Voice-activated content may still be in the initial phase, but forecasts indicate that voice shopping will make up the $40 billion US consumer spending by 2022.
As voice-enabled content is related to voice search optimization, optimizing the website and content for voice searches is a must. One quick tip is to use natural language like “Find a sushi restaurant me.”
Another tactic to optimize content for voice search is to focus on long-tail keywords, taking into consideration how you talk and not how you write. Additionally, optimize website and content for local SEO. For example, when someone searches “Where is the nearby pet shop in San Diego?,” Google will be able to find your pet shop in San Diego.
Expand your reach and extend the life of your content by repurposing one form of content into another.
A research post can be converted into an informational infographic. You start by taking all the data previously gathered and present a well-designed infographic. There are websites that offer the use of their templates to create infographics for free.
Another way to repurpose content is to recreate old posts into SlideShare or videos. Also, converting old YouTube video posts into blog posts is also a good idea. You can turn the script into content and use the video screenshots as images. Do not forget to embed the YouTube video within the post.
Diversify Your Blogging Themes
Blogging is the most popular form of content marketing among B2B and B2C companies. Over the years, content formats change, but blogging remains a staying power. It’s an excellent way to interact with your target audience.
What makes blogging so effective? It’s simple: prospective customers ask for information and then you give it to them.
Users search the web for information or to find answers to their questions. Getting their attention is possible if you are able to answer their queries through blog posts. They will read your posts if they find them interesting and informative. Subsequently, this converts site visitors into clients if you earn their trust.
But blogging is not as easy as it looks. There are two factors you must take into consideration for blogging:
- How you will optimize your content for search engines like Google, and
- How you will generate ideas for your content topics on a regular basis.
Don’t worry if you haven’t thought of anything yet though, here are a few popular blogging ideas to help you out:
Times have changed.
The standard text and image style will no longer work to encourage site visitors to read posts or even more share them. Therefore, you have to think of ways on how to reinforce each blog post. One way to do this is to add interesting visuals.
For instance, you can create data-driven visuals and use them as images for blog posts instead of plain, ordinary pictures. For example, imagine you have found a perfect quote from a well-known thinker or personality to include in your blog post. Design an image that includes the picture of the personality and the quote. This provides the reader with more to connect with thereby better holding their interest.
Data-driven-based posts can be difficult, but it’s worth the time and effort. It makes content more credible and persuasive because it is backed by statistics.
To start, you have to select a topic and research it. This allows you to narrow down your topic to something more specific. Once a worthy topic is found it's time to gather data. Of course, any data, especially statistics or claims, should be credible and cited. If readers find a research post to helpful and illuminating it will build trust with your business.
3. Ultimate Guides
The ultimate guide post must serve its purpose, which is to write a comprehensive post that is both useful and interesting to the target audience. It is best then to take the time when writing this type of blog post to avoid shortchanging readers. To say that it is an ultimate guide, it must then be rich in related information.
It’s correct to say that this type of post isn’t new anymore. However, it remains one of the best content marketing ideas because it directly addresses readers' issues.
How-to posts must consistently connect with the target audience. To do this, you can change the way to present them to attract readership, such as combining text with an infographic.
Aside from the text, you may create an infographic to clearly and visually explain how to execute the process like “how to apply a moisturizer” or “how to clean your carpet.” Additionally, an explainer video can go with the blog post. Site visitors will understand and take action if the process becomes easier to do understand.
Often, blog posts carry these words in their titles:
- Top 10
- Top Reasons
- 5 Must-Haves
- 25 Christmas Recipes
Sites write posts this way to deliver information in an easy-to-read format. Some people do not have the time to read an article fully, or they just have the habit of scanning content instead of reading. Some even prefer to go straight to the information they want to know. Therefore, list posts are perfect for these types of readers.
Luckily, list posts tend to be easier to write. They also drive traffic to your site and are more likely to be shared or go viral. Thus, they are ideal for your blog.
Audiences love a good checklist post. For one, it is very easy to read and understand because they are broken down into a checklist format. If the readers are preparing for travel, they can cross out what has been prepared already. When cooking, recipes and instructions that are written in the checklist format are easy to follow as well.
Interviewing influencers in the industry is an example of an interesting interview post. The process can be easier by just sending them a list of questions that they have to answer and send back to you. You may write an introduction and a short profile, and then include the list of questions and answers.
Interview posts offer a lot of potentials when it comes to driving site traffic. When you feature an influencer, then expect increased blog traffic, brand awareness, and user engagement.
According to RhythmOne, the influencer marketing engagement rate reached an average of 9.66% in 2018. The one reason for this is because, aside from your own, they have their specific audience set already. When the interview post is shared on their social media platforms, this reaches their own social network as well.
8. Question & Answer Format
What type of information does your target audience still need? What questions do they still have in mind? As a business or an organization, answering most, if not all, of the queries they have is vital. But how will you know that?
Pull questions from Facebook groups and provide answers to the questions in the form of a blog post or as a social media caption of your own.
Try visiting Quora to learn what people are asking. Quora can help to find more inquiries related to your niche where you will find every possible answer to people who are asking for information.
From there, you will have more content marketing ideas and begin to create Question-and-Answer posts.
Creative Content Marketing Ideas
As an expert in your industry already, running your business is like second nature.
However, content marketing is a different ball of wax. It requires creativity that you may or may not be equipped to provide. Just knowing that you need content to be present online isn’t enough. You have to know what you will create and how you will create it.
But, don't let this intimidate you. Here are a number of creative content marketing ideas to get you started.
1. Use Content Made By Users
User-generated content comes in the form of reviews, videos, and images.
People or customers are the ones that create them and share them on their social media accounts. In the process, this helps the business promote brand awareness, improve credibility, and boost sales.
Therefore, encourage buyers to share their experiences with your products or services on their social media accounts like Instagram and Facebook. This may not be an easy thing to do, but there is the option to offer them freebies or discounts when they share them on their own websites, social media accounts, and other marketing channels.
2. Convert Educational Content into a Slideshow Presentation
Turn your most viewed content into a slideshow presentation and post it on Slideshare.
You can also try using Google Slides or Canva to create a slide presentation from your blog post content that was originally formatted as listicles, how-tos, or ultimate guides.
Post the presentation content directly to your website or go a step further to share the content with your audience in a monthly newsletter or for an email campaign.
3. Launch a Question-of-the-Week Campaign
Try launching a Question-of-the-Week post on your website. Start by using questions frequently asked by your followers that may not be addressed in the FAQ section of your website.
To make followers feel connected and engaged, you may even want to expand the question sharing on your social media accounts and include the names and photos of the featured followers.
4. Share Personal Stories
Engage readers with your storytelling. Share your origin story, the company's inception idea, or a historical account of a specific experience for inspiration. You may also write about struggles and how you were able to cope with them. Get creative with it, but remember to stay in your niche.
The more connected your customers feel, the more likely you’ll earn their trust.
5. Host a Round-Up
Hosting a community or expert round-up on your website has immense networking opportunities.
Whether you conduct outreach or simply compile your list from research, you will be tapping into a large group of people and their own established networks within an industry in one fell swoop.
6. Get Help from Guest Bloggers
Guest bloggers can breathe a new perspective into your blog. Focus on inviting only experts or personalities in the same industry as yours.
Guest bloggers will appreciate the added exposure. And in turn, the business gets exposure from their audience when they share their guest posts.
It’s a win-win!
Businesses and organizations that fully grasp the purpose of content marketing and embrace new content marketing ideas will survive and stay for the long term.
Use this ultimate content marketing ideas cheat sheet to achieve your marketing goals.