It’s no secret that content has been driving online activity for some time, but more recently marketers are emphasizing the significance of quality to the material they’re creating. Companies specializing in content development services can no longer count on quantity to increase visibility, with weak blog articles or monotonous social media posts. Google and the other search engine giants constantly strive to improve the user search experience by rewarding informative, error-free content and punishing marketers who manipulate SEO.
At the same time, content is no longer only about the written word. Today’s savvy content development firm knows that video, images, podcasts and other forms of content are increasingly popular. The new face of online marketing uses several formats that get a thumb’s up from both users and search engines.
1. Blog Posts: Blogging should be a central component to your marketing campaign. Posting articles that are educational and interesting to your audience enables you to demonstrate your expertise. Many of your potential customers aren’t ready to buy, but blogging helps you earn their trust: They’ll come to you when the time is right.
2. Embedded Tweets: Twitter’s function for embedding tweets is under-utilized in the world of content, which is unfortunate considering its simplicity. Embedded tweets are your way of showing off the positive things being said about your company online. You can include real time tweets on your website, giving you another option for promoting your business.
3. Livestream Video: This content is a great multi-tasker, as it can both drive traffic and serve as high-quality content. Visitors will flock to your website during the session, which gives you the opportunity to insert additional calls-to-action and encourage them to navigate to other pages. The format should be similar to blog content in that you provide valuable information, while avoiding too much sales-speak.
4. EBooks: Usually published as a PDF, eBooks are a type of long-format content that go into great depth about a particular topic in an industry. Another excellent lead generator similar to white papers, the intent is to make them downloadable and offer them in exchange for the user’s contact information. Firms specializing in content development services use eBooks often, as they are a proven strategy for demonstrating a company’s expertise and establishing trust.
5. White Papers: More and more consumers are researching products and companies online before making purchases, so it’s important for your business to be there with the information they need when they want it. White papers are a powerful tool for lead generation, because you get their contact information in exchange for providing them with valuable industry information. Plus, they can be published in a variety of places, including your website, emails and social media profile.
6. Case Studies: It’s best to use a case study when you want to demonstrate how your company helped a customer eliminate a business pain through your product or services. They’re especially effective when you describe the challenges that were faced and how you addressed them, so avoid the off-putting marketing language. Case studies should offer a storytelling-style tone and include a step-by-step approach to how you solved your customer’s problems. Don’t forget to include relevant client quotes and a strong call-to-action.
7. Podcasts: Whether audio or video, podcasts are perfect for busy professionals who want to stay current in their industry during commutes or business travel. In addition to the podcasting websites and iTunes, you can also link to them from your website or blog post.
8. Press Releases: This type of content is your company’s way of communicating newsworthy information to the online world. They’re best used when announcing details about market developments or achievements in your industry. Content development services typically publish press releases with the major web news outlets, which boost your company’s exposure and separates you from the competition.
With the wide array of tools that are available online, it’s no wonder more companies are using professional content development services to lead their marketing efforts. Does your company handle web advertising in-house or have you hired a content development firm? What types of content has been most successful at various stages of the sales funnel? We’d love to hear about your experiences below.