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I thought I loved reading—until I met my coworker Michelle. Michelle actually LOVES reading. She’s been known to come to the office completely exhausted on many occasions because she’s been up until 3:30 a.m. totally immersed in a book. For the same reason, she’s also been known to cancel plans with friends and family—she simply can’t tear herself away. I’ve also seen her pick up discarded bookshelves at curbsides because she is always in need of places to store her impressive library. I should also mention her favorite Christmas gift—an embosser that imprints “Library of Michelle Mittens” on all of her books:
If Michelle was a Disney character, she’d be Belle from Beauty in the Beast—who was known not only for liking extremely hairy and easily agitated men (I can’t say for sure that Michelle’s fiancé fits this description…) but for also always having her nose stuck in a book.
Much to every writer’s chagrin, not everyone loves reading as much as Michelle. When you think about the target audience for your business, you’ve got to remember that different people prefer to digest information in different formats.
Some people think of content marketing as synonymous with blogging. The truth is, blogging is simply one type of content marketing strategy your business should execute.
“Content is anything that communicates a message to the audience. Anything.” – Ian Laurie
- Graphs, charts, and other data
- Case studies and white papers
- Social media posts
- Downloadable materials
- Shopper guides
- Project galleries
- Email newsletters
- Interactive quizzes
These are all examples of content assets your business can and should add to your content library. Doing so will help you engage a wider variety of individuals in your target audience by providing information to them in the format they prefer.
A Few Examples of Non-Blog Content
Hullco Exteriors offers replacement windows, entry doors, siding, roofing, gutters, and more in the Chattanooga, TN area. Hullco believes that “finding out details on products and companies should be easy”—that’s why the company offers all of its information in one place: its downloads page.
On Hullco’s downloads page, you’ll find comparison guides, shoppers guides, and even a contractor standards guides. These downloads condense all of Hullco’s product information to help customers determine what product is right for them and also explain why they should choose Hullco.
Zen Habits is a popular Zen blog with over a million “breath-taking” readers. The blog is ad-free, but author Leo Babauta still manages to monetize his blog through ebooks and online courses.
What better way to demonstrate your authority on a topic than by offering an online course?
I like ebooks because your prospects get the pleasure of getting something valuable for free while you get the pleasure of building value and desire for your products and services. Have you seen our ebook—The Remodeler’s Web Marketing Blueprint? It’s available for download and is also available on remodelerwebguide.com.
I recently took a quiz on BuzzFeed that promised me by the end of the quiz, they would be able to predict how many people I’ve slept with. My results? 86. Alright, BuzzFeed.
According to an article on nypost.com, “Buzzfeed says the quizzes are smashing traffic records and generating more Facebook comment threads than any viral posts in the site’s history. Experts say the phenomenon isn’t surprising given the age-old fascination with that central question — “Who AM I?” — and a desire to compare ourselves with others in a social media-obsessed society.”
Companies like Interact and SnapApp will help your company make a quiz, though there are also WordPress plugins and other cheaper ways to make a quiz if you’ve got a trusty designer/developer to help you make it look nice.
One of the most well-referenced examples of video marketing is BlendTec’s “Will It Blend” YouTube series. According to a SocialLens case study,
“The Blendtec “Will it Blend?” series of viral videos started when then new Marketing Director George Wright found out that CEO Tom Dickson and the R&D team had a practice of blending up wooden boards to test product toughness. Wright had an idea to shoot video of the operation and post it online. He invested under $100 in supplies and convinced Dickson to blend up other things on camera. 186 videos later, Blendtec’s retail sales are up a reported 700 percent, its YouTube site has 200,000+ subscribers, and it has been featured on major mainstream media outlets like The Today Show, The Tonight Show, The History Channel, The Wall Street Journal and others.”
This video series was insanely successful for many reasons, but one of the things I liked most about it was a form on the website asking for suggestions for items to blend. How’s that for customer engagement?
Learn More About Content Marketing
Although almost any type of business can benefit from content marketing, Blue Corona specializes in content marketing services for home service businesses such as bathroom remodelers, contractors, HVAC companies, kitchen remodelers, landscapers, plumbers, roofing companies, and more.
About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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