(This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)
For many brands, content marketing makes for one of the most effective ways of reaching, engaging, and nurturing audiences into loyal customers. It offers stellar benefits to anyone committed to regular posting and high-quality production. However, it also comes with some serious challenges. One of these is coming up with fresh content marketing ideas on a regular basis.
Are you stuck in a rut and need some inspiration? Or maybe you’re diligent in your work and just want to prepare for the next big thing in content marketing. Either way, read on for the best creative and killer content marketing ideas – along with examples.
Using Your Expertise
One of the most powerful weapons in your arsenal is your expertise, regardless of your industry, niche, and competition. What really counts is that you know what you’re doing and are ready to share your insights with your audience.
And, the best part is, using your expertise in content marketing is great for both B2C and B2B brands. The following are some of the possible ways you can make this happen on your distribution channels.
Idea #1: Buyer’s Guides
Whether you run an ecommerce business or not, investing in great buyer’s guide content is always a solid investment. That’s not only because you can monetize it to make a profit but also because internet audiences love conducting product research online. If you can provide them with the type of content they’re after, you’ll be:
- boosting your SEO
- building your authority
- potentially even increasing your revenue
An excellent example of a brand that helps its potential customers by helping them conduct research is the social media management tool company SocialPilot. This example blog post showcases the pros and cons of the various tools out there to help them choose the right one – and hopefully it is their own!
What’s interesting about their approach is that it doesn’t just do the homework for the reader. It actually calls readers’ attention to the features they should be looking out for, giving them valuable advice they may not get elsewhere, and from an expert in the space!
Idea #2: How-To Posts
Another killer content marketing idea is to use your expertise to teach your audience how to do something. What matters is that you offer your readers or viewers simple directions that they’ll be able to recreate at home.
For one of the best executions of how-to content, check out the following video by Epicurious. It explains how to slice every type of fruit, complete with insider tips by a professional chef and helpful timestamps.
Idea #3: White Papers
Are you an expert who can put together more than a couple of thousand words on a subject? Do you have some original information that you could share with your audience? If that’s the case, white papers make for one of the best content marketing ideas you should try out.
These in-depth reports allow you to cover complex subjects and position your brand as an authority in your niche. Moreover, they allow you to create original content that your competition (most likely) isn’t producing.
For a great example of a brand fully utilizing the potential of white paper reports, look no further than Gartner. Their research spans a variety of topics and offers readers original data they couldn’t get anywhere else.
Idea #4: Gated Ebooks & Resources
One great way to take the previous content marketing idea further is to turn valuable information into gated resources.
By adopting this strategy, you’ll achieve two things. On the one hand, you’ll be turning your expertise into an exclusive asset that only you can offer. On the other hand, you’ll create an effective lead generation form that will help grow your business with content marketing.
For inspiration, you can check out this blog’s Maximizing LinkedIn for Business by Neal Schaffer. This ebook is an excellent example showing just how simple this content strategy can be.
Idea #5: Product Reviews and Comparisons
How about creating killer content for people who are doing product research but whose position in the sales funnel means they need specific feature-related information?
Are you interested in using content marketing to appeal to people at all stages of the buying journey? If yes, it’s not a bad idea to consider adding product reviews or product comparisons to your repertoire.
The video below shows how The Sole Brothers YouTube channel does this with a pair of runners from Anta. But don’t be afraid to take a completely different direction with your upcoming post. After all, the absolute best way to do reviews and comparisons will always be to find your original take. That way, your content won’t get lost in a sea of similar posts. Plus, you’ll be on your way to building up a loyal fanbase.
Idea #6: Roundups
What if you know that your audience is looking for a convenient way to consume a large amount of information? Well, if you find yourself short with content marketing ideas for this scenario, you should definitely consider creating roundup posts about your niche.
If you’re an ecommerce store selling a specific type of product, this can be a list of “Top XX” items your buyers might need to get the perfect consumer experience. Like this Sweetwater article about snare drums.
Or, if you’re not trying to sell (or make money through affiliate marketing), then you could do the same thing with information.
For example, this article by WIRED offers fascinating statistics about climate change. Not only is it helpful to the site’s audience interested in the topic, but more importantly, it’s a super-linkable post that plays a part in boosting the site’s authority.
Idea #7: Behind the Scenes
How about using your content marketing strategy to share insights into your industry?
Sometimes, the best content marketing ideas don’t even have to require you to do copious amounts of research or spend days writing the perfect post. Sometimes, just allowing glimpses into your everyday experiences works pretty darn well.
A great example of a content marketer who built a following in this way comes from the Tonester TikTok account, whose TikTok videos show him mixing paints.
So, if you think that people might be interested in what happens at your company behind closed doors, why not give this idea a try? It’s super-simple, budget-friendly, and, best of all, has the potential of being the most original thing in your industry.
Idea #8: Specialized Blog Sections
The last way to direct your content marketing strategy based on your expertise is to find a way to create a series of posts. Center them around the same topic, but make sure you offer readers/viewers something new and fascinating each time they land on your distribution platforms.
For inspiration, check out the Copycat Recipes section on AllRecipes, where they help readers figure out ways to make their favorite restaurant foods at home.
Or, if starting a whole series is not your jam, you can choose to categorize your existing content in appealing ways, as done by Paar Socks on its Instagram page, for example.
Connecting with Your Audience
All right, we’ve covered several ways you can implement content marketing ideas to cash in on your unique expertise. But what about creating a stronger relationship? After all, don’t online users want brands to connect with them?
Fortunately, content marketing can do a great deal in making this happen for you. Here are a few ideas on how.
Idea #9: Turn Your Content Into a Routine/Ritual
There’s plenty of proof to show that keeping a consistent publishing schedule makes for one of the main contributors to content marketing success. But what if you want to take things a step further and turn your content into a routine part of your followers’ day?
Well, one way you could achieve this is to be vocal about when your audience can expect new posts from you.
For example, take a look at the Merve Study Corner YouTube channel. You’ll see that the creator has a detailed video schedule on their homepage, helping viewers plan their own study sessions to coincide with those of the page owner.
Or, if this is not something you can effectively implement in your own content marketing strategy, you can go with something more traditional, as done by Healthline on its newsletter sign-up page.
Idea #10: Ask & Deliver
The truth of the matter is, your audience wants to engage with your brand. So what better way to make use of your content creatively than to construct a platform where you can have conversations with your followers?
Doing follower Q&As is one of the best content marketing ideas you can adopt, and here’s why:
- It’s a free way to conduct market research.
- It encourages followers to get in touch with you by saying what they’re after and allowing you to deliver.
- It’s a strategy applicable to almost all distribution platforms. It doesn’t matter whether you only publish on your blog, run an active social media account (which you definitely should), or publish a weekly podcast episode.
For a great example of how you can include Q&As in your content marketing strategy, there are some great examples from the podcasting world from the likes of Gary Vaynerchuk’s #AskGaryVee episodes and Pat Flynn’s AskPat 2.0.
Idea #11: Feature Real People
As we cover creative ways to connect with your followers, let’s mention the one strategy that’s guaranteed to drive positive results: shifting the focus off of your brand and onto your audience.
There are multiple ways you can do this on your channels. For example, you can take a page out of GoPro’s Instagram account book and share user-generated content to make your brand relatable.
Or, you can show the faces behind your brand by including signatures at the end of each social media post. Or writer bios at the end of each post. You can even construct content around your staff and company, as done by the team behind the MKBHD brand, who started a brand new YouTube channel called The Studio.
Idea #12: Share Your Fails
The most frustrating thing about content marketing to consumers is that brands and creators often lose touch with reality, sharing posts that, while fun, aren’t rooted in the real-life experiences of most people. Fortunately, however, there’s a super-effective way to avoid this pitfall: practicing transparency.
You see, when constructing expertise-driven posts for their channels, marketers will tend to go down a prescriptive route. They’ll often say something along the lines of “do this and this to achieve results.” Or, they’ll put together blog posts about how changing the colors on their CTA buttons helped them get 20+% more conversions.
But here’s the deal. Most of your readers won’t be able to boost their conversion rates by 20% or more. Chances are, they may only get as far as 1-2%. So, if you want them to connect with your brand, you might want to go in an alternative direction.
That’s why sharing failure experiences and passing along the lessons you’ve learned can be a breath of fresh air. That goes especially for industries that are saturated with success stories, empty promises, and speculation.
Making the Most of Available Opportunities
As we near the end of our list of killer content marketing ideas to use for your next post, it’s essential that we emphasize the importance of making use of every single opportunity you come across. Even if it seems completely basic.
Sure, keeping your evergreen posts up to date based on seasonal trends may not turn you into a leader in your niche. But it’s safe to say that, without it, you’re just wasting a chance to meet consumer search intent and position yourself as the go-to authority on the matter.
Idea #13: Reuse & Repurpose
When trying to get more out of your content, try to look for ways to use what you already have. For example, let’s say your content marketing strategy relies mainly on text. In that case, you’ll want to find ways to represent that text in more visual ways.
British Vogue finds a great solution on its Pinterest boards. For example, it features a “Vogue’s Ultimate Guide to Fashion” board, consisting of images linking to text content on the magazine’s website. This makes the original articles more discoverable. Plus, it helps reach audiences who would otherwise miss out on the content because of its text format.
Idea #14: Find Influential Collaborators
Feel like you don’t have much to say at the moment? That’s all right. Not every element of your content marketing strategy has to come from you directly to be a valuable asset to your brand. In fact, offering a fresh perspective may just be the thing that allows you to do something new and creative.
If you’re interested in enriching your channels with new voices, try to find collaborators whose perspectives would offer value to your followers. Perhaps that’s an expert you bring on to help you with the more technical aspects of your subject matter. Or, you can try collaborating with influencers. Work together to come up with creative content that both of your audiences will appreciate.
Check out how makeup brand Laura Mercier does it.
Idea #15: Keep up with Current Trends
Finally, if you want to stay fresh and relevant with your content marketing, it’s essential that you stay in the loop regarding the latest industry trends. This is definitely something you want to be consistent about.
Employ social listening. Check networks for trending topics or hashtags and give your take on the subjects. You can even produce great content by writing about other people’s content.
Don’t be afraid to experiment. After all, you may find that creating posts around hot topics isn’t your thing. But, you may also find a brand new way to connect with your audience. That’s what the F1 team managed to do, thanks to its active presence on TikTok and the open mindedness to create content that’s different from what most people would have expected.
Whether you’re producing content for your website and social media profiles or hoping to publish on new distribution platforms, you’ll definitely want to rely on creative content marketing ideas. The ones listed here are all great starts, but you have to remember: they’re just that – starts.
To arrive at something original, you will have to dedicate just as much time to the research phase as to the production itself. That way, you’ll know what you need to do to meet (and exceed) your audience’s expectations. And, you’ll have the foundations to which you’ll add those extra instances of flair, bringing you the impressive results you’re after.
This guest post was written by Natasha Lane. Natasha is a digital marketing and content writing specialist. She has been working for, and collaborating with, individual clients and companies of all sizes for more than a decade. Natasha specializes in writing about digital marketing, branding, and productivity. To see what she is up to next, check out her website natashalane.io.
Hero photo by Per Lööv on Unsplash
Content Marketing Ideas FAQs
A good example of content marketing would be a company that creates blog posts, infographics, or videos on a regular basis in order to educate its audience about its industry. By providing this valuable information for free, the company is able to build trust with potential customers and establish itself as an expert in its field. In turn, this can lead to increased sales and brand loyalty down the line.
Follow these tips on how to generate content marketing ideas:
1. Look at the problems that your target audience is facing and then create content that offers solutions to those problems.
2. Keep up with the latest industry news and develop content that addresses the latest trends.
3. Look at your competitors’ content and identify gaps that you can fill with your own content.
These are the 7 steps of content marketing:
1. Define your target audience.
2. Set your goals.
3. Create a content strategy.
4. Develop and publish your content.
5. Distribute and promote your content.
6. Analyze and adjust your content marketing efforts.
7. Rinse and repeat!
When it comes to content, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, your content should be original and relevant to your audience. It should also be engaging, informative, and shareable. The important thing is to find what works best for your brand and your audience. Experimenting with different types of content will help you to determine what drives the most engagement and leads to conversions.
Here are a few tips to start in content marketing:
1. Define your goals
2. Know your audience
3. Choose the right platforms
4. Create great content
5. Promote your content