Join Dayna Rothman for an in-depth discussion in this video Choosing your content types, part of Content Marketing Foundations (2015).
- You wanna make sure you have a solid content mix. So you need to choose your content types. When it comes to content there are a lot of types to choose from. You can choose your content types based on your brand look and feel, the different content topic you choose, your content goals, and your proposed promotional channels. So I'm gonna go through what each of the different content types are. First let's talk about blog posts. Blog posts are short pieces of content that are regularly updated on your company blog. Your blog posts can range anywhere from about 300 - 700 words, and they can be about a variety of topics.
Blogs are fantastic for trend related content, and when you need to put out a point of view at a very fast pace. An example shown here, is a post about the Super Bowl. Now let's talk about cheat sheets. Cheat sheets are short pieces of downloadable content, that are created for the purpose of giving the reader quick access to a series of tips or best practices. Your cheat sheets are typically one page, they can be front and back, and they don't have too much design. These are simple, easy to digest, content assets.
This example here is an SEO cheat sheet on best practices for optimization. You may or may not want to create a content piece similar to a definitive guide. A definitive guide is a very large content piece, often over 60 pages, that you can then break apart into smaller supplemental content items. These take a lot of effort and are often in conjunction with a large promotional plan. These can really anchor your content themes for a quarter. At the company I work at, Marketo, we create one of these each quarter.
They range anywhere from 60 - 160 pages, and contain a ton of thought leadership. They also go along with a large promotional plan, and then we chop them up afterwards to create smaller content items. Ebooks are the bread and butter of your content strategy. Particularly if you are in a B to B company. An Ebook is an electronic version of a shortened book. It is designed to contain thought leadership and best practices on a particular topic. Ebooks can be short, 4 - 5 pages, or they can be much longer, at around 50 pages.
Your Ebooks should be designed to fit your brand and give you the opportunity to present your information in a creative way. This Ebook example from the design firm Column Five, shows how to build a long-term strategy in a real time world. As you can see the cover is visual and appealing, which is very important to Ebook creation. Infographics take information like statistics, or best practices, and present it in a visual way. Infographics are generally vertical graphics that are short and easy to consume. Your graphics should be highly visual with an interesting hook.
Typically, infographics are created to be presented on your blog, and then you can promote them out for inbound links, and media attention. This example, from the company Captora, shows five ways to reign over your content marketing. This infographic includes data, visuals, and topical insights. Reports can be created by collecting survey and industry data, and presenting it in a comprehensive document. Reports often contain lots of statistics, a strong point of view, and are generally formatted like an Ebook.
Reports can be a critical cornerstone of your content, and can gain a lot of recognition in your industry. For example the company AdRoll, puts out a state of the industry each year, that shows a close look at ad re-targeting. Don't just stop at downloadable content, think about what else you can create that is interesting, fun, sharable, and engaging for your audience. Think outside of the box because content can take many forms. For example, this is from Marketo, and it takes a particular card game, "Cards against Humanity," and makes a marketing version of it.
Marketo then created "Cards against Marketing Madness," and had fun cards that marketers could download, print, and play with their teams. Marketo also got professional card games printed out, and gave them out at events. Videos are an engaging and visual form of live action content that can be filmed and promoted on youtube, social channels, and your website. Your videos can range from product related topics, to stories, music videos, and more. They can also range in length from 30 seconds to 10 minutes. However, note that best practices here, are for most of your videos to clock in at around one to two minutes.
People have short attention spans. Visual slide decks present information, statistics, and best practices in a highly visual format using slides. Often your slide decks can almost be like an infographic chopped up. You can publish them on SlideShare and promote out on your website in social channels. A caution here is to make sure each of your slides are professionally designed, and does not include too much text. In this example above, Marketo took marketing predictions from internal thought leaders, and turned each prediction into a separate slide.
A webinar is either a live or recorded presentation that a speaker presents along with a slide deck. These are generally events where your audience signs up, attends, and asks questions. Webinars are generally topical and can be easily recorded for later viewing. A downloadable workbook provides your readers with an actual template to fill in his or her own answers to questions. These are great if you're trying to teach your audience something in particular using a checklist, table, or fill-in-the-blanks. This example is from Marketo, and gives the reader various exercises for creating his or her own lead generation plan.
Now that we've broken down all the different content types, you can then start to really formulate what your content marketing mix is going to look like.
The course explores creating a content plan, choosing content types, and developing an editorial calendar. It also explains how to write, edit, and design content, as well as choose the right mix of content and curate it for maximum impact, and closes with tips on measuring the impact of your content marketing efforts.
This course is part of a Learning Path approved by the American Marketing Association.
Gain the skills you need to become an AMA Professional Certified Marketer (PCM) in Digital Marketing by using the industry-leading courses and resources in the Learning Path. Take the AMA certification exam to show that you have what it takes to lead the digital transformation.
- What is content marketing?
- Hiring a content marketing team
- Creating buyer personas
- Developing a brand voice
- Setting goals
- Creating a content plan
- Writing, editing, designing, and curating content
- Promoting content on various channels
- Tracking performance