Content Marketing Madness: The Bracketed Battle for Content Supremacy
February 20, 2013 | SnapApp Marketing
For any given business objective there are certain kinds of content best suited to achieving the desired result. In this case, however, none of that matters. In this bracketed battle, there can be only one kind of content — one winning type to rule them all, and it all rests on you!
We’re pitting some of the best types of content against each other in our own SnapApp bracket challenge, and you decide the winner. As you can see in the SnapApp bracket contest below, two content types will square off against each other vying for your votes from today up until March 14th. One content type will rise to the next round and one will fall.
Click on the match ups you want to vote for, and follow along round by round. The first round closes on February 25th, the second on March 1st, and the third on March 7th. Meanwhile, below this app, you can read up on each type of content in the competition and view examples of some of the people and companies who use these kinds of content best.
Infographic: An infographic is an interesting and compelling way to visualize data. Common marketing objectives achieved with inforgraphics include top funnel awareness, social sharing, and establishing mid-funnel thought leadership positions. A great example of a successful infographic is Brian Solis‘ collaboration with Jess3 to create the Social Compass infographic.
Blog Post: One of the simplest, yet most versatile forms of content, blog posts can field anything from company news, to employee insights. Common objectives achieved with blog posts include SEO ranking, product promotion, relationship building, and top-funnel awareness. For blogging for business, look to the model set by Jeremiah Owyang of the Altimeter Group.
One Page Overview: A concise summary of key offerings or information. Some of the most common uses of one pagers includes sales enablement, event collateral, and mid-funnel evaluation content. At SnapApp, we’ve worked to develop effective one pagers of our own, but always practicing what we preach, we’ve wrapped them up in our own interactive content. To find out which one pager is right for you, feel free to take this personality test. Guide: An in depth collection of valuable information and best practices. Guides are great sources for lead generation, thought leadership, top-funnel awareness, and mid-funnel evaluation. One of the best uses of guides is the award winning Grande Guide series by Eloqua.
Creative Video: Fun, light, airy, entertaining, or even random, a creative video gives more value in entertainment than in any directly promotional manner. Creative videos are great for top-funnel awareness, social sharing, and audience engagement. The 2013 Budweiser Clydesdale Super Bowl ad is a perfect example given how it generated exposure via emotion verses promotion.
Informative Video: Specific, helpful, how-tos, or even product demos, informative videos wrap up what people want to know into something people can easily watch and absorb. When Apple hypes up the launch of a new product, then walks viewers through the features and benefits it’s exemplifying what can be done with informative video.
Podcast: For the multitasking audience, podcasts offer informative and/or entertaining audio presentations. Popular podcast marketing objectives include thought leadership and general top-funnel awareness. For an example of effective usage of podcasts look to Social Media Examiner.
Webinar: A combination of web seminar, webinars are an engaging way to inform an audience, while also enabling the audience to communicate with the presenter(s). Webinars are most effective for education, partner marketing, networking, and social engagement. A great company walking the walk and talking the talk for webinars is On24.
Slide Deck: From high profile presenters at events to sales people regularly delivering presentations on a day to day basis, having a public, reusable, and sharable slide deck is a proven content marketing tactic. Most common uses of slide decks include entertaining top-funnel content, in-depth mid-funnel product or service specifics, or late-funnel final sales pitches. A great person to follow on how to use and gain success from slide decks is Kinvey‘s VP of Marketing, Joe Chernov. Check out some of his best slides here.
Whitepaper: An old faithful of content marketing, whitepapers are deep-dive documents about given topics, trends, products, etc. Primarily, given their depth of focus, whitepapers are used to drive mid to late funnel conversions, but targeted lead generation efforts can also be effective. At SnapApp, for example, our own Integrated Engagement Strategy whitepaper alone generated over 500 new leads in less than a month. Externally, research firms like Aberdeen, Gartner, and Forester can even generate revenue via whitepapers.
Mobile App: Going mobile in offering your audience a valuable experience has become an increasingly popular content marketing tactic. From a business standpoint, mobile apps can directly facilitate sales, increase top-funnel buzz, and boost customer retention and engagement. A great example of a business leveraging a mobile app is Mashable who can directly syndicate the content they publish online to mobile readers.
Interactive Widget: Web tools like tweet grader, or blog level are common examples of interactive widgets, but essentially, these types of content take basic user inputs to yield valuable resulting outputs. These tools are often used for lead generation, social sharing, and top-funnel awareness. Edelman Digital, the company behind blog level serves as a great example of using interactive widgets created by their developers for marketing.
eBook: Even more in-depth than a whitepaper, an eBook is a full compilation of stories, case studies, observations or other detailed chapters into a refined digital piece of content. Generally, eBooks serve as the best way to cement and validate a thought leadership position. As the pioneering company for inbound marketing, HubSpot is a great example of a distinct investment in producing quality eBooks.
Email: The tried and true, most old-faithful-esque of all marketing tactics, emails are the simple, scalable messages marketers rely on most. The most common marketing uses for email include lead scoring and nurturing, customer retention and outreach, and relationship-building communications. For email, brands like PBS who have a high level of community engagement and high quality messaging strategy, well-crafted emails can generate distinctly favorable results.
Event: Events offer both presented content via the event organizers, as well as shared content through the wealth of knowledge brought to the event via the attendees. Events often generate leads, cement thought leadership positions, facilitate networking, and yield beneficial stories and experiences. With the rise in prominence of DreamForce, SalesForce‘s premiere event, the company has truly demonstrated the value in creating major content out of events.
The Content Wild Card: The great thing about content marketing, however, is that new formats and mediums regularly burst onto the scene. The wildcard isn’t any particular piece of content, but a place holder for the next big thing, or the next game changer for marketing. If you’re a fan of wild card content, feel free to tell us what you think the next wave of content will be.
Whichever content type is your favorite, SnapApp can help you build it, deploy it, and measure your results. For more information on how SnapApp can fit into your content marketing objectives, contact us today!