What takes content from being just another blog post to a creative masterpiece? How do successful content marketers get creative content marketing strategies right every time?
For most modern companies, content marketing strategy is an integral part of how they relate with their target audience. And it pays big time in conversions.
After all, compared to PPC, content marketing generates three times the leads per dollar spent.
However, the high ROI of content marketing has made the competition very stiff.
From from blog posts to social media marketing and video posts, many companies are duplicating the same old strategies. Something has to give.
That you should be using content in your campaigns is a given. To stand out, your content needs to be particularly creative.
Creativity may seem so effortless when it is coming from the right person.
However, you will agree with me that it takes more than just typing away on the keyboard to produce content you would consider a real master piece.
In a world where everything seems to have been said and done, writing a stellar piece of content copy takes extraordinary effort and grey matter.
Here’s how you can rise above the waves in the murky sea of content marketing.
1. Become an Expert – One Step at a Time
According to this 2016 Pew Research Center study, nearly 50% of 18 to 49-year-old’s get news and information online.
This means that a significant portion of your online audience wants content that will teach them something new.
With the competition getting stiffer, you need to be an expert to convince your audience that your content is the real deal.
Gaining industry authority isn’t something that happens overnight. You’ll need to take some time to build your understanding of your niche and develop your position online.
A good place to start is to attend as many industry and networking events as you can.
If people can see that you’re always working to actively expand your knowledge, they’ll take your opinion more seriously. They will listen to your podcasts and read your posts when you start publishing them.
You can also position yourself as an expert through:
- Publishing case studies with unique statistics
- Launching Q&A sessions with industry experts
- Speaking at niche events
You can watch this video by Evan Carmichael for more information on how to become an expert in your chosen field.
2. Discover the Value of Video
Today’s brands make a brutal mistake to assume that content is all about blog articles.
While blogging and social media marketing remain popular content marketing strategies, they aren’t the only options.
In fact, if you want to leave a lasting impact on your audience, it might help to try something new.
Most social media platforms offer live video streaming opportunities for brands. Facebook live is growing in popularity and Instagram TV is a hit.
Video marketing is increasingly becoming a lucrative avenue to increase conversions, improve click-through rates, and most importantly – establish relationships with your audience.
Video brings your personality closer to the audience and they associate those characteristics with your company.
Live video is like a double-edged sword that not only makes your brand more human and relatable but also saves you a ton on costs and time.
There is no need to invest in expensive video-editing software and billable man-hours since you are live streaming raw video.
3. Make Content Development a Team Effort
Writer’s block is real. It affects even the most experienced writers. Exhaustion can take a serious toll on you if you try to defy it.
When you find yourself particularly gobbledegooking, it is time you started scouting for an additional head to add to the content team. It makes absolutely no sense to churn out same old gibberish content.
With the team in place, idea generation becomes fun. A quick brainstorming session with the team will bring up so many ideas you wouldn’t know what to do with them.
Additionally, getting insights from other members of your team could help you to come up with more in-depth blog posts. That’s particularly important today since long-form posts can generate 9 times as many leads as their short articles.
Before your next content strategy session, ask the more creative team members to float ideas of possible content topics. Try to bring as many people from different departments into the brainstorming session as possible. The more perspectives you can get, the better.
Try and make it fun too because people tend to generate their most creative ideas in a relaxed environment. Offer some free freshly brewed coffee if you have to. The idea is to make the team feel as if they are not working.
4. Try Podcasting About Things
Have you noticed how busy everyone is these days?
We’re living in an increasingly chaotic world. People don’t seem to have enough time to even sit down and relax, leave alone downloading your eBook or reading your latest case-study.
Keeping this in mind, you must device a way to stay in touch with your audience, given that they might not read your indulging long-form blog post.
Written content and videos demand the customer’s full attention, unfortunately. On the flip side, a podcast doesn’t demand full attention.
One can listen to a podcast when driving to work, or when filling the time on the subway.
You can even encourage your audience to listen to your podcasts when they’re cooking dinner or while working out at the gym.
Podcasts are increasing in popularity by the day for the simple fact that they do not demand full attention. What’s more, you may not need to create fresh content every single time.
You can make use of your already published posts to create an awe-evoking episode.
Other podcast ideas include:
- Answering customer questions
- Interviews with industry experts
- Insights from different members of your team
- Themed discussions
5. Stand Out. Say Something New
We all like blending in with the crowd at times. It makes us feel nice and no one turns down an invitation to a trip down the ecstatic avenue.
Remember when you got your new job or when you joined the new school? All you craved was to be one of the group. It is natural and there is nothing wrong about it.
However, when it comes to content marketing, the only thing you want to do is to stick out like a sore thumb. That is the only way you are getting noticed.
The simple thing to do is give a slightly different opinion on something that’s happening in your industry right now. You don’t want to do that.
Instead, turn a concept completely on its head.
For instance, if you’re running a PR blog and everyone else is talking about a recent branding flop, take a detour. Talk about the things that went right with that campaign.
Sounds crazy, huh?
Well, taking this approach requires more than courage. Going against the grain means you are taking a carefully calculated move.
If anything, give your audience the insights they will never get anywhere else.
6. Reinvigorate Something You’ve Already Done
Having to come up with something completely new every single time can be draining. In such scenarios, you may take a shot at giving life your old arsenal.
Go through your existing content assets and find out which of your blogs, videos, infographics, and guide had the best impact in the past.
Which ones gave you the most conversions, or generated the highest level of engagement?
Once you’ve found the content that had the right impact for your brand, you can look for new ways to start transforming it.
For instance, if you had a great case study that drew a lot of attention, transform it into an eBook or guide. If your previous podcast was a massive hit, transcribe it into a blog post.
Remember, it’s not enough to simply echo what you said last time.
You’re going to need to make some updates if you want to be seen as truly creative, but at least you’ll have a launching pad.
The best way to breathe life into an old post is to connect it with the current themes and trends.
Be Patient; Creative Content Marketing Takes Determination
When it comes to launching a successful content strategy, it’s important to remember that your ideas are limited by time. It could be a different scenario in case you are either particularly creative or your pockets are really deep.
Once in a while, you may get lucky and generate some fantastic ideas. Most of the time, you will need to distill your creative ideas with determination, patience, and focus.
To avoid getting into the unfortunate situation of content difficulty, try to keep a list of all your content concepts as they come to you. Don’t wait until you need a new blog or podcast to start planning. It will be too late.
Keep a notepad, an excel spreadsheet, or Evernote on you at all times where you can keep your thoughts organized. You never know when you’ll need to tap into a little bit of extra inspiration.
This article was written by Raj Jana. Raj is the creative mind behind JavaPresse, an innovative coffee company with a passion for making healthy living easy and fun. When he’s not running his company, Raj likes sharing the advice and guidance he’s gathered through the years on business, life, and well-being via blog posts.