15 Creative Content Marketing Ideas for 2021
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Is your well of marketing ideas running dry? Worthwhile, creative content marketing ideas are hard to come by – but we’ve got a few up our sleeves.
We hope this post sparks your inspiration and gives you the opportunity to create more content that engages and converts. Take a look to see what you’ve done in your own content marketing – and what you haven’t. You’ll likely find a handful of ideas that spur you on a brand new content journey and produce great results.
1. Compile Some of Your Best User-Generated Content
User-generated content (UGC) is a powerful content marketing tool – especially when it comes to converting real customers. Up to 79 percent of people say that UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions, and it’s estimated that it is 9.8 times more impactful than influencer marketing.
Take a look at your brand and your users. What kind of content do they create – and can it benefit your own marketing efforts?
During COVID-19, we’ve seen many examples of UGC in advertising, just like the Facebook commercial above. Companies are reaching out to their consumers, trying to connect with them in a personal way during the pandemic and beyond.
Whether you’re compiling user-submitted videos, stories, pictures, or audio recordings, this is an excellent way to encourage your customers to engage with your brand on a public scale.
So, how do you get user-generated content? What makes people produce content that your brand can actually use?
There are a few ways you can ask for content from your users. We recommend:
- Hosting a competition (check out the GoPro Awards)
- Creating a hashtag that people can participate in (i.e. the #shareacoke campaign)
- Featuring special customers/users (like the Teva Instagram does)
Find the UGC campaign style that works best for your brand, then actually feature your users’ content in public, mutually beneficial ways.
2. Host a Webinar
Webinars have been popular for years, but with the increase in remote work, they’ve become even more far-reaching and versatile. The Content Marketing Institute actually ranks them as one of the top three B2B tactics for securing and converting leads.
Not only do you get your face and brand image in front of engaged viewers, but you also provide valuable information to interested customers. Whether you’re talking about an industry-specific topic, brand advice, or any other topic under the sun, you’re offering something worthwhile to attendees.
Take a look at Fresh Service – they offer scheduled webinars on a regular basis, as well as “on-demand” webinars that stay on their site for months after.
Image Source: Fresh Service
From talking about “decoding IT” to explaining “employee engagement” tactics, their webinars cover a large range of topics that are all pertinent to their target content audience.
3. Clear Up Some Common Industry Misconceptions
Running out of unique blog post topics? Pull-on your myth-buster cap and write about common myths or misconceptions in your particular industry. People will tune in to learn about misunderstandings and get the “inside scoop” on your field.
Image Source: Jones Smile
As you can see in this example, debunking myths about industry-specific practices helps the brand earn skeptical customers’ trust. Jones and Copeland Smiles are working to advertise their expertise while also soothing concerns/fears that consumers on the fence might feel.
4. Start a Podcast
Podcasts weren’t common a decade ago, but now, there are more than 850,000 active podcasts in the world. At least half of Americans have tuned into a podcast at least once, and that number is continuing to increase.
What’s so great about podcast content? It works well with multi-tasking. People can engage with your content while they exercise, commute to work, travel, or even clean the house. You’ll be able to reach a large chunk of your audience, even when they’re busy doing other things.
Image Source: E2M Solutions
Digital businesses such as E2M Solutions are frequently turning to business podcasting as a way to capture the audience’s attention and create personalized, highly engaging content. As far as pricing goes, podcasts are a very affordable and easy form of content to produce, and they even offer up more opportunities for revenue generation via partnerships and ads.
5. Dip Your Toe in Livestreaming
If you’re ready to really get with the times in your content, consider live streaming. This has taken off in a big way in the past five years or so, and now, any company with a big social media following has adopted the tactic.
Image Source: Jay and Laura
What’s so great about live streaming?
As Stacey McLachlan stated in her guide on Hootsuite, “Live streaming is dynamic, authentic and engaging.” It’s a personal way to reach your social media followers, as well as show your face and a bit of your work “behind the scenes.”
Whether you’re talking about your newest product, your manufacturing process, promoting an event, or just giving people a behind-the-scenes glimpse into your company, livestreaming captures authenticity in a way that few other kinds of content can.
6. Build a Personal Brand
Speaking of behind the scenes, there are other ways besides livestreaming to pull back the curtain on your process and team.
One good idea is to make your company’s CEO a well-known figure. Rather than swathing their goals, morals, and habits in secrecy, bring them into the light with regular interviews or posts. Have them share career advice or other interesting information with potential customers.
Image Source: Bella Vita Med Spa Facebook
For example, Bella Vita Med Spa in Illinois frequently shares pictures of their owner and her work with the facility. She’s a common face on their social media accounts, which helps followers feel more engaged and trusting when they schedule appointments. This is especially powerful when she posts her own tips/advice.
By highlighting your leadership team and managers via content, you will help to put a face in front of the company. It humanizes your brand and gives your products/services a more authentic feel.
7. Start Answering (or Asking) a “Question of the Week”
Questions provide a great launching point for future blog posts or even FAQ pages. Encourage your top customers to submit questions about your brand, products, processes, and more. Then, highlight an answer to one of these queries at least once a week.
Image Source: NPR
Remember: you can answer these questions however you see fit. You could post short podcast episodes with responses, like NPR, or you could round-up similar questions in a blog post. Some brands even answer questions on their social media profiles.
The goal is to ask questions that get conversations started. Use your content to inquire about customers’ wants and needs. This form of content engagement is extremely powerful, and it will teach you a great deal about the audience you need to reach.
8. Post Some PDF Guides
Sometimes, it’s beneficial to have guides that your users can download and keep forever. This is especially true if your product or service is relatively complicated. You can create PDFs that guide customers with carefully chosen instructions and explanations.
Image Source: Diversity VC
Sure, you could post a “how-to” guide blog post, but that doesn’t offer all of the same benefits as a downloadable PDF. People like to have all of their information in one neat place, especially if it means they don’t have to revisit your website every time they have a question.
Customers love a good set of data, especially if it’s shared in understandable charts, graphs, or blog posts. They’ll learn about your company’s results or relevant industry trends, and this will encourage them to view your brand as a trustworthy, credible source of information.
Image Source: Deloitte
If you’re any kind of content producer, you already know how much time you spend compiling your research and looking up numbers. Why not hop on the bandwagon and gather/create relatable statistics for your own followers?
The other great thing about statistics: they make for easily shareable content. Slap your company logo on the bottom of the graphic, or add a watermark, then encourage people to share the information across their various social media channels for a farther reach.
10. Write a Comprehensive “Buyer’s Guide”
When customers are in the “consideration” part of the buyer’s journey, they’re doing a lot of research on products and services similar to the ones you offer. If you want to snag their attention, give them a guide packed with information that will assist in their search.
Image Source: Bagmasters USA
Walk your customers/clients through the process of purchasing products in your industry. Introduce your own, but also explain what they need to know about this particular shopping journey. Your goal is to serve as an aid during their research. That way, whether they purchase from your or not, they form a positive opinion of your brand.
11. Turn an Old Piece of Content into an E-Book
There are many forms of old content that lend themselves to book formats. Transcribe your podcast episodes into a downloadable pamphlet. Take lengthy “guide” posts and convert them into an e-book (free or for purchase). If you have interesting or helpful user-submitted stories, gather them into a book bundle.
Image Source: Beta List
If you don’t have the time to create the e-book in your own workday, there are many services out there that will do it for you. Some will even transcribe your podcasts into an e-book format. Nowadays, it’s super easy to create a new form of content for different kinds of customers.
12. Invite an Unusual Guest Blogger
Guest blogging is hardly a new concept in content marketing, but perhaps it’s time to expand your pool of guest writers. Find some unique experts or business owners to partner with. Think about who your audience would really like to hear from, then make an appeal or offer some kind of mutually beneficial relationship.
Image Source: Diabetes 365
For instance, if you’re a health-oriented blog like Diabetes365, ask for stories/guest posts from unique writers. Don’t just interview doctors or schedule guest posts from paid advertisers – find guest posters that will really strike a chord with your readers.
Can you find some interesting organizations/individuals to work with? Who would your audience love to learn about via a guest post, and how can you get them to work with you?
13. Cover an Event
Whenever your employees or brand attends an event, consider covering it in a “report.” Talk about the latest conference or workshop you attended. What did you learn? Was it worth attending? How was it unique or special?
Don’t be afraid to get a little personal, just like this Lonely Planet writer did.
Image Source: Andrea Smith
Andrea Smith covered what it was like to attend a big film festival in Scandinavia, which fit in with her travel expertise and garnered interest from movie buffs. The headline alone makes us all want to learn more about her experience, and therefore about the brand/website.
14. Make Some Daring Predictions
Whether it feels like it or not, you’re the expert. Consumers turn to your content for answers and guidance, and it’s up to you to produce content that reflects expertise.
A great way to do this is to make some well-thought-out predictions related to the future of your industry. Let your customers know that you “know” what’s coming, and you’re willing to share that valuable information with them.
Image Source: Forrester
Take a look at Forrester. This company frequently releases their educated guesses for the future, especially at the beginning of the new year. They also round up blog posts, videos, and links that support their predictions – contributing to their content’s credibility.
15. Talk About Your Goals for the Year
Although we’re a little bit into 2021, it’s not too late to share some of your brand’s professional (and personal) goals for the new year. Your ambitions reveal a great deal about your brand – and your followers want to know what’s important to you now and in the long-term.
Image Source: Pegasus Publishers
Use your content marketing to showcase your brand’s opportunities for growth, as well as your current path toward a better future. People like to support brands that are going places, so the more you can reveal about your future goals/efforts, the more people will jump on the bandwagon now.
We hope the 15 suggestions above have started you on a path to more creative content marketing. Give a handful of them a try – see what you think and which works best for your particular efforts.
As always, our team at Foxxr Digital Marketing is here to help when your team hits a dead end. Reach out to our digital marketing agency for assistance with marketing, content production, ideation, social media, and more. We’ll ensure that your 2021 content creation reaps the results your brand needs to thrive.
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