Another blog post? Really? That’s what your audience is thinking when you only offer them blog posts instead of multiple content marketing formats.
We get it.
When someone mentioned a content marketing strategy, you thought they wanted you to create a blog. While blogging is one of the content marketing formats you can use, it shouldn’t be the only one.
In this post, we will teach you new content marketing formats that can help you keep your content fresh and your audience interested.
Table of contents:
- Why use multiple content formats
- Blog posts
- Written tutorials
- Case studies
- Quote graphics
- Instagram carousel slideshow
- LinkedIn slideshows
- YouTube videos
- Instagram reels
- LinkedIn videos
- LinkedIn live
Why use multiple content marketing formats
If you’re relying on one content marketing format, you’re not reaching nearly as many prospects as possible. Not every person consumes content the same way.
Some people like to read blog posts that they can easily skim. Other people prefer to quickly glance at an image or watch an entire video to understand your message. And then some people need all three (and maybe more) formats to really get your message.
Sure, limiting yourself to just one can save you time. But at what cost? There are many reasons why you should use more than one content marketing format. One of the most important ones is because it can help you to maximize your reach.
Whether you’re repurposing old content or creating new content, using various formats can help you reach more people.
Your blog might have hundreds, maybe even thousands of subscribers on it. But when you’re trying to get in front of your target audience, that one channel isn’t enough.
Written content marketing formats
Now that you know why you need it, let’s discuss some of the more well-known ones.
1. Blog posts
One of the most popular content marketing formats, blogging is the first strategy businesses use to get in front of their target audience. That’s because it’s so versatile, you can use it to:
- Boost your SEO. If you’re creating blog content that’s relevant and using appropriate keywords, then you're driving more traffic to your site. And by doing so, you and your blog rank higher on search engines. This means that your site will be one of the first sources they see when prospects need help.
- Position yourself as an industry leader. By consistently posting valuable content on your blog, you make it easy for your audience to view you as an expert. And when they need your product or service, they’ll think of your brand that they already trust.
- Generate leads. Once you start generating traffic from your blog, don’t let the momentum die. Instead, use it to turn your readers into leads. The easiest way to do this is to include a call-to-action with every post. Of course, every person who reads your blog may never become a lead. But at least you did everything in your power to make the most out of their visit.
- Increase brand awareness. When you make your blog content shareable, your prospects can easily do so. But what does this mean for you? Your audience will only share content with people they believe can benefit from it. And the majority of the time, those people are your target audience.
Even if they don’t currently need services, they now know about your brand. And if your content is really interesting to them, they might continue to seek out your guidance for similar information. So when they actually need help with a problem you can solve, you’ll be the first company they think about.
Hubstaff uses its blog to provide its target audiences (freelancers and employees) with valuable insight on how they can make the most out of their and their employees’ time, respectively.
2. Written tutorials
Written tutorials are mainly used to repurpose video content and allow your audience to digest the same content in a different format.
Not only does content like this give your audience scannable video content, but it also lets you create another indexed page to drive traffic to your site.
Check out Curator, who repurposed their video on embedding Twitter feeds to create a written tutorial.
3. Case studies
Case studies allow you to “show, not tell,” how you can (and previously have) benefited your target audience with customer stories. And it also allows customers to use this social proof to trust you and determine if you can actually help them.
When using case studies, ensure that you:
- Choose the right customers. You don’t want to interview just anyone. While a few businesses might like to share their story, you have to be mindful of who you choose. One quality you’ll want your candidate to understand your product. Also, you need their story and results to align with your purpose for the case study.
- Choose the right format. Each case study you produce should be backed by a goal and target audience. And if you know who you’re targeting, then that’ll determine if your case study should be in the form of a blog post, video, slideshow, etc. By choosing the correct format, you ensure that your content is actually being consumed.
- Include a CTA. Creating case studies isn’t a walk in the park. Even if it’s only a few hundred words, getting the data to craft them can take weeks, if not months. So make sure that you give your audience directions on what to do next.
This written case study from Insightly helps customers see how they can benefit from switching CRMs. And it also includes a CTA that clearly tells readers that their next step should be to schedule a demo.
Ebooks are another highly effective method you can use to format your content. It’s packed with value but uses a combination of fonts, color schemes, jargon (or lack of), and graphics to make the content feel more welcoming. And less formal.
Because of their length, one way you can use them is by offering them as a lead magnet. Typically, in exchange for this content, leads have to provide their email address and name. They’re then placed in a funnel, where you can introduce them to similar content that they might be interested in.
Vindicia uses their ebooks as a lead magnet that provides its audience with valuable content for their personal information.
Graphic content marketing formats
If you really want to have diverse content, then text alone isn’t going to cut it. So, let’s look at other content marketing formats that can help you make a statement, just with fewer words.
Infographics make digesting content easy, quick, and enjoyable. Most marketers use them as…
- Table of content for blog posts. Most people skim blogs and only read sections that stand out to them. Table of content infographics gives readers an overview of your blog’s content and where to find specific content.
- Collection for statistics. With multiple statistics in one place, it’s hard to read them and absorb the data without your eyes glossing over. But with infographics, you can deliver your research to them in a format that helps them understand it.
- Step-by-step guide. Whether it’s a simple or complex process, infographics make it easy to grasp and follow each step.
When creating your infographic, don’t try to stuff your entire blog post in it. Too many words and you’ve created a blog post, just with a nice background. Also, don’t add too many graphics. While they're pleasing to the eye, you can risk overstimulating your readers.
Here’s an example of OneSpan using an infographic to explain the difference between electronic and digital signatures.
6. Quote graphics
Quotes, especially from well-known figures, hold a lot of weight to them. Even quotes from testimonials or tips can keep your audience interested when used correctly. So, if you’re going to use a quote to evoke a specific emotion, why not turn it into a graphic?
Quote graphics have the benefits of being informative, short, relatable, and fun to read. And because it’s so adaptable, you can post the same quote on multiple platforms. The only thing you’ll need to change is the caption so that it’s consistent with the social media channel.
By posting graphics like this, you’re showing your audience that you want to build relationships with them and that your social media accounts aren’t only for self-promotion. But social media isn’t the only place quote graphics can be used. You can also use them in blogs, ebooks, and case studies, to name a few.
In this example, Visme used them in a case study so readers can get a clear view of what problems they can help them solve.
7. Instagram carousel slideshows
Instagram’s carousel lets you post up to 10 images, videos, or both for one post. There are different approaches you can take to using carousels to their fullest potential. For example, you can showcase the same product but at a different angle. Or by highlighting different features. You can also use it to tell a story or as a how-to guide.
How you choose to incorporate this into your content marketing plan solely depends on what goal you’re trying to accomplish.
Plus, carousels are an effective way to increase your engagement on the platform. The more posts you have, the more likely it is for users to become invested in your content and potentially engage with it.
Slack’s Instagram account used a video and a branded image in this carousel to help businesses navigate remote work with their Channel feature.
8. LinkedIn slideshows
Have a blog post that went viral? Or a video with views that are steadily increasing? Then make the most out of that content by turning it into a slideshow on LinkedIn.
Of course, you’ll have to condense it to only the main points. Like any other graphic content, slideshows that are too long will result in more users clicking off it.
Besides length, you need to make sure that the graphics and fonts you use make users want to read more without overwhelming them.
But the best part is that by repurposing this content, you can get in front of thousands of your target audience. SendGrid used LinkedIn’s SlideShare to create a visually pleasing, informative slideshow on email marketing.
Video content marketing formats
According to Statista, 85% of Americans watch online video content on any device. That’s a massive segment of your audience that you can reach when you start using more video content.
9. YouTube videos
When we’re talking about content marketing formats, it’s impossible to discuss videos without mentioning YouTube. It’s the cornerstone of video marketing and for good reasons.
For one, you can reach millions of people on a platform that is only growing in popularity. So whether you’re discussing your product, solving product-related problems, or just providing relevant content, when used right, it can benefit you.
On their YouTube channel, MailChimp used the above tactics to provide content for their audience.
10. Instagram Reels
Instagram recently launched a new feature called Instagram Reels that allows you to create short, creative videos that help drive your brand awareness. Like TikTok, it lets you use music, effects, and more to get your message across while keeping your audience entertained.
You can use Instagram Reels to...
- Educate your audience on topics that are relevant to your product or service.
- Give users behind-the-scenes access to your team, workplace, how your product operates, etc.
- Build relationships with your audience with genuine content.
Hubspot used Instagram Reels to educate their audience on how to turn business cards into contacts step-by-step.
IGTV can help you increase your brand’s reach with video content. Whether you create content that’s exclusively found on Instagram or repurpose video content from other channels, IGTV can help you get in front of a new audience.
How you use it can vary, but here are a few options:
- Conduct interviews
- Answers relevant questions
- Introduce new products or services
- Host a mini-series
Sprout Social uses IGTV to give tips from their team on how they handle day-to-day tasks that their audience might find useful.
12. LinkedIn videos
Like other video content marketing types, LinkedIn videos allow you to reach more of your target audience. And the more users engage with your video (liking and commenting), the further your content can go.
One way to use LinkedIn videos is with a video case study that lets your audience hear from a customer’s own words how your solution helped them. This is what GetResponse did in the example below.
13. LinkedIn live
By live streaming on LinkedIn, you make your content more accessible to a broader audience and potentially increase your engagement rates.
Here are a few ways to provide valuable content during your live streams:
- Conduct interviews with experts in your field. By asking experts that you know if they wouldn’t mind being interviewed on your live stream, you’re providing your audience with insight, they wouldn’t want to miss. And because of the valuable insight being shared, users might share the video with others that can also benefit from it.
- Provide tips that can benefit your audience. Even if you don’t know of having connections with any industry-leaders, that doesn't mean you can’t provide your audience with valuable content yourself. Plus, by doing so, you can also position yourself as an authority.
In this example, Hootsuite used LinkedIn live to discuss cybersecurity and social media with two of their team members.
Investing in multiple content marketing formats will initially cost you more time and effort.
But keeping your content fresh and showing up on important platforms will be worthwhile.