No other marketing medium takes a business closer to its prospects and customers than content marketing.
Visit the websites of your top competitors. You’ll see content.
If you don’t see lots of content on the site of your top competitors, it could be that you’re in a rare niche where competition is zero. But I doubt that’s the case.
Every niche has at least an individual or a business creating content for it. The content may not be good, but competition exists.
Let’s assume that your niche has some talented and influential content creators. How do you compete with them?
Despite the intense competition for attention by brands in every niche you can think of, there continues to be a high demand for fresh content.
Consumers will continue to demand new content. However, they don’t want content that isn’t better than the ones they’ve seen.
Top brands are searching for talented content creators. Top talents are scarce.
Create better content that disrupts the current standard content in your niche.
There are 13 types of content that’ll help you drive massive traffic.
Video is a powerful and effective medium to market your brand. Video has a more significant effect on consumers than other marketing mediums because it incorporates motion, sound, and visuals.
Video is my favorite medium for learning.
Search engines love videos. Businesses that use videos receive 41% more web traffic from search engines than companies that don’t.
Top social media platforms support videos. For example, Facebook gets an average of 8 billion video views each day.
Start with a small investment in videos.
MedCognition, a startup that creates and markets its realistic holographic patient simulation for pre-hospital providers uses a video on its homepage to educate prospects.
If you’re shooting videos by yourself, it’ll take some time to build up the skills required to become a top video content creator. Give yourself some time to learn – to make mistakes.
If you intend to employ people to handle video production and promotion for your company, you should still start small.
See how videos affect your revenue. Increase your investment as you begin to see more revenue from the videos you publish.
Learn where your prospects watch video content online before you publish your first video. You won’t reach your customers if they scroll on Instagram and you post videos on YouTube.
High-quality guides help your audience learn and grow.
If you help your audience learn and grow, they will come to you when they need your product or service.
I’d read guides that taught me something new. I’d read guides that changed my life.
I still remember some helpful guides I read 10 years ago. I still remember writers who wrote them and companies that published them.
People will remember brands that educate them. When you educate your audience, you invest in their lives. You improve their lives.
Shopify is an e-commerce platform. Its customers are online merchants. Shopify published a guide on how to deal with the legal aspect of e-commerce business.
Brands that train their customers position themselves as a helpful resource. They earn more trust than brands that always ask for the sale.
Ask prospects or customers what they’ll like to learn. Ask them by email, phone or SMS. No second, minute, hour or day you invest in your customers will go to waste.
After knowing what your prospects will like to learn, go ahead and create high-quality guides for those topics.
3. Opinion posts
An opinion post is filled with opinions of the author.
In an opinion piece, you can share your views from different angles using different stories.
New York Times is one of my favorite sites for reading strong opinion posts from experts in politics, business, tech, health, and science. It’s not uncommon to see headlines of opinion pieces in the New York Times trend on Twitter.
Below is a recent opinion post that trended on Twitter.
When Mark Schaefer wrote about content shock back in 2014, it sparked a debate among marketers that year. That piece was one of the most popular opinion posts in the digital marketing space that year.
Opinion posts have the power to travel faster than most other types of content.
Spark an argument. Get people talking and arguing. Get friends arguing with each other.
Choose one side. Everyone shouldn’t agree with you. It’s not a bad idea for some people to disagree with you.
Sometimes, we disagree with each other. Friends disagree with each other. Siblings disagree with each other.
Before you write an opinion post on a topic, ensure that you’re an authority in it. You should be an expert on that topic.
For example, Drip IV Lounge, an IV clinic in San Antonio has an article on their site titled “Is IV Therapy Safe?” Articles like this make prospects see the business as an authority.
If you don’t know about a topic, it’s impossible to make people believe anything you write.
Unless you founded a company, employed in a startup, or have friends or family who are founders, don’t write an opinion post on startups.
For example, Paul Graham has been in the startup world for decades. He has experience. He’s an authority. When he speaks, people listen.
Someone like Paul Graham opinion pieces are going to be popular because he’s respected. He’s an expert.
Nicholas A. Parr, a Maryland attorney that specializes in DUI, crimimal defense, personal injury, etc, publishes interesting opinion posts on his site.
4. Product reviews
According to a survey, 88% of consumers trust online product reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Writing product reviews is a great way to gain some people’s trust online. If consumers trust online product reviews as if their friends wrote them, it’s an opportunity for you to appear much like a friend.
By writing product reviews, you can rank for some long tail keywords in your niche. As consumers find your product reviews through search engines and social media, they also discover your brand.
Product reviews get you in front of people who may buy your products or services in the future.
When people find and engage with your product reviews, you become an authority. They see you as an expert.
Don’t like every product you review. Stay neutral in your reviews.
Consumers will see you as a trustworthy expert when you share your experiences and views about a product or service.
Keep in mind that you’re not in it to make money. Write reviews because you want to attract an audience that needs your product or service.
Write both positive, negative and neutral reviews of products based on your experience using them.
Matthew Woodward wrote a negative review of his experience with WP Engine. His audience liked it. The post has received 666 comments.
He shared proofs to show he’d used WP Engine.
Businesses that sell services should also write reviews. For example, on the website of The Law Offices of Nicholas A. Parr, you’ll find reviews from clients of the firm.
A how-to content is a shorter form of a guide. A guide takes longer to create than most how-to content.
You may need to hire a designer to make your guide attractive. A how-to content is simpler than a guide.
A how-to content can contain anywhere between 1,500 – 2,000 words. A guide may have between 10,000 – 30,000 words.
If you want to create a content that teaches people how to perform a skill in a short time, then a how-to content is what you want.
You can produce a how-to content within 5 – 15 hours if you’re an expert on the topic. Guides may take 1 – 3 weeks to create.
The difference is that guides are in-depth. They require a lot of research and more demonstrations in the content. Both are good.
Some of your visitors will prefer guides. Some will prefer how-to content. Publish both.
However, because guides require a lot more investment, you may want to create more how-to content. For every 10 how-to content you publish, you may create a guide.
Infographics are another popular type of content that drives traffic.
The design is an essential aspect of many successful infographics I’ve seen. The design of an infographic is the first thing that draws people’s attention to it.
The design of an infographic is its first impression. If the design is poor, an infographic will receive less or zero attention.
The next essential part when investing in infographics is the promotion. Promote your infographics. Promote hard.
Reach out to people through emails. Some influencers like to share infographics on their sites and social media accounts.
If your infographic appeals to them, they’ll add it to their blog posts and link back to you. They’ll share it with their followers on social media.
Everywhere you go online, you see list posts. When you go to Google, Facebook, Twitter, Medium, Quora, and Pinterest.
BuzzFeed is famous for its listicles.
Econsultancy is UK’s premier marketing blog. They did a study in 2013 and found that 9 out of 10 most popular posts on the blog were list posts.
Numbers attract web readers. When they see a number in a headline, they know what to expect from the article.
The problem is that there are too many list posts on the web. Most of them contain old ideas.
Don’t copy what everyone has written. Be creative. Find new ideas. Or, use old ideas in a new way that make your content looks different.
Get outside of your niche and find ideas competitors haven’t covered in their content.
E-books make it easy to generate leads on your site.
If you’ve created a valuable e-book, offer it to visitors. Collect their names and emails before they can download the e-book.
For example, Karen Brody is a relationship coach for men. On her site, she offers a free E-book titled “Reignite Her Passion: 3 Keys to Overcoming No and Unlocking the Gates of Her Desire.” Lots of men would want to get their hands on this e-book. When they do, Karen generates more leads on her site.
An e-book allows you to dive deeper into a topic you’ve covered on your blog. If you’d written about a topic on the blog, offer an e-book to help visitors learn more.
As you educate prospects with your e-book, you position yourself as an authority and expert.
Each chapter in your e-book should cover one topic alone. See each chapter as one blog post.
Some e-book creators say that e-books should be several blog posts combined to form a book. I don’t like this idea.
Your e-book should be new. It should contain information that is not out there. If visitors have taken the time to download your book, they should know that it’s not something they can find online.
While e-books don’t generate traffic by themselves, you can use them to collect leads from platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Drop a link to the opt-in page where visitors give you their emails to download the e-book.
9. Link pages
A link page is a page that contains helpful links to visitors.
For example, if you have a blog about marketing, you could create a link page that contains mentions and links to the tools you use.
A photographer, for example, may create a link page that links to the tools he uses.
Sometimes, people want to know which tools you use. A link page is a helpful page that introduces people to your work life.
If visitors have taken the time to read your content, they may as well want to know the tools you use. You can create a link page for that.
Pat Flynn of SmartPassiveIncome.com has a link page on his site. On this link page, he mentioned all the tools he uses and recommends.
A link page can also tell visitors about your business. For example, an insurance agency like Nielsen Professional Insurance, Inc. uses its link page to tell potential clients about important topics like attorney malpractice, and various types of products like health and business insurance.
10. Case studies
According to a survey, 62.6% of marketers say case studies are effective for lead generation.
A B2B Technology Content Survey Report by Eccolo Media ranked case studies as the third most influential content marketing type in the purchase process for both small and large enterprises.
Case studies remove doubts prospects may have about your products or services. When they see that others achieve success with your products or services, it helps them trust your business.
There has been an increase in the adoption of audio platforms like iTunes, Soundcloud, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Google Play and others over the past years.
Audio content allows web users to multitask. You can listen to a podcast and do laundry, go to the gym, wash the dishes, and relax.
No barrier prevents you from podcasting. All you need is a voice and a knowledge of your topic.
The process is easy:
Get ideas. Record yourself speak. Edit it. And upload on the top audio platforms out there.
Of course, you have to promote your podcast if you want people to see it.
Through your podcasts, people on platforms like iTunes, Soundcloud, and others will learn about your business. That sends more traffic to your site.
You can be the only speaker on your podcast. You can have guests and do interviews. Whichever way you do it, podcasting will let you tap into the power of audio platforms on the web.
Geekdom Media is an example of a brand that creates podcasts for its audience.
You can build a massive audience by interviewing influencers in your niche.
Influencers have thousands of loyal fans who are interested in them. When you interview influencers and they share it with their followers, you tap into their influence.
Their followers will become interested in you. Then they become interested in what you do.
Publishing interviews is a great way to build massive traffic within a very short period.
13. Research and original data
Research and original data are information that can’t be found anywhere else other than your site. They are studies you did and decide to release to the public.
GoSmartSolar is a solar power company in San Antonio, Texas. The company published an original data that shows how much the August 21, 2017, solar eclipse would cost solar energy users.
When people mention your data, they reference you as the source. They link to your site. That tells readers that you did the study.
To publish original data, you need to set up a lab on your computer.
Don’t let the word “lab” scares you. See yourself as a scientist who has questions and wants to find answers.
You find answers by experimenting and tracking outcomes.
What are the interesting questions people have in your niche? You can answer those questions with original data.
Let me use myself as an example. I write a lot.
Writers out there want to write more. They are looking for productivity tactics that will help them write more within a short time.
I could research this.
For example, I can research writing with outlines and writing without outlines and publish my results.
Many people will want to see the results.
I can do a study where I write and take frequent breaks and write with less frequent breaks and compare both.
I can also do another study where I publish on Medium each day and post on Medium twice a week and compare the results.
I have my lab where I run experiments. I publish the findings of my research.
My content becomes original data because I’m the source of that data.
When you publish lots of original data, people will mention your findings and link to you. As you already know, more links lead to higher rankings in search engines. That means more traffic.
Earth Class Mail, a business that turns your physical mail into digital copy has a white paper library where you can download original data. This helps the business develops stronger relationships with prospects.
These 13 types of content generate traffic.
Start with one or two at first. If you’re running a small or medium-sized business, there’s no way you can afford to produce all these types of content at the same time. However, there are plenty of awesome digital marketing tools which can make content creation a lot easier.
Some content types will work for you. Some won’t. Find the ones that work for your business and publish lots of them.
Generating traffic doesn’t mean more sales. You have to collect visitors’ emails to generate sales. As digital marketers say, the money is in the list.
OmniKick helps you do that. You don’t have to worry about lead generation again.
It’s free to start using OmniKick. Sign up today.