We really like the content map below from Smart Insights, Sometimes it's hard for organisations to migrate from creating marketing campaigns to content campaigns, as creating genuinely readable, engaging content is a challenge. The map shows what content is relevant in different stages of the customer journey.
You'll find lots of in-depth guides to how to develop engaging content in our knowledge hub, but at it's simplest, the guiding principles we use in our own campaigns for clients are as follows.
As part of a lead generation programme, content needs to be:
Impartial rather than brand led
People are much more impressed by a piece of content that addresses an issue or their needs, rather than a service that a business offers which is seen as ‘salesy ’
That’s not to say that the content can’t be aligned to the services you offer.
Supportive, informative and helpful in building a business case. People who are looking for content are in the decision making process. The ideal is content that will be helpful throughout the decision making process.
Engaging and easy to digest
A lengthy whitepaper has its time and place, but to engage an audience immediately when they are online and short of time, just the key points across a short 3-pager should do.
‘Top 10 tips to…’ and ‘best practice for….’ are a great way of engaging a cold audience.
Infographics and animations are both popular ways to digest a lot of information, especially factual and statistical based content. They are also very 'share-able' socially. In our own campaigns, we have seen response rates to emails linking to infographics and animations increase up to four times the average over a multi-wave campaign.
For more engaging content, interactive content such as ‘ROI calculators….’add value to the end user and are genuinely helpful.
Up to date
Latest content has more appeal. People typically are disappointed to read content that was published less than 2 years ago. Timeless content is hard to create and keep relevant and engaging.