Join the Ranks of These Success Stories
These content marketing examples show that there isn’t one, clear-cut way of running a successful content marketing campaign. Creative tactics, like interactive infographics and podcasts, are more likely to be successful than a text-heavy article. With celebrity endorsements, a free offer, expert information, and shares from trusted sources, you can create a content marketing campaign that will revive your brand.
Holiday Advertising Countdown
Cox Media produced a holiday marketing countdown to increase engagement amongst prospective clients. The countdown calendar was created to aid local businesses in their holiday marketing tactics, and it included things like checklists, workbooks, videos, infographics and graphic ebooks. Social ads and blog posts got the word out about the calendar, and the quality of the content did the rest. By offering a variety of content options, they accommodated visual and auditory learners. As a result of their content marketing campaign, their web properties traffic jumped, and there was a 60% increase in client inquiries. This campaign also received 10% more interactions and shares than previous campaigns. It ranks as one of our top 5 content marketing examples because it combines free information (always good) with our love for countdowns.
As humans, we’re naturally drawn to countdowns. Rocket launches, the new year, songs on the radio—you name it, and we love a countdown to it. There’s a psychological reason behind why we love countdowns so much. Since we’re naturally curious creatures, the thought of solving puzzles and finding answers intrigues us. According to this Washington Post article, “we can’t stand to not know how something is resolved…once a countdown starts, people are naturally interests in what the order will be”. This is great news for you marketing gurus out there. Rather than releasing a long blog post on ‘the top 10 websites of 2017’, you can draw that out by featuring one of the top ten each day starting from #10. Since people think each sub sequential blog post will be better than the last, you can be sure to keep them coming back. Besides the anticipation, people also love lists and the simplification of data. They like having ‘the best of’ information that has already been curated for them. That’s why a lot of page titles will include a numerical component (ie: ‘Top 10 SEO Mistakes Everyone Makes’).
To generate interest in a new offering, a crop nutrition company produced a 10-episode fictional serialized audio drama (podcast) exploring causes of issues that the company’s offering solves. As an added incentive, prizes were offered to those who solved the clues. The campaign drew in 1,586 podcast episode downloads and 1,764 sessions on GreatYieldMystery.com. Their total reach was 197,377 people. They were able to get these results by using a unique (free) platform, engaging with social media through the hashtag #greatyieldmystery on Facebook and Twitter, and honing in on our natural love for mystery to generate interest. Their unique content platform lands them a spot on our top content marketing examples.
According to Pschologies.com, our obsession with solving mysteries is deeply engrained in our psyche. We live in an information age, when anything can be googled and so much of Earth’s mysteries have already been solved. Even emotions can be explained by empirical brain chemistry. However, mystery is intrinsic to the human mind—we seek answers, strive for progress. Mystery is “the ultimate trail of bread crumbs…it piques our interest, invites us to solve or make sense of something and use our imaginations to fill in the gaps”. The Great Yield Mystery monopolizes on this yearning for problem solving and unexplained phenomena.
How do you make someone read something that’s, quite frankly, boring? iLEVEL Solutions was faced with this challenge when they had to convey how using spreadsheets for portfolio monitoring could be beneficial to private capital firms. Their previously published brief was converted into a colorful, infographic-filled page on their website that you could interact with by scrolling. They received 1,000 views, a 33% sustained increase in website traffic, and a 60% increase in time spent on their site per visit. They gained 63 opportunities through this content marketing effort, upping their sales by $6.2 million. This content marketing example proves that even the non-sexy stuff can be popular as long as the communication form is intriguing.
What was so different about an interactive infographic element to their content rather than textual information? Humans are visual. More than sharing information, content marketing is about sharing information in an easily understood and interesting manner. The search volume for infographics increased by 800% between 2010 and 2012. Visual content is making its way to social media as well, with websites like Instagram and Pinterest dominating with their picture sharing platform. Even Facebook statuses are more likely to be read if they’re accompanied by a picture. According to MarTech, traffic to websites increases by 12% once an infographic is added. Over 87% of visitors tend to read text placed on infographics. Pressing buttons and scrolling is fun, so why not incorporate interactive elements into your content marketing campaign?
4. VIDEO INTERVIEWS
This content marketing example revolved around an online platform that compiled video interviews from industry influencers around the country. The free online series answered questions like ‘which technologies are you doubling down on for the next two years?’ and ‘In the future, what place will offline events have within a greater marketing strategy?’. The series was geared toward marketing executives, event marketers, and technologists. You can choose to either watch a video or listen to an interview, depending on what type of learner you are.
The video interviews were popular because they came from event marketing experts. We’re more likely to trust people in authority, and an expert counts as an authority figure. This submission to authority comes from our basic conditioning—we are raised to obey those who come from a higher position than us or know better than us. We would rather trust someone else to provide control for us than to control things ourselves. Obedience is gained through a promise of future action, and these videos promise to boost your event marketing strategies by providing step-by-step instructions on how to get the results you’re looking for. It makes sense then that the interview campaign resulted in 9,143 new contacts, 1,084 total registrations, and 257 marketing-qualified leads.
5. EMOTIONALLY-CHARGED STUDIES
This content marketing campaign by SuperDrug took a photo of a woman and asked female graphic designers from around the world (18 countries) to Photoshop the image to fit their country’s ideal beauty standards. The unique visuals not only have shock value, but also give insight into what physical qualities are valued the most in each country. While designers from Italy and China created the thinnest figure, Spain’s ideal woman was the heaviest. The purpose of the campaign wasn’t to make any country look bad, but rather to show that all bodies are beautiful. Societal standards shouldn’t affect how you view yourself, since all different body types are valued by different countries. The topic of body image issues produces millions of results in Google searches, and is a hot topic for celebrities, marketing campaigns (Dove), and organizations. The campaign utilized influencer marketing by getting a celebrity endorsement from Sofia Vergara and Lil Wayne. The findings were published exclusively on BuzzFeed at first, since the website has a large readership with many readers suffering from body issues.
The campaign was a success because it drew on people’s emotions. Rather than trying to entertain or inform, the ‘perception of perfection’ project told a human story that exposed something about human behavior. According to Fractl, “’Perceptions’ relied on the innate human desire to live up to some form of perfection, and the side-by-side layout highlighted the stark differences in how the idea of perfection can vary significantly by each country”. In addition to playing off shared insecurities, the campaign also played off ego by adding the label for each country to the Photoshopped woman. National pride took over—enticed audiences wanted to see how their country’s perceptions compared to other countries’.
The campaign had 600 pickups and was features on Buzzfeed and The Huffington Post. It received international coverage (CNN) and received 1 million social shares (20% from the site itself). The SuperDrug website received more than 700,000 page views in fewer than five days, due in large part to earned media placements with The New York Times, Yahoo, E! Online, and The Telegraph. The visual aspect of the campaign made their emotionally charged data even more poignant, and the shares from trusted/popular websites gave them the audience they needed. Fractl got the word out about their campaign by contacting editors from BuzzFeed and The Huffington Post who had written about similar topics before. This shows that they really put in the time to find the people who would be interested in the issue they were addressing. The ‘perceptions of perfection’ campaign makes our list of top content marketing examples because it utilized an emotionally-charged topic and celebrity endorsements to draw in a huge amount of traffic to the SuperDrug website.
If content marketing is something you would like to pursue for your business, contact us for a quote or visit our content marketing page for more information. We research successful campaigns (like these content marketing examples) to stay up to date on the latest trends. If you’re focused more on B2B marketing, check out our guide on B2B content marketing. We track your competitors and conduct a thorough analysis of your brand values and voice before formulating a strategy that we can both stand behind.