8 Brands with the Best Content Marketing

According to the Content Marketing Institute, these are the top 8 brands with the best content marketing strategies:

  • IBM

Because IBM is a technical company, they need to have technical content, and they        implement that through their many different blogs. They are a company that is trusted by millions, and reaches millions of people in different technological facets of life. A few examples of their different blogs are: Citizen IBM, Building a Smarter Planet: A Smarter Planet Blog, IBM Software Blog, SocialBusiness Insights Blog, IBM Impact Blog: Promoting Discussion and Perspectives.

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  • Hootsuite

Hootsuite “lets you do more with social media.” Their video that they created, capturing the success of Game of Thrones went viral, particularly because they   understood that many of those in Hootsuite audience like Game of Thrones, and immediately connected with the video. Hootsuite advises other brands, even if they’re technical (like IBM), to have some fun! Create some non-serious, light content for your brand!

  • Buffer

As a social-sharing service, Buffer gets it, they know how to get their posts spread            across many platforms, many times! They’re advice on creating shareable content:

  • Don’t forget about killer content
  • Ask for shares
  • Put out your information strategically
  • Use subtle cues to further advance sharing
  • Have social fans!

“Promote the heck out of your content. Social sharing is just as valuable as creating the content itself.” – Neil Patel, Content Marketing Institute

  • Microsoft

The biggest thing that Microsoft has going for them is STORYTELLING! When a company can tell a good, compelling story, they will, without a doubt, gain any and all of the attention that they’re looking for. Two big things to remember when creating god stories for your brand is to stay humble and stay relevant.

  • McDonald’s

Jay Baer of Convince & Convert called McDonald’s content “the best example of             content marketing ever…could be the start of a cultural change that impacts every      business.” They reviewed 450 question on their website everyday, and answered   more than 10,000 of them. Could you ask for a better, more transparent customer service?

  • Disney

Disney specializes in being magical; they promote magical lifestyles. They invite people into their magical world through their blogs, and it works, people become hooked!

  • HubSpot

HubSpot’s “inbound marketing” strategy is what sets them apart from everyone   else. Inbound marketing “turns strangers into customers and promoters of your business.” Their blog page is constantly being filled with hourly posts with creative content; HubSpot has a lot of things to say and create, but more importantly, they have quality things to say and create.

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  • GoPro

As we all already know, GoPro is all about the visual content. My favorite part about GoPro’s content is that they don’t show-off their products, but rather they get their content from their customers using their products…it’s genius.

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lululemon knows why.

When asked to think of a company that understands why they exist, I didn’t hesitate to think of lululemon athletica.

lululemon athletica just gets it; they know why they exist, and they carry that out through every one of their services.

I became a fan of lululemon, and genuinely began to understand, and more importantly, appreciate what they stand for, ever since I got to college, three years ago.

They’re a brand that goes far beyond their products; their loyal customer base is why they exist. They are a company that truly sticks to their mission statement:

Creating components for people to live longer, healthier, fun lives.

In fact, a few months ago, I had an issue with a pair of lululemon leggings, and the entire issue could not have been solved any smoother or more professional; it’s a story that I share anytime lululemon comes into conversation (which is more than you’d think…especially with college students).

A few months ago, I noticed a very small hole in my favorite pair of leggings, actually the first pair of lululemon leggings I ever had…so this was basically a travesty for the basic white girl that I am.

I had heard how great their customer service was, so I put it to the test. I tweeted a picture of the hole to their official Twitter account, and explained how upset I was, and within minutes they slid into my DM’s (directly messaged me).

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After messaging back and forth for a few minutes, they provided me with their customer service number that I ended up calling a few days later.

The woman on the phone could not have been nicer. She gathered some personal information from me, as well as information regarding the pants, and emailed me the return label while we were still on the phone, in order for me to ship my pants back to their warehouse…for free.

I had my dad, who works for FedEx (#blessed), ship my pants back for me, and exactly two weeks later, I received an electronic gift card from lululemon for $92. Naturally, I bought a new pair of leggings within 5 minutes of getting the gift card…it felt like Christmas morning.

lululemon gets it; they know why.

Take note people!

Twitter is your friend!

I was a big fan of Twitter in high school; I basically tweeted everyday (nothing academically related, just your classic high school tweets, such as: “Omg it’s game day! #FridayNightLights). But that love for Twitter started to dwindle away in college as Instagram became more popular, and became my new social media obsession (still is).

When we were first assigned to make 21 tweets throughout a 7-week time span, I chuckled under my breath because I thought, “Wow this will be the easiest assignment ever…free, easy points!” Yeah….no.

Because I was out of the Twitter game for about a year and a half before this assignment, my everyday, natural instinct that I had in high school to check Twitter and tweet at least five times a day had vanished during this assignment.

That said, honestly, I hated this assignment, I just felt forced to do something that really didn’t interest me.

But as much as I hated it, I am very thankful for the lesson that it taught me.

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We are college students, most of whom will be graduating within the next few years, which means we’re adults and soon enough we are really going to start having to act like it, which includes being up-to-date on world news, as well as news relating to our field of study.

This assignment taught me how much information and news is being disseminated every single day (and how much I am missing out on), but even further, it taught me that being up-to-date and “in the know” with your news, doesn’t have to be boring.

You choose who you want to follow on Twitter, such as AdAge or CNN, so it’s the best possible platform to get your news from because you’re not being thrown information at you that you don’t care about; it’s truly genius. It also makes getting your news more “fun,” if you will, because it’s interactive, and even if the account you tweeted at doesn’t reply, Twitter is still stimulating deeper thoughts beyond what is presented to you in the tweet or an attached article.

So, thank you Mame for this assignment; I may have disliked it, but I definitely learned something from it.

How Can Your Company’s Content Stand Out in 2016?

In one of my previous posts, I explained that one of the keys to success in regards to content marketing is understanding your audience and truly creating your content for them, based on their needs, wants, and passions.

Although I believe that to be one of the major keys to success, there is SO much more to the success behind content marketing. An article titled “7 Content Marketing Trends That Will Reign Supreme in 2016” from jeffbullas.com lays out a few more keys to success, for those looking to stand out in the digital world. Jeff Bullas is the world’s #1 Content Marketing Influencer, Social Media Marketing Strategist & Speaker.

Trend #1: The magic of user-generated content

As companies try to build and maintain customer loyalty, it’s imperative to understand that their target consumers are 70% more likely to refer to User Generated Content (UGC), such as reviews and recommendations from other consumers than the company’s professionally written content.

Trend #2: Zero in on interactive storytelling

I think that the best way to describe this section is as Jeff Bulla states: “They demand content in which they can get involved, without feeling targeted. They seek a visual story that’s powerful and out of the box.” The best way to connect with your audience, and ultimately allow them remember you, is through great, compelling stories.

Trend #3: Episodic content is a must-have

The best way to keep your audience your audience engaged in your company is by strategically disseminating your content over a period of time; this will subconsciously lead your consumers back to your content time and time again.

Trend #4: Try personalizing your content

We are surrounded by hundreds of different types of content every single. It’s gotten to the point that we don’t even recognize it anymore because it’s just become apart of our lifestyle. If your company has the opportunity, more importantly the budget, to create different content for each of your target audiences…DO IT!

Trend #5: Select social media for content distribution

92% of marketers reported using social media as a primary component of their marketing strategy in 2015. More social media platforms being created means an increase in opportunity to reach your target market. Companies need to study their audience, know which platform their audience is primarily using, and put content there!

Trend #6: Content marketing and SEO go hand in hand

The article said it best: “SEO and content marketing complement each other. Content marketing fulfills the demand created by SEO…Who doesn’t want to be on the first page of any search engine?

Trend #7: Budgets will skyrocket

Creating content good content that is engaging and effective isn’t cheap, and it’s certainly not going to get cheaper; content marketing budgets are going to see a significant increase in 2016.