Content Marketing

Content marketing is the planning, creation, promotion and measurement of content for a specific audience and intended to inspire a business outcome. With over 90% of B2B and B2C marketers engaging in content marketing, it’s more important than ever to make sure your content stands out from the crowd.

 

As the only blog to be named #1 content marketing blog three times by Content Marketing Institute, TopRank is dedicated to helping marketers understand the opportunities, best practices and current trends in the world of content marketing.

 

Browse our content marketing articles to find tips, guides, expert interviews, conference liveblogging and best practices.

 

Anne Leuman

How Data Insights Can Lead Your B2B Content Marketing Strategy

Anne Leuman on Nov 8th, 2018     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

Let Data Insights Lead Your Content Marketing Strategy

There’s little doubt among seasoned B2B content marketers that strategy is the key to success. In fact, according to the 2019 B2B Content Marketing Report produced by Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs, the most successful content marketers (65%) are far more likely to have a documented strategy than their less successful peers (14%).

The kicker? That same report revealed that just 27% of B2B marketers say their content marketing efforts are very or extremely successful in achieving their organization’s desired results. The next largest chunk, 51%, say their content marketing is only “moderately effective.”

What’s causing the disconnect? The report points to content marketing maturity: The more sophisticated your content marketing efforts become, the more success you’re likely to have.

Lane Ellis

Don’t Blink: 3 Often-Overlooked Practices for Highly-Effective Content Creation

Lane Ellis on Nov 7th, 2018     Content Marketing

Green hedge row maze with hut.

Welcome to the fourth installment in our multi-part “Collective Wisdom” series of content marketing strategy articles.

In this episode, we’ll take a look at the value of specific strategy practices that are sometimes overlooked or underutilized when it comes to creating strong content, featuring insight and examples from some of the world’s best digital marketers.

We kicked off our series with the planning process in “How to Boost Your Content Marketing Efforts By Planning Ahead,” went forward with content creation in “The Art Of Crafting More Powerful Content: 5 Top Tactics from the Experts,” and then dug even deeper into messaging with “5 Powerful Messaging Tactics For 2019 And Beyond From Marketing Experts.”

Joshua Nite

5 Content Marketing Shortcuts That Cost You in the Long Run

Joshua Nite on Nov 6th, 2018     B2B Marketing, B2C Marketing, Content Marketing

Content Marketing Shortcuts to Avoid

You know what they call a shortcut that actually saves time?

The route.

That was the wisdom my dad gave me the first time we went hiking together. Sometimes when you look at the map, it looks like there’s a better path. But the route is the route for a reason. Chasing a shortcut feels like making progress — but it might not get you to the trail’s end.

Marketers dig shortcuts. Or, as we call them, “hacks.” It makes sense: We’re usually overworked, understaffed, and expected to work wonders. A content marketing hack promises to cut a straight line through a tedious process, increasing efficiency and boosting results.

Caitlin Burgess

6 Scary Good Tips to Take Your Content Marketing ‘Beyond the Grave’

Caitlin Burgess on Oct 31st, 2018     Content Marketing

Save Your Content Marketing Campaign from the Digital Graveyard

After conjuring all the budget, talent, and creativity you can muster, the moment you release your content marketing campaign into the digital wild is devilishly satisfying. All your hard work comes alive right before your very eyes, and that’s certainly cause for celebration.

via GIPHY

But after the campaign lives its best life, what will its fate be?

Oftentimes, all that spooktastic work is retired to the content marketing graveyard. However, with the right mix of will and witchcraft, your campaigns can be saved from the digital depths of darkness and be given new life.

How? Below we offer several frightfully fantastic tips to take your content marketing campaign well beyond the grave.

Lane Ellis

5 Powerful Messaging Tactics For 2019 And Beyond From Marketing Experts

Lane Ellis on Oct 25th, 2018     Content Marketing

Powerful redwood tree forest image.

Welcome to the third installment in our multi-part “Collective Wisdom” series of content marketing strategy articles. In this Pubcon-themed episode, you’ll learn powerful methods for creating engaging and bookmark-worthy messaging, featuring insight from some of the world’s top digital marketers who spoke at Pubcon Pro Las Vegas 2018.

Previously in “How to Boost Your Content Marketing Efforts By Planning Ahead,” we looked at implementing a smart and robust content planning strategy, while “The Art Of Crafting More Powerful Content: 5 Top Tactics from the Experts” began exploring five of the most fundamental content creation methods.

Now it’s time to focus on five additional smart tactics for creating engaging and powerful messaging to help you create a successful content marketing campaign.

Lane Ellis

You Have 8 Seconds – GO! Brand Messaging Secrets With Debra Jasper at #Pubcon 2018

Lane Ellis on Oct 22nd, 2018     Content Marketing, Pubcon

Debra Jasper Pubcon Las Vegas 2018 Keynote Photo By Lane R. Ellis

Debra Jasper, founder of Mindset Digital, practices what she preaches when it comes to delivering engaging messages in eight seconds or less, as she demonstrated during an energetic mile-a-minute “You Have 8 Seconds – GO! “ Pubcon Pro Las Vegas 2018 keynote address.

Before Debra took the stage, Pubcon founder Brett Tabke told the audience how one of her previous keynotes holds the record as the conference’s highest-rated, and her latest presentation showed no sign of letting go of that title.

Walking The Walk With 367 Slides

Debra’s keynote explored how to effectively get your message out in a world where today’s professional has just an eight-second attention span, and she hit the ground running, flying through some 367 visually interesting slides, nearly all featuring motion or video.

Tiffani Allen

5 Secrets for Growing Influence in Marketing: Key Takeaways from Lee Odden at #Pubcon Pro

Tiffani Allen on Oct 18th, 2018     Content Marketing, Pubcon

Lee Odden speaking at Pubcon Pro Las Vegas 2018 Photo by Lane R. Ellis

Research has shown: consumers don’t trust the companies they buy from. They don’t trust ads. And they definitely don’t trust marketers.  Trust in marketing is on a decline – between internal stakeholders and customers. In fact, according to a study by Fournaise Group, 80% of CEOs simply don’t trust marketers at all.

Trust is the gateway to influence.

Influence plays a major role in the marketing that moves customers to make purchases. That’s why Lee Odden (our fearless leader and CEO of TopRank Marketing) is challenging marketers to take a step back from the day-to-day of marketing and recognize the trend of reduced trust and influence in marketing.

Marketing Influence Pubcon

Tiffani Allen

Joe Pulizzi Shares What it Takes to be a Content Brand at #Pubcon Pro

Tiffani Allen on Oct 17th, 2018     Content Marketing, Pubcon

Joe Pulizzi at Pubcon 2018 Photo by Lane R. Ellis

When it comes to any trade, the best practice is to learn from the best. So, who better to learn about content marketing from than Joe Pulizzi — the Founder of Content Marketing Institute — when it comes to turning your content into revenue?

Joe’s keynote presentation at Pubcon Pro in Las Vegas today focused on becoming a content brand and all that it entails.

Nine Content Brand Takeaways from the Godfather of Content Marketing:

1. Find a niche where you can be the leading expert in the world

This is what Joe calls ‘The Sweet Spot.’ It’s located at the intersection between knowledge or a skill area that you have and your key customer’s pain point. He used the example of John Deere, where they created content around agriculture and technology specifically for farmer’s trying to improve their operation.

Lane Ellis

The Art Of Crafting More Powerful Content: 5 Top Tactics from the Experts

Lane Ellis on Oct 16th, 2018     Content Marketing

Craftsperson working and creating.

Welcome to the second piece in our new multi-part “Collective Wisdom” series of content marketing strategy articles, where you’ll learn proven methods taking you from the beginning of the content planning cycle to its final post-publication conclusion, and featuring insight from some of the world’s most respected and successful digital marketers.

Previously in “How to Boost Your Content Marketing Efforts By Planning Ahead,” we looked at implementing a smart and robust content planning strategy. Now it’s time to take a look at the intrinsically important content creation stage of any successful content marketing campaign.

Crafting Powerful Content

As we’ll explore, skillfully crafting content is one of the most important steps on a successful content marketing journey. After all, content is the centerpiece you present to the digital world — so let’s examine some of the strongest tactics to incorporate in your next campaign.

Lee Odden

16 Ways to Be More Efficient with Content Creation

Lee Odden on Oct 15th, 2018     Content Marketing

Content Creation Efficiency

Last minute scrambling to crank out another blog post is hardly the origin story for most great content. Falling behind on content production happens for a variety of reasons from poor planning to lack of resources.

Solutions will vary, but one thing I’ve found that helps with the creation of quality content on a consistent basis is a combination of efficiency and creativity. Process and technology are a certainly a big part of efficiency but so is thinking beyond your own capabilities (creativity).

Knowing you should do a thing and being able to do it well are not the same thing, so while some of these types of ideas are familiar, it is in their implementation that you’ll find new content creation productivity.

Joshua Nite

2019 B2B Content Marketing Trends: The 10 Biggest Opportunities for Marketers

Joshua Nite on Oct 10th, 2018     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

B2B content marketing research

For content marketers, each year’s publication of the B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends Report should be truly exciting. Even more than the latest iPhone announcement. In fact, especially more than the latest iPhone announcement.

Don’t get me wrong: I love a slightly bigger screen, creepy new camera features and a higher price tag as much as the next guy. But the annual report from Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs can actually make marketers better at our jobs.

The 2019 edition has officially been released, and there are plenty of thought-provoking stats in just the first couple of pages; high-level attributes of top performers and clear opportunities for improvement.

Anne Leuman

How Customer-Centric FAQ Pages Can Improve Content Marketing Results

Anne Leuman on Oct 3rd, 2018     Content Marketing

How FAQ Pages Drive Content Marketing Results

Your prospects and customers have questions. And it’s your job as a content marketer to answer them. That’s why you’re continuously turning out content to inform, engage, and inspire action throughout the buyer journey.

But wouldn’t it be great if you could answer many of those burning questions in one convenient, easy-to-use resource?

It would. And it exists. It’s an early-internet favorite that’s not super top-of-mind these days: The FAQ page.

FAQ pages have been around since before search engines, but the question is: Are you making the most of this often forgotten resource?

Rather than an afterthought, FAQ pages can become a robust piece of content that directly serves the interests of your prospects and customers, helping accelerate the success of your overall content marketing programHere’s how you can make sure that your FAQ has “best answer” content that helps inform customers and prospects and move them along the buyer journey.