B2B marketing shouldn’t have to be snooze-worthy. It should be insightful, engaging, even emotional. But why is that so hard? So many companies are trying content marketing and a large percentage of them are falling flat on creating exciting, worthwhile content.
While so many struggle, there are a handful of companies that are knocking it out of the park, creating incredibly human content in an industry defined by logic and statistics.
I’ve compiled them for you in the following list, outlining what makes them so great and what you can learn from them.
I will mention Intel again and again, if only because they do such a lovely job on so much of their content. Not only does the company have a blog that is a good mix of original and curated content, but also some really inspiring videos.
Here is one of the videos that Intel has recently created:
What makes this work? Let’s start with the dramatic music that makes up the soundtrack of the video. Not only is it dramatic, but it is played by a real life orchestra. Couple that with the creative use of drone technology, beautiful colors and a video that is stunningly composed and you get a real winner. Here, Intel does everything beautifully – perfectly. I may not want to buy something from Intel because of this video (I’m not quite the target audience), but if I were, this campaign would have won me over.
All those things combined have created a touch of magic in the video. The classical music makes it emotional, then it is combined with the awed faces of the spectators being lit by the drones, which are blinking in a carefully choreographed pattern.
This stellar example is anything but boring and even if you can cram in half of the things that Intel put into this video then you will well on your way to producing engaging content.
Content Marketing Institute
Content Marketing Institute (CMI), which was recently acquired by UBM, has been putting out great content since 2007, when it was known as Junta42. They created CMI as an offshoot of the original brand to answer business’ questions about content marketing.
The brand puts out an astonishing array of material covering most every area of content marketing.
This article, posted just yesterday, talks about what content marketers need to be doing in order for their content to succeed, in a post called, “9 Actions Content Marketers Need to Do Right Now.”
Content Marketing Institute knows what its audience needs and creates engaging, insightful content to fill that hole.
Moz takes digital marketing and turns it into a science. Its products include SEO, analytics and performance tools. Its founder, Rand Fishkin, who calls himself the “Wizard of Moz” is active on social media, which does wonders for brand engagement.
When I brush up on my SEO, the Moz blog is on top of my list. It’s authoritative and convincing and they weave promotions for both their free and paid apps seamlessly into your experience. I don’t download much off marketing blogs, knowing that doing so instantly makes me a lead, but after going through a few posts on the Moz Blog, I was convinced I needed to download the company’s SEO toolbar.
Another really cool thing on Moz’s blog is Whiteboard Friday where Fishkin tackles a variety of SEO-related topics by mapping it out on a whiteboard for viewers. It’s definitely worth checking out.
This company specializes in video hosting for businesses. It is a platform for businesses to put their video content on, so Wistia’s content is centered around those ideas. Naturally, the content is often a video explaining a topic. Even the company’s lead in to its blog is convincing. To navigate to it, you must hit “Learn” and the word blog is not even contained within the page’s URL.
There is a good blend of both video and non-video content (usually about videos), which makes it good for a casual reader that may not always want to watch a video about a particular topic.
What I really like about this blog is its diversity. Wistia understands its companies range from larger companies wanting just hosting to companies with just a couple employees trying to pull off video marketing.
This is particularly evident in posts like “Organize Your Gear with This DIY Camera Toolbox” compared to “How to Incorporate Video into a Marketing Automation Campaign.” These are two different audiences, one in the highly technical aspects of marketing, the other is just trying to figure out how the hell to store all that expensive camera equipment.
The other really nice aesthetic you might noticed as you scroll through the blog is the amount of pictures on each page. There are graphics scattered across the page, breaking up what would otherwise be a large wall of text. I also love how simple and personal most of Wistia’s content is. It’s just a person talking to you, but it doesn’t feel stiff or unnatural. It is definitely a good place to look if you are trying to create solid video content that isn’t too complicated.
Obviously, Hubspot does a brilliant job in its content marketing efforts. The home page of its blog boasts, “Your Daily Dose of Inbound.”
Hubspot has a huge team churning out large amounts of content at any given time, making it invaluable for someone who might want to visit the company’s blog every day and gain new insights.
The company’s blogs cover three major areas in a company: Sales, Marketing and Agency. This diversity makes the blog an appealing place for large sections of a company, which likely makes its services easier to sell because its work covers a multitude of stakeholders.
Additionally, Hubspot seamlessly and easily integrates its free content with its gated content. And its gated content is well worth filling out the form. You can do anything from download a guide on how to write a stylebook (which includes Hubspot’s very own style guide) to a set of projects that its customers can complete to enhance their marketing efforts.
There’s some paid stuff in there, but you’ll seriously be amazed with all the value that Hubspot provides totally for free.
These companies are the best of the best in B2B content marketing. They are keeping the B2B marketing industry fresh by keeping the topics fresh and the content aesthetically pleasing and engaging to many in the industry. This is why they work. While not all of the things that these companies do will work in your company, you can be sure that many will. Try out some of these tactics and you’ll be sure to up your content marketing game.
Is there someone else we should have included on this list? Who is it and why? Tell us in the comments section!