12 content formats – how to inspire your target group

Content marketing offers the ideal opportunity to noticeably increase attention and reach in search engines such as Google and Co. This is the main reason why the content marketing discipline has come more and more into the focus of experts in recent years. As an interface between SEO and social media, it is not only the visibility and reach of a strengthened website. Companies are much more concerned with good content in the right content format in interaction with prospects, customers, or real fans.

Exciting, funny, or informative content is liked on social media platforms and recommended to friends. The website itself contains articles and texts that can have an advisory function. Other entertaining or explanatory content is available in video or podcast format via SoundCloud or Youtube platforms.

We find the content everywhere these days. No wonder that this online marketing discipline is becoming more and more the focus of business people and marketers.

The right content for your target group

Scattering myriad types of content indiscriminately across all sorts of channels on the web to attract positive attention or greater reach is undoubtedly the wrong strategy. Perhaps that sounds obvious to you, but many companies still do just that – producing content without a goal, plan, or strategy.

The essential requirement for content that is effective is: It has to hit the bull’s eye!

To ensure that you also produce successful content, you need a proper content marketing process that builds on specific goals and target groups relevant ideas.

When creating your process, you will come into contact with selecting the right content formats, among other things.

With target group-relevant web content in the right format, you have the chance to grab the public attention of your target group. And that is exactly what content marketing should be about. Because with targeted attention, other goals such as range, traffic, and other signals can be achieved quickly and easily.

Content Marketing Formats

Social media posts, blog posts, and videos are certainly among the most popular content marketing formats. Do you know any others? And do you even know which design and under which conditions the best suit your company and your target group? Below is a selection of popular content formats that may also be great for your business. To provide a better overview, I have categorized the selected formats:

TEXT-BASED CONTENT

When you think of content marketing, blog posts, guides, and other text-based content are sure to spring to mind. Logical, after all, there are already tons of texts on every possible topic to be found online. But what kind of books are there? And how can you use them to inspire your target group with your business and your products in a targeted manner?

Counselor

A content format that can provide content with ideally high added value is advice.

While people used to look up books or specialist magazines, advice on all sorts of topics is now spread worldwide. All the better if you can find one of these guides on a specific topic on your site.

The character of an advisor is always based on the needs of users and customers. Otherwise, it only does not fulfill its purpose.

Advantages of the advisor format:

– The expertise in your field is competently emphasized.

– The target group is given an approach to a solution – this creates real added value.

– This content format is ideal for SEO optimization of a website.

Regardless of the area: Advice topics can be found in every area. For example, a dog website can create a guide on puppy training. A travel agent can put together special tips for the next trip that replace the travel guide or give a good first impression of the country.

In turn, a fashion e-commerce company has the option to work with in-depth buying guides to help customers make the right decision.

Also, a guide does not always have to be in the form of a more or less rigid text on a website. Other conditions, such as white papers, instructions, e-books, and tutorials, are ideal for advice content.

Instructions, lists, tips & tricks

Checklists, how-to or step-by-step instructions, and valuable tricks represent suitable content formats in the online world. People love help or free downloads that make their lives easier.

Structured, prioritized, and understandable overviews characterize this format and make it a popular type of content.

Since this format provides important content and quick solutions, it satisfies customer need for self-help.

Thus, instructions, tips, and lists for almost every topic are suitable for publishing target group-relevant content.

Possible forms for high-quality advice are whitepapers, PDF checklists for download, or blog articles on any topic relevant to target groups.

Videos are, of course, also possible, depending on the topic.

? Tip: Think about whether it makes sense to write an article on a specific topic and re-record the whole thing in a video. In this way, you spread the content over different channels and secure a greater reach.

Often, depending on the topic, combinations of these formats in one channel make sense. Travel providers can give tips and tricks for the next vacation and, at the same time, offer a vacation checklist for download. A children’s toy company could provide a children’s birthday checklist and instructions for crafting games simultaneously. When it comes to combining and creating meaningful content, there are almost no limits!

Advantages of lists, instructions & tips:

– They satisfy the need for self-help.

– You offer support to your target group.

– You can serve different channels with the same content.

– The time required for pure text or image formats can be kept relatively short.

Studies and surveys

Adequate studies provide informative value in the area of ​​trend development, status quo, and future strategies. However, studies and surveys are among the time-consuming and money-consuming formats.

However, due to this format’s enormous potential, studies are popular in many industries for creating meaningful, relevant, and meaningful content.

A big plus point of studies and surveys: The results can be used, copied, and mostly also republished not only in your publication but also by specialist journals, scientists, and students.

Diagrams, diagrams, and infographics are used to present studies and surveys easily. The complete research can, of course, also be downloaded.

? Tip: If you want to release your study as a download, this is an excellent opportunity to generate e-mail addresses or other contact details.

Advantages of studies and surveys:

– Long-range thanks to well-founded and scientific added value

– Enhance scientific expertise in a particular area enormously

– Offer a reasonable basis for forecasts and developments in the respective subject area

Quotes

Quotes are famous in all subject areas because they usually get to the heart of the matter briefly and meaningfully. By the way, quotes are also ideal as a text break in longer articles and ensure a pleasant reading flow. Of course, a quote should always match the statement of the related content.

A currently prevalent form in which we like, share, and comment on quotations – the “visual statement.”

In combination with an image, quotes as a content marketing format can ensure reach and attention on various channels.

Some excellent and free providers on the Internet make it easy to create such quote images. Canva, for example, is recommended here.

? Tip: Use statements and quotes from your management or experts for your content production. This not only ensures that you do not provide false personal information. You also secure branding opportunities in your industry.

VISUAL CONTENT

Visual content is also widespread today and enjoys great popularity.

photos

“A picture is worth a thousand words.” And not only that: Pictures can arouse emotions and evoke moods.

For example, fitness studios and sports brands no longer only work with pictures of trained models. Instead, the providers are now trying to create feelings with their images and advertising. Needs to “feel good,” “experience lifestyle,” “have fun,” “live healthy and fit,” “feel good in your body” play a much more vital role in advertising strategy these days.

A small example: In which of the two pictures does more emotion come across? And what exactly do you feel about both photographs? Lifestyle? Fun in life? Wellbeing? Do you fancy a healthy life?

Two image formats that are used as advertising for fitness studios serve as an example. Which content is more appealing to you? Which gym would you prefer to workout in?

I suspect more than half identified more with the second gym.

Use images sensibly and awaken in the viewer – your potential customer – the desire and motivation to take advantage of your offer, your product, or your service with pleasure and a good feeling.

Advantages of image formats:

– Arouse feelings and moods faster than a text

– The corporate philosophy and corporate design can reinforce your branding.

– Provide variety in the flow of reading

In addition to the listed advantages, images offer a lot of space and space to be liked, shared, and clicked on social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest.

If creating your images is too time-consuming or if the other resources such as B. If there is not enough time, you can buy suitable images from free or paid photo providers. Popular platforms are in stock and 123rf. In addition to pixabay, pexels are also available in the open area.

? Tip: Always make sure that you choose images that don’t look too much like “stock photos.”

Infographics

Infographics are becoming increasingly popular on the web. The informative images quickly and easily graphically bring even more complex content to the point. The most significant advantage of visualized content is that users can remember the range up to 90% better than the written word.

Further advantages:

• Good branding options

• Comprehensible processing of complex data

• The chance of viral distribution in social media, especially Pinterest, Instagram, or others, is high.

Thanks to free tools such as piktochart and canva, it is unnecessary to hire a graphic designer to create colorful, exciting infographics.

Image description: piktochart offers everyone the opportunity to create free, stylish graphics using drag & drop.


There are many good sites on the internet that provide templates and thus greatly simplify the creation of competent infographics.

Image description: The piktochart templates offer good samples and inspiration for creating your infographics.

Of course, there are hardly any limits to creating an internal graphic designer, whereas you cannot make everything for free with the platforms. Nevertheless, these tool providers for competent infographics are particularly suitable for freelancers and small business owners.

? Tip: It’s easy to get lost between icons and colorful layouts. Make sure the content is clear and understandable. It is best to make a detailed plan and a rough sketch of what you want to depict in advance. Only with structure, accuracy, appropriate design, and meaningful content will your work find attention and, at best, great approval.

GIFs

GIFs have become hugely popular in recent years. The short excerpts of the videos reflect a mood or a feeling even more strongly than a picture.

Advantages of GIFs:

– Loosen up texts and thus the flow of reading

– Appear entertaining

– Bring stronger feelings across than a simple picture

? Tip: Don’t use GIFs all the time and everywhere. It has to fit thematically and also with the respective format. In a guidebook on a severe or severe topic or problem, meaningful images are certainly better than a funny GIF.

AUDIOVISUAL CONTENT

Videos

The video format offers many possibilities to display content in a targeted manner and thus generate attention. There is funny, entertaining, or explanatory and informative content. But image videos that provide information about companies, their culture, or team spirit can also be found alongside exciting reports and terrifying awareness campaigns.

Examples of meaningful content and campaigns that are supposed to get a message across are e.g., B. the campaign “Onslaught.”

The Dove campaigns offer unique content with a story and meaning.
The most famous platform here is YouTube. Social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook are catching up, however. These globally known channels have long since ceased to serve to distribute all kinds of content and offer the option of creating the content directly via the platform.

Some advantages of videos as a content marketing format:

• High individuality through cinematic possibilities

• Entertainment value can ensure a positive connection with the brand

• Offer users real added value with instructions, how-tos, and tutorials

• Strengthen personal branding

• Elaborate storytelling possible

The Swiss sports and outdoor clothing manufacturer Mammut came up with a sophisticated and lavishly designed storytelling advertising campaign. The story is about an 85-year-old woman who has set herself to climb Mount Everest with the dachshund lady Daisy. A few weeks passed before the Swiss company cleared up the campaign. During this time, newspapers even reported about the tough Mrs. Woodbridge from England. The elderly lady and her crazy plan had already announced a website and a video – a great example of creative storytelling.

Whether such elaborately designed campaigns ultimately achieve the desired success depends on other factors. But stories like this attract attention.


If you don’t have the resources for the complex creation of video or storytelling campaigns, you can approach your target group with simple explanations, exercises, or recording lectures.


As a rule, there are no limits to creativity. But it is also clear that this content marketing format also requires an OK thought-out concept and strategy to create a high-quality video. The better the technical means, the more competent and professional the video appearance will ultimately be.

? Tip: In addition to how-to videos, tutorials work great too. Tutorials offer content that supports you in mastering different challenges and thus provides real added value.

Webinars

The content marketing format webinar is ideal for providing your target group – regardless of whether they are customers or potential customers – with expertise in a particular area. The speaker is a lot closer to his audience than the advisor is to his readers.

Advantages of webinars:

– Expertise close to the interested listener (target group)

– Interaction with the user

– Later convertible into another format (video format)

With this format, there is even a direct exchange with interested parties via the possible collection of questions.

? Tip: If you give lectures at conferences or in smaller meetings, it is worthwhile to offer the course and the presentation again as a webinar afterward. 

Podcasts

The podcast format allows you to take up current topics or publish expert interviews and thus provide your target group with the latest content. Above all, people who do not want to read blogs or do not have time to sit in front of a long video can be targeted here because podcasts can also be consumed on the go without any problems. Whether via iTunes, SoundCloud, or specialized podcast channels – there are many publication options.

Similar to video creation, content creation requires a certain amount of technical know-how for high-quality recordings. After a few recordings, however, you will surely get the hang of it, and you will find that creating podcasts no longer takes too much time.

ENGAGING CONTENT

The engaging content format lives from the entertainment factor. Depending on which form is best suited for your company, this format offers you excellent opportunities to turn followers and customers into loyal and enthusiastic fans.

Interactive content

Engaging content encourages the target group to participate, i.e., to interact with a provider, influencer, or company.

There are many possible ways to distribute engaging content:

  • Online tools (e.g., a currency converter)
  • Question-and-answer games
  • They are often featured in Instagram stories these days. The influencers ask questions and let their followers answer or let their fans ask them questions, which they will respond in the next session.
The “Question & Answer” option on Instagram offers followers a direct exchange with their influencer. Another great option Instagram offers: take surveys. 
The chance lies not only in the interaction between business or influencers and followers, but at the same time opinion research can be carried out on a small scale (depending on the number of followers who are involved).
  • Special advertising campaigns
  • Do you remember the McDonalds’ build your burger’ action? In 2016, McDonald’s started the campaign and called on thousands of fans to create their burger. The burgers were put together, given a name, and released for ranking. The aim was to add later the burgers that users liked most to the range.
  • As well as this case fits into the elaborate “engaging content campaign,” this example also warns of possible consequences. McDonald’s had to stop the action after a short time due to racist burger names. Should you start such a hands-on campaign, be prepared for possible dangers and try to protect yourself with targeted strategies.
  • Sweepstakes
  • Advent calendar sweepstakes, where 24 prizes are played out, are incredibly popular at the moment.

Depending on the form, the time and money required are, of course, also calculated. The question-and-answer game on social media channels such as Facebook or Instagram shows that a lot of interaction can be created between you and your target group with little effort.

Conclusion: the right content makes you king (or queen)

Target group-relevant content, packaged in the right format, played on suitable channels – content marketing sounds easy!

Of course, it’s not that simple. Creating good content in the right format requires creativity, goals, an understanding of your target group’s needs, planning, complex processes, and targeted strategies.

But if you now have an idea how you can bring your content to your target group in an entertaining, informative, and, above all, varied way, then you have taken a big step in the right direction.



Categories: Content Marketing, Google, Marketing

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