Marketing Blog Knowledge | 12 min read

8 Content Marketing Strategy Examples That Deliver Leads

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With your brain full of strategy from binge watching marketing gurus on YouTube, you're probably ready to kick strategy to the side. Well, don't! Instead, take a break from thinking too hard with these content marketing strategy examples that will help you implement what you know.

And if you don't know as much you'd like, head over to our Content Strategy Checklist for an easily digestible crash course.

But...why should we even create content in 2019? As content marketing maven Julia McCoy puts it:

“Good content can 10x what you invested into it. Through the organic rankings that you can get from one long-form piece or sales that result from the trust you built up through brand awareness content.” - Julia McCoy

If that sounds better to you than a chocolate donut 🍩, then keep on reading. This post will show you how to craft a content marketing strategy from scratch and will give you unique strategy examples from 8 different industries to inspire your next move.

Table of content:

  1. What makes for a great content marketing campaign?
  2. The 5-step process for creating your content marketing strategy
  3. Content marketing strategy examples:
Let's roll!

What makes for a great content marketing campaign?

Before we take a look at the strategies, let’s first understand what makes content marketing successful.

Your content should….

...Solve a problem for your target audience or meets a need they have

You already know that your content marketing should be geared to your target audience. But did you know that your content will be even more successful (higher engagement and conversions) if it satisfies specific needs for this ideal customer? Give them needed information or the solution to a common problem.

...Have a system in place for getting regular traffic

You can’t just create something and expect your ideal customer to find it. This is where keyword research and content promotion come in.

...Bring visitors further into the buying cycle

Don’t lead people to your site without offering a way for them to engage further. With affordable products, you can include CTAs leading to purchase in your blog posts, podcasts and videos. In the case of longer buying cycles, you’ll want to offer a freebie so they opt-in to your email marketing list.

...Stay on-brand and foster brand loyalty

To have lasting business success, customers have to love your brand. If your brand is confusing and inconsistent, you won’t build up a following. So, any content you create must adhere to your brand guidelines.

Make content that people want to share.

The 5-step process for creating your content marketing strategy

How do you create a content marketing strategy? Here’s the process in a nutshell.

1. Identify your target customers

Who are your best customers? If you have multiple customer or user types, which ones have the highest lifetime value? You may have only one type of ideal customer (say, an office manager at a corporation, or you may have multiple — an office manager at a corporation and a small business.)

2. Discover their struggles and desires

Understand who your ideal customers are on several levels (professional, personal, emotional). You can fill out a persona template to make it easy to recall the information at any time. At a minimum, you should know some basic demographic information about them, their daily responsibilities in life and/or business (depending on your industry), their biggest fears and frustrations, and their goals and dreams. If you’re struggling to understand your customers on a deeper level, surveys and interviews are invaluable tools—and they’ll help with your content brainstorms too!

3. Determine your best content channels

In your company, what types of content can you execute on reliably? What types of content do your ideal customers resonate with the most? For small businesses, it can be smart to choose ONLY a blog, a podcast or a YouTube channel (for example). Whereas larger businesses might have the capacity and the need to create content for all three. The best channels for you are at the intersection of what your target audience wants to engage with and what you can produce consistently as a team.

4. Ideate large, high-value content pieces for your top channels

Once you know your channel and your audience (and most importantly, their needs), it’s time to start brainstorming. At this stage, don’t hold back! Come up with ideas that your target audience will find helpful in solving their problems. You can also use free SEO tools like UberSuggest and Keywords Everywhere to determine keyphrases that are worthwhile for your business. (The higher the search volume and the more quality content that already positions, the harder it is for new companies to position something. Depending on your existing domain authority, you may need to go for less competitive keyphrases.)

5. Architect your funnels and promotions

And the final piece of a smart content marketing strategy is to make sure that some basic structures are in place before you hit publish on a blog, video, ebook or podcast. As an example, you might want to set up an email opt-in to a free 5-day challenge, and then link all your blog posts link. Or you may want the call-to-action at the bottom of your blog posts to offer a lower-tier, introductory product, such as a sample-size pack in the case of a beauty company.

The following content marketing strategy examples will solidify your understanding of this process and illuminate ways to incorporate more strategic content marketing at your company.

Content marketing strategy examples

Because we ❤️ you, we created content marketing strategy examples across 8 different industries. Each example gives you a quick overview of the business, their target audience’s needs and goals, 3 pieces of content that satisfy them, and a CTA (call-to-action) for the content.

Use suggestions below as a starting point. You can create multiple content for different CTAs or different customer personas. Expand on this concept to come up with dozens of content topics that work for your audience.

1. SaaS startup

Let’s meet our first fictitious company in our round of content marketing strategy examples, the SaaS startup!

The business

A SaaS startup that helps manage 2FA (two-factor authentication) for large teams and their tech stack.

The target audience

The startup is beginning by targeting other startups and small businesses. Their target audience is COOs in the tech industry at companies with 10 - 50 employees.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The COO gets frustrated by the lack of security at the company. Passwords are shared haphazardly amongst the team and 2FA isn’t used because it’s a challenge to manage.

The COO’s goal is to improve security while not wasting anyone’s time.

3 content examples

  1. [Blog] How to Use 2FA as a Team
  2. [Ebook] Technology Security Challenges Faced by Growing Startups
  3. [Blog] Why Your Employees Shouldn’t Share Passwords Over

CTAs & funnel considerations

Each of the two blog posts above links to an opt-in form for the Ebook. The end of the Ebook links to a signup page for the SaaS product.

group of people using laptop computer
Photographer: Annie Spratt | Source: Unsplash

2. Luxury e-commerce shop

The next strategy example is a luxury e-commerce company. The content is a bit more playful and lifestyle focused.

The business

Luxury e-commerce company that sells mens’ pocket squares and ties in modern styles with luxury fabrics.

The target audience

The target customer is a millennial man who lives in an urban area.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The ideal customer wants to project a rich, classy look while still being fashionable and fresh (yes, I said fresh). No hoodies here!

3 content examples

  1. [Video] 4 Ways Millennial Men Can Uplevel Their Weekend Style
  2. [Photo Gallery] 50 Luxury Looks for Modern Men
  3. [Blog] How to Dress for Your First Conference Presentation

CTAs & funnel considerations

Leveraging email is key in e-commerce. A smart move would be to end all content with an offer to join the email list for 20% off the customer's first order.

person using black tablet computer
Photographer: Brooke Lark | Source: Unsplash

3. Travel planner

Next up: the travel planner! Unlike a large travel agency, this planner is an individual.

The business

Travel planning service for honeymooning couples, built on the solopreneur’s personal brand

The target audience

While the brides are off planning weddings, it’s customary for the groom to plan the honeymoon. So while there are 2 target personas, the groom is the primary.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The groom wants to create an experience that’s romantic and adventurous. He’s worried that things will go wrong on the journey, and he wants it to be completely stress-free.

3 content examples

  1. [Blog] 15 Unique, Non-Cliche Honeymoon Ideas for 2019
  2. [Video] How to Know What Your Fiance Really Wants to Do on Your Honeymoon
  3. [Blog] 3 Luxury Honeymoon Itineraries for a Middle-class Budget

CTAs & funnel considerations

Each piece of content leads to an opt-in form for a 3-day honeymoon planning challenge. During the challenge, people are encouraged to book a call if they want custom help.

body of water near trees and mountain cliff during daytime
Photographer: Derek Thomson | Source: Unsplash

4. Financial adviser

The financial services industry is built on networking and referrals. Having a solid content marketing strategy in place compliments that by helping the business owner stay in touch with leads and existing clients.

The business

An independent financial advisor who helps small business owners set up retirement plans.

The target audience

Their target audience is small business owners with fewer than 10 employees who run service-based businesses.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The target audience must create retirement plans for themselves and their employees. They want to maximize their investments and not make any bad decisions with their money.

3 content examples

  1. [Blog] How to Retire Early When You Own a Small Business
  2. [Blog] The Best Retirement Accounts for Small Business Employees
  3. [Blog] How Small Business Owners Can Use Benefits to Retain Their Best Employees

CTAs & funnel considerations

The blog posts can all end in an offer to book a free consultation. Or if the financial adviser is using email marketing, the blogs can link to an opt-in form for the weekly or monthly newsletter with financial news and tips.

grayscale photo of Wall St. signage
Photographer: Rick Tap | Source: Unsplash

5. Web design agency

In certain industries, positioning content in organic search is very competitive. Web design agencies can still position for content, but they might use content more for branding and to appear as an authority to potential clients.

The business

A web design agency that specializes in e-commerce storefronts.

The target audience

Large and small e-commerce sellers, particularly Amazon and eBay sellers who have been successful on those platforms and are starting their own proprietary online stores.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The target audience needs to create a professional site that maximizes conversions and is never down or glitchy. Because e-commerce has tight profit margins, they need to do it on a budget.

3 content examples

  1. [Blog] How to Create an Ecommerce Website on Any Budget
  2. [Webinar] How to Transition from Amazon Selling to Selling on Your Own Shopify Store
  3. [Blog] How to Increase Repeat Business for Your Ecommerce Site

CTAs & funnel considerations

Because working with a web design agency can be a considered purchase, it would be wise to capture email addresses whenever possible. The above content pieces can all link to an opt-in form for an ebook called “How to Optimize Your Ecommerce Site”

silver iMac turned on inside room
Photographer: Lee Campbell | Source: Unsplash

6. Course creator

Now let’s take a look at how an infopreneur can use content marketing strategically.

The business

An infopreneur that sells courses at various price points on how to master sales calls.

The target audience

Self-employed service providers.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The target audience is not naturally gifted in sales and doesn’t have a professional background in sales. They need to learn sales for the sake of their business, but master it without feeling sleazy! (#nothanks)

3 content examples

  1. [Video] Why Being Sleazy or Pushy Doesn’t Sell and What Works Instead
  2. [Blog] How to Optimize Your Sales Script
  3. [Blog] 3 Ways to Practice Sales When You’re a New Service Provider

CTAs & funnel considerations

The content can all lead to an opt-in form for a free 3-day course (whose upsell is a premium group course).

clear glass terrariums
Photographer: Neslihan Gunaydin | Source: Unsplash

7. Business coach

A business coach can use content to attract more people to their email list and to nurture existing leads.

The business

A business coach who helps businesses to increase operational efficiency and set up smart systems.

The target audience

Small service-based business owners.

The target audience’s needs and goals

The business owners need to make the most of their team and increase revenue without having to increase their operating expenses. They also have a very limited amount of time to try new things or train their team.

3 content examples

  1. [Blog] How Small Businesses Can Increase Revenue without Hiring More Employees
  2. [Blog] 3 Ways to Upsell for Local, Service-Based Businesses
  3. [Blog] Why Operational Efficiency is an Overlooked Source of Profit

CTAs & funnel considerations

At the end of each blog post, offer a complimentary business analysis call (yes, a sales call for coaching). The content pieces can be sent to an existing email list to nurture leads and book more sales calls.

man in blue formal suit
Photographer: Tamarcus Brown | Source: Unsplash

8. IT services firm

An IT services firm can establish greater authority in their area by creating a strategic content machine.

The business

Sets up IT systems for dental offices and medical offices in their urban area.

The target audience

Medical and dental office owners.

The target audience’s needs and goals

Implement technology that saves time for their team and is reasonably priced. Use of top-of-line technology that is user-friendly without being difficult to learn or manage for support/clerical staff.

3 content examples

  1. [Video] Recommended Technology for Medical Offices in 2019
  2. [Blog] 3 Types of Technology Systems That Every Dental Office Needs
  3. [Blog] How to Vet and Select an IT Services Firm for Your Medical Office

CTAs & funnel considerations

For the simplest way to maximize conversions from content, each piece can link to a form to request more information on the company's services.

person using laptop
Photographer: John Schnobrich | Source: Unsplash

Over to you to create your own content marketing strategy examples! (and share them with us of course:)

That concludes our content marketing strategy examples. Let’s overview those 5 steps one more time:

  1. Identify your target customers
  2. Discover their struggles and desires
  3. Determine your best content channels
  4. Ideate large, high-value content pieces for your top channels
  5. Architect your funnels and promotions

Use these steps to build your content marketing strategy (and refer back to these examples for inspiration if you get stuck). Onward ho!

Pick your strategy and make it a winning one.

To manage your content calendar and instantly publish to all your favorite channels, sign up for StoryChief.

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