Value added content is exclusive content that your audience cannot get anywhere else. Such content is the core of any content marketing strategy. According to the Content Marketing Institute’s 2015 study, marketers allocate 28% of their total marketing budget to content marketing. 28% – that’s a lot! Marketers pay attention to content because content drives leads and sales.

Content marketing works and should be the core of any inbound marketing strategy.

Your audience has needs and your organization is designed to meet those needs. If, for example, you are a non-profit your audience needs help and you exist to help them tangibly. Or, if you are a social media firm your audience needs social media management and strategy and you exist do that work for them.

Value added content serves as a bridge between your audience’s needs and your solutions. You aren’t giving away what you do – rather you are giving away content that helps lead your audience to what you do.

If you are a non-profit you may offer content recapping projects you have done, testimonials from people who have turned their lives around, or teaching that can lead your audience in the right direction. If you are a social media firm you may offer content about the marketing value of Twitter’s new 280 character limit, content on how Facebook de-ranks pictures with lots of text, or a tool for evaluating social media success.

For Rystedt Creative, an online creative firm, this post is another example of value added content.

Value added content will keep your website fresh, give you plenty of content to share on social media, and convert website visitors into subscribers and customers.

Here are five of the most common – and most effective – types of value added content:

Blog posts

Blogs began (in the late 1990s) as web-logs – series of informal and personal posts that read somewhat like a diary. They have since evolved to include almost any style of writing on any subject. Today blogs have become an essential element of most websites.

Example:
If you run an auto-body shop, you could publish a blog with posts with crash safety tips, examples of complex jobs you have finished, and customer testimonials.

If you are considering adding value added content to your website a regularly updated blog is an excellent place to start.

Tools

Whether you own, manage, or work for your organization you have surely developed tools to help you work and live more efficiently. Or, perhaps, you have developed tools for clients that could be useful for others as well. You can revise such tools and generalize them to share as downloadable content.

Examples:
If you run a marketing agency offer a downloadable sales toolkit with a few spreadsheets and templates.

Rystedt Creative offers tools like our Outstanding Website Quiz and Checklist and our Website Self-Evaluation.

How-to-Guides

How-to-guides may come as videos, articles, or blog posts. Different guides will lend themselves to different formats. Use these guides to help your audience accomplish something with ease.

Examples:
If you run a data analytics business you could publish how-to-guides on how your audience can leverage specific data points to help their own business succeed.

Rystedt Creative recently published a how-to-guide for better securing your WordPress website.

Infographics

Infographics are images that display data and make it easily comprehensible. They usually include multiple graphs, short explanations, and quick statistics on a unified subject.

If your business has original research or data you should certainly consider designing some infographics. Infographics make your data easier to understand and more convincing and they’re also more sharable than a wall of text.

Example:
If you teach communication skills consider designing an infographic on the importance of non-verbal communication cues.

e-books

Have lengthier original content? A blog series that could be combined and revised as an e-book? Original research or data requiring lengthy evaluation?

Your website should offer a downloadable e-book!

Whether you offer this as a PDF, EPUB, or both – offer it exclusively on your site or also on Kindle and iBooks – e-books are a type of content your audience expects to pay for. Surprise them – give it away in exchange for their contact info. Offering e-books as value added content will then benefit both your audience and your organization.

Example:
If you run a fabric shop, you can release an ebook of children’s clothing patterns called Quilting Cottons for Children’s Couture.

Rystedt Creative can help develop value added content for your website

Many organizations find that they do not have the time to both do what they love and regularly create and publish useful content. That’s what we’re here for. Your next step to improving your content marketing is as east as contacting us.