Want more traffic to your blog?
Of course you do.
Having a blog is a great way to get people interested in your brand, services and products, but with so much competition out there, it can be challenging to stay on top.
While writing traditional blog style posts are great, there are so many alternative types of content out there that can deliver information in a new and unique way.
By offering alternatives to regular blog style posts, it not only helps your brand to stand out from the crowd, but it can also help to appeal to a wider audience.
In fact, brands that embrace alternative content types often experience:
- A major boost in traffic
- An increase in targeted visitors
- Higher conversion rates
- Improved SEO
With the online world becoming more and more visual and information hungry, there has never been a better time to experiment with different types of content.
Here are 12 of the most popular alternative content mediums out there and how you can use them to grow your traffic to new heights-
Alternative Content Type #1: Video
Videos are not only a great way to get your message out there but they can also be extremely persuasive. This is great if you are looking to sell a product or get buyers interested in your brand.
There are so many different types of videos that you can choose, but let’s take a look at three of the most popular styles:
1. Demonstration Videos
These are great for demonstrating a product, software or even how one of your services work. You can also use demonstration videos to share with your viewers how to complete a simple task, such as how to edit an image in Photoshop.
YouTube is one of the biggest search engines out there, so by having videos uploaded to the platform, you can also tap into a huge source of traffic.
Videos are also a great way for your customers or leads to learn more about your brand, products and services. They also help to establish a connection and increase the number of buyers coming to your page.
2. Informative/Teaching Videos
Turning your blog post into an informative video is a great way to deliver your information in a new way. It is also a great way to repurpose old content and maximise your traffic.
Informative videos are also great for people who don’t want to read through a lengthy blog, or for people who learn visually. It is also a great way to offer value to your readers.
3. Interview Videos
Interviewing a thought leader is a great way to boost traffic to your page, it also helps to establish your reputation in the industry. A good example of a business using videos to drive traffic to their site is MarieForleo.com, which is led by entrepreneur, Marie Forleo.
Forleo posts interviews and tidbits of advice to her followers, which end up scoring hundreds of thousands of views. These videos then help to drive traffic to her main website where visitors can purchase her products or e-course.
By releasing videos, Marie Forleo has helped to build up her brand and create a multi-million dollar empire.
Alternative Content Type #2: Infographic
Infographics are a great way to present information because they are not only visual, but they are also to the point.
Statistics also show that Infographics are one of the most popular content styles out there and tend to earn far more traffic and engagement than a regular blog post.
In fact, another study found that infographics were liked and shared on social media up to three times more than any other type of content.
Infographics have a lot of “viral potential,” which means that they are more likely to be shared and more likely to drive a huge wave of traffic back to your website.
To capitalise on this growing trend, take some of your top blog posts and find a designer to turn them into infographics. If you don’t have the budget for a designer, you can also use software programs such as Visual.ly or Canva. These types of programs charge a fee, but make it super easy to create infographics.
When it comes to the creation of your infographic, be sure to use statistics and keep your written information to a minimum, as this has been shown to have the greatest impact.
Alternative Content Type #3: Guides
Guides are epically long pieces of content that go into great detail about a topic or subject. Guides are often available as a PDF download and can also be used as a lead magnet.
Guides are great because they offer comprehensive information for those who are looking for more detail. They are also a great way to show off your knowledge or communicate to your audience the expertise that your company has.
Because guides offer a lot of value, they are also considered highly by various search engines like Google. In fact, many of the top ranking posts in Google are all over 2,000 words, so writing longer style content can naturally help to boost your website traffic.
To start writing a guide that is actually going to get read, think about a topic in your niche that often attracts a lot of attention.
Usually commonly searched topics do best as guides, because people are often looking for more detailed or specific information. There is also likely to be a lot of generic information out there about a commonly searched topic, which means that having a comprehensive guide can help your brand and content to stand out from the crowd.
Once you have chosen a great topic to write about, consider breaking your topic up into subheadings or even chapters. This will help your content to be more readable. You definitely don’t want your guide to be big chunks of content, as this can be very off-putting.
Once you have completed your guide, consider adding some images, graphs and other visuals that support some of your content. This will help add a new appeal and dimension to your content and will earn you plenty of clicks.
Alternative Content Type #4: Podcasts
Podcasts are a great way to increase traffic to your website and not many businesses utilise them, which means that you can really use them to your advantage.
Podcasts are also relatively easy to create and are still fairly popular, especially amongst millennials and a younger crowd.
While it can be difficult to compete with some of the big and popular podcasts out there, it may still make sense for your brand, especially if you have content that people would enjoy listening to on their morning commute or at the gym.
Podcasts are also a great way to conduct interviews with thought leaders and are also a great way to re-hash and repurpose old content.
To get started with creating your podcast, perhaps take a look at some of the popular podcasts in your industry to see what they are doing. You may even want to get a few interviews first so you can work out how it all works and if it is a good fit for your audience.
Once you are ready to create and launch your podcast, all you really need is a decent microphone and good story to go along with it.
Alternative Content Type #5: Reviews
Review style posts are a great way to capitalise on traffic, as often reviews are some of the most read content online.
Just look at the review site Yelp, which has dominated the review space and grown to huge heights in just a matter of years.
The reality is, people love to read reviews and want to be clued up as much as possible, especially if they are looking to make a big purchase or pick that perfect restaurant for a special date or occasion.
By offering honest reviews of products or services in your niche, it can help to attract viewers to your site and can also establish your brand as somewhat of an authority. This is especially true if your reviews are unbiased and offer genuine and helpful information to other consumers.
Offering reviews is also a great strategy for B2B brands, as it can help your voice and your business to gain authority in the industry. Reviews also help to earn the respect of developers, manufacturers and other service providers.
To start constructing a solid review style post, be sure to include information on the following-
- Product name, features and what it is used for
- The manufacturer of the product, or who created it
- Describe the product- how it works or any additional information
- Share your opinion of the product – what did you like, or not like
- Share your experience with the product- how easy was it to use etc.
- Provide an overall recommendation- who would benefit from this product, who would not benefit etc.
- Offer a call to action
You can also use review style posts to talk about one of your own products and services, but this may not come out as genuine if you publish it on your own blog. Instead, you may want to consider publishing your review as a guest post on another website or blog.
Alternative Content Type #6: Interview
We have already briefly touched on video and podcast interviews, but you can also offer a written interview or essay as well.
Interviews are an extremely popular type of content, especially if you are interviewing a big thought leader or prominent figure in your field.
By interviewing, you also capitalise on their traffic sources as well as your own, which can be huge for your business and can help to open your brand to a whole new audience.
Interviewing also gives you access to exclusive content. After all, if you are conducting the interview, no one else is going to have access to the exact information that you do. This puts you head and shoulders above the rest and also helps to win the respect of your peers and audience.
To conduct a solid interview, reach out to a few thought leaders in your field and pitch them on your idea or story. If they agree to an interview, here are some steps you may want to keep in mind-
- Come up with a list of questions you feel that your audience would want to know
- Make the questions professional, original and thoughtful- try not to ask the same stereotypical questions
- Limit the interview to a maximum of 5-7 questions, any more than that can get tiring for all involved
- Record the interview so you can refer back to it later – be sure to record it on at least two devices in case something happens
- Let your interviewee know that you are wanting to record them- maybe even ask for permission depending who you are interviewing
- Take written notes during the interview as well, this will help you to remember certain points or interesting facts
- Be sure to thank the interviewee and share the article with them when it is completed
Interviews can keep on giving too, as you can always write two, maybe even three stories from just one interview if you ask the right questions.
Alternative Content Type #7: Research Report
Research reports are similar to guides, the only difference is that you are sharing some original research that your business has conducted on its own.
This is a great strategy for B2B brands and for companies who rely on statistics or research to get their message across. Really, any brand can conduct their own research and make a report, as there is no limits to what you can test or evaluate.
Creating your own research can also help to put your business in an advantageous position because if other brands want to write or share your research, they legally have to link back to your content.
This can pay off big time for your brand and can keep traffic flowing to your page for years to come. This is helpful to know, as conducting your own research can be extremely time consuming.
If taking this route feels like a good decision for your brand, here is how to get started-
- Find a good topic that would be valuable for your brand to research
- Create proper research conditions to ensure that your research is fair and unbiased
- Present your data in an interesting and engaging way, you could also experiment with different types of content such as infographics and slides.
- Consider also releasing a research report that highlights what you tested, how and the final outcome
Alternative Content Type #8: Memes and Images
Visual content is huge right now, and creating memes and images is the best way to tap into this trend.
People also love meme’s because they are often funny. This means that they also have the potential to go viral very, very quickly.
To create memes or fun images, you really don’t need any design skills. There are so many great programs out there that will do most of the work for you, all you need to do is come up with the witty headline.
Meme’s and images are great for sharing on social media and can help funnel traffic back to your blog. It can also help you to increase your social following, which in turn can increase the number of people who see your content.
Just remember when creating a meme or image to put your company logo or website watermark on it, so people always know where to find you.
Alternative Content Type #9: How-To
How-to posts are an oldie but a goodie.
While they are the most common style of blog post out there, they are still great for directing traffic to your page. This is because a lot of people use the term “how-to” when searching for things.
As more and more people rely on their phones and audio searches, “how-to” style posts are going to continue gaining popularity. This is because when using audio searches, most people search by asking a question.
To write engaging how to posts, it is important to think about questions that your audience may have and then work your posts around those questions.
Here is a quick guide to get you started-
- Target a common problem
- Introduce a solution to the problem
- Discuss each step of the solution in a clear and concise way
- Suggest ways to avoid the problem in the future or alternative solutions
- Offer a conclusion or summary
- Consider including images, graphs and other visual material to help your post stand out
Alternative Content Type #10: Lists
Lists are another popular style of content and earn the most likes, clicks and shares according to numerous studies. List style posts also earn blogs some of the most traffic, which means that they are often a popular choice.
Lists appeal to readers because they imply that the article is quick and easy to read and offers bullet points.
To capitalise on list style posts, the best way to start is to think about a topic and the appropriate number of bullet points, then all you need to do is fill in the blanks.
List style posts are also super easy to write, which further adds to the appeal, but here are a few things to keep in mind if you really want your list style post to stand out-
- Detailed lists tend to perform better, so offer bullet points but also more information
- Lists with 10 bullets seem to perform the best and earn the most number of shares, this is also true for lists with odd numbers
- Long lists with more than 100 bullets also do well and tend to rank higher in search results
Alternative Content Type #11: e-Book
e-Books are similar to guides in that they offer a lot of information, the difference with e-books however, is that they are usually longer and they usually offer some type of “story”. This is often a personal story or introduction about your company and how it all got started.
Ebooks often make great lead magnets, but they can also be sold for a monetary value, which can help create an additional source of revenue for your brand. Many businesses have success with selling ebooks and many ebook customers also become brand ambassadors.
If you feel writing an ebook would be a good fit for your brand, try to come up with a topic that you can write at least 10,000 words on. Also, try to include a personal story in your ebook, as this can help your brand to be more relatable.
Once you have a topic, outline the chapters and get writing. You will then need to convert your ebook into the right format and either publish it on your own site, or on an ebook platform like Amazon.
Alternative Content Type #12: Case Study
Case studies are designed to explain your product or service and how it benefited a client.
Case studies are a great way to promote your brand’s products and services and are also a great way to prove to interested buyers what working with your brand can achieve.
This is a great strategy for all types of businesses, as it allows readers to see the quality of work and what results your brand can achieve. By being able to read real results from a real client, it also helps to build more trust in the mind of the reader and this helps to increase conversions.
To create a successful case study, here are some pointers to get you started-
- Start by writing a summary of the case study and the outcome
- Highlight the main concern of the client
- Provide instructions on how you helped the client to solve this problem
- Explain the results and any reasons for the results
- Discuss the overall effect and provide a conclusion
- Include a call to action
There are so many different styles of content out there that can help your brand to stand out from the crowd.
Why not try a few of these alternative content styles today, to see if they can help increase your website traffic and conversions?