By Marc Woodland on July 29, 2016

Bread and butter content: The 5 key pieces of content every company needs

Bread and butter content? What are we talking about? Well, content is not just a case of producing stuff for your blog. The content you produce should be adding value to your business and helping you generate leads.

Imagine the internet is a plate, and all the fun content you post is jam, you also need helpful, valuable content (bread and butter) on the plate as well. After all, what good is a plate just full of jam?

Get your key pieces of content in place and build your content strategy around them. These are the five pieces of content which add more value than any other.

1. Provide a case study

Nothing is better at proving your point than a case study. It's the perfect application of social proof and a great way to show off a success story. In a survey commissioned by eMarketer, 62.6% said case studies where one of the most beneficial tactics in generating leads. Nail a good case study and you're well on the way to demonstrating the value of your business to any prospective customers. Don’t just produce one and be done with it, aim for one every 1-2 months.

You may also like: Case Study: ABM and content marketiing increase sales and grow agencies accounts

2. The meaty download

Don't be afraid to share your expertise. Produce an ebook or white paper that is full of your valuable insight and make it available to download in exchange for an email address. In internet parlance this is a 'lead magnet', although we would argue that they’re contact magnets really. Getting an email address and calling it a lead is a bit like getting a girl’s phone number and calling them your wife.

You need a plan to follow-up: what are you going to do all with those emails? You need a combination of content and email marketing to further nurture those new relationships. They have engaged with your brand, they are interested in what you offer, now it's on you to turn that interest into solid leads. For this to work effectively you need to produce content that has genuine value and is too good to miss.

Still, whether you count it as a lead or not, these downloadable pieces of content are the starting point of a relationship which should lead to a steady stream of organic leads. say they generated 35,859 leads in just 60 days by sharing their best Facebook ad templates. You should produce something equally valuable for you target audience.

3. Proving your point

Next, you should look to produce a 'proof point' piece. This is content that talks directly around your USP. It's a delicate balance not to turn it into something that’s too advertorial. Our advice is to focus the content on answering this question: 'What is the result of your service?'. Furthermore, look to explain the unique process you go through to create your product, it's a great way to position and differentiate your brand. Back up your content with statistics that support your work and examples of studies you've carried out.

4. FAQs

This is a great way to stay ahead of your customers. What are the most common questions prospective clients ask during the sales process? Answer these and you've already laid the foundations for a stronger sales platform going forward. It also reassures your existing clients about where they stand and reminds them of all the benefits. It's a great resource generally, and a good FAQ page will help drive traffic to your website.

5. The interview

Possibly the best and easiest way to generate an insightful and highly original piece of content. Plan an interview with a significant figure in your industry, a thought leader or someone you admire. Be sure to make the interview about the industry and not about your company. Even better, interview a client. Perhaps there is a particular company you have been trying to win over? Invite them to discuss the industry and their needs in an interview, it's a great way to connect with them in a non-sales way.

Read: 10 things journalism can teach us about content marketing

So there you have it, five pieces of content that should be the bread and butter at your contentinental breakfast buffet (Ok – enough of the analogies - Ed) Your content push can be full of experimentation and exciting investigations into lots of different areas, just make sure you have your foundation content in place. The content that is proven to work. Not only do these pieces of content increase your credibility, but in order to get them right, it forces you to dig deep and truly understand what your clients want. That can only be a good thing.  

Read our case studies for inspiration and proof that giving your customers the right content really does work.

Published by Marc Woodland July 29, 2016