Want to Create Innovative Content? Do These 3 Things

ann handley dj waldow marketing nation podcast

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Posted: November 7, 2013 | Content Marketing

According to Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer at MarketingProfs, the formula for innovative content marketing is…

Useful x Enjoyable x Inspired

Graphically:

The Formula for Innovative Content from Ann Handley

As Ann Puts It:

“Content marketing means you consistently create and share information that is packed with utility, seeded with inspiration, and is honestly empathetic to attract customers to you.”

So What Do Those Terms Mean?

Useful.
A piece of content that is useful helps the consumer in some way. It may allow them to do something, or it may simply help them make a decision. In any case, it makes their lives easier, makes them smarter, provides a tip/trick/lifehack… and so on.

Enjoyable.
Simply put, this is content that people like. “It’s not written or produced in marketing-speak or Frankenspeak,” says Ann. “It’s human, real, and maybe fun. It’s not painful to get through. People LIKE it. If they pass it along or it makes them laugh — all the better.”

Inspired.
According to Ann, this is content that is “inspired by data (you know what your customers want or need) and/or creatively inspired (it’s interesting and different — it’s unique to your brand’s point of view). It is not what anyone else would do, and maybe it breaks the mold a bit.”

The key however, is that if you really want your content to be innovative, all three attributes must be present. If not, the content is simply not innovative.

Of course this is (much) easier said, then done.

Introducing The Marketing Nation Podcast

In the inaugural episode of Marketo’s new weekly podcast, The Marketing Nation Podcast, Ann discusses this “innovative content” formula in detail.

Just a few days after an international trip that included stops in Istanbul and Denmark, Ann chatted with me about:

  • Her feelings on the current state of digital marketing
  • Why the best marketing shouldn’t actually feel like marketing
  • Why companies are beginning to put more money into content

We also discussed a few great examples of content that meets all three of the innovate content criterion.

Listen to this episode with Ann as well as all future Marketing Nation Podcast shows by visiting our new podcast page.

Additionally, you can subscribe to the podcast via iTunes or Mixcloud. Oh, and if you love this episode with Ann (or any future episode), please share it with your friends, co-workers, colleagues, and family.

Want to be a guest? Have a topic you’d like to share? Email us: podcast@marketo.com, or drop us a tweet using the #MktgNation hashtag.

DJ Waldow is the Digital Marketing Evangelist at Marketo, a writer, speaker, and a co-author of The Rebel's Guide to Email Marketing. He also hosts two podcasts – The Work Talk Show (a podcast about how work gets done) and The Marketing Nation (Marketo's podcast about all things digital marketing). DJ is a knowledge craver, a sponge, and a lover of beer, coffee, and people (in no particular order).

Read DJ's Blogs

Ready to become a #contentmarketing innovator? Try @annhandley's formula for innovation, as told to @djwaldow

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