Beyond the blog

content marketing

Publishing a regular blog is a fantastic way to share useful knowledge and demonstrate your firm’s thought leadership. Perfect for sharing everything from timely tax tips to brief discussions of niche-specific trends and insights on dealing with persistent challenges, the blog format lets professional service firms connect and communicate with their audience. But why stop there?

Depending on your preferences and talent pool, you might want to explore one or more of these alternative content types to augment your blog:

  • Infographics are ideal for getting data-heavy information across in a fun and attractive manner. You can pack a lot of statistics to support your main point into one of these graphic displays, while still avoiding the eye-glazing effect of a written list that shares the same numbers. Bonus: infographics are particularly shareable and tend to earn a lot of clicks!
  • Video content is easier than ever with the panoply of tech tools that abound today. Anyone with a smartphone or one of the numerous (often free) apps can capture and edit reasonably high-quality video. Interview industry leaders, partners or interns. Capture your next firm event (professional or volunteer). Introduce a new service offering or team member. Create a top ten list. Add a video to your About page for site visitors who’d rather watch than read. There’s virtually no limit to what you can do!
  • Slide decks are another wonderful way to communicate a lot of information in a manageable package. Boil down a complex issue (preparing for an audit, for example, or the new 199A deduction) to bullet points and key takeaways.
  • Case studies are a win-win-win situation that every firm should utilize. Not only do they allow you to boast in an acceptable manner, but they help potential clients get a concrete sense of what you can do to benefit their business while giving a publicity boost to the client you’re featuring. And since they’re so relatable, a surprising number of people like to read them for the human interest and business strategy they provide.
  • Whitepapers are just the thing for a topic that’s too big or dry for a traditional blog post. If a full discussion of the issue you’re tackling requires more than several hundred words, consider putting it into whitepaper form. There you’ll have plenty of room to fully describe the challenge as well as the solutions you’re advocating, along with the reasoning behind your position and the research to back it up.
  • E-books provide an alternative when you want to treat a topic more comprehensively than in a blog or series of blogs, but don’t want to keep the tone quite as serious and heavy as a whitepaper. You can express your personality and have fun in an e-book in a way that would be inappropriate for a whitepaper. Both make good premium content to offer as incentive for signing up for a newsletter – or to share with no strings attached.

While blogging can form a solid backbone for your content strategy, it certainly doesn’t have to be the sole tool in your content marketing kit. Even small firms can offer variety without straining a limited marketing budget, because it’s often possible (and smart) to present the same content in multiple formats. Taking a multi-pronged approach helps you extend your reach by connecting with folks who are more visually oriented, click more often on videos than articles, or simply want to delve more deeply into a subject than blogging allows. When it comes to content marketing, make sure to share your expertise in different ways so you can give the people what they want!

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Sarah Warlick

Sarah Warlick founded Proof Positive Content to provide professional service firms with high-quality content that resonates with their target audiences. Sarah's writing appears in books, on the websites of over a dozen Top 100 Accounting Firms and in Accounting Today, Forbes and other leading publications, but usually under another name. Ghostwriters rarely get the glory - their clients do!