No matter what form it takes, content still forms the foundation of any modern marketing effort.
Your content will get your business visibility, it will earn you links, help consumers fall in love with your brand, enrich lives and help your company grow.
Start 2019 with a bang by taking advantage of these resources.
The Best Content Marketing Blogs
Follow these blogs for a steady stream of fantastic advice.
It feels like this one has been a top-notch content creation blog pretty much from the day it first launched. With multiple contributors and advice you can't find regurgitated everywhere else, their quality continues to run strong.
2. The Content Strategist
This year I've been all about trying to transform myself from a mere content creator to a solid strategist, so this blog caught my eye. The perfect blog to take all your content marketing efforts right to the next level.
3. The Content Marketing Institute
This blog inspires me to take notes in my work journal, regularly sends me to jot down ideas in my editorial calendars, and helps me view content marketing in brand new ways. Maybe it will do the same for you.
4. Content Writers Content Strategy
Actionable posts about content marketing, with plenty of tips. You'll find something for everyone. Some of the content is aimed at freelance writers, but there's also quite a bit aimed at businesses.
Another site that's been going strong for about 14 years now. While ProBlogger's primary audience is people who want to start blogs as their primary source of income, businesses and agencies can find plenty to help them sharpen their game up as well.
While Hubspot covers a broad range of marketing topics, their content marketing sections are outstanding. And it makes sense, Hubspot specializes in inbound marketing. The best way for people to find your content is by providing helpful, engaging, educational, and remarkable content. They're pioneers in this marketing strategy and thus have a ton of valuable insights worth keeping on your radar.
The Best Content Marketing Articles
Some great finds from blogs and sites that don't strictly focus on content marketing.
14 Ways to Avoid Creating Safe and Boring Content - Advice just about everyone needs. Safe and boring is the pitfall we've all got to dodge. Favorite quote: "The minute you make your brand the focal point of your content is the minute you lose your audience."
3 Examples of Clever Content Marketing (That Built Entire Businesses) - Content marketing is older than the Internet. These much older examples can help you rethink your current content strategy, and perhaps launch it in a far more productive direction.
3 Ways Small Niche Businesses Can Breathe New Life Into Their Content - Lots of great ideas to take your content beyond the same "me too" stuff we've all seen before.
10 Ways to Differentiate Your Inbound Marketing Content Strategy - These ten tips come from successful marketers at a whole host of different businesses. They bring their unique perspective to the article, which means it's full of some very nice insights.
Your Organization Is Full Of Content Creators—You Just Need to Give Them a Platform - Aimed at larger organizations, this article is nevertheless a very insightful look at ways companies can tap into talent they already have to create amazing content.
10 B2B Content Marketing Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them - Any of these scenarios applies just as well to B2C marketing. They're common mistakes, so it's well worth the time to read this.
Delicious Content Tips from the Great British Baking Show - This makes a lot of important points, but it's also just a really fun read. Of course, I'm a fan of the Great British Baking Show. If you're not, YMMV.
The Best Content Marketing Tools
There are zillions out there, but I like these.
The Hemingway App - A recent discovery for me. I love big words. I love adverbs and adjectives. Too bad they make writing more—ahem—obtuse. This app color codes all the mistakes that are killing your clarity so you can fix them.
Survey Anyplace - Surveys are helpful to content creators. You can use them to figure out what your audience wants, or you can use them to conduct studies which can help you discover new insights. This tool makes it easy to do either or both.
BuzzSumo - Find the most shareable content about your subject matter, then figure out how to do it even better. Great for figuring out what your customers care about.
Airtable - An awesome tool for creating editorial calendars, for planning social media posts, planning video production, and more.
Canva - This app ensures you don't need to hire a graphic designer to put out cool infographics.
The Best Content Marketing Influencers
Follow these experts to get even better at content marketing.
Jan Gordon - CEO of Curatti and one of the top content marketing influencers in the world. She seems to routinely make those top ten, top twenty, top fifty, and top 100 lists. Now she's making this one.
Leo Odden - CEO & Co-founder of Top Rank Marketing, featured in publications like Forbes and The Wall Street Journal, author of Optimize: How to Attract and Engage More Customers by Integrating SEO, Social Media, and Content Marketing. A regular keynote speaker at all kinds of conferences.
Sujan Patel - He's helped grow major companies like Zillow, TurboTax and Expedia. He's created tools to make the lives of content creators easier. And he's a regular content creator himself.
Ann Handley - She's waging a war on content mediocrity, and she's doing a good job of it. She's a best-selling author and a frequent keynote speaker. She's got a ton of personality, too!
Shane Barker - A brand and influencer consultant who has taken the digital marketing world by storm. His twitter feed has plenty of insight into how you can keep your customers engaged.
Jeff Bullas - He's been named the #1 Global Content Marketing Influencer by Oanalytica. His website gets 25 million visitors, and he did all that with content. Definitely someone you'll want to pay attention to.
The Best Content Marketing Ebooks, Whitepapers, Webinars, and Other Noteworthy Resources
Got time to take a deeper dive? Start here.
The Ultimate Guide for Content Marketers - A huge and extremely useful eBook produced by SEM Rush.
What Great Brands Do That Good Brands Don't Do In Their Content Marketing - From Convince and Convert. You'll walk away with several strategies for making your content better than ever.
Craft Your Brand Adventure: The 2018 Guide to Essential Content Marketing - Gives you helpful tips on all the different types of content you may need to create, as well as a rundown on distribution formats. Plenty of case studies from brands doing it right. As a hardcore tabletop gaming geek, I also high-key appreciate the D&D references and imagery.
Hubspot's Free Content Marketing Certification Course - Need a comprehensive series of lessons delivered by content marketing experts to walk you through exactly how to do this? This is the course you'll want to take.
G2 Crowd's Learn Hub - Does G2 Crowd do online software reviews? Sure! Do they know content marketing? You bet. The G2 Crowd team is frequently pumping out great insights on how to use your Reviews in your content to stand out from competitors.