Subscribe
Join 40,000+ sales and marketing pros who receive our 4x a week insights, tips, and best practices.
Thank you! You have been subscribed.

Free Guide: The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

Read the Guide Subscribe
Join 40,000+ sales and marketing pros who receive our 4x a week insights, tips, and best practices.
Thank you! You have been subscribed.
Learning Center
Learning Center
Close
The IMPACT Learning Center

Free resources to help you master inbound marketing and They Ask, You Answer

Access the Learning Center

Access the Learning Center

Access the Learning Center
learning_center_grey__What is They Ask, You Answer-v2-black

What is They Ask, You Answer?

What is <span>They Ask, You Answer?</span>
Articles, Podcasts, & Updates

Articles, Podcasts, & Updates

Articles, Podcasts, <span>& Updates</span>
learning_center_grey__Free Courses and Certifications.svg

Free Courses & Certifications

Free Courses & <span>Certifications</span>
On-Demand Keynotes & Sessions

On-Demand Keynotes & Sessions

On-Demand <span>Keynotes & Sessions</span>
Events
Events
Close
IMPACT+ Membership
IMPACT+ Membership
Close
Services
Services
Close
Navigation_8_2021_taya

They Ask, You Answer Coaching & Training

They Ask, You Answer Coaching & Training
They Ask, You Answer Workshop

They Ask, You Answer Workshop

They Ask, You Answer Workshop
Navigation_8_2021_workshop

Inbound Marketing Services

Inbound Marketing Services
Navigation_8_2021_website design - monitor

Website Design & Development

Website Design & Development
Navigation_8_2021_hubspot implementation

HubSpot Training & Implementation

HubSpot Training & Implementation
Navigation_8_2021_virtual selling

Virtual Sales
Training

Virtual Sales <br>Training
Navigation_8_2021_swell - paid ads

Paid Search & Social Services

Paid Search & Social Services
Become a Certified Coach
Become a Certified Coach
Close
... Inbound Marketing Content Marketing
Close
The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

Free Guide:

The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022
Read the Guide
The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022
Free Inbound Marketing Playbook
View The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022
The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

Free Guide:

Take your inbound strategy to the next level

  • Master the 7 principles of highly effective inbound marketing
  • Dramatically improve your inbound sales
  • Get more buy-in at your company

11 Companies Banking Off Original Content (& How You Can Without Billions)

By Derrick Weiss

Derrick Weiss also recommends this free guide: The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022.

11 Companies Banking Off Original Content (& How You Can Without Billions) Blog Feature

Over the last few years, original content has become the cornerstone of successful marketing campaigns, from household names to niche businesses. Heck, we’re creating more than ever!

It’s not too much of a stretch to see why - people crave originality and hate being sold to.

Once the internet became a thing, the amount of effort required to reuse content dropped significantly and it gave birth to the repost.

With Pinterest, Tumblr, Buzzfeed, and more growing almost entirely out of sharing others’ content, it’s getting harder and harder to find original content in the mix.

Free Guide: The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

The amount of effort required to post someone else’s work and get some credit for it is far less than the effort required to create your own content. But it’s just not as meaningful or lasting, doesn’t create any differentiation, and doesn’t foster a relationship.

Before I go any further, let me explain what I mean by original content: it’s content that is brand new, that you created, and that doesn’t already exist. It can take any form, written, video, audio, live - but it has to be new and unique to you.

Original content used to be the playground of the big boys - radio shows and TV shows come to mind for me, but then YouTube came out, and every person with a video camera or smartphone all of a sudden has the capacity to produce excellent quality videos.

Since then, the barriers to creating original content have lowered and the market for it has increased substantially. The tools available for individuals and businesses to produce better content have blossomed as well.

While companies like Netflix or Apple can invest millions (or billions) in creating original content, I’m telling you, you can leverage the same trend to fuel your own small or medium-sized business online.

How? Let’s look at some people doing it well so far and I’ll explain:

Big Businesses Investing in Original Content

Apple

No surprise here. The tech giant just dropped a billion dollars into creating original content in the next year. It’s necessary to keep up.

As The Verge explains, “Apple previously focused on renting TV shows and movies through iTunes, but this business has been damaged by the rise of subscription services.” If Apple is going to continue to capitalize on the new media market, original content that isn’t available on any other platform is a must -- especially since it has competitors like:

Facebook Watch

Facebook is entering the original content game as well and fueling its own growth into creating new video content through Facebook Watch. Some of you may have already seen this in your Facebook app, but soon it’ll be a new tab where you can find original video content.

After all, Zuckerberg has been spouting video as the holy grail for a while.

Netflix

Another brand that grew to fame sharing content created by others, Netflix found its way when it began investing in creating original content back in 2013.

From House of Cards to Orange is the New Black, many of these exclusive shows, documentaries, and movies are what keep subscribers coming back, rather than those they can easily rent from elsewhere. They have also earned the platform an impressive number of awards and recognition for its diversity.

You can’t buy word-of-mouth like that.

Amazon

While not as strong a player as Netflix, Amazon has also introduced its Prime audience to fresh original content and seen some strong growth.

While Amazon Video’s original content didn’t hit it big until shows like Bosch, Transparent, Downton Abbey, and The Man in the High Castle took off, which are moving into their prime seasons, it has earned many accolades.

It’s accessible through a normal Prime subscription (estimates are around 80 million for total Prime users), but also through a standalone video subscription. Exact numbers are difficult to pin down, but the best determinant of success is that Amazon is continuing to produce original content.

Smaller Companies Investing in Original Content Creation

As mentioned earlier, just because a company is smaller doesn’t mean it can’t see growth from original content -- and even make money from it. A great original content strategy, whether it be written or visual, can help businesses create new, reliable revenue streams, especially if implemented properly.

River Pools and Spas

River Pools has a fascinating success story and if you’ve been in inbound for a while, you may have heard it.

Things were going poorly for the company - this was right after the financial crisis of 2008 - because people weren’t buying pools. In an economy like that, who could blame them? So Marcus Sheridan (a partner in the company) started creating content, answering a question he heard from every single potential customer: How much does a fiberglass pool cost?

Nobody had answered the question online up until that point. He was in a deep, blue ocean, and from that single blog post (which took him 45 minutes at his kitchen table to write) River Pools was able to generate over $3 million in revenue.

There’s definitely more to the River Pools story, but that’s the main point.

The Sales Lion

As Marcus grew River Pools, lots of people asked him questions. They were mostly about pools, but some of them were about how he had achieved a phenomenal amount of growth in a short period of time. He realized this was another potential business, and started The Sales Lion (TSL).

Fast forward a few years, and TSL has become a world leader in sales, marketing, and video workshops, speaking, and consulting - not to mention a HubSpot Platinum Partner.

The team has tripled down on original video content - answering the questions members of the team get on a regular basis in short videos that are easily digestible.

And it’s not just video - Marcus and George also create and produce the HubCast, a podcast specifically aimed at HubSpot partner agencies, customers, and businesses in the inbound world.

Aside from creating phenomenal audio, video, and written content, Marcus has published a book, They Ask You Answer. You bet it’s providing a reliable revenue stream, as well as a lot of clout to help The Sales Lion close new business, speak at more events, and grow as a HubSpot partner.

Yale Appliance

One of the first well-known companies to embrace inbound many years ago, Yale Appliance (now an IMPACT Client) has created an enormous amount of content since then and still ranks in the top spots when searching for premium kitchen appliances.

They generate millions of visits a year by sharing content on a regular basis that keeps up with the industry. Every month, appliance manufacturers create new products, upgrade old products, and retire older products. Steve and the team at Yale Appliance is all over that - producing original content around reviews or ratings, cost, and issues, amongst other things.

You’d think talking about advantages and disadvantages of products you sell would be shooting yourself in the foot - but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Some of the most engaging content talks about the most and least reliable brands for appliances. This allows Yale to build trust with prospects before they even come to the showroom.

The main reason this worked is because Yale Appliance adopted content creation into its core culture. If you work at its Boston showrooms, chances are you’ve appeared on a video, written content for the blog, or had a hand in helping to produce those.

Digital Marketer

Digital Marketer (DM) has probably the most self-explanatory name on this list. It specializes in creating, sharing, and educating marketers with up-to-date tactics and strategies in the digital marketing field.

It has a podcast, a phenomenal blog, a huge network of partners, and a great list of small and large products to help businesses grow. How did they get there? With original content. It monetizes all of this by offering its content in an invaluable monthly subscription course. Its Customer Value Optimization model is becoming part of the core of what we do here at IMPACT.

Rand Fishkin & Moz

Moz is a company that sells SEO tools, products, training, and consulting services, but that isn’t how it started. Moz was actually one of the first digital marketing websites I ever found (organically of course), and I quickly bookmarked it because the content I found was so valuable, and the presentation so clear.

Today, Founder Rand Fishkin creates a new Whiteboard Friday every week. It’s a less-than-ten-minute video that talks about important changes to SEO, tactics, and other stuff you should know. It’s worth the watch if you don’t already.

Moz has grown quite a lot and offers a ton of free tools that can educate marketers, make them savvier, and then give them a reason to purchase a premium tool.

Individuals Monetizing Original Content Creation

Casey Neistat

Casey Neistat lives by a certain philosophy: do what you can’t. It’s powerful because he was always told he couldn’t do the things he wanted to do because he had no money, or he wasn’t good looking (no really, watch that video).

All that changed once Casey started vlogging. It was a daily ritual to create a video, share it with an audience, and just have a good time. Eventually, he was able to meet others creating original content on YouTube, motivational speakers like Gary V, and many more.

Today, Casey is a well-known name in film, TV, and advertising, directing commercials for brands like Samsung, Nike, Google, and Mercedes. It all started with a video camera and YouTube, and has turned into his life, full-time job, and inspired many others to do the same.

Sophia Amoruso & GirlBoss

Sophia Amoruso, former founder and CEO of Nasty Gal, is a well-known entrepreneur and author these days, but she didn’t just wake up one day and do that.

She started with humble beginnings: eBay and MySpace. eBay helped Sophia sell fashion products under the Nasty Gal name and MySpace helped her connect with her customers on a personal level and provide personal advice/style tips.

This helpful content and brand made Nasty Gal into a billion dollar organization. While the company has since been sold and she has stepped down as CEO, Amoruso’s rags to riches story (which she shared in the book #Girlboss) has inspired millions across the globe and opened many doors.

Today, Amoruso is at the helms of Girlboss Media. Amoruso calls it “a platform focused on redefining success for a new generation of women.” And it’s built entirely on creating original content including blog articles, a podcast, and videos.

What You Do Next is What Matters

So, why did I share these stories? Because you can do this too.

Creating original content isn’t easy, but it’s incredibly rewarding. Every single individual mentioned in this post has had a lot of FUN creating something new, and sharing it with their audience.

The hardest part is starting.  If you’re looking for a better way (and a formula) to leverage original content to grow a business (or even without a business), look no further than the steps outlined in Content Inc, by Joe Pulizzi:

  1. Identify Your Sweet Spot
  2. Tilt Your Content
  3. Build Your Base:
  4. Harvest Your Audience:
  5. Diversify
  6. Monetize

Learn more about that here!

The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022
The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

Free Guide:

The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Strategy Playbook 2022

Take your inbound strategy to the next level

  • Master the 7 principles of highly effective inbound marketing
  • Dramatically improve your inbound sales
  • Get more buy-in at your company

Topics:

Content Marketing
Examples
Published on August 24, 2017

Recent Articles

Long Form vs. Short Form Content: Which Is Better For Your Business?
January 3, 2022 • 9 min read
What Should a 2022 Content Marketing Strategy Include?
December 30, 2021 • 9 min read
How To Write About Your Competitors on Your Business Blog or Website
December 27, 2021 • 12 min read
17 Business Blog Topics Your Audience Wants You To Write
December 24, 2021 • 11 min read
Outsourcing Is Broken: Why We Need To Rethink the Relationship Between Client and Agency
December 10, 2021 • 6 min read
22 Best Content Marketing Tools and Apps for 2022
December 4, 2021 • 14 min read
‘The Big 5’ Best Business Blog Topics That Drive Traffic, Leads, and Sales (+ Video)
November 26, 2021 • 9 min read
Who Should Be On Your Content Marketing Team? 5 Critical Positions
November 23, 2021 • 9 min read
What Is a Learning Center and Why Does My Website Need One?
November 22, 2021 • 6 min read
Content Managers: Use This Step-by-Step Guide to Create the Content Your Team Needs
October 15, 2021 • 10 min read
How to Organize Content on Your Website
October 5, 2021 • 6 min read
Inbound marketing success: Building a healthy content pipeline
September 10, 2021 • 7 min read
How to Write a Pillar Page (With Examples)
August 30, 2021 • 13 min read
The Best Sales Enablement Tools for Your Team in 2021
August 30, 2021 • 11 min read
Content Manager Job Description for Marketing Teams (All Industries)
August 24, 2021 • 9 min read
7 Content Marketing Mistakes You’re Probably Making [+Fixes]
August 20, 2021 • 9 min read
7 Content Marketing KPIs You Must Be Tracking In Your Strategy
August 18, 2021 • 12 min read
How much does marketing news really matter? (Content Lab, Ep. 56)
August 13, 2021 • 1 min read
How Inclusivity Can Supercharge Your They Ask, You Answer Content (Content Lab, Ep. 55 ft. Ramona Sukhraj)
July 29, 2021 • 1 min read
What It Takes to Dominate Organic Search, ft. Jeff Coyle of MarketMuse (Inbound Success, Ep. 205)
July 26, 2021 • 34 min read
Data: 'Funny' seniors imagery is not only demeaning, it's inaccurate
July 21, 2021 • 4 min read
How Can the StoryBrand Framework Be Used for Inbound Marketing?
July 21, 2021 • 6 min read
17 Best Content Marketing Platforms for 2021
July 19, 2021 • 9 min read
How to Create a YouTube Channel for Business (+ Examples)
July 16, 2021 • 7 min read
What the Heck is Going on With All the Google Updates? (Content Lab, Ep. 54)
July 15, 2021 • 1 min read