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The Angry Birds Formula to Content Marketing

Yes, Angry Birds has hit the Pulizzi household.  We love all the birds…red ones, yellow ones and even the blue ones that split into three birds.

As you move through the game levels, the key is to understand that each bird has a particular role.  For example, the light blue one that splits into three birds is perfect for breaking glass.  The yellow one?  It takes out wood.  The bloated red one tears through just about anything.

Angry Birds Content Marketing

What does this have to do with content marketing? Everything.

Besides Angry Birds being one awesome example of content marketing as a business, the birds can tell us a lot about online content.

One Content Tactic Is Not Enough

I had a few email/twitter conversations with some of the attendee’s from yesterday’s Blogging Success Summit presentation about expanding outside the blog. Most of the bloggers made it to a certain point in their online strategy and plateaued, never moving beyond the blog post.

You see, for online content marketing to work, it’s hard to succeed with just one type of content. You could be throwing up red birds every day for months, but what you really need to do is mix in some yellow and blue birds.

Let’s be more concrete by using blogging as an example.

A consistent blog is a great first step to content marketing.  Solid blogs can be the centerpiece of an entire content strategy. But to truly be effective, blogs aren’t enough.

I like to use Russell Sparkman’s publishing calendar as a good example of how to mix and match content types.

  • 1 = Daily = Blogs/Tweets work (red bird)
  • 7 = Weekly = eNewsletter is a strong possibility (blue bird)
  • 30 = Monthly = Podcasts or videos? (yellow bird)
  • 4 = Quarterly = White Paper or eBook (white bird)
  • 2 = Bi-Annually = Webinar or In-Person Event (black bird)
  • 1 = Annually = Industry Research Project (over-sized red bird)

Of course, this is just an example of how you can mix and match content.  Each tactic/channel serves a different goal.  eNewsletters are great for continuous opt-in engagement. eBooks are excellent for social media sharing.  White papers are best for lead generation. The point is, one tactic (bird) alone usually can’t cut through the clutter and solve all your content marketing challenges.

So the next time you develop your editorial calendar, scope it out with multiple tactics in mind to solve multiple goals.

Jonathan Kranz and I put together this Content Marketing Playbook for just this reason to help you decide which tactic makes the most sense.  Use it wisely.