The growth of content marketing is astonishing. While a lot has changed in how content is structured and disseminated, the underlying value of content in digital marketing has become more important than ever before. But do you know which formats are worth investing in?

Try These 4 High-Returning Content Formats

Every audience is different and your brand has its own marketing flavor but there are certain overarching trends that dictate how you should spend your time and money. This year, the following content formats deliver the highest return.

  1. Live Streaming Video

It’s been discussed for years, but we’re finally at a point where live streaming video is accepted by both marketers and consumers. The beauty of live streaming video is that it’s highly personal. Whereas a typical marketing video is heavily edited, a live streaming video has that amateur feel that humanizes your brand.

Tough Mudder, an endurance event series that’s hugely popular, provides a good example of what it looks like to be successful with live streaming video.

  1. Review Posts

What was the last major purchase you made? Maybe a car, dishwasher, or piece of equipment for your business? Whatever the case, you probably did a little bit of research in order to find the best product in your price range. And in your research, you probably consulted a handful of reviews to simplify the process.

“Decisions, even minor ones, can be difficult and tiresome, particularly when we’re presented with so many options. Humans can only process so much information at once,” marketing expert Josue Ledesma points out. “Enter reviews. Consumer reviews, and popular opinion in general, sum up the wisdom of the general population and serve it as a means of collective intelligence, giving shape and structure to the wealth of information out there.”

Review posts are fairly easy to produce and tend to generate lots of backlinks and traction on social media. Here’s an example from Consolidation.CreditCard. Could you do something similar in your niche?

  1. Instagram Stories

It’s hard to deny the growth of Instagram. In an age where young people are swiftly gravitating away from Facebook, Instagram (which is ironically owned by Facebook) is taking the lead. One of the greatest features of the platform is the “stories.”

Instagram stories are awesome in that they’re comprised of brief snapshots that last for just 24 hours before disappearing. This sort of content is ideal for showing behind the scenes footage or promoting events. Here are some good examples to get your creative wheels turning.

  1. Online Courses

While most people don’t view online courses as content marketing, they can certainly play a role. An online course can be used to both capture and convert leads in a high-value format that reflects well on your brand as a thought leader and educator.
Barclays is one brand that does exceptionally well with educational content. Barclays’ Code Playground is a site dedicated to teaching kids how to code. While it may seem unrelated to the company’s goals, it instills trust in parents who are the ultimate targets.

Revisit Your Content Marketing Strategy

One of the bigger mistakes a company can make is developing a content marketing strategy at the beginning of the year and relying on it for the next 12 months. While strategizing and setting goals are important, content marketing isn’t something that can be planned months in advance. Things change, consumer tastes evolve, and what works for your brand right now may be ineffective in a matter of weeks.

Make it a priority to revisit your content marketing strategy on a revolving basis. Instead of creating a year-long strategy, develop a monthly or quarterly content marketing plan. This will ensure you stay relevant and generate the highest ROI you possibly can.