The Best Content Marketing Examples
Editor’s NOTE: Previously, we had published 99+ Amazing Content Marketing Examples. (There were actually 106 examples there but “99+” sounded better.) Actually, these were “content marketing hubs.” There’s a difference.
Here, we focus on simply giving examples, and leave you to do the sorting, analysis, and insight gathering. This year, the list has almost doubled. So I’m giving up on counting them. (You can count them below 🙂 But if you are you looking for the best content marketing examples you’ve come to the right place! Brands from different industries and backgrounds are now entering the world of modern marketing, and we welcome them into the fold.
Maybe you are still skeptical that content marketing is right for your unique business/industry/size/audience. Maybe you are trying to learn from others by emulating what works for them. It’s hard to believe that anyone wouldn’t believe in the power of content marketing, but we’ve got the proof you need with lots of examples. Odds are your competitors are moving full steam ahead with content marketing. Do you want to be left behind?
And maybe your boss needs some convincing. Nothing gets executive buy-in like some solid fear-based examples of the competition being ahead of your company on the latest and greatest digital marketing trends. You can also get our Content Marketing ROI formulas free, perfect for anyone who loves numbers.
The Difference between Content and Content Marketing
Content marketing is not a piece of content. it is not marketing with content like brochures. It is not a native ad. It is not a “viral video.”
Content marketing means acting like a publisher, consistently creating content that our customers actually like to read and share. Content marketing is how build an audience and attract subscribers who opt-in to allow you into their already over-crowded email inbox.
This is very different from advertising. Advertising means occasionally interrupting the content your audience actually wants, in order to sell them a product or introduce your brand. Many of us opt-out of unwanted advertising. Advertising is not something we typically want to read and share. Advertising is how publishers monetize their traffic.
So look to great content marketing examples like L’Oreal’s Makeup.com, Adobe’s CMO.com and our favorite industry-wide content marketing example like American Express OPEN Forum. That site is the largest source of leads for their small business card division.
Imagine you are the content marketing director for your company and you led the creation and management of a program that drove more leads and sales than any other marketing activity. With results you can rack and measure in business terms.
It starts with an understanding that marketing is not about selling, but about the conversation we have with our customers. It continues with investing in content marketing, because the difference between just content and content marketing is the destination.
What Makes a Great Content Marketing Example
In assembling our list, we had to create some criteria around what we considered to be great. There needs to be a balance of design and utility. It has to get the job done—value of some kind—and ideally they are well designed.
The topic needs to be relevant and interesting to the audience. It should have a high readability score and cover the topic from an angle that delivers new insights and ideas. And of course, it should not be all about your brand. In fact, the less the brand name is used, the better. This is true thought leadership.
The examples on our list cover a wide variety of industries and formats. From ebooks to apps to video, content marketing includes a spectrum of opportunities. You’ll find the examples in alphabetical order instead of numbered because on this list, they all deserve equal props.
Let me break it down:
- Define your content marketing mission and put someone in charge
- Publish content your audiences want
- Publish on a regular basis
- Publish content from a combination of named authors
- Cover a unique variety of topics that you have the authority to be an expert in
- Consider whether your content marketing will be more or less branded and “on domain” (the same as your company url) or off domain (a website you have to buy).
- Optimize your efforts on building subscribers
- Measure Content Marketing ROI based on your ability to reach, engage and convert new audiences for as little investment as possible
It might seem like a lot of work to produce content hubs like these, but this is not necessarily the case. If you are a content marketer – if you are producing articles, videos, blog posts and other content on a regular basis – you are already most of the way there.
Now, take a look at the list, get inspired, and know that you can become one of the best content marketing examples.
The Best Content Marketing Examples
The entries on our list come from a range of different categories. We have major financial institutions brushing up against mindfulness and well-being apps, and globe-trotting airlines rubbing shoulders with search engine marketing blogs.
The message that this gives is clear. No matter what field you are in, no matter what sort of content your users are interested in, developing a content marketing program to tie it all together is the only way to go.
Think about what your users want to see, then think about how they want to see it. How are you going to deliver it to them? Which way is going to be the most effective?
I’m not picking winners here. For the purposes of this list, everyone is a winner. Instead, arranged in alphabetical order, are the best content marketing examples I have found. Get inspired and join my list next year!
Are you interested in building your own amazing content marketing experience? Contact me here and let’s talk about how we can help.
- Acorn’s Grow
- Adidas Group’s Blog offers “Personal insights into our business in sports.”
- Adidas’ GamePlanA provides stories for “creators, tackling work life with an athlete’s heart”
- Air B’n’B: The revolutionary accommodation solution provider have been lighting the way when it comes to content.
- American Express OPEN Forum: “Insights, Inspirations and Connections To Grow Your Business” -1 of the earliest and most-cited example of content marketing
- Anthropologie: As stylish as you’d expect from these guys
- AT&T’s BusinessCircle
- Bank of America BetterMoneyHabits
- Ben & Jerry’s: The ice cream giant has been a master of brand identity for years now, and their web content shows the same commitment.
- Betterment’s Resource Center “Information to help you lead a smarter financial life”
- Birchbox Magazine and Men’s Guide
- Blackboard Blog
- Bloomberg Enterprise Blog
- Blue Apron
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama has this amazing YouBar that customizes your content experience
- Bobbi Brown’s Everything Bobbi
- British Airways: Connecting cities around the world with their travel hub services; doing the same for web users with their content hub.
- BufferApp Blog
- Canva: An unusual entry on our list, Canva is a digital design app. However, its website hosts a content hub with the sort of smart organization and stunning design we would all do well to emulate.
- CapGemini’s Content Loop (one of the best examples of how to convert visitors to leads)
- Casper’s Pillow Talk but they also created . . .
- Casper’s VanWinkles: “Exploring sleep with our eyes wide open” (one of my favorite content marketing examples)
- Chase.com/News – Great example of a company incorporating content marketing right into their homepage
- Cleveland Clinic Health Essentials is one of the best examples on this list
- Colgate Oral Care Center
- ConAgra’s Forkful.com
- Coke’s Coca-Cola Journey “Refreshing the world. One story at a time.”
- Ciena Insights
- Cisco Connected Futures Magazine I love the look and design of this site
- Cleveland Clinic
- Deluxe Small Business Revolution
- Departures from American Express for their Platinum card members, run by Time Inc.
- Disney Blogs – the power of storytelling
- Domo’s BusinessIntelligence.com shows the power of owning the category domain
- Dollar Shave Club’s MEL
- Electronic Art’s EA News Blog
- Equinox: Equinox’s Furthermore balances subtle but sharp aesthetic touches with content variation across the whole lifestyle spectrum, showing others in this class how it is done.
- Farmer’s Insurance Inner Circle “The latest tips and insights on auto safety, home upkeep and planning for life’s special moments.”
- Fidelity MyMoney “Get in better financial shape today.”
- First Republic
- First Round
- Four Seasons
- Fresh Direct: The branding here is exquisite; as fresh and clean as you’d hope for from these guys. But, beneath the surface is genuine insight.
- General Mills Tablespoon “Food that’s fun” – offers a great visual exploration of recipes and food
- GE Reports
- GE Txchnologist
- Google’s Think With Google
- Grant Thornton
- The Hartford SmallBizAhead
- Headspace: The team behind the fantastically popular meditation and well-being app deliver great content and insight via their CM hub, all with the same trademark branding we have come to expect.
- Home Depot DIY Blog
- HPE Matter
- HPE Community Blog
- HPE TechBeacon Great examples of a company building on-domain and off
- Hubspot Blog “Your Daily Dose of Inbound” segmented by Marketing, Sales and Agency personas
- IBM: The computing giants are showing that they are not going to get left behind in the content marketplace.
- Innocent: Innocent by name, wily in the content game by nature. Innocent have been a runaway branding success story for several years. Their top notch content hub shows us how.
- Intel IQ: Another computing giant, leveraging their vast stock of expertise and authority. Intel’s content hub is exactly as it should be; a fascinating resource of insight.
- Jack Daniel’s The Single Barrel Standard: Whiskey wisdom and Cocktail news? Sign me up!
- Jet Blue
- Johnson & Johnson
- JP Morgan
- Kimpton Hotels
- Lego: With Lego, the emphasis has always been on fun, and this is very much evident within their content marketing strategies.
- Lenovo’s ThinkProgress, with content by Intel
- Lincoln Now
- LinkedIn’s Marketing Solutions Blog
- Rosetta Stone’s LinguaVore: “A blog about learning language.”
- L’Oreal’s Makeup.com great example of a consumer brand “owning” the category
- MAC: No one is going to accuse MAC cosmetics of selecting style over substance. The market leader’s content hub provides a wide range of different articles and content formats to its visitors.
- Marketo Blog
- Marketo CMO Nation
- Marks & Spencers
- Marriott‘ Traveler: Love what these folks are doing across their portfolio
- Marriott’s Meetings Imagined
- Marriott’s Travel Brilliantly
- Mayo Clinic’s Sharing offers personal stories of real people overcoming disease
- Memorial Sloan Kettering: The Memorial Sloan Kettering cancer treatment and research center website features a content hub with a tone appropriate to the gravity of its subject matter. Providing support and assistance to patients and family members, the New York non-profit gets it right.
- Method’s Soap Dish
- Michael Kors: The luxury fashion marque keeps it diverse with different pieces of content for every user. Dipping in to look at photos and losing yourself in more in-depth pieces is possible here, as all needs are catered for.
- Microsoft’s Stories – another great example of a company bringing “Stories” to their homepage
- Mint Life Blog
- Morgan Stanley
- Morning Star Farms
- Moz: As SEO and web content specialists, you’d expect their content hub to be exemplary. Committed fans of the Moz team will know this to be true.
- Nasty Gal’s Nasty Galaxy
- National Association of Realtor’s House Logic
- Net-A-Porter’s The Edit and Mr Porter
- New Belgium Brewery Community Blog – because beer
- One Medical Blog: “You have one life. Make it count.”
- OpenView Venture Partners Blog “Insights for B2B software companies.”
- OpenView Venture Partners’ Labs – another early example of content marketing for a small business
- Oracle’s Modern Marketing Blog
- P&G Everyday is another site that has been around almost from the beginning of modern content marketing
- Patagonia: Durable outdoor wear needs a robust content strategy to go with it, and this is provided by the Patagonia team.
- Petsmart’s Parent Resource Center
- Prudential The Challenge Lab “Learn about the human behaviors that get in the way of planning your financial future.”
- Progressive: Insurers Progressive have taken a few steps away from the somewhat irreverent branding, instead focusing on a range of incisive content topics aimed at giving customers the information they need.
- Random House: Publishers Random House are no stranger to the power of the written word, and their hub utilizes this strength to the full with a diverse array of content.
- Red Bull
- Reebok: Reebok understands what is meant by a solid content strategy and have been providing great pieces of content to an avid base of users for years. This year, they showed no sign of letting up.
- Ricoh Work Intelligently
- Rue La La
- Samsung’s Insights
- Samsung’s Tech Life
- Salesforce Blog
- Santander: As one of the biggest banks in the world, Santander has a great deal of authority. They use this authority with aplomb within their content hub.
- SAP Digitalist Magazine: This was the site I started while at SAP and so proud to see how the team there has evolved it.
- SAP Hybris‘ The Future of Commerce
- SAS Blog
- Sharethrough’s NativeAdvertising.com “All things Native”
- Shutterstock Blog
- Society of Grownups
- Soul Cycle
- Sprint’s Future of Business
- Starbucks: The ethos of Starbucks has always been a creative, hip, collaborative one, and this is exemplified with their 1912Pike blog. This is where the firm’s creative endeavors come together, spearheading the brand into 2017.
- Sun Life
- Sweet Green
- Target’s “Bull’s Eye View” merged in 2015 with Target’s Corporate News site
- Taco Bell: Taco Bell’s The Feed is a consistent great source of inspiration for a successful, playful content strategy.
- TD Ameritrade Tickertape “Pearls and insights for investors.”
- Tory Burch’s Tory Daily I like how this site humanizes the Tory brand
- Uber’s Newsroom
- US Government White House Blog
- United Airlines
- Urban Outfitters: The ‘style blog’ genre has gained huge popularity in recent years, and has helped to propel numerous small businesses to the big time. Urban Outfitters is not one of them – their content game has been strong for some time – but they continue to serve as an inspiration.
- Virgin America’s Flyer Feed
- Visual Matters – Sponsored by SAP
- Warby Parker
- West Elm’s Front + Main
- Wistia Video Library “Succeed With Video Marketing”
- WestJet Magazine
- Whole Foods
- Williams-Sonoma Taste: (still) a beautifully designed site
- WorldVision Blog “Building a better world for children.”
- Your Primer
- Zillow Porchlight: “Always on. Guiding you home.” This site is so popular, they are selling ads
- Zuora: Zuora’s great-looking Academy focuses on delivering genuine insight, support and development to the software producer’s customers.
Here are some more that I added, after I stopped counting…
AARP listens to its members and develops content based on their needs in their monthly magazine that has over 22 million subscribers.
AbbVie StoryLab, a content hub focusing on the healthcare community.
Adobe and CMO.com’s digital publication literally targets their buyers with content and insight.
ADP’s SPARK on igniting the power of people
American Express Open Forum is one of the oldest examples of modern content marketing!
Anthropologie’s a BLOG is filled with ideas on what to pack or how to mix and match plates for a dinner party.
Autotask generates lots of content in different formats to attract customers.
Away Here, which signifies Away as a travel and lifestyle brand, not a bag company.
11. Barclaycard “The Fast Track” interactive online course for small business.
12. Bayer Magazine offers the latest in heath science
14. Ben & Jerry’s What’s New, which is about much more than ice cream.
16. Blendtec “Will It Bend” video series is just pure fun
17. Bloomberg Diversity & Inclusion blog where stories of diversity show innovation.
18. Blue Apron’s Blog uses storytelling to attract fans.
19. British Airways Destinations
20. Bumble’s The Beehive
21. Buffer Blog on everything social
22. Buzzstream uses a variety of content formats to rise to thought leader status.
23. Capgemini partners with LinkedIn to create Content Loop (one of my favorite examples of ROI)
25. Caterpillar #BUILTFORIT content hub for kids is pretty amazing and includes a machines playing Jenga.
26. CB Insider’s funny and informational newsletter
27. Chanel’s “Inside Chanel”
28. Cheerios Recipes
29. Cisco Blogs and blogs and blogs…
30. Clambr’s Featured Experts Articles
31. ClassPass’ great fitness content on The Warm Up.
32. Cleveland Clinic Health Essentials another one of my favorite examples.
33. Clif Bar Our Stories, that exudes brand values.
34. CMI has great content overall but even did a 45-min movie called “The Story of Content.”
35. Cox Media Group created an online “Success Kit” with valuable information to help other businesses succeed.
36. Crowe Insights develops content to target accountants and consultants with case studies, infographics, video and more.
37. DemandBase just rebranded their Account Based Marketing Blog
38. Dell Technologies Perspectives uses a content-first approach and takes on thought leadership.
39. Ellevest Insights, an investing platform with content focused on females.
42. Etsy Blog
43. Farmer’s Insurance Learn from Experience content hub.
44. Fidelity MyMoney, offering money advice for every stage of life.
45. First Republic Articles & Insights with topics and stories with high relevance for its audience.
46. First Round Review makes the most of long-form content.
47. Fiverr Guides
48. Four Seasons Magazine helps the brand connect to luxury travelers.
49. Fujitsu I-Global Intelligence for the CIO is the go-to digital content hub for information technology leaders.
50. GEICO More
51. GE Reports has been a great example of brand storytelling for a long
52. GE Healthcare’s new Insights Platform
53. Glassdoor’s Blog including the awesome “25 Tips from Top CEOs” eBook
54. Goldman Sachs and the leadership hub “Our Thinking,” featuring podcasts, articles, and infographics.
55. The Google Blog is mostly company news but has some interesting stories on “Working With People.”
56. GoPro News has some cool stories interspersed with news and product updates
58. Headspace “The Orange Dot”—advancing mindfulness and meditation.
60. Hootsuite Blog includes this awesome “A Game of Social Thrones” video
61. HPE’s Newsroom sets the bar for corporate newsrooms (Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s content hub)
62. HubSpot Blog —one of the reigning kings of content marketing.
63. IBM’s Blog has a ton of great content
64. InVision’s blog turns design into a problem solver, not an aesthetic.
65. Intel IQ Blog has been a leader in our space for a long time.
66. Intuit’s Blog
67. IKEA Ideas, featuring style and decorating tips.
68. Inside Intercom has distinct visuals and creative content.
70. Intrepid Traveler’s content hub “The Journal,” which is filled with stories of real travelers.
72. John Deere’s 120-year-old publication “The Furrow,” which still leads with education and information over sales.
73. Johnson & Johnson’s home page reads more like a digital magazine with great health and wellness content.
74. Kinsta’s “A Beginner’s Guide to Website Speed Optimization,” is a masterfully done long-form content piece.
75. KLM iFly, the content hub for travel inspiration.
77. LeadPages Blog has great tips on converting website traffic
78. LEGO Family has amazing play ideas, building ideas, birthday party ideas and more (plus tons of awesome videos)
79. LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Blog is awesome. Just check out their “The Secret Sauce”
81. L’Oreal’s Makeup.com is another one of my long time favorites.
82. Lowe’s Creative Ideas inspires homeowners.
83. Lush Stories adds quirkiness to its content marketing plan, including inside videos.
85. MailChimp’s Blog speaks to their Small Biz audience
86. Marketo’s Blog is a must-read for every marketer.
88. MassMutual’s Society of Grownups, the content hub that helps the world understand how to be a grown-up. Full of relatable, informational, and humorous content.
91. Michael’s The Glue String blog
92. Microsoft’s “Anatomy of a Data Breach” Interactive Site
93. Morgan Stanley
96. National Association of Realtors’ HouseLogic
97. Neil Patel’s “The Beginner’s Guide to Online Marketing”
100. Old Spice videos shift to humor, rarely mentioning the brand.
101. Optum eBooks and resources
104. Peloton’s “The Output,” generating content for all the brand’s fans.
105. Pfizer’s Get Old website
106. Plated’s Morsel, with its beautiful imagery and great tips.
107. Progressive Commercial Business Onward, content for SMBs.
108. Qualcomm’s Spark
109. Random House
111. REI’s Paul’s Boots video
112. Rent the Runway’s The Shift blog
113. Rip Curl, the “ultimate surfing company” with its online publication “The Search” where surfers share stories of searching for the best wave.
114. Rolex shows that even as an iconic brand, you can master content marketing. Their Instagram account is sophisticated and timeless and has over seven million followers.
115. Rosetta Stone
116. Rue La La: Rule Now
117. Sage Advice—which is a very clever name—offers information for SMEs on finances.
119. Santander and the Prosper and Thrive content hub designed for millennials.
120. Scripted uses content for every stage in the buyer journey.
121. Sephora and the Beauty Insider Community, which contains mostly user-generated content.
123. Simply Business publishes useful tips and guides, making a dull subject interesting.
125. SoulCycle Community
128. Stitch Fix Stitch Fix/Style gives women ideas on outfits and features designer spotlights.
130. Sun Life Financial
131. Superdrug’s campaign to raise awareness about body image issues is a great example of the power of content marketing. The company asked graphic designers all over the world to edit a photo of a model in Photoshop to express the norms of their country. The body image campaign went viral and netted three million views and at least one million social shares, including from celebrities.
132. STR Software created a “university” as its content hub and promoted it via many channels.
133. Sweetgreen’s content hub Passion + Purpose is part of Medium.
135. Taco Bell’s “The Feed,” directed at college-age buyers and leans heavily on humor.
137. The Home Depot “Grow a Living Salad Bowl” Infographic
141. United Airlines The United Hub features destination specific stories and service tips.
142. USAA Stories
143. Virgin Mobile, a long-time participant in content marketing, is still innovating.
144. Visit Seattle uses video to capture the experiences travelers can have in the city.
145. Wal-Mart “Based on a Wal-Mart Receipt”
146. Warby Parker uses content for brand building.
147. Whole Foods Market shares beautiful food photos, killing it on social media.
148. Wistia’s “Terms of Service” is a fun idea!
149. WP Engine used content to drive more business and funding.
152. Zappos The Ones
153. Zendesk takes keyword phrase “Zendesk alternatives” to create spoof video taking the page to number one in results for the keyword.
154. Zipcar’s Ziptopia, engaging drivers between rentals.
155. Zomato’s great sense of humor is a winner for this restaurant finder app. They have a knack for creating and sharing images on social media poking fun at popular culture.
That’s a long list with lots of great examples. If you’d like to create something amazing with your content marketing but aren’t sure where to start, contact us today, and we’ll help you make the list next year.
Are you interested in activating the storytellers inside your business today? Let’s talk about how I can assist you.
I use a combination of personal branding, consistent social audience building, and support in creating authentic and ongoing thought leadership content. I’ve done it for myself. I’ve done it for the companies I’ve worked for. I’ve helped activate hundreds, even thousands of thought leaders to tell better stories. I’ve done it for numerous clients. And I can do it for you.