SyncShow B2B Marketing Blog

A Lesson in Content Marketing from the City of Cleveland

Every quarter, we sit down with our clients and rethink our strategies – we take a look at what kind of content is working for them, and in what channels. Whether it is email marketing or social media, it always comes back to one thing: content. 

Now, being the “all things Cleveland” enthusiast and huge sports fan that I am, it only makes sense to relate this topic back to my city. These days, I am always finding myself attempting to convince people I encounter – whether it be friends from college or people I meet on airplanes – that Cleveland really is a great city and is undergoing something awesome. As of late, my arguments are becoming much easier and I owe that to content marketing.

So, back to these discussions with our clients – let’s take a look at some of the different mediums of content. Basically, however you slice it or dice it, you can take one content topic and talk about it in many different ways. Some of them include:

  • Blogs and Articles
  • Whitepapers, Guides and eBooks
  • Checklists, Lists and How-To’s
  • Infographics, Videos and Photographs
  • Case Studies

Regardless if people are jumping on the Cleveland bandwagon or not, content marketing is making my side of the argument a whole lot easier to have. People all over the country are starting to drink the Cleveland Kool-Aid because of what they are seeing on the Internet, so let’s take a look at a few different types of content marketing and how they are helping my case.

Exhibit A: Huffington Post Blog Post

Just two weeks ago, a blog post titled “Cleveland, Ohio Is a Magical Place” was published on the Huffington Post. In short, the author took a 30-hour trip to Cleveland, checking out all of the hot-spots and finishing out the weekend at the Cleveland Browns Stadium with a huge win over the Steelers. The high he explains that he was on for the next couple weeks after his return back home sure would make me want to visit! The blog post went viral and was shared by Clevelanders all over social media. Now, with the Browns clenching the sole first place spot in the AFC North (first time since 1994), the buzz and content marketing continues. 

Exhibit B: ABC News’ List of Cleveland To-do’s

Back in July, ABC News published “15 Things to do in Cleveland at the 2016 Republican National Convention.” We have seen across the board with our clients that lists can be extremely powerful. People are busy, going from one thing to the next, and they don’t necessarily have the time to sit down and read a 2-page article. Lists allow for a lot of great content in a quick and digestible format. As many people pour into the city for the 2016 RNC, they are going to be looking for things to do. I guarantee this list gets a ton of traffic as we approach the RNC.

Exhibit C: The Lebron James Nike Video

Surely saving the best for last, this LeBron James Nike video really needs no introduction. Once you let that one sink in, let’s talk about the power of video. At this year’s Content Marketing World conference, which takes place in Cleveland, we repeatedly heard about the importance of video in content marketing: images trump text, videos trump images.

As we approached the return of our hometown hero and opening day at Quicken Loans Arena, LeBron James (and many other news outlets), leaked this video, which would air during the broadcast of the game. LeBron Tweeted:


(For social media best practices for publishing, check out this blog post.)

The buzz and excitement around the game became even more apparent with the release of this video. When it leaked, it was merely minutes before my coworkers gathered around my desk to watch the video and shared it on our own social media channels. Obviously, this LeBron James Nike commercial is highly produced, and in certain scenarios, that is completely necessary. However, keep in mind, there is a time and place for more “down and dirty” type videos that do not take the editing/producing that most commercials take.

Alright, it is finally time for me to get off my Cleveland soapbox, so I will leave you with this:

  1. Cleveland is awesome (come visit!)
  2. Content marketing is awesome (give it a try!)
  3. If you practice content marketing, you will also be awesome (and successful with spreading your brand's message!)


For another blog post about content marketing, check out:
Content Creation Tips: How to Write for the Web

Image credit: Sunrise over Cleveland Ohio by Chris Capell via Creative Commons License Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0

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