Practical Ecommerce

5 Content Marketing Ideas for March 2015

The month of March has plenty of opportunities for content marketers to create topical and useful content that might ultimately attract new customers and additional sales.

Content marketing is the act of creating content — articles, videos, podcasts, or other posts — and distributing that content with the aim of engaging customers and making more sales.

In March 2015, consider creating content: related to St. Patrick’s Day; how not to do something; on Pinterest; about an observance; or related to spring.

1. St. Patrick’s Day: March 17

From the content marketer’s perspective, St. Patrick’s Day offers almost limitless opportunities to share useful, interesting, or entertaining articles, posts, and videos. This means that regardless of what segment a business serves, it is possible to promote around this holiday.

Here are some examples.

Imagine an online retailer that sells used or rare books. This store could tell the real story of St. Patrick, perhaps, as an article on its blog or even in a short video published on YouTube and shared on social media. The article could discuss the circumstances of St. Patrick’s birth and his life. The article might reference rare historical books, which the merchant happens to sell.

A search for "St. Patrick's Day" on Williams-Sonoma's website returns 16 recipes for traditional Irish food.

A search for “St. Patrick’s Day” on Williams-Sonoma’s website returns 16 recipes for traditional Irish food.

An online store that sells kitchen supplies could create a different sort of content around St. Patrick’s Day, publishing several articles describing how to make traditional Irish meals. In fact, this is exactly what Williams-Sonoma has done. The store’s site has 16 recipes that show up when you search for St. Patrick’s Day, including one for corned beef and cabbage. The recipe, by the way, has been pinned on Pinterest nearly a thousand times.

Here the content marketing idea is simply to find a way to relate the industry you serve to St. Patrick’s Day.

2. Make a How-not-to Video

How-to articles and videos make for premiere content because they are inherently useful and engaging. In fact, good how-to content encourages reciprocity, wherein potential customers feel like you’ve given them something of value and, in a sense, they need to give you something in return.

In March, try turning how-to on its head and produce a how-not-to video. The idea is similar in that you’re going to offer potential customers something of value only now that value will be entertainment not utility (or perhaps both).

As an example, consider watching Mehdi Sadaghdar’s YouTube video, “How NOT to Make an Electric Guitar.” The video is not entirely safe for work thanks to the language used in it, but it is a good example of a how-not-to video, with more than 2 million views.

Art’s Cyclery, a brick-and-click retailer of bicycle parts and accessories, has a “How (Not) To: Lube Your Bike” video, which is, perhaps, a more utilitarian example of the genre, but still good content with more than 19,600 views on YouTube at the time of writing.

3. Start a New Pin Board

Pinterest is a powerful platform for sharing products and product related content.

“Each month, customers engage with our pins hundreds of thousands of times, generating millions of impressions and significant site traffic and demand,” said Bryan Galipeau, Nordstrom’s social media manager, in a Pinterest case study.

“Our goal is to inspire customers — in the way they shop, share, and pin,” Galipeau said. “One of the things we love most about Pinterest is that customers can get inspired and take an action on their own terms. In many ways, it’s the world’s largest wish list.”

Nordstrom is a master of pinning.

Nordstrom is a master of pinning.

Small and mid-sized online retailers can take a play, if you will, from Nordstrom’s playbook, and start a new pin board in March. One of Nordstrom’s most popular boards is titled “Our Favorite Things.” It features high quality product images that are very similar to the sorts of photos many retailers are probably using on their sites.

Consider starting your own favorite things board and try to pin 300 great images in March.

4. ‘March is’ Article

Depending on who one asks, March is:

  • National Nutrition Month,
  • Red Cross Month,
  • Social Worker’s Month,
  • Women’s History Month,
  • Umbrella Month,
  • Peanut Month,
  • Noodle Month,
  • Mirth Month,
  • Poetry Month,
  • Ethics Awareness Month,
  • Help Someone See Month,
  • Honor Society Awareness Month,
  • Humorists Are Artists Month,
  • International Listening Awareness Month,
  • International Mirth Month,
  • Irish-American Heritage Month,
  • Music in Our Schools Month,
  • National Collision Awareness Month,
  • National Craft Month,
  • National Kite Month,
  • Optimism Month,
  • Play the Recorder Month,
  • Poison Prevention Awareness Month,
  • National Frozen Food Month,
  • Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig Month,
  • Credit Education Month,
  • Employee Spirit Month,
  • International Ideas Month,
  • National Cheerleading Safety Month

In fact, this is only a small sample of the month-long observances in March. Nearly any marketer, regardless of segment, can find some topic for interesting and entertaining content. Here are some example titles.

  • “7 Reasons National Nutrition Month Matters to Your Kids”
  • “The 19 Best Resources for National Red Cross Month”
  • “A Manager’s Guide to Social Worker’s Month”
  • “7 Podcasts About Women’s History Month”
  • “Don’t Get Soaked During Umbrella Month”
  • “35 Heart-stopping Recipes for Peanut Month”
  • “11 Ways Noodle Month Can Help You Be a Better Person”

Pick a “month” that makes sense for your business, and find an interesting angle. If you need help with title ideas, check out Portent’s Content Idea Generator.

5. First Day of Spring: March 20

The vernal equinox, or first day of spring, brings warmer temperatures, longer days, and new growth. It is also an opportunity for content marketers to publish articles or videos related to the changing season.

Here again, the products a store offers can guide the sort of content it publishes. As an example, an online retailer selling art might want to create a video similar to Porch’s “How to Hang a Wall Gallery,” showing folks how to decorate a wall for spring.

As another example, Gurney’s Seed and Nursery, which sells seeds online, recently published a blog post about “Starting a Vegetable Garden,” which is just the sort of thing that new Gurney customers might like to know about in the spring.

Finally, clothing retailers might think about publishing spring fashion tips and trends.

With the new season come new opportunities for useful, entertaining, and engaging content.

Armando Roggio

Armando Roggio

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Comments ( 7 )

  1. Elizabeth Hollingsworth March 2, 2015 Reply

    And don’t forget the tail-end of March brings us closer to Easter so you might run relevant blog posts such as Last-Minute Non-Chocolate Gift Ideas for Easter or Last-Minute Easter Break Travel Bargains, for example.

  2. liqvideo March 2, 2015 Reply

    Thanks Armando for this really usefull post. Will you do that every month now? ;-)


  3. Reed March 3, 2015 Reply

    Excellent. It is to easy to get stuck thinking inside of a box.

  4. barbara smith March 5, 2015 Reply

    This is great! I had run out of standard topics and ideas for the two company newsletters I run. Thank you.

  5. Anastasia March 15, 2015 Reply

    Hi Armando, again this is a great article. I enjoy reading your ideas and implementing them in my own work. Keep up the great work and I look forward to coming across more articles like this in future.

  6. Jock Breitwieser April 14, 2015 Reply

    Hi Armando – love the article and the different angles you offer. Hugely helpful. Thanks for sharing! I took a look at content creation from a writing perspective – three main points that complement yours: “3 Proven Steps to Creating Useful Content” by @jbreitwieser on @LinkedIn

    Looking forward to your thoughts/feedback.

  7. TOMTOM February 29, 2016 Reply

    I love your articles!