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There’s a lot of content marketing out there. And it’s about time we shared some of our favorite content marketing examples. We chose the following from brands that know their target audience, brands that produce content that goes above and beyond just the product, and brands that, well, personally speak to us on some level.

Here are just a few of our favorite content marketing examples from the past year:

Mazda

Let’s start with, ah, a sobering one. Japanese car company Mazda is already bound to do some inspiring things with engines. To balance that out, it brought things crashing down to reality with a glass-shattering campaign on Facebook. The forward-thinking auto company screeched little animated cars through users’ feeds, crashed them, and “broke” the screens on their phones in a bid to help deter texting while driving. Morbid? Yeah, a little. Effective? Absolutely. The message is loud and clear: stay safe out there on the road, put your phone down, and drive a car from a company that evidently cares about safe, responsible driving.

MailChimp

What often happens in emails? Typos. Or even in everyday conversation? You mishear what someone is trying to say. I’m sorry, did you say JailBlimp? Or SnailPrimp? Was that KaleLimp? Email marketing company MailChimp noticed they’re consistently the victims of spelling mistakes, so it took a tried and true gag and turned those common errors into a memorable content marketing campaign that featured potato chips, videos, and something called a… uh, a WhaleSynth. Fun, innovative, and it tickles the funny bone.

Crew Style Blog

Maybe I’m a little biased here since I’ve had a J.Crew gift card burning a hole in my pocket since June, but the clothing brand offers some stylish advice on its blog alongside how-to videos, interviews, behind-the-scenes making-of articles about specific clothing, and links to buy said clothing, free of GQ-style pretense. If it’s scarf-tying tips you need, or just an affordable blazer, after you find out what went into its design process, the J.Crew editorial blog might be for you. And what’s good for our former First Lady must be good for the rest of us.

Domino’s Wedding Registry

Talk about thinking outside the box…pizza box, that is. Oh, quit your booing. This idea is as amazing as it is ridiculous. Plus, it takes a lot of guts to open a wedding registry on your pizza delivery site after spending what felt like an eternity in what was essentially a self-effacing brand rehabilitation phase-slash-apology tour. So, y’know what, kudos to Domino’s for pulling off something extremely unique and, depending on some of the weddings we’ve all been to—it’s okay to admit the food at your cousin’s nuptials didn’t exactly hit the spot—necessary.

Stranger Things Season 2

As if the hit Netflix series wasn’t good enough already, the creators behind the sci-fi/fantasy/horror/nostalgia mash-up saw fit to deliver two exemplary examples of content marketing: an era-specific video game and a Snapchat AR app. AR, or Augmented Reality, changes the world around you—so long as you’re peeking through your smartphone, which takes the camera and overlays virtual graphics over real life. In this case, you can turn your living room into the Upside Down, the freaky alternative dimension from the show. Think Pokemon Go, but with more bloodthirsty hellbeasts. Then there’s the video game, which, like the show, perfectly recreates a specific period in time. But rather than the early 80s, the game recaptures the 16-bit action-adventure games of the early 90s—a perfect way to engage with the Duffer Brothers’ show even when you’re not bingeing on the couch.     

LEGO

How do you compete with a brand like LEGO? Why, make a few Hollywood blockbusters starring famous comedians, one of them about the most popular superhero ever, of course. Okay, LEGO may be hurting lately, but the way the Danish company turned a colorful set of bricks into a monumental global phenomenon through music, movies, TV shows, and crowd sourced YouTube videos is still nothing short of astounding. And, for the record, LEGO Batman is probably the best Bat-flick in ten years. And you can take that to the LEGO Brick Bank.

Geico

What more can you say?

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