5-examples-of-epic-cornerstone-contentCompany blogs are a growing source of incredible information. As I use Google to find answers to the questions I have, I inevitably end up on somebody’s blog who specializes in solving my problem.

More often than not I get to the end of the post and I want to dig deeper — but i don’t have a clear next step to get more information.

Sure, I could always fill out a contact form, but I’m not really interested in talking to a sales person. So what do I do?

I leave.

With so many companies investing in creating quality blog content every day, it is shocking to me how little they invest in offering next-step, cornerstone content like in-depth emails or whitepapers to generate leads.

I’d happily fill out a short form to download a free copy of a helpful eBook. Here are 5 examples of cornerstone content that companies are using to generate leads.

Northern Engraving: Silver Surface Collections eBook

Specializing in offering a “complete range of options for the design and manufacturing of nameplates and trim,” Northern Engraving has done a great job of creating some pretty epic cornerstone content.

Their eBook has one simple purpose: to visually engage prospects with samples of the company’s ability to create beautiful engravings on silver surfaces.

The eBook itself is simple. In fact, to the untrained eye it may seem too simple. The truth is, however, that Northern Engravings answers one of the fundamental questions that their prospects likely have: what do these engraving patterns look like?

The added benefit is that Northern Engraving can get in front of these customers not only with their capabilities, but also with their brand.

This company creates building products for homes. They create high-quality materials for roofing, flooring, fireplaces, and pavers. Pretty cool stuff.

Although they are a manufacturer, it seems that their content really targets consumers and contractors who may be interested in the timeless look that is offered in their products. As such, many of Firerock’s blog posts are geared towards trends, DIY projects, and contractor ability.

Their eBook is short, simple, and to the point. It is only a page long, but it delivers on that which was promised: 5 trends for outdoor living.

The content is well-designed and was a pleasure to read. Well done!

HubSpot: How To Turn Facebook Fans Into Paying Customers

HubSpot is the King of creating epic cornerstone content. They grew by 50% in 2013, and the content that they create played a large role in that.

The best kind of cornerstone content is that which is actionable and can bring value to your prospects immediately. HubSpot certainly achieves that in this eBook, which shares the best way to turn (unpaid) Facebook customers into paying customers.

ViFX: vSphere upgrade delivers major benefits

Specializing in “infrastructure & cloud transformation,” ViFX is faced with a common challenge for companies in technical industries: helping people to quickly and easily understand what they do, and how their service can assist them.

When the product that you offer is technical in nature, case studies are often a great way to articulate the types of challenges that you regularly face and how you most often address them.

ViFX does a great job of doing just that in this case study (and they have seen great results in return).

Townsend Security: Encryption Key Management Resources

Also in a highly-technical industry, Townsend Security is most certainly in the business of educating their prospects.

One cool way that they approach this is to bundle a set of valuable resources (ranging from whitepapers, to podcasts, to webinars) in such a way that they are easy to redeem (in part because they fit together so well). The quality of the content is top-notch, offering in-depth explanations for Encryption Key management.

What will you offer your readers?

Cornerstone content is a great way to engage with your readership and to give them opportunities to pursue more information. If behind a form, you can begin collecting lead information from your readers as they look to educate themselves further.

The result: you will start to see better educated and higher qualified leads filling your funnel through your website.

Who could complain about that?