It’s no small feat.

Guitar Center’s YouTube channel beat out hundreds of leading brands, including Target, Four Seasons and General Electric, to snag the Project of the Year award at Content Marketing Institute’s 2014 Content Marketing Awards.

As if that wasn’t enough, Guitar Center also nabbed Gold for highest YouTube subscriber growth and Silver for best use of YouTube for content marketing.

Guitar Center is the largest retailer of guitars, amplifiers, drums, keyboards and lighting equipment in the United States. It’s a $2.3 billion company that manages several retail brands, including Musician’s Friend and Guitar Center. All told, it sells merchandise through more than 260 outlets across America.

In addition to its success at the Content Marketing Awards, Guitar Center also picked up kudos at this year’s New Media Awards and Telly Awards.

The reasons for the accolades aren’t difficult to understand.

Check out Guitar Centre on YouTube and get ready to be totally blown away—and see some examples of content marketing and storytelling at their best. Here is some of what you’ll see:

Singer-Songwriter: The Search for the Next Great American Songwriter

Now in its 4th year, this contest invites songwriters to submit an original song for a chance to win time in the studio with legendary producer Don Was to make a 4-song EP. The winner also receives a mentoring session with Colbie Caillant, a performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, $25,000 in cash, and (of course) new gear from Guitar Center.

Here’s Tess Henley, winner of Singer Songwriter 3:

Guitar Center Drum Off: The World’s Largest Drum Competition

Now in its 26th year, this search for the top undiscovered drummer hands the winner $25,000 in cash, plus gear, endorsement deals, studio time and more. It’s too late to enter this year’s contest, but you can watch the final competition on January 17, 2015.

Guitar Center Presents: Your Next Record with Steve Aoki

This competition invites musicians to submit a remix of Steve Aoki’s single Delirious, featuring Kid Ink. The winner is awarded studio time to have a single produced by Aoki, plus $10,000 in cash, gear, the chance to perform as an opening act at one of Aoki’s shows, an editorial feature in Electronic Musician Magazine . . . and more.

At Guitar Center with Nic Harcourt: Exclusive Interviews and Performances with Featured Artists

Guitar Center produces a regular program about music called At Guitar Center with Nic Harcourt. The popular show features interviews and performances by famous—and not-so famous—artists. At Guitar Center is distributed both through the Guitar Center YouTube channel and as a podcast. Host Harcourt is best known as a former radio music director and on-air personality in Santa Monica.

Guitar Center Sessions on DIRECTV

Guitar Center also has its own DIRECTV show called Guitar Sessions.

The show primarily features live performances by well-known artists, but it also gives budding artists the opportunity to perform by opening for famous bands. Featured artists over the years have included Joan Jett, Snoop Dogg, Slash and Peter Gabriel.

Here’s an exclusive clip of Buddy Guy performing “Damn Right, I’ve Got the Blues.”

Celebrating the music

What I really like about Guitar Center’s approach is that they focus on the experience of playing music—not the instruments they sell. The company is clearly passionate about helping musicians improve their craft . . . and to providing undiscovered musical talent with the opportunity to achieve success.

In the words of Guitar Center vice-president Dustin Hinz, “Our team works incredibly hard to create programming that not only helps artists get their music out to wide audiences, but also inspires people to play music.”

In doing so, they are showing the way for all companies that are striving to be storytellers and produce content that their audiences find useful and compelling.