Interactive Content: The Latest Trend in Content Marketing

Dear Reader, before diving into this article like a pro, you should know that this is a story of how Interactive Content might save your ASS! (Awesome Shopping Site).

A 2016 Content Marketing Institute (CMI) research showed that 79% out of their 182 for-profit marketers base opinionated that traditional marketing and interactive content noticeably enhance retention of the organizational message. Thus, interactive content must be a key marketing ingredient to engaging customers and enhancing CRO.

Key Takeaways from this article:

  • Interactive Content is when the audience/customers/etc. talk back.
  • Content, just as the provider-consumer tandem, goes through 3 stages: awareness, assessment, and decision.
  • UGC is greatly leverageable.
  • Yes, content can be recycled by turning it from static to dynamic.
  • We grouped over 450 examples of Interactive Content that you can enjoy and make use of right away!

A Better Look on Interactive Content

According to SnapApp, Interactive Content is supposed to look a lot like an active conversation with your consumer:

  • they have to be engaged and respond to some of your inquiries in order to get the “real-time, hyper-relevant” bits of information they actually need;
  • your challenge is to involve them emotionally through interaction;
  • you need to add real value to their experience.

Interactive content is, usually, easier to digest and more concise. Interactive content is leading content. It leads people into the next stage of our sales funnel. In this case, judging by how “close”, familiar or emotionally involved we are, we’re feeding our prospects a certain kind of content, covered in a certain package. In the

In this case, judging by how “close”, familiar or emotionally involved we are, we’re feeding our prospects a certain kind of content, covered in a certain package. In the Beginner’s Guide to Conversion Rate Optimization, we go through all the inbound stages and explain more on the customer relationship and how to approach it at every step of this process.

On its way to being fruitful, the provider – customer relationship goes through 3 phases – Meet-Anchor-Loop, which we called Find-Trust-Loyalty. Indifferent of what we’d call them, the essence remains the same. It’s just like a relationship – you don’t quite say “I love you” on the second date, do you, now? Or maybe you do… It depends, I guess. I mean, life can put you in the most extreme contexts. But you get my point, most of the times, we’re taking our current and future customers through a gradual process of building loyalty.

Phase One: Meeting the Customers and greeting them with Interactive Content

It’s an awareness stage, where a visitor is in searching mode. We need to get to know him better, to build his profile in a fun way so that we could, later on, make better and more appropriate recommendations and suggestions.

Customers’ main goal: Have a broad view on who these guys are and what they can do for me.
Interactive content should be: Engaging, easy to access and get involved as well as fun!

Types of interactive content they’re most likely to engage in now:

  • Self Assessments
    You get to gather information for your e-mailing list
    You provide a good incentive for social sharing and results comparison with peers
    E.g.: If you sell content writing services – Advanced Marketing Headline Analyzer’s
  • Quizzes
    More than just assessing, you can gather data on your visitors
    E.g.: If you sell clothes – The Elephant Pants Quizz
  • Knowledge tests
    You get to encourage active participation and assess your visitors’ brand awareness – how much/what do they know about you – and increase page views at the same time
    E.g.: If you sell magazines – The Stir Pop Culture Test

Phase Two: Anchoring Customers with Interactive Content

It’s an assessment stage. The lead evaluates his/her options/solutions and is preparing for a decision. We’re here to help him with valuable information on how things should work and what’s supposed to happen.

In this phase, we show them the ideal, the end-goal, the where we/they want to be part of the picture.

Customers’ main goal: Gather as much relevant information to decide on one provider or another
Interactive content should be: Future evocative, direct and relevant (should evoke unique selling points and differentiators)

Types of interactive content they’re most likely to respond to now:

  • Benchmark assessments
    Benchmarking is a comparison study between you and the top leaders in your industry
    You can offer your leads the possibility to go through an assessment that positions you as the niche option for them in terms of services you offer
    E.g.: If you’re selling communication services: Telco 2.0 Transformation Index Benchmarking
  • Interactive white papers
    They’re like traditional white papers, only they require active engagement from the user when going from one step to another
    E.g.: If you sell digital marketing services – Cero’s Interactive E-Book
  • Personal assessments
    You can identify and qualify leads.
    E.g.: If you sell IT services – LeadSeed’s Self-Assessment Tool
  • Content wizards and recommendation engines
    In the case of a content library, for instance, you can offer your visitors the best and most appropriate content for them, only after they have gathered some previous data to make
    E.g.: If you sell traveling services – Beyond the Map from Google

Phase Three: Looping Customers through Interactive Content

It’s a decision stage. It’s the “critical” buying stage.

Customers’ main goal: Buy.
Interactive content should be: Decision inductive, providing options, practical

Type of interactive content they’re most likely to use now:

  • ROI calculators
    It depends on their purpose, but they can serve as price comparisons, estimates, or purchase options benefits
    If you sell health services – Authority Nutrition’s Losing Calories Calculator
  • Product pickers
    E.g.: If you’re selling fashion products or related services, you can add related products and upsell products in your shop. Magento already has that functionality and if you need your complete Magento shop, we can help! *wink.
  • Surveys
    E.g.: If you sell accommodation services – Hilton Hotels Service Experience
  • Galleries
    E.g.: If you sell branded products – Arcade Fire’s fan generated gallery (they asked fans to submit pics from concerts with the chance to be featured on their FB Page)
  • Storytelling
    You can use different effects, animations, narratives in order to create this integrative digital experience
    E.g.: If you sell memories – Welcome to PinePoint’s interactive story
  • Games
    E.g.: CandyCrush has over 50 million users. Facebook users. Monthly. We’re not even going to talk PokemonGo!
  • Interactive videos
    You can give customers the chance to go through their own scenario by allowing them to try on your products or services, for example, mimicking the actual experience you’re creating for them.
    Users can explore their preferred story
    E.g.: If you sell beauty products: Maybelline New York’s Interactive Tutorial Video

Interactive Content Campaigns

In Demand Metric’s Enhancing the Buyer’s Journey Benchmark report, iON states that Interactive content generates conversions at DOUBLE the passive content rate.
Content adds value for the users. This is what makes them talk/spread the word/gain-the-knowledge-share-the-wisdom kind of thing.

Benefits of Using Interactive Content

These are the actual study results we cited at the beginning of this article. As you can see, using interactive content tactics has increased engagement with a bit over 60%. On the other side, though 33% of marketers haven’t seen any difference, let alone, an improvement. Another interesting number is 79%! The overwhelming percentage of marketers who agree that interactive content can be recycled, which means multiple exposures, which turns into more leads. Only 21% of them believe that they cannot reuse the value of interactive content.

So, what do we make of this? Remember our article on how to up your game with 10 easy and effective Customer Care and Delight techniques? We highlighted Bain & Company’s study according to which you increase profits by a quarter with increasing CUSTOMER RETENTION by 5%. That’s working smart, not hard, isn’t it? Leveraging its value’s re-usability component, interactive content increases retention, which, in turn, raises the bottom line. Again, work smart!

Besides that, customers actively participating in their own experience develops loyalty. It’s about customization and allowing people to define and choose for themselves. Digital marketing today is mainly aiming towards solving these two needs – people’s necessity to belong to a social group and their need to feel special and validated. It’s even quite logical if we follow Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

We’ve currently just completed the worldwide economic reconstruction phase after the 2007 crisis (yeah, we have a lot of evocative moments in this article) and now we’re on the ascendant trend, heading for the next boom. Collectively, we’ve been through reinsuring physiological needs are met (housing, in particular – we regained our ability to pay our mortgages). That was stage one. Then, during the second stage, for the past few years, we’ve worked to regain trust in all the economic mechanisms in order to satisfy our basic, safety needs. We’ve adapted and become more cautious (you can see that in our financial behavior, but mostly spot on millennials’), we’ve gained financial wisdom (demonstrated by an increased interest in financial education programs and in the fact that following generations are oriented towards diversifying their income sources). Now, security seems solved for the moment. We’re moving on to the next levels in the aforementioned hierarchy: the need of being part of a social group and the one to demonstrate esteem. So, yes, it makes sense to tap into those 2 experience shapers.

But don’t take my word for it. Follow us into some more numbers. *smile Here are 3 Interactive Content campaigns that have had great returns:



WHEN? Campaign and How it fostered Interactive Content RESULTS


2011 (Australia) and 2014 (US)

Share a Coke

  • Exploited Need: Personalization
  • Labels of cokes were imprinted with the most 250 popular names of youngsters and, also, most popular social jargon terms, such as “bestie” or “wingman”
  • Big Hit Off on Social Media
  • Added generosity factor dynamic
2.5% increase in total sales7% increase in Coke consumption

0.4 % increase in Soft-Drink volume

ALSA = ALS Association

Summer of 2014

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

  • Exploited Need: Esteem
  • People virally posted or challenged one another to post a short movie on social networks, while dropping a bucket full of ice on their heads
  • Goal was to raise awareness on ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis)
Forbes: Over 28 million people have joined the conversation about the Ice Bucket Challenge (posts, comments, linking posts/comments)

Forbes: 2.4 million videos related to the ice bucket challenge have been shared on Facebook

DigiDay: First decade of August 2014 got a bit over 90.000 mentions of the #incebucketchallenge

DigiDay: ALSA raised $5.7 million (mid July – mid August 2014). That’s almost 5 times (4.75x) more than they managed to raise same time last year.


2015 Christmas


  • Exploited Need: Esteem (Narcissism… “But I looked good in it”)
  • Best Christmas Digital Campaign
  • You could crop your own and your friends’ faces from another picture and add it on an elf into an app with a funny dancing representation
  • First appeared in 2007, but they reiterated it each year
  • In 2007 it was a website; In 2008 a website that allowed you to register; Since 2012 it’s an app still available for download
Forbes: ½ billion people have elf-ed themselves

More than 1 billion digital elves have been created over the past 9 years

Yahoo Finance: 480 million users in 215 countries


Interactive Content & User Generated Content

Yes, interactive content is also about user-generated content (UGC), what you do with it and how you choose to use what your audience creates into your marketing campaign. Learning and zooming in how to effectively leverage UGC as an interactive content is both challenging and critical to how we market today.

This success stands in the fact the UGC is three dimensional – it impacts your audience, your bottom line and the market at the same time.

First, your crowd doesn’t just want to be tangential, but they want to be part of “your thing”. So, why not use what they’re offering? Leveraging UGC is quite reasonably priced *haha

On top of that, the Ipsos Media Millennial Social Influence Study showed how, millennials, for instance, consider UGC to be 50% more trustworthy than another kind of content. The more they trust, the more they’re interested, attached and loyal. Plus, it’s fast and easy to make use of. Smartphones and cool cameras have made it such. *wink

What’s in it for you? The more connected they feel to your brand, the more they invest in it and, at the same time, in advocating it.

Lastly, since you’re operating with more their content and going more your customer’s way, you can depict a more accurate image of your area and the market you’re activating in. Purchase intent and brand awareness become clearer.

So, here are some inspiring UGC campaigns:

450+ Ideas on How To Do Interactive Content

They say: “Give a man a fish and he’ll be able to eat today. Teach a man how to fish and he’ll be able to feed for a life-time”.

With this in mind, we’ve put together an awesome resource list, where you can find over 450 examples of interactive content for each of the customer-provider relationship segments.

Need to create charts & infographics easier? Take a look at these 100+ data visualization tools:

Need to do a great survey? Or an assessment? Or a quiz? We’ve got 30+ examples for you to get going:

Need to tell a compelling story in an innovative and effective manner? Here are 100 examples of it:

Need to hit off a fun, social media and leads generating contest? We’ve gathered the web’s 100+ most appreciated (mostly for Facebook, but you can adapt):

Want to put up a learning game? Here’re 30+ ideas:

Need to create a stellar interactive video? Here’re 10+ inspiring ideas:

Need to create a Product Page with killer selections? Take a look at these 15:

Need to put everything together into an interactive white paper? We’ve got 4 examples:

Two of the main attributes that make content great today are usability and accessibility. This is why we group in content hubs and try to make the best sense of it all.

Well, this article stands in itself as a content hub on Interactive Content and how did everyone else made use of it. Below it, it’s a comments area. Tell us how you do it and we will add you to this resource article. You will then be part of our content hub and you will make it even more relevant for everyone.

And please do me a little favor and share this guide with others, for there’s a good chance that it will help them with their marketing endeavors.

Author avatar
Deliana Trasca

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