Every single day, people write and publish all sorts of different content pieces on the web. Whether they’re writing short stories, long and informative blog posts, hacks, tips, tricks or specific case studies that showcase examples of solid practice, it doesn’t really matter, they’re all in a way contributing their work to this ever-growing online library we refer to as the Internet.
Although, as consumers, we tend to view this as a blessing from the skies, as content producers, this tidal wave of information feels like someone tied our shoes together and pushed us down a flight of stairs.
How come? – Well, because this sort of fast and highly efficient content mass production can lead all sorts of different businesses to feel quite intimidated. Since 2011, the number of companies that invest in content marketing has at least tripled. There’s a lot more competition in almost every niche now. Everyone is battling head-to-head for the attention of their targeted audience.
Guys, it’s a war zone out there.
Having this in mind, content marketers are doing their best to stay relevant in this game and stimulate as many people as they possible can to read their material. They write all these short and catchy pieces that are intended to be shared around quickly, but briefly.
Although these type of articles and blog posts are known to generate some significant attention, once the tide settles – they quickly fade into oblivion. Their lifespan is extremely short. That’s why every smart content marketing expert tends to avoid them and focus solely on producing evergreen content that will never stop bringing in new leads to their website.
The term is actually pretty self-explanatory. Evergreen content represents all those blog posts, articles, analyses and case studies on your website, that will always be relevant to your audience, compared to those above mentioned short ones that tend to fade away over time.
Let’s, for an example, say that you own a web hosting company and you’ve been writing content for your website on regular basis. You have all sorts of different content pieces, but only such posts as Importance of Domain Hosting for Online Business, What Kind of Hosting Package Is Best Suited for Small Businesses, Does Web Hosting Affect SEO Rankings are able to stand the test of time and keep bringing in new visitors.
Why? – Well, because, opposed to such articles as The Best Web Hosting Services for 2015, they provide answers to timeless questions. They weren’t written with a specific expiration date in mind, nor to score on a current trend, so thus – their value is endless. These type of queries will always be searched by newbie entrepreneurs who are about to take their first steps in this online business world.
That, in a nutshell, is what evergreen content is all about – providing endless value to topics that are known to be continuously “hot” in your niche or industry.
Evergreen content can be found in many different formats. How-to articles and tutorials, case studies, FAQ, resource list – it can be anything.
As far as creating this type of content, in my experience, I’ve learned that you need to:
1. Produce something that is genuinely great and useful: You need to tailor something that has some real value behind it. You cannot create evergreen content by solely thinking about long-tail keywords and other low hanging fruit. Sure, focusing on things that people actually search for should be a big part of your strategy here, but you also need to think a couple of steps ahead.
If you want to see all sorts of different generations of people visit your site time after time, after time, after time, you’re obligated to create for them some definitive answers to complicated industry questions or stellar and precise analysis and reviews of fundamental hardware or practices that are not likely to become obsolete. You need to know if your content could become outdated somehow, and prevent it from happening. 2. Make it newbie friendly: Be sure that people who are not quite knowledgeable or experienced about a specific field or subject are able to easily digest your content and get what they need from it.
3. Think about SEO: Make sure that your content is well optimized so that it’s likely to show up on a Google SERP.
4. Focus on one particular thing: Don’t go overboard. Don’t try to solve every possible issue with one blog post. Narrow your topic down. Make it about one thing and do your best to provide clear and useful information that will actually help your readers.
So, now that we got all that in the clear, let’s focus on the matter at hand:
1. Keep those links coming: One of the cornerstones of your strategy here should be to reinforce your natural backlink flow with those links you created on your own. Although guest blogging and getting citations on various site that link back to your original source is a superb way of building up your visibility, you should also do your best to leave teasers of your evergreen content on all sorts of different well-visited forums and groups on popular social networks.
Commenting on sites that get a lot of traffic and that are relevant to your content, is also something you should think about when crafting an SEO campaign for your evergreen content.
I know that reaching out to new people in this sort of way and asking them to take a look at your content seems like a total drag, but if you set Google Alerts for the right keywords, you can almost automate the entire process.
2. Periodic rewrites: In order to keep your content forever relevant, be sure to change the headlines and insert new keywords in the body of the text from time to time. Also, try to change the images and add new videos, if possible.
Why? – Because these type of small tweaks will inform Google’s crawlers that your content is still living and breathing, and they should continue to index your page.
3. Repurpose that content to fit different platforms and formats: As I already wrote on this blog, creating unique, high-quality, trustworthy, useful, and interesting content pieces that are able to achieve an impressive quantity of amplification by solving problems or giving answers to questions in a comprehensive, accurate and resourceful manner is nothing easier than digging for gold in a huge desert. The chances are, you’re gonna go home empty handed.
Great and successful content pieces are dependent on all sorts of different factors. Timing, writing style, personas, design, targeted audience – these are just some of the things that come into play here. Having this in mind, we can easily agree upon that creating great content is not something that could be automated. That’s why, if we get lucky enough and produce something that people actually respond to, we need to do our best to get as much out of it as possible.
This is where the concept of repurposing content comes to shine. If you repurpose that post as a presentation, animation, video, podcast, and infographic you suddenly end up with much broader possible audience and the investment you made earlier will continue to bring you more and more revenue. Repurposing content is a great way to get high mileage from the time you put into creating content.
4. Don’t bury it under a ton of new content, make it stand out: If you want people to read your “evergreen content”, you shouldn’t make it hard for them to find it. If they have to browse through a lot of your pages to find it, the chances are, most of them are going to give up. You don’t want that, do you?
There are a few ways on how you can make your content easily to access: First, you should give it its own sidebar on your homepage. Nothing complicated, just like a “Most popular posts” section or something similar.
Second, you can create a special beginners page on your site where you will list all that priceless evergreen content that you want people to read. Just look how MOZ did it. They have a special menu, called “Learn & Connect”, where you can “get started” with their Beginner’s Guide to SEO.
Thank you so much for reading this blog post. I hope I helped you understand the importance of creating evergreen content and how to use it to build effective SEO campaigns for your brand. If you have any questions on this particular subject, feel free to write your thoughts in the comments sections below, and I’ll do my best to answer as soon as possible.
That’s it for now,
See you soon again,
Goran @ AltusHost B.V.
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