As of 2018, an average of 2 million blog posts are created each day—and that’s on top of the hundreds of millions of other digital content pieces such as pictures, videos, and vlogs being uploaded. Suffice it to say, a lot of marketers have noticed, and they believe that tapping into this online phenomena is the key to getting results.
They’re right. It’s called content marketing, and it’s one of the best ways to generate organic, highly convertible leads.
Not sure what content marketing is all about? You might want to start here: “What is Content Marketing?“
But if you think that generating leads is as easy as just churning out two or three pieces of content every day—utterly comfortable in the belief that your network will do all the distribution work for you—then you’re a little misinformed.
Everyone’s putting out content nowadays. Even the most socially inept individual has a Twitter account, and they’re introverted ramblings can come off as more entertaining—and therefore more shareable—than some inspirational Instagram quote post.
It’s not about whether you want people to share your posts—it’s about whether they want to.
Content marketing is only successful if your content is shareable, whereas the definition of ‘shareable’ in this context means a couple different things: attention-grabbing, relevant, amusing, unique, never-before-seen … and so on. If you can create valuable content that wows people, you can undoubtedly generate more traffic, effectively improving your bottom line.
So how does one go about it?
1. Know What’s Trending
Trending content covers topics that everyone is talking about, both online and IRL. This kind of content is more likely to be shared because of its relevance to readers. For instance, during election season, political videos, musings, and posts get shared more than posts than other categories. Keeping up with the latest trend helps you generate more shares much faster.
How to find out what’s trending? There are apps specifically for this aspect of content marketing. They scour the net, constantly updating their database, to categorize—according to their own installed algorithm and framework—what’s trending. You can select specific topics and the app will notify you when something important happens related to those topics.
You can also check out the trending section of websites to see what the majority of your market is sharing. Another great way to see trending topics is through a website’s Most Shared section, which constantly updates you on their high-performing content.
2. Work on the Aesthetics
Admit it: looks matter, even when it comes to online content. Make it a point to construct your content in a manner where it can be scanned and understood easily. Consider creating content that has a clear eye path to drive your message home while simultaneously increasing your engagement numbers. Keep the design minimal and optimized for easy consumption.
If you present your audience with big chunks of text, chances are they will close the window before you can even deliver your message. The same concept applies to colors, pictures, web design, and typography. All elements need to work well together so that the experience is enjoyable for the reader.
3. Check Out Online Communities
By engaging with an online community of your choice, you learn what matters to them. You can also find out if they have burning questions about a specific topic that maybe you can give an answer to. You have several ways to interact with other people online; forums, blog comments, Quora, social media conversations, Reddit threads, emails, video comment sections, and so on. Engaging with people allows you to see subjects from different perspectives.
Now that you know how to make shareable content, you can begin applying these tips to your business’s content marketing strategy. Obviously, there’s no specific formula for success in creating “viral” content. However, the above-mentioned points can certainly guide you in the right direction. Continue pushing out high-quality, highly shareable content, and rest assured your audience will remain loyal to your published posts.