Content is a living organism: it’s constantly changing and adapting to its surroundings. That’s why your content strategy is a living document.
As marketing technology changes, so does content. As a consumer grows, learns, and digests information, content adapts to best reach them. This all goes to say: you constantly need to be reviewing and tweaking your content strategy.
As we go into the end of Q1, now is a great time to reflect on what you’ve done to date during 2019 and take a look at what is currently happening in the content landscape.
Here are the five stats that you must know before putting pen to paper (or, I guess, finger to keyboard) and planning out your 2019 Q2 Content Strategy.
Audience relevance is number one when it comes to content effectiveness at 58%, but compelling storytelling takes a strong second place at 57% (LinkedIn Technology Marketing Community).
What does this mean? Simply put, you really need to understand your audience if you want anyone to read your content. Too many marketers make the mistake of constantly writing but never actually listening to what their readership has to say. Here are a few questions to consider:
- Are you sympathizing with their pain points?
- Are you providing them with action items to fix their problems?
- Have you commented on recent industry news with your brand’s opinion?
If you’re not sure what your audience wants to hear, then now may be the time to take advantage of your content community and ask them what they want to write about. Since they’re not privy to all in-house conversations, they have the potential to bring a fresh perspective to your blog and highlight a few of the struggles your audience is having that you may not have realized.
The average word count of top-ranked content on Google is between 1,140-1,285 words (SearchMetrics).
What does this mean? No, it does not mean squeezing as many words as you can into one piece of content because, as we mentioned above, storytelling plays a key role in creating killer content. But this does mean that if you’ve been consistently publishing blogs that are around 800 words, it may be time to change it up a bit and see your audience’s reaction.
Perhaps play around with creating pillar pages. Or invest in creating investigative, long-form content that highlights what thought leaders in the industry are saying. Here’s a great example of investigative blogging.
The average blog post takes 3 hours and 16 minutes to write (Orbit Media), but the average time spent reading an article is 37 seconds (Forbes).
What does this mean? So many things. Where to begin?! Here are our takeaways:
- Not everyone on your team will have the time to write a blog. While we’re strong supporters of making employees the foundation of your content community, we also recognize that not everyone has the time to sit down and write. This is why we promote taking a short blog for employees to write and expand upon it. Or set your thought leaders up on a brain dump with a freelance writer so that you can still share their insights but aren’t taking up more than 30 minutes of their time.
- Invest in good writing. You need to create attention-grabbing content. I’m sure that you’ve heard of this before. This concept isn’t anything new. But it’s why formatting (bolding, creating lists, shorter paragraphs, etc.), pictures and diagrams, and an incredible intro and conclusion are so important. You only have 37 seconds to make a great impression.
Better content can drive traffic to a blog by up to 2,000% (Omnicore), and content marketing gets 3x more leads than paid search advertising (CMI).
What does this mean? Great content is going to drive more people back to your blog, which means more people will be visiting your website. This means you have 2,000% more opportunities to convert visitors into leads – or better, customers.
Sounds pretty straightforward, right? It is – and it isn’t. While creating more content will generate 3 times more leads than PPC, it won’t deliver if your content is, er, for lack of a better word, bad.
If your content doesn’t haven’t a compelling message, doesn’t resonate with your audience, and there isn’t a clear call to action at the end, then it won’t provide your marketing team with the results they were hoping for.
Your engagement rates will increase by 28% if you invest in professionally written content alongside video product demos or similar information (Omnicore).
What does this mean? While more and more companies are beginning to invest in video, this doesn’t mean that written content can fall along the wayside. It’s still so incredibly important to invest in written content. Not just as a standalone medium but as a supporter of your video content.
Next time you put out a product demo or create a vlog, make sure that you have some incredible content on that page to accompany it. Not everyone is going to automatically set aside the time to watch your video, yet you’ll still want them to leave the page knowing what you’re offering.
Here are a few options for what written content to include on the video page:
- Tease the video content
- Recap highlights and takeaways of what the video covers
- Provide a written transcript of its contents
Here’s a great example of how written content can accompany a video you’d like to share.
Final Thoughts on Stats for Your Content Strategy
There’s never the “perfect content strategy.” But the one thing you do not want to do is stick with the same content strategy every single month. Your audience is constantly growing and changing, and your content should reflect that. Add more voices to your blog, and change up the types of content you’re creating to figure out what resonates best.
Are you ready to build your content community? Let us help! We’ll do the writer recruiting for you. Drop us a note.
Editor’s Note: This post was written by nDash community member Tereza Litsa. Tereza is the Social Media Manager at Lightful, helping charities transform how they do digital and build meaningful relationships with their supporters. She’s passionate about anything digital, with a keen interest in content writing, social media, and marketing. To learn more about Tereza, or to have her write for your brand, check out her nDash profile page.