Green is the New Black: How to Save your Content from the slums

evergreen content

 

First, let me tell you what evergreen content is. For those who don’t know, evergreen content means a piece of writing that stands the passing of time. You publish it, and it never goes out of date. Almost, like those baked beans tins you stock in your cupboard. Rachel Deahl from the balance blog explains:

” Evergreen content can help deliver traffic to your website and hold a valuable position in search engine rankings for months or even years”

Evergreen content is a long, well-researched piece of writing that solves a problem. As a result, Google loves it and keeps sending traffic in. So, instead of churning pieces of content no-one reads, you create something valuable for years to come.

It takes a considerable amount of time and effort, but at the end it’s worth it. You put out something visitors are thankful for.

 

Step by Step Guide on How to Create Evergreen Content

 

1#  Every marketer on this planet would shout ” know your readers”. If you’re not sure who they are, a bit of research can help. Knowing your readers is key to creating content that helps.

I’m sounding like a stiff marketing bot, but believe me writing on topics people are actively seeking is better than writing for no-one. Who wants to hear her own echo, we need readers right?

I know,  trying to get into the mind of your readers is hard. Likely, few tools out there can make your life easier.

 

BuzzSumo: This site tells you  topics people are searching, top articles, how they perform, and what’s going on around the net in real time.

Google Analytics: This tool helps to know your best performing articles. Then, based on this information you can write another article like an update or a new version with extra tips.

Social Media: Social Media is a great way to find hot topics. Choose a platform you feel more comfortable with. I’m not very keen on Facebook, but I love the groups.

Groups are made of real people sharing with each other their pains, their frustrations and their wins.  There are tons of groups, join a few and see which one fits best with your needs.  Quora or Reddit are also good places to start.

 

2# Based in your findings you can start to draft your masterpiece. Disclaimer: you don’t need to make listicles to make your content appealing. Readers are not fools, they know when you’re using click bait techniques. I have nothing against sticky titles, at the end we all want our content to be shared.

But you can create super useful stuff, without falling into the content anxiety trap. Make it fun and human, your readers will value that.

 

3# Articles should be digestible.  The SEO guidelines that marketers and developers love are:(H1) for the title, (H2)for subtitles, (H3) for more subtitles -and so on. Short (P )paragraphs and maybe a call to action at the end.

This makes it easier for readers to scan your copy and get an idea of what the article is about. An article on the web should be easy to read, approachable,  with short paragraphs and in plain English.

Most people online, have a short attention span, besides, they don’t want to invest time reading an article without making sure that first it’s going to give something in return. Guide them into your world with a friendly article they’ll be forever thankful.

 

4# Show off your expertise. Of-course, you don’t have to be a PH student, few quotes of well-known experts will work wonders. In addition,  case studies, white papers  or famous works can help you craft the perfect copy.

Do your research and get to the sources. Newspapers sometimes are fine, but original sources are far better. With time you’ll be known for your sound advice, people will trust you and everyone in the neighbourhood will invite you for a beer ( this part takes longer to accomplish ).

 

5#Visual aids have a huge impact on how people react to your article. Even a small picture helps to understand your words. Also info-graphics, short videos, anything that makes the reader remember the content adds value to your copy. Here is a fancy infographic by Walter Lim on how readers interact with visual aids.

 

content infographics

 

6#Your masterpiece should be 1000 words minimum but don’t make it too long you want an article not a novel. Plus, a graphic designer or a pet’s blog may have more visual stuff to show.

Just because Google likes long form, doesn’t mean you have to churn an endless piece of content. It all depends on your niche. Don’t feel you have to make 5000 words article when you can say the same with just 2000 words.

 

7# The sole intention of the article is to educate, inform or entertain, but never sell! You’re not selling, you’re sharing knowledge. The idea is to create a piece that helps your readers to solve a problem.

You can tell a story on how you went on with the same issue, or you can just tell your readers what you know. This is far better than trying to sell your latest e-book. Readers have to relate to you.

Your story  may resonate with few people, so much that they’ll keep coming back to see what you’re up to.

 

8# Take your time, last minute articles never help anyone. You need to research, craft your ideas, this is not an easy task, your brain goes in a million different directions.

It’s hard to stay within the topic. What I do these days is to write a bit, leave the article on slow cooking and then  later come back for more. From my own personal experience, articles that take a long time to write perform better than the last minute ones.

This is because in the rush you can’t see all the angles, the mistakes and  all the unnecessary fluff. If you leave it and come back, the whole idea will start to make sense, soon your article will look polished enough to see the light.

 

9# Okay now you found the topic, you did your research, edited and polished the article; finally it’s ready to see the light. Once published, share it several times a day.

Try to syndicate your content in places like Medium or LinkedIn. There are other blogs that let you syndicate content, you may need to do a bit of research.  Here, a good place to start.

 

10#You are the queen of the digital jungle. You made it, people are commenting, they love your words, share it again. In case, some people haven’t read it, remember it’s evergreen, it can never go to the slums.

Are you writing evergreen content? Do you think is worth it? Leave me a comment in the comments section below.

 

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