July 3, 2014
4 Easy Ways to Make Content More Shareable
Every day millions of blog posts, articles, infographics, and whitepapers get dumped into cyberspace. And while a lucky few are shared, retweeted and downloaded millions of times, most of this great content goes unnoticed. With similar content going out from a variety of sources over and over again, yours may often be getting overlooked, especially if you have yet to truly establish your brand.
If you’re reading this, chances are that you’ve already dedicated some serious time to creating quality, original content that people should want to read. The trouble is, no one knows that your content is out there, so no one is reading it – much less sharing it for others to read, too. That’s the bad news. Now, the good news: if your great content is not getting found, all is not lost. Better content marketing starts with learning how to create shareable content.
#1: Format for mobile consumption.
We already know that mobile traffic accounts for a large percentage of all internet activity around the world. From the length of your blog post to the design of your blog (you are using a responsive mobile-friendly web design, right?), it’s critical that your content is optimized for mobile consumption.
Think of it this way: When consumers are on their phones or tablets, and they click on your link, they want to be able to interact, share, and engage the same way that they do from their computers. If the process requires more steps, or is simply harder to do, they’ll likely give up, and find other content to share. If you want your content to stand out, make it easily sharable from a mobile device.
#2: Write real, unique, clickable headlines.
There are marketers out there who are going to tell you to use the most shocking, surprising, or engaging statistics to write short, attention-grabbing headlines. While this isn’t bad advice, there’s more to it then that. As StreamFeed writes, writing a “sticky headline” requires finding a way to draw in your readers, while still telling them the truth.
The fact of the matter is, we’re duped all of the time on the internet. And if you pull someone in with a “click-bait” false headline, they’re not likely going to want to share your content. Use real numbers to tell a story, make sure that your point is specific and clear, and be as unique as possible with your angle. Above all else, ask yourself this time-honored question: “Would I click on this headline?”
#3: Break longer content into more sharable chunks.
The folks over at Buzz Sumo found that when it comes to lists, 10 is the magic number for the most social shares, generating on average of 10,621 social shares. However, lists of any size are great because they make content easier to consume, which increases the likelihood it will be shared. There are interesting studies about the ways in which our eyes travel across a page when reading, which explain why it’s easier for us read something that is broken up into smaller pieces.
When you have an idea for a post, try and think of it in sections. Think about the various points that you want to make, and construct an outline. If there’s any way that you can turn that outline into bullet points or a numbered lists. Make sure that it feels natural, or readers won’t feel compelled to keep reading. Build upon each point, and if you find that you have a lot of them, and there is a natural divide, you could even turn one post into two, even more sharable pieces of content.
#4: Re-promote your post.
Unless your blog post is covering a breaking news story, it’s likely not going to “go stale.” So if your content didn’t catch the viral wave the first time you posted it, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Re-promote your post approximately a week after you first write it. Spice up the headline and break longer content into an easier-to-consume list format. Or, find old content that ties into a new industry trend, an upcoming event, or a holiday, and re-promote your post in conjunction with this event.