Is Your Content in the Right Place at the Right Time?
A lot has been said and written about content, its size, its volume and of course, its quality. Nevertheless, only a few seem to achieve the success, the views and the shares that good content deserves. Rest all of us just seem to scratch the surface without any noteworthy feats. Discover, why content distribution plays an important role in how your content performs.
A major share of the blame goes on our content sharing and distribution practices. If we could somehow divine the secrets of successful content companies, we would know that even the best of content could go wrong if it is published in the wrong place or at a wrong time.
Let's say you have a hilarious, tongue-in-cheek piece on alternative careers for football stars. On any given day, this piece would elicit decent laughs but now, when the world is burning of football fever, this piece would get you the shares and views it truly deserves.
Again, this would happen more quickly and surely if it is published on viral sites and not your own site which has limited number of viewers. So the time and place play an important role in how your content performs.
But that was the tl;dr version for those who have pressing needs to attend to. Here's a long answer that will stop you from posting content in the wrong place and at the wrong time always.
Content Distribution: The Importance of Time
Most content pieces become obsolete after a certain time and date. What was relevant yesterday, might not be relevant today.
For instance, all those old-school SEO tips for ranking on Google may have worked like charm between 2005 and 2011, but the dynamics changed completely after Google Panda and Penguin were introduced.
Some content is more short-lived than others. For instance, '7 tips for eternal happiness' is evergreen content but '7 ways to decorate Easter Eggs' isn't. For the latter, you need to promote as much as possible around the time of festive season, so it gets all the possible views it can get.
The secret behind the virality of short-lived content is it has urgency and is related to some ongoing or upcoming event. It is very important for content marketing services provider to keep this in mind for all posts.
You’d do well to get a deep understanding of the “half-life” of content on social media platforms. This will give you a better idea of what to expect with your content distribution:
So how do you, as a service provider, find out if the content piece you have written is timely and relevant or not.
- It has to be related to some news. For instance, LinkedIn was in news recently because it was acquired by Microsoft. That was your cue to write something, anything related to LinkedIn or perhaps republish and promote an article you had already written about LinkedIn.
- It has to be timed around an event. Post seasonal content around the time of an event. For instance, Insights on holiday shopping behavior would work best during Christmas or Black Friday.
- When I say event it doesn't mean a catastrophe or terrorist attack, unless you have something genuine to say about it. If you want to cash in on a negative event better hold your horses. Most people don't appreciate monetizing sad events. However, you could always do PR tips from personal or company crisis.
- Also, publish your post on a certain time of the day. It is a bit of a trial and error but you will get a vague idea through analytics at which time your posts get more views. In any case, avoid posting on weekends.
So these are the few things to remember when posting content. Now we will understand the importance of place for content.
Content Distribution: The Importance of Place
Coming to the next important determinant i.e. Place. There are so many places where you can distribute content, from your own blog through to third party publishing sites like Medium or LinkedIn and guest blogs.
Sometimes it makes sense to publish your post on your own blog, for instance if it is a tutorial or how to post. However, if you are writing a thought piece or opinion piece, determining the right place might be a little more difficult than that. These pieces usually perform well on third party platforms.
As a rule of thumb, first figure out if your followers on LinkedIn / Medium or the blog followers where you aim to guest post would appreciate the post? For instance, if you are writing a post tearing down Facebook, you will enjoy great support from Medium audience but not so if you are tearing down Twitter.
Now let us see some of the points that will help you select the right place:
- Some posts are meant to go viral quickly and die down. These are time-sensitive posts. If you have one such post on hand, post them on social sites that can make them viral quickly. However, in order to excel, make sure you have managed to build a good network already.
- Always stick to the niche. Let's say you have an excellent recipe on lobsters but your blog mainly deals with cocktail recipes. So what do you do? Instead of publishing a one-off recipe on your Medium page or Facebook, you submit them to an already successful recipe blog. This applies to all niches whether you have a sports blog or a marketing blog.
- Try and get your post published on Medium publications or shared by influencers on LinkedIn and other communities. This is a great way to garner more views for your post.
No matter how great your post is or how much time you have spent on research and writing, the fate of your post is sealed by your content distribution,i.e, when and where you post it.
Choose the wrong time or place and your content production and marketing efforts are down the drain.
That is why you need to be very careful when selecting the time and place. Just remember a few key points like time-sensitivity and influencer marketing and network to ensure you get the best possible views for your post.