By now, if you’ve read the first two parts of this Evergreen Content Series, you know what evergreen content is. You know why you need it. In this third part of the Evergreen Content Series, I’m going to discuss how to use and create evergreen content that will keep bringing in new web traffic to your site long after its original publication.
Didn’t get a chance to read the first two posts yet? Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. You can check out what evergreen content is here, and why you need it here. I’d recommend reading both of those articles in addition to this one to round out an understanding of just how useful and vital evergreen content is to your digital marketing efforts.
As I mentioned in previous posts, the Creative Wealth Project is specifically geared towards creative people in creative industries. So, any examples/demonstrations I give in this article will draw from those niches. However, the lessons here apply to anyone in any industry or work sector who is interested in learning how to use evergreen content to grow their web business and brand.
Introductions aside, let’s get to it.
Here are 4 tips on how to create excellent evergreen content and 4 tips on how to use it.
4 Tips for Creating Evergreen Content
Tip #1. Know the Functional Purpose of Your Content
The functional purpose of your content is fundamental in determining the long-term effectiveness of its evergreen potential.
I have previously covered many common types of evergreen content (lists, how-to articles, interviews, etc.) in which their function is readily apparent. However, it can still be easy to fool yourself into thinking something you’ve created is evergreen content when indeed, it is actually not.
Many times, this comes in the form of creating something that has an evergreen topic but is not actually evergreen content.
Evergreen Content vs. Evergreen Topics
So you know what evergreen content is, which likely means you also know what topic content is. But what’s the difference between an evergreen topic versus evergreen content? Are they both the same?
In a word: no.
The two are similar, and they often overlap because, especially in creative industries, evergreen content is often the artistic product itself (i.e., a song, a novel, a painting, etc.). But knowing the slight difference between evergreen content and evergreen topics is vital to the functional longevity of your posted content.
Let me demonstrate this ever so subtle difference with an example.
Let’s say your band is promoting a single for your new upcoming album with a blog post. The content within your article is indeed classified as evergreen content: the single/song being released is everlasting, and the album that’s it featured on, once released, is also everlasting.
The focus (and intention) of the article, however, is NOT everlasting: the article’s purpose is to promote the upcoming album utilizing the single song showcase as the method/vehicle of generating interest. Once the album is released, however, the article loses its relevancy because its functionary purpose has been fulfilled. This happens even though the article will continue to generate SEO results long after the album is released because the TOPIC of the article is the single/album, which is evergreen.
The point is, make sure you understand that the function of an article and the topic and content featured within it can change its evergreen status and lasting power – a subtle but different importance. The likelihood of clicks and continually generated interest from old promotional material can be significantly lessened if its functional purpose is no longer relevant.
I should note that I do not mean to say there is no value in evergreen topics. However, understanding the difference between evergreen topics and evergreen content is important if you are to be able to utilize them both appropriately for maximum effect and intention.
Tip #2: Know Your Audience
This might go without saying, but many times people grab an idea for great evergreen content and start writing before they stop and take the time to consider who they are writing it for.
Casting a wide net may be great for catching fish. Writing a broad, generic article for no specific audience, however, is more likely to see your article lost, forgotten, or (worse) ignored in the vast sea that is the internet when compared to more engaging and targeted content.
You want to be rewarded for your efforts, so understanding who your audience is will go much further towards producing effective results than just relying on pure numbers to generate a return.
For example, have you ever seen a death metal band open up for a Top-40 country act? I didn’t think so. While if that bizarre set up were to occur, the death metal band might be technically playing in front of 100,000 new people… but chances are the audience there to see the country act would be so vastly different from the death metal audience that the interest level from the Top-40 audience would be low at best (and vice versa).
Pushing your science fiction novel towards publishers or groups looking for romance novellas would accomplish the same thing. In essence, you might have a great story, but each audience has their own tastes that determine what they believe to be great really is.
100,000 disinterested people are always worse than 100 interested people.
Know your audience, and specifically target and tailor your material to them.
Even after categorizing your target audience, get more specific, and apply the same principle within your own niche, too, for even better results.
For example, let’s say you teach guitar online through your Youtube channel/website. Instead of creating posts/videos for “guitar lessons,” which is a very broad and overly encompassing topic, create specific posts and lessons that tailor towards specific things particular groups of people in your audience will be looking for. For example, specific lessons like “sweep picking arpeggios” or “7 blues licks in the style of Stevie Ray Vaughn” will attract a much more specific audience. People looking for precisely those types of lessons will actually receive more value from your site and products because of how specific they are.
The best part about being so specific is that it gives you plenty of new evergreen content posts to create and link together. Instead of just creating videos for “blues guitar lessons,” you can instead host a multitude of different videos showcasing specific blues guitar techniques or different blues artists’ styles to keep your audience coming back for more!
Tip #3: Write for Newbies
Most of the time, the best evergreen content comes when it is written for an audience that is just becoming familiar with the topic of focus. Typically, the reason people search for content is that they want to learn more about it… which is an indicator that they don’t ALREADY know about it.
Continuing with the example I listed in the previous section… do you think a guitar player who’s a master of sweep picking arpeggios is going to be searching for lessons on how to do sweep picking guitar arpeggios? Not likely.
But that kid who idolizes Yngwie Malmsteen and just got seriously into playing guitar probably is – and there will always be more people who are novices at something are looking to learn and improve than there are masters.
So write for them.
I’d like to point out that this doesn’t mean you won’t find experts occasionally browsing your content… but to make sure your content is accessible to newcomers. Be sure to limit jargon and technical talk so that beginners and experts alike can understand and relate to your posts.
Tip #4: Speak In Your Own Voice
Evergreen content is great because it lasts a long time. But by that virtue, it means that just about every subject that is considered evergreen content has also been written about or been featured by other people, businesses, and websites too.
A lot, actually.
So how do you make your audience choose your evergreen content on a subject over someone else’s?
Aside from creating great, well-written content (which is a given and a must), give the topic you’re writing about a fresh spin by writing about it in your own way.
Maybe you have new or personal insights to offer on the topic, or perhaps you’ve found that most of the content that comes up in your own searches/research on that topic seems to have missed something… so fill in the gaps and make something new out of something old.
Providing a unique and fresh take on something is always an excellent strategy to stand out from the crowd.
4 Tips For How To Use Evergreen Content
So now (using the tips in the section above, of course), you’ve created some great evergreen content, and you’re ready to release it to the world. That’s great – give yourself a pat on the back, you’re halfway there!
But now comes the second part:
How do you use it effectively?
Here are 4 tips on how to use your evergreen content effectively so that it continually stays fresh and engages new audiences for years to come.
Tip #1: Backlink It
As evergreen content ages, if created effectively, its function and usage doesn’t. One way to ensure that old evergreen content continues to engage new members of your audience is with backlinks.
When creating and releasing new articles or content, many times, there are sections or opportunities within them that could benefit from a little “further reading/listening/watching” … so use those opportunities to backlink your old content.
Not only does this mean that users visiting your new posts can be directed to go back to existing posts and re-generate views/interest… but it will continue to boost your old posts in Google’s search rankings so that they actually become easier to find the longer they have been around.
Don’t underestimate the value of hyperlinking content together – it makes your content easier for your audience to find and chances are if they’re interested in what you have to offer… they’re going to search for more. So help them out.
Tip #2: Share It
Social media is a pretty powerful tool, and I can personally attest that a lot of my web traffic comes through sharing my content with others on social media platforms.
While my personal social media network will always eventually reach its limitations, any time my content is shared the opportunity to create a ripple effect occurs. One share from someone in my audience introduces that content to that person’s audience and someone in that person’s audience releases it to theirs, etc. until eventually, you’ve reached hundreds or thousands or more people whom you’d otherwise never reach on your own. It’s called the snowball effect, and it works like a charm.
Sharing your content is easy to do and can be a very effective way of finding/building your audience.
One word of caution, though: you don’t want to share so much that you wade into spam territory… people don’t like being constantly advertised/pushed upon without receiving anything in return.
Find out what works best for you and adjust your social sharing habits until you find the right balance of when and how frequently to share and what type of content produces the best results.
Tip #3: Highlight It
Another way of funneling people directly to your evergreen content (which should be your best content) is to highlight and feature it predominantly on your website.
Maybe it’s the first post that comes up on your webpage, or perhaps it’s a sidebar that stays active no matter which landing page a consumer is directed to on your site, but your evergreen content will always produce better results when you highlight it and draw attention to it.
An example on my own site is the “Featured Creators” page. The interviews I do with a variety of creative people are a definite highlight and a key component of the Creative Wealth Project. These experts in their respective fields don’t just have awesome creations I’m glad to help showcase, but in their interviews, they reveal tonnes of excellent expert advice and tips for others in their industries and provide a lot of fun stories too.
As the featured creators page grows, it is my intention to implement a sidebar on this site that archives all of them to be easily accessible from every page. That way, anyone that comes to my site looking for a new graphic designer, music, video team, etc. can find all my featured creators easily and quickly.
Tip #4: Repurpose It
One of the advantages of the digital age is that things can be edited and repurposed at the click of a button anytime after they’ve been published.
We don’t need to be scared to send things to print, effectively finalizing them anymore – when new information comes out, or dates change, or whenever we just feel we could make an improvement to something… we can do so with the click of a button.
Taking some time periodically to audit your evergreen content and update it is a great way to keep it relevant and fresh for a long time.
Even better is when you can repurpose old evergreen content into a new form to give it a revitalizing jolt of excitement and engagement.
For example: releasing a music video for an old song is one way to bring new attention to something that already exists. Taking a series of informative posts on one subject and condensing it into an e-book is another example. In essence, doing so gives you new consumable content for your audience, but you’ve already done the bulk of the work for creating it (for example, this series of articles on evergreen content could be released as a checklist/summary article in the future).
Because evergreen content is everlasting, sometimes showcasing it differently is an excellent method to bring new attention to something old.
By now, hopefully, you have a pretty good understanding of what evergreen content is, why you need it, and within this article, you’ve found some tips on how to create and use it effectively.
While this almost concludes the Evergreen Content Series… I’ve got one more post coming specifically for creative types that outlines some of the ways evergreen content can set up your creative livelihood for years to come – so stay tuned.
In the meantime, be sure to follow The Creative Wealth Project below, so you don’t miss a post… and if you like what you read here… share it with your friends!
That’s it for today folks!
Never stop creating!