What is evergreen content? Sowing the seeds of your new content strategy
Does your content strategy have an expiration date?
Most companies today know that a content plan is a crucial part of their branding and marketing efforts. According to studies, content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates three times the number of leads.
The question is, how do you make sure that your content provides ROI for as long as possible?
A post that delivers traffic for a month or two is great, to begin with, but this short-lived content can be time-consuming and costly to create. On the other hand, evergreen content ensures that you continue to reap the fruits of your marketing labours for years to come.
While your seasonal posts about holidays and trending news topics will stay on the internet for years to come, they’re unlikely to see a consistent level of traffic and engagement. On the other hand, evergreen content retains its value indefinitely, giving you access to a steady stream of new potential customers.
Evergreen content is informative, entertaining, and ideal for improving your brand reputation. It gives depth to your digital strategy and sets the foundation for an authoritative and unforgettable online presence.
By the time you’ve finished reading this article, you’ll have an answer to the question, “What is evergreen content, and how can you use it to bolster your brand strategy?”
Let’s plant some roots for your brand content.
What is evergreen content? A simple evergreen content definition
To begin this guide, let’s define evergreen content.
Evergreen content is the blogs, articles, infographics, and videos in your marketing plan that centre around a timeless message or concept. Fabrik articles are “evergreen” for the most part because they’ll retain their relevance 2, 3 or 5 years from now.
Just like conifer trees that stay green and sturdy all year around, evergreen content doesn’t lose its value across the seasons. This content stays fresh year in, year out – keeping your customers and the search engines happy.
To better define evergreen content, let’s examine what this content isn’t. Evergreen content cannot be:
- News articles.
- Statistics that might go out-of-date soon.
- Current trending topics.
- Seasonal articles.
While seasonal or “trending” content has its value in a marketing strategy, it can’t achieve the same longevity as evergreen content. An evergreen content strategy:
- Boosts your keyword rankings: The longer you remain relevant in the search engines for a specific keyword, the more the search bots will associate your company with those terms, setting the stage for better SEO in the future.
- Enhances site traffic: Since your evergreen content is timeless in nature, it can drive steadily increasing numbers of potential customers onto your site. Those people can even share your content with their friends, improving your customer reach.
- Improve your authority: Evergreen content is often highly in-depth and informative. It includes things like guides, case studies and how-to guides which demonstrate your unique industry knowledge and insights. The more evergreen content you publish, the more authority your brand collects.
- Enhances social shares and backlinks: Finally, because evergreen content appeals to a wide range of people, it can attract the most shares. Evergreen content has inherent value, and one of the main reasons that people share content is because they think it will be valuable to their peers. 49% of people say sharing allows them to inform and assist others.
How to create an endless forest of evergreen content
Evergreen content is timeless, relevant and highly immersive.
Most of the time, quick news posts, and 500-word blogs just won’t give you the consistent traffic you need. That means that creating evergreen content generally requires more time and investment. However, if you can establish genuinely effective evergreen content, the results can be phenomenal.
To help you start growing your forest of evergreen content, here are just a few different types of content that can stand the test of time:
- Lists: List content that features useful information, curated content, or sources that your followers can use to expand their mind are excellent types of evergreen content. Lists are incredibly easy to create, and they’re a powerful resource when you want to keep people coming back to your website in the long-term. Many people add useful lists to their bookmarks bar and share them with friends.
- Top tips blogs: Blogs that provide actionable advice are an influential part of any content strategy. To make your blog posts as sticky and evergreen as possible, make sure that the tips you’re offering relate to a topic without a best-before date. For instance, “top tips on digital marketing” is likely to be more evergreen than “top tips for fidget spinners.”
- How-to tutorials: People are always looking for ways to expand their minds and skills. How-to tutorials give brands an opportunity to create evergreen content examples, while simultaneously improving their thought leadership status. By guiding someone through a complicated situation, you show them your inherent industry knowledge and background.
- Encyclopedia entries or definitions: Content that defines important industry terms and outlines unchanging facts about specific topics is also useful for an evergreen content strategy. You can even create knowledge bases that support customers who want to learn more about your brand and sector.
- Case studies: Original research and posts driven by data are fantastic for your evergreen content definition. Case studies demonstrate your expertise by promoting real-world results that add to your levels of social proof. Since you probably already have information about previous projects on-hand, case studies can be very easy to create too.
How to sow the seeds of your evergreen content strategy
So, you know the answer to “what is evergreen content,” and you even know some of the different types of content you can explore. Now it’s time to start building your evergreen content strategy.
Like any other form ofdigital marketing plan, an evergreen content strategy helps to ensure that you maintain a consistent tone and image for your company. Get your strategy right, and you can end up with a sustainable stream of customers ready to invest in your brand and even support your company’s growth through ambassador actions like social sharing. Here are a few quick tips for setting your evergreen content strategy up with strong roots.
1. Always keep your audience in mind
The best evergreen content is the stuff that appears to multiple buyer personas in your audience. Because it’s designed to be far-reaching and timeless, evergreen content can be broader than other types of content in your marketing plan. However, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have a distinct audience in mind.
Your target market is an excellent source of inspiration for creating evergreen content. All you need to do is find out what kind of questions your customers have, and how you can answer those queries in the most immersive way possible. For instance, if you know first-time buyers of your software product need help with setting up their new purchase, you can provide a how-to video guide. If you know customers in the “awareness” stage of the buying cycle need help to decide if your product is right for them, you can create a case study demonstrating successful user cases from the past.
Use your evergreen content to solve problems and support your customers.
2. Use keywords to identify evergreen content opportunities
Most digital marketing campaigns will involve some consideration of keywords and SEO; evergreen content creation is no different.
Research will pave the way for a powerful piece of content. Keyword research helps to identify opportunities where you can get ahead of your competitors and stand out in the search engine result pages. Brainstorm a few ideas based on previous conversations you’ve had with your customers and enter them into a tool like Google’s Keyword tool to find terms you can target.
Remember, when you actually start creating evergreen content, aim to include a healthy balance of short-tail (head) keywords, and long-tail keywords throughout the piece. The right keyword saturation will help significantly in your quest to reach the top of the search engines.
3. Know your competition
Just as it’s essential to know your audience and your keyword landscape with evergreen content, it’s also important to understand what your competitors are trying to rank for. The best evergreen content goes beyond the content that’s already out there, to answer the burning questions that customers have. Creating evergreen content isn’t just about writing the same guides that your competitors have.
Find a way that you can support your customers from a different perspective. This way, your evergreen content strategy can also be one of the ways that you differentiate yourself in your marketplace. For instance, if your competitors have essential blog guides to introduce their product, explore new media with a video content strategy, and live Q&A sessions on Facebook or YouTube.
Evergreen content examples: Growth strategies to inspire you
One of the toughest aspects of evergreen content creation is figuring out how to present your timeless information to your customers. We mentioned some of the different evergreen content types available above, but to help you dive into your strategy head-first, we’re going to look a little deeper.
The following evergreen content examples should help you to see how long-lasting content has power over your promotional strategies. At the same time, these instances can also act as your source of inspiration when you’re figuring out where to go next with your content.
Evergreen content examples #1: ‘How-to’ posts with “WikiHow”
As we mentioned above, people are continually looking for ways to learn new things. The internet is a great source of educational materials, but the information your audience needs isn’t always available to them in an easy-to-consume format. That’s where you can lend a hand with informative how-to posts.
How-to posts can come in the form of videos, podcasts, infographics, and blog posts – depending on your audience’s preference. WikiHow capitalises on the article format to give credibility to their brand. With unique illustrations and easy-to-understand content, WikiHow has elevated itself to a position of significant power within the search results. Just remember to make your how-to evergreen content:
- Concise and straightforward: Make your instructions easy to follow, so they’re perfect for beginners.
- Jargon-free: Stay away from any language that makes your content less accessible.
- Visually-rich: Use images to maintain audience engagement and drive the eye down the post.
- Actionable: Provide real tips that your audience can use in everyday situations.
Evergreen content examples #2: Introduction and 101 posts with “Cointelegraph”
Sometimes, people don’t need to know “how to” do something, use a product, or access a service. Instead, all they’re looking for is an in-depth definition to help them expand their understanding of a particular area. There’s an evergreen content readership out there that’s ready to learn from your expertise and knowledge about your industry.
Like your how-to content, your “101” blog posts need to be simple and consumable to attract your audience’s attention. For instance, let’s look at a website addressing one of the most popular, but confusing concepts in our modern world: cryptocurrency. To guide and educate their customers, Cointelegraph created an “Explained” knowledge base of introductory blogs.
The “Explained” section simultaneously proves Cointelegraph’s authority in their industry and makes the website more appealing to their target audience. To create similar content:
- Listen to the questions your customers are asking and find exciting ways to answer them.
- Make your explanations simple and jargon-free, so that they’re easy for anyone to understand.
- Choose exhaustive in-depth articles to explain complicated topics, and smaller “glossary-type” posts to address smaller concepts.
Evergreen content examples #3: Infographics with “Column Five Media”
You may have noticed a recurring theme in our evergreen content examples up to now. While every piece is in-depth and brimming with useful information, the creator also strives to make the content available as consumable as possible. Infographics are an easy-to-digest form of content, perfect for simply conveying complicated ideas.
Infographics are easy to share on social media, and they’re a source of useful information that your customers can keep coming back to when they need help. Infographics loaded with stats can even be great for your backlinking strategy, as other companies in your industry will want to take advantage of your knowledge.
Look at ColumnFive’s comprehensive collection of infographics for inspiration, and remember, your infographics should be:
- Packed with useful data and statistics.
- Regularly updated when information or stats change.
- Beautifully designed with high-quality visuals.
Evergreen content examples #4: Case studies with Fabrik
Finally, case studies are probably some of the most effective forms of evergreen content available to brands today. Case studies discuss a moment in time, within the context of your audience’s needs and expectations in mind. Case studies never become outdated, because your future customers can continue to relate to your clients from five, ten or fifteen years ago if you show measurable results that stand the test of time. For instance, all companies want to see evidence that your product or service has a quantifiable return on investment.
For an example of how informative and useful case studies can be, check out our portfolio pages here on Fabrik. When a potential client clicks on a case study, they can see a quick overview of the work that we’ve done before, and the outcomes that our customers have seen, to determine whether we can provide the kind of work they need. With your case studies:
- Remember to provide plenty of details and statistics.
- Cover experiences with customers from a range of different backgrounds, to broaden your market reach.
- Offer links for download-able PDFs, charts, and graphs if possible, to show future customers how much time and effort you put into achieving client goals.
Creating evergreen content: Tips for long-lasting success
Just like coniferous trees that never lose their appeal, your evergreen content strategy can be the gift that keeps on giving, both to your brand and your customers.
No matter how much time passes, the right evergreen content persists, answering the timeless and recurring questions of your audience. Creating evergreen content means that you can offer a steady stream of user value, which translates into consistent traffic and loyal customers over time. Here are a few ways that you can make sure your evergreen content grows into something truly incredible.
1. Choose topics with timeless value
Evergreen content answers the most pressing questions your customers have in an unforgettable and highly immersive way. If you’ve been working on your blog strategy for some time or have a wide selection of podcasts in your portfolio, then you might already have some evergreen content. If you don’t, ask yourself:
- What are the questions your prospects ask most frequently?
- What industry concepts do people find the most confusing?
- What issues do your competitors address that you can bring a new angle to?
- Do you have any unique industry data or information that would be useful to your customers?
Remember to analyse your target audience and their needs before you get started. Responding to customer pain points is one of the best ways to begin your evergreen content strategy.
2. Be comprehensive
According to a study by HubSpot, content with between 2,250 and 2,500 words generally encourages the most traffic. The success of your marketing strategy depends on more than just the number of words that you choose to write. However, the more thorough you are with your evergreen content, the more useful and shareable it becomes.
High-performing evergreen content is generally longer because more space allows you to:
- Elaborate on subjects further and discuss concepts in greater detail.
- Add more long tail and short-form keywords into your content to boost SEO.
- Reference sources of expertise to generate backlinks and boost credibility.
- Showcase examples for actionable tips.
- Position yourself as a definitive resource in your industry.
3. Write simple, and write narrow
Just because your evergreen marketing content needs to be comprehensive, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be easy to read. Your guides, articles, and other forms of content need to appeal to beginners in the space that are just discovering a topic for the first time.
Writing with an accessible tone and simple language will help you to make quick connections with your audience. With a little luck, your evergreen content will also set you up for future interactions with customers who rely on you for easy-to-understand information.
Stay away from jargon and go in-depth with narrow concepts. For instance, instead of writing an article on “How to generate leads,” start with an informative piece on what lead generation is, then move onto an article about lead generation strategies. Separating evergreen content into a series makes it easier to consume, and also gives you more ideas to work with.
4. Update your content over time
Evergreen content is built to stand the test of time. However, just like anything else in your marketing strategy, it needs regular care and attention to perform at its best. Think of your evergreen pieces like the trees in a perfectly manicured garden. To help those trees keep growing strong, you may need to go back and trim branches at times or add extra fertiliser to the soil.
When you update your content, promote it again through email, social media, and other advertising channels. A few ways to refresh include:
- Adding new information and removing old or outdated statistics.
- Changing the tone of voice slightly to suit your unique personality.
- Refreshing content by recreating it in a new style (i.e., from blog to podcast).
Finding your evergreen content definition
Evergreen content is an integral part of any content marketing strategy.
Long-lasting content gives you recurring returns on your investment, for minimal effort. Unlike seasonal content, it retains its relevancy throughout the years and therefore gives you an unparalleled ROI. At the same time, because evergreen content is an investment in your brand image, it’s a great way to show your value in the marketplace.
When you’re looking to establish yourself in the market, convince your customers of your credibility, and demonstrate your thought leadership, evergreen content is vital.
Used correctly, creating evergreen content can help you to form a stronger root system for your entire promotional strategy. Remember, it’s not easy being green, but it’s worth it.
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