Buzzfeed has been so successful for a reason: people love tips and tricks that can make their life easier. This trend is not only having an impact on user-friendly articles, it is also playing into the marketing strategies of brands. Econsultancy recently conducted a study of 422 blog posts posted over a two-year period on the Red Rocket Media website. The plan was to find out which types of content brought in the most traffic in the short and long term. The result? Tutorials also work for businesses.
The 4 types of content
To measure what type of content attracts the largest audience, Econsultancy has divided four categories:
1. News content – AKA press articles
Analysis has shown that these timely pieces of content are an important part of any results-driven content strategy because they capture interest when it matters most. In addition to bringing constant search traffic to the site, these news-oriented posts sometimes strike a viral nerve that causes a significant increase in the number of visits.
2. Promotional Content – AKA Landing Pages
Econsultancy has found that blog posts that have a sales angle work very differently from news posts. There are few that attract immediate traffic, but these types of posts tend to generate as many visits once they are added to the archive as they do in the first month after posting.
3. Knowledge content – AKA white papers, case studies, testimonials
Intuition suggests that white papers and other thought leadership content generate the most interest over time. Generally speaking, this is what the study determined. The entire archive of blog posts focused on sharing information and ideas attracted more traffic than the posts published the previous month.
4. Educational content – practical articles AKA, the “listicle”
While knowledge content is a long-term traffic driver, it has been overshadowed by what Econsultancy considered to be “educational blogs”. Data shows that branded content drives the most traffic when it tells readers how to do something or introduces a process. During the two-year reference period, traffic to educational blog content began to look like a bell curve, with visits exceeding the rate of adding posts to the archive.
Marketers who want to increase the presence of their brands can’t be afraid to engage leads. A long format downloadable document may seem more appropriate, and in many cases it will. However, the digital marketplace challenges business organizations, and B2Bs in particular, to step out of their comfort zones with interactive content or risk becoming irrelevant.
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