The Compounding Power of Content Marketing

Consistency is arguably the most important component of reaching your goals.

Consider training for a marathon – a few weeks of running won’t get you to your end goal. Running a few times a week over a year, however, could show immense improvement in your endurance.

The same concept applies to content marketing. Sticking to a consistent content strategy can have a plethora of benefits, compounded over time. You’ll be rewarded for your efforts.

Not all content is made equal

Content marketing is a long-term investment with sustainable, compounding power over time. The longer you’re in it, the more benefits you’ll reap.

Content that you publish today can continue to generate traffic and leads for months and years to come. However, content marketers should always be strategic with the type of content they create.

Temporal Content

Timely pieces that do not hold relevance for a while, including examples such as:

  • News posts articles
  • Product announcements
  • Statistics and trends that are fleeting
  • Seasonal content or ads
  • Content about current trends

Temporal content won’t get you far when it comes to long-term traffic, but balance is key.

Taking advantage of timely trends and turning them into a buzz article can be successful (and fun to write)! Consider Super Bowl ads, but insert your own industry spin, leveraging the Super Bowl as click-bait for your own benefit. Write about pop culture, reality TV, or your guilty pleasure, but make it resonate with your audience.

While temporal content may not have the same compounding effect as evergreen content, it does deliver timely, fresh content to your readers, which some of your target customers may appreciate. Evergreen content, however, is what will ultimately drive sustainable traffic growth for your brand in the long-term, to help you increase awareness, generate quality leads and convert them into sales.

Evergreen Content

Content that stays relevant, useful and fresh for your readers, evergreen content will grow bigger and faster than temporal content.

To get a better idea of how evergreen content performs against temporal content, take a look at the graphs below. Former Google Product Manager and current RedPoint Ventures Partner, Tomasz Tunguz, demonstrates this concept well.

A hypothetical evergreen blog post, for example, may generate roughly 150 views on the day it is published, and about 20 views the following day. Based on the post view decay rate he calculated using his own post, a typical evergreen blog can still earn about 18 views per day, a whole year later.

It’s a no brainer, right? Let your content do the work for you, even while you’re asleep.

evergreen blog postThe graph also shows content marketing’s compounding effects. In a year, the blog post would bring in over 250k readers every month. The value of quality content will compound over time, and that is what differentiates it from traditional marketing tactics.

temporal blog postWith a temporal strategy, on the other hand, a typical blog post may earn the same amount of views an evergreen focused blog generates on the first day (150 views) and the following day (20 views), but the decay rate for temporal content is much steeper. The blog post may only get about 1 view per day after a year. Traffic also hits its peak at 70k readers, less than a third of the traffic of an evergreen post.

Evergreen content isn’t the only answer to your content needs. Content marketers should still experiment with content catered to their audience, ultimately finding the perfect balance.

Once you build a portfolio of timeless content, the rest will fall into place. Your timely pieces can complement the evergreen content.

Don’t get lazy

Timeless doesn’t equate to effortless in the long-run. While the improved lifespan of your evergreen content will naturally follow, you should revisit old posts to ensure relevance. Especially consider the rate of change in your industry – innovation happens, research and technology improves. A content team, dedicated to all moving parts, might be exactly what you need.

If you’re not fully equipped to create a consistent content marketing plan at this time, start somewhere. Refresh your outdated content with purpose, adding value, updating links, and incorporating eye-catching graphics.

Have you seen compounding returns on your evergreen content? We’d love for you to share your personal experience with us in the comments below.

If you are ready to get more traffic to your site with quality content published consistently, check out our Content Builder Service.

Haley McDevitt is a Director of Marketing Strategy and Client Services at Marketing Insider Group, a leading Content Marketing Agency. She has worked in marketing and communications at Fortune 500 companies such as Qurate Retail, Inc (QVC, HSN, Zulily) and Universal Health Services, Inc. Her part-time hustle is her photography business and blog, where she writes on productivity, life-work balance and photography. Connect with her on LinkedIn.

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