As content marketing progresses, we learn more and more about how audiences interact with our content. And as we understand more, we're able to create the best content possible, whether for our business or personal brand.
If you are working to develop your personal brand, content creation is absolutely critical.
Why do we say this?
Let's look at a few reasons why content marketing is an important element for your personal branding strategy.
Why Your Personal Brand Needs Content Marketing
Content marketing is virtually the lifeblood of personal branding. While social media is a valuable asset, it's the content that you share on social media and on your website that can make all the difference for your brand.
But exactly what does content do for your personal brand? Here are a few ways that it helps:
- Provides tangible proof of your expertise. As people read your content, they get a strong sense of your knowledge and expertise. Especially when you provide key insight into industry matters and trends, your audience will come to eagerly look forward to each piece of content.
- Boosts your visibility with SEO. As you create more and more content, it gives search engines a better idea of what you're all about. As search engines have more content to comb through, your site's authority and page ranking will both rise -- meaning more overall visibility for your brand.
- Opens the way for collaboration. Collaboration, such as guest posting with influencers, is a valuable way to boost your brand's visibility. But often influencers want to see a regular pattern of content creation and audience engagement with your content before they agree to collaborate. Creating a wide range of content is a key tool for such alliances.
But what will make your content successful? What distinguishes the best content from the inferior?
To answer that, SEMRush has published a new study that provides key content marketing statistics that will help your strategy. The study examines what elements within blog posts make for better performing content. Let's look at these results to see exactly how you can create the very best in content.
5 Ways to Create the Best Content to Support Personal Branding
1. Create Longer Blog Posts
The study showed that posts with 1,000 words or more bring in about 3 times more traffic than shorter posts. To highlight the disparity, consider that shorter posts between 300 and 900 words had 0 shares on social media 4.5X more often than longer posts of over 3,000 words.
Creating long-form content might seem daunting at first, especially if you're just starting your content strategy. But it doesn't have to be. The key is to focus on subjects with some complexity. Don't be afraid to dive deep and get detailed about your topic rather than simply skimming the surface.
2. Make It Into a List
List posts (i.e., X ways to..., X Things You Need to..., etc.) get 2X more traffic and 2X more shares on social media than regular posts.
We've all seen those posts that read like an essay -- just a big long document. It can be overwhelming at times, especially if you only have a passing knowledge on the subject. There's no doubt that there is a time and place for such content, but according to this study, it shouldn't become a habit.
List posts, on the other hand, break up your content into an easy-to-read outline and can make your content less daunting and easier to process.
And lists can be adapted to virtually any industry and any subject. As you create your own content, consider potential subjects based on what lists you can create.
3. Use Lists in Your Headline
Some people will format their posts as a list, but not reflect that in their headline. But SEMRush's survey shows that the most effective headlines are in list format as well. Headlines with lists get 2X more traffic and 2X more shares than other headline formats.
Seek ways to spice up your headline by making it into a list. You'll probably find that it gives you license to be more creative than other headlines such as "How to" and "Our Guide to..." Here are few list examples to get your creative juices flowing...
- X Sure-Fire Ways to...
- X Biggest Mistakes...
- X Powerful Tactics for...
- X Surprising Trends...
- X Smart Insights...
You get the idea. Play around with your own titles to discover exciting lists you can create.
4. Go Long with Your Headline
New evidence shows that longer headlines get better results. The SEMRush study found that headlines that were 14 words or more received 2X more traffic, 2X more shares and 5X more backlinks than shorter headlines.
This makes sense, since a more in-depth, descriptive headline gives your audience and search engines a clearer idea of the subject matter of your content. With a longer headline, chances are there will be no doubt what your content is about.
This might require you to think outside of the box and use more powerful language in your headline. Instead of "How to Get a New Job," you might spice it up with something like, "5 Guaranteed Strategies to Land Your Absolute Dream Job in 30 Days or Less." It's more engaging, fun and descriptive.
5. Use Headings in Your Content
No matter what tool you use to publish your blog posts, you most likely have heading options (h1, h2, h3, h4, etc.) that help you to create headings within your post and break it up into different topics and lists.
And the SEMRush research shows that using heading options is important to your content's success. Articles that used h2 and h3 headings within the body of the post were 36% more likely to generate more traffic, social shares and backlinks.
As you write your blog content, think about how you want to structure it in terms of headings. Each time you progress in your discussion of a topic, depict that with a new heading. In general, articles that are structured in this way are easier for readers to process than big blocks of text.
We hope these content marketing statistics help you approach your content with renewed vigor -- and ultimately create the best content for your audience.
What tactics get the best results for your content strategy? Let us know in the comments below.
Handpicked Related Content