Today’s guest post is by Ginny Soskey
If you’re feeling disappointed that people aren’t sharing your content, you’re not alone.
You spend hours crafting content you think readers will love and then…crickets.
There’s good reason to want to fix that.
Shareaholic’s data, based on 200,000 websites reaching 300 million people each month, shows that last month 32 percent of the traffic sent to our publisher websites was through referral traffic.
This is evidence of a change in content consumption behavior.
It’s now less about email and RSS subscriptions and more about people finding your content through social media.
Even then, it’s not all about the magic solution of social timing—your content has to stand on its own and be good enough to motivate your readers to share.
While there isn’t a strict recipe for creating content people love to share, there are some ways you can identify what will work for your audience:
Recognize What’s Working in Your Content Analytics
Before trying a new content marketing strategy, make sure to analyze what content has worked for you best in the past so you can replicate success. Are there certain topics, keywords, or formats that drive the most traffic to your content? If so, change up your content to mirror the successes of your past posts.
You also don’t have to completely forget about your most successful posts once they are written—if the older content is evergreen, continue to link to it in new content to keep new readers engaged.
Develop Your Own Distinct Voice
The key for writing online is to have a distinctive writing style. You shouldn’t be copying your competition’s way of writing—you want your own superfans who will religiously share your content. It doesn’t matter whether you differentiate by making a few enemies or by drawing comics—having a unique voice will make people more invested in sharing your content because it comes from you, not just another blog.
If you need an example of a great writing style, you’re in the right place—On Spin Sucks, Gini Dietrich has a very unique voice that you automatically pick up on when reading. She gives you an insightful and no-B.S. thoughts on what’s going on in the world of PR and marketing, and that’s why you keep coming back.
Engage With Multimedia
There is a reason Pinterest is now the fourth largest social network in the world—people are drawn to visual content online. Including more images in your content is an often-recommended tip, but there’s even more you can do with multimedia to drive traffic to your blog.
If you plan on creating your own images or posting your own photography, make sure to brand your images with the name of your company or blog in order to increase brand awareness. When people know your blog by name, you’ll see your direct traffic improve because your target audience knows where to go for the content they liked on social media. One of our publishers who does this really well is PB Fingers—all of her workout and recipe photos have her URL and the name of her blog on them.
Include the Right Social Sharing Buttons
“Include social sharing buttons” is another often-shared tip when it comes to content. If you want people to share your content, you have to make it easy for them to do so.
Always have easily accessible and stylish social sharing buttons on your blog, but be very selective with which ones you provide. We have found that the Shareaholic publishers who get the most shares are actually the ones who stick to just a few social media icons—five or six at most. Identify the social sharing buttons you actually need by looking at your content analytics and determining where social referral traffic comes from and where your audience is already sharing your content the most.
Enable Content Discovery
We’ve all heard that social media and content marketing can shorten the buying cycle by educating your potential customers before they even land on your website’s product pages. Educated prospects can evaluate your product or service more efficiently because they know what they are looking at.
You can speed up this process even more by serving your potential customers more content with a related content tool such as Recommendations, which will recommend your own posts at the bottom of each blog article you publish. This improves engagement and time on site for your content, as well as creating an opportunity for each visitor to learn even more about what you are offering.
Ultimately, getting people to share your content relies on understanding their motivations for sharing. By following these tips, you’ll better engage with your readers and inspire them to share your content with their network and beyond.
Ginny Soskey is a marketing manager at Shareaholic. Shareaholic creates social sharing, related content and content analytics tools for more than 200,000 websites, reaching 300 million people each month. You can learn more about creating shareable content and keep up with Shareaholic on the Shareaholic blog.