Shares Are the Cotton Candy of Content Marketing

When I looked recently at the most shared content published by marketing and it sites. The data confirmed that on average long form posts achieved more shares. But when I looked in more. Detail at the 50 most shared posts, 45 of .Them were short form and under 1,000 words. Thus people are very happy to share short form. Content and given the pressures on. Everyone’s time may prefer short form content.

I personally think there is a big opportunity for short form content and I aim to adapt my strategy to focus more on repurposing and republishing short form versions of my research that focus on specific issues. These could be focused around just a single image or chart.
On this point, I largely agree with rayson insofar as shorter content, with rare exception, should be a part of your brand’s content strategy (this post notwithstanding). I know, I know, many of you do very well with posts of varying lengths. I get that. What I’m saying is your content should be assigned, not by your whims or the needs of the brand, but by the needs of the audience.

And Certainly Not Based on Shares

Which, as we know from a recent moz and buzzsumo post, do not correlate with the all-important links.

In many cases and for many brands, shares are a distraction serving to keep our attention away from the important elements of content marketing. I liken them to the cotton candy at the county fair: a lot of puff, but not nearly as filling as that smoked turkey leg.

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When creating content, we should begin with Leads for Commercial Real Estate empathy being top-of-mind. That’s when you can allow your inner journalist to soar:

Who benefits most from this information (I.E., who, specifically, am I talking to?)
What are their specific needs?
Why is my brand uniquely qualified to satisfy those needs?
How can I best depict and share the information?
When is the optimal time to create, share and promote it?
Notice I never mentioned length. That was intentional.

The Length of Your Content Should Be Determined

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By your audience, not your brand. A recent EL Leads study by chartbeat, which looked at user behavior across 2 billion. Visits over the web during the course of a month, found that 55% of visitors spent fewer than 15 seconds actively on a page. 15 seconds!
Better idea: if readers aren’t spending a great deal of time on our site’s we should reward them. Not punish them: create short but meaty posts; share graphics with a few lines of commentary to invite comments. Share videos or podcasts you’ve enjoyed, as curated content; or ask a question, then be the first answer,. Nudging others to dive into the fray.

Whatever direction you decide to go in, do so with guidance from your audience and/or would-be audience.

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