How To Create Content To Attract Readers, Shares & Search
Does your content suffer from a lack of love?
Feel like you’re on a never-ending treadmill where your content fails to gain traction such as backlinks, influencer love and social shares?
Don’t worry—you’re not alone.
You need crowd pleaser content. It’s one of the 5 core content types every marketer needs.
Crowd Pleaser Content’s Goal:
- Attract attention and stay visible. Even the best-read media entity must continually stay top-of-mind and grow their readership.
After publication your content must continue to attract search juice through backlinks and reader activity. (BTW, this doesn’t necessarily mean lots of social media shares!)
To keep your content marketing visible over time, incorporate crowd pleaser content into your editorial calendar at least once a month.
Crowd Pleaser Content Defined
Crowd pleaser content is defined by the following attributes that set it apart from other content and articles.
- High creation effort (plus amplification)
- Chock full of reader value (contains 2,000+ words plus other formats)
- Consistent publication (Schedule once per month)
Further this type of content must:
- Be relevant to your brand. Otherwise why are you putting your effort into doing this?
- Stir an emotional response, preferably a complex one. Understand that positive emotions are better. You want your audience to care.
- Include other types of content. Specifically visuals that convey your information in a concise way.
Rand Fishkin calls this “10X Content” and Brian Dean calls this “Skyscraper Content.”
Fortunately the most effective forms of crowd pleaser content are well tested based on past results. They succeed by filling a genuine reader need, providing a unique angle, and enhancing value.
Crowd pleaser content solves key content marketing issues:
- Supports your content offering and search marketing by providing high quality, trustworthy content that’s useful, interesting and/or remarkable. Provides a standout customer experience.
- Supplies the most comprehensive, accurate content or resources to meet your target audience’s specific information needs. It differs in scope and detail from previously published content.
- Provides information readers actively seek and share on your core topics.
- Is grounded in data (including internal information or original research). This makes it worth attention and links.
- Involves influencers and micro-influencers to help content creation and distribution.
Crowd Pleaser Content Caveat:
- Regardless of the amount of creation effort, content quality or track record, your crowd pleaser content will only break through 10% to 20% of the time according to Rand Fishkin. https://moz.com/blog/how-to-create-10x-content-whiteboard-friday
5 Types of crowd pleaser content
Fractl found 4 characteristics are key to content success based on campaign data from their 345 campaigns between 2013 and 2016.
- 39% Use exclusive research or data. This is a recurring theme for Rand Fishkin and Priceonomics.
- 27% Relate to recent news. Think David Meerman Scott newsjacking.
- 19% Is relevant to your brand or other objective.
- 15% Suggests an emotional response especially positive feelings. Additionally complex emotions stir reader response.
4 Characteristics of crowd pleaser content-Fractal Research Chart
Crowd pleaser content generally falls into one of these 5 categories:
- Research. Includes original research or hard to find internal data that is difficult to compile. Example: Orbit Media’s Blogging research
- Roundups. Provides meaty information. Think beyond the listicle. It’s useful for including influencers and micro-influencers. Example: Aaron Orendorff’s How To Network a Conference Like a Jedi.
- Resources. Consists of authoritative listings or guides. Example: Neil Patel’s Marketing Guides.
- Controversial opinions. Pick an argument many people feel strongly about. Ideally this should be something authoritative that your audience has strong views on. BuzzSumo and Fractal consider this a top content theme. Example: Mark Schaeffer’s Content Shock.
- Trending news. Taps into the power of existing themes and newsjacking. This type of content is referred to differently. Priceonomics considers this cocktail party knowledge that makes your audience want to know more.
Crowd Pleaser Content Research: Making The Content Marketing Case
Buzzsumo’s Steve Rayson analyzed 750,000+ articles for backlinks and social shares. He found that content that attracts social shares differs from content that attracts links.
- Specifically the average article attracts 8 shares and 1 backlink.
By contrast Fractal focused on link performance results from a more limited sample. They included dofollow, cocitation, nofollow and/or text attribution.
As a result, they found that a site’s authority mattered more than the link type acquired. Nofollow link could lead to dofollow links from other sites.
To compare linking performance, Fractl categorized content as:
- High success: over 100 placements
- Moderate success: 20 to 100 placements
- Low success: Less than 20 placements
Additionally Fractl discovered these 3 types of crowd pleaser content yielded similar social media success.
Crowd Pleaser Content Example: Brian Dean’s Skyscraper Content
Backlinko’s Brian Dean Skyscraper Content. http://backlinko.com/skyscraper-technique is the best example of crowd pleaser content. (I recommend following Dean, his stuff is well worth your time investment.)
Dean enhanced the power of his skyscraper content by writing a three-step how-to case study for Noah Kagan’s OkDork.
Brian Dean’s Skyscraper Results on Google Analytics – Chart
1. Find link-worthy content
Do your homework using Google and BuzzSumo. See what’s working for others. Gini Dietrich uses her PESO model for this.
Stand out content starts with better research. Sorry it’s work but it beats seat-of-the-pants thinking every time.
- Start with Google search.
- Check Wikipedia links.
- Assess potential ideas on Reddit.
- Search for curation pieces. (Note: Curated content supports search rankings.) Add link and chart)
- Use Ahrefs to examine root domain.
- Check domain authority on Moz Bar.
- Look at Pinterest. While no longer a sexy top social media site, Pinterest still drives long tail traffic.
2. Create even better content
Your crowd pleaser content must stand out from existing published content.
Use hard to replicate information such as original research or internal data according to Fishkin. (Of course, this work is time consuming.) Orbit Media’s Blog research is a good example of this type of content.
Extend your content recommends Dean. (Note: This doesn’t mean filler! It doesn’t work for dog food and it doesn’t work for your content!) Specifically make strategic improvements. Then add and/or update information your readers need and seek to existing content. Neil Patel’s Guides are examples of this type of content.
Presentation counts. Provide a great user-experience on any device while ensuring all types of learners can consume your content. This often translates to visuals since people see images 60,000s faster. Further drive time attracts on-the-go audio content listeners. Allow for longer content consumption with apps like Pocket.
3. Amplify and distribute your high value content
To ensure your crowd pleaser content succeeds you need readers, influencers and backlinks to help you.
Specifically, reach out to your readers, customers and influencers. Dean sent 160 emails landing 17 links, an 11% success rate.
Use a tool like Ahrefs.com to determine who has linked to similar content. Don’t limit yourself to follow links. Your goal is to increase overall readership and to gain traction.
Consider crafting related guest posts and columns where appropriate. Dean did it. So can you.
BTW, don’t gate your crowd pleaser content since this will significantly reduce your results. I know that it’s tempting to require visitors to fill out a form after all of your hard work but resist this urge. Instead, find other ways to encourage readers to share their email addresses.
Crowd Pleaser Content Defined Conclusion
Your content offering requires crowd pleaser content to reach a broader audience and to continue to drive traffic to your site over time.
Research consistently reveals that crowd pleaser content yields above average results.
Crowd pleaser content takes time and effort to create, amplify and distribute.
Your creation effort, which is large, is only the beginning of the process. You must work to distribute and keep it visible.
Even then, you’ll only succeed 1 out of 10 times!
Therefore, ensure that each piece of crowd pleaser content supports your content marketing strategy, your business and your audience.
Assess what’s worked for you and others and use this as a guide to create your best piece of crowd pleaser content.
The only way you’ll succeed is by continuing to create new crowd pleaser content.
Each piece that falls short of your expectations helps you get closer to a success.
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