One of the best things about content marketing is that it gives you the opportunity to connect with your target audience over a long period of time.
Unlike PPC campaigns, email campaigns, or even many social media posts, the extended lifespan of content goes beyond having active campaigns continually running; someone can find a year old blog post, come to your site, and end up converting.
Sometimes, though, just writing great content and relying it on indefinitely isn’t the way to go. Old content can end up stagnated, and it can stop bringing in results all together. In some cases, outdated content that no longer contains accurate information or fails to align with your current brand could even hurt you.
So what to do about all content that isn’t getting you the results you want? In this post, we’re going to look at a few simple ways you can updated stagnated content to get the clicks, views, and conversions coming back to where you want them again.
1. Start with Some Troubleshooting
Your content– and your content strategy– may start to plateau or drop off for a number of reasons, and before you decide how to freshen things up, you need to know what’s causing things to go a little stale.
Look at your Google Analytics.
Is there an issue with bringing traffic to your site on content where this wasn’t an issue? Look for new competitors in the field, and do some digging to see why your content may have lost ranked positions in the SERP. You may just need to refresh the keywords, or there may be someone creating higher-quality, longer-form content that’s snagging the clicks.
Or, maybe there’s an issue with keeping readers engaged or getting clicks? If this is the case, your content may not be what your audience is looking for. Make sure the keywords match the search intent and that the blog fully matches that intent, and ensure that all information is up to date.
Other signs to watch for may include:
- Higher bounce rates and exit rates
- Lower conversion values
- Fewer social shares
- Reduced time spent on a page
2. Look for Indications of Shifting Interest
What is your audience responding to?
Maybe before, they were devouring your 4,000 word beginner’s guides and how-to ebooks, but traffic to this content has started to slow down. There could be so many competitors out there offering similar resources it’s hard to grab them.
That being said, while you notice a decrease in those ultimate guides, you might also notice a slight uptick in your business’s published case studies, which involve experiments that you’ve run or a compilation of statistics and actional information that your audience can use to achieve similar results.
Watch your content, looking for topics, styles of content, and even styles of writing that seem to do well with your audience. An audience’s interest can shift over time, especially as you further define your brand and start connecting with new niches. Being mindful of this will prevent you from hitting a wall with your content.
3. Consider Changes in the Landscape
Your content marketing has hit an unexpected lull, and it doesn’t seem to be an issue with your audience or your competition.
Keep looking. There are other changes that can happen in the online landscape and marketplace that will slow things down. This can include changes to Google’s algorithm that affect how you place, or you may find that some of the content you’re covering is also available in video form on YouTube, which your audience is rapidly responding to.
Stagnated content sometimes even happens when there’s a change that affects your site. Maybe you’ve started using too many large-file images, which are slowing downloading speeds and driving away traffic. Or perhaps more users are reading on mobile than ever before, and your site isn’t 100% mobile-responsive.
Over time, user behavior changes to match changes in technology and vice versa. You need to be prepared for this, staying agile enough to keep up so that your content doesn’t end up stagnating because of a problem that has little to do with the content itself. If you can’t meet your audience where they’re currently hanging out online, this will be to your detriment.
4. Repurpose the Content into New Mediums
When all is said and done, sometimes the content strategy is fine, and it’s just individual pieces of content that are slowly fading into oblivion.
If you have specific blog posts that seem to be falling by the wayside even though you’ve previously ranked well for them, there’s a good chance that those specific posts need a little bit of a freshening up.
Google likes new, timely content, after all, so taking an old blog post, editing it, and updating it with new additional information before publishing it again. If it’s been a year or more, your audience is unlikely to notice, and as long as you have new and valuable information mixed in, this will work in your favor.
You can also redirect posts to newer, updated long-form content that suitably answers a user’s search intent, sending them to the posts that are most valuable to them while using the momentum of long-term successful content to your advantage.
Content marketing is a relatively evergreen marketing strategy, giving you the potential of massive long-term payoffs.
This isn’t a guarantee, however, and factors like changes in Google’s algorithm or newer content from your competition could knock you down a few slots and make it harder to get the results you were maintaining originally or hoping to get.
Keeping an eye on all of your content (not just its general performance) can help you assess when it’s time to revamp slowing-down or slowed-down content. Knowing where your content stands in overall performance will also help you decide exactly how you should revamp it and what methods will work best to bring it back to life.
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What do you think? How do you breathe new life into stagnated content? What strategies do you use to keep your content engaging and exciting? Share your thoughts and questions in the examples below!