If your business or organization has a blog, then you’ll want to know what your readers want:
The annual Orbit Media Studios survey of 1055 bloggers demonstrates that the longer your blog post is, the better results you’ll get. The average blog post this year is up 19% over last year to 1054 words! Now, that’s a lot of research and writing.
And, the percentage of posts that are 500 words or less is half of what it was two years ago!
Wait, there’s more to know…
The percentage of posts that are 2000+ words long has doubled every year! So, now this begs the question. Is longer better? Does it get better results?
According to the survey… yes!
Note: What the survey does not ask participants is to define their metrics for “strong results.”
How much time does it take to get “strong results?”
Hang onto your chair.
- 33% of bloggers who spend 6+ hours per post report “strong results”
- Only 23% of bloggers who spend less than 6 hours per post report “strong results”
- The average blog post takes 3 hours 16 minutes to write. (That’s up 26% from last year.)
- Twice as many bloggers are now spending 6+ hours on their average post.
Does adding media to your posts produce better results?
Yes, the survey also shows that adding media to your posts is a good thing, especially video.
Let’s recap. Your blog will get better results if you post longer content and add rich media.
OK, but that means you’ll be posting less frequently, right?
Well, yes, that’s the trend.
- The percentage of bloggers who are blogging daily is down by more than 50%.
- Weekly is now the most common answer to the question of frequency.
- There’s a 38% rise in the percentage of bloggers who publish monthly.
But, here’s the irony and the challenge for bloggers:
In the quality versus quantity debate, quality is winning as the more popular strategy. But, less frequent blogging does not equate with better results!
The survey assumes that bloggers with higher-frequency content programs are probably doing other things well, including distribution, promotion, and measurement. No evidence here, but it does include data that shows how bloggers are driving traffic to their posts.
- More than 95% of bloggers are promoting their posts on social media.
- More than half of respondents (57%) are using search engine optimization to promote their content. But this number is mostly flat.
- Bloggers who spend 6+ hours on a blog post are 64% more likely to be using SEO to promote their content.
- The majority of surveyed bloggers (60%) are now using email to promote their content.
- Although only 14% of bloggers are paying for visitors, this number is up more than 3x over the last two years.
Drum roll: the $64,000 Question:
If you have a team of content writers, or even one assigned writer, then more power to you. But, if you’re a solopreneur or part of a small marketing team, how can you spend over three hours writing one high-quality blog post and do your other work????” (Elaine Fogel)
- Review your old content for topics you can revise and update. I was dubious about this until I did it and discovered a wealth of new content.
It takes less time to tinker with an older post than write a new one and experts claim it’s good for SEO. Here’s how to choose the “right” older posts:
- Farm out content writing if you can afford it. There are plenty of agencies and freelancers who are happy to oblige your needs.
One of the most important things to keep in mind with any business blog is maintaining a sense of credibility and authority. You’ll either need to find a writer that somehow has the background your blog requires, or you may need to be willing to train them a bit, or pay them for the time they spend researching.” (Carmelo Hannity, Business 2 Community)
- Ask your readers and customers for their burning questions about your industry, profession, or specialty area. These should give you plenty of topics.
Instead of waiting for valuable information to drift in, you can create a simple survey, email your subscriber list, canvas social media followers, or write a blog post to ask about people’s biggest dreams and scariest obstacles and to find out what they need to move forward.” (Leanne Regalla, SmartBlogger)
- Use other articles, posts, and studies as foundations to add your take and expertise. This post is a good example.
- Add quotes from other bloggers/experts and additional relevant information to make your point.
- One thing you don’t want to do is to add fluff to lengthen your posts. You’ll lose readers that way. Make sure what you write brings value to their personal and/or work lives.
- And, if your post doesn’t add up to 1000+ words? Don’t kill yourself. Build up to it.
Test your results. Remember that blogging and social media marketing are not the only tactics you’re doing.
Got any more tips?