The internet has revolutionized the way consumers search for products and services. It allows consumers to effortlessly research brands before they make a purchasing decision. This is great news for companies that already have a content marketing strategy in place. But what if yours doesn’t? If a consumer visits your company’s website and sees very little informative content, that consumer will probably shop elsewhere. Every brand needs a comprehensive content marketing strategy that includes both evergreen and seasonal content to capture consumer interest, inform consumers of the benefits of the products and services, and encourage them to make a purchasing decision.
Characteristics of Evergreen Content
Evergreen and seasonal content are two of the main categories of content that should be on your company website. First, let’s take a closer look at evergreen content. Picture a stately evergreen tree. From summer through winter, evergreen trees keep their green needles. No matter what the season is, a healthy evergreen will stay the same. Evergreen content is similar. It has these characteristics:
- It has no expiration date.
- It stays relevant regardless of how much time has passed since the publication date.
- It’s always of interest to consumers.
- It has the potential to attract an increasing volume of traffic over time.
The popularity and usefulness of evergreen content isn’t dependent on temporary trends. For example, let’s say your website has a blog post on how to make cupcake frosting. And let’s say that currently, consumers are purchasing lots of cupcakes and cupcake shops are cropping up all over the country. Even though cupcakes are a trending topic, a how-to blog on making frosting will always be relevant, even after the latest diet craze forces cupcakes to temporarily fall out of favor. Speaking of how-to blogs, this format lends itself particularly well to evergreen content. Evergreen content may also follow these formats:
- Lists or listicles.
- Explainer videos.
- Case studies.
While these formats are most often used for evergreen content, it’s also possible to use them for seasonal content.
Characteristics of Seasonal Content
When you turn on your local news channel, shop for Halloween costumes for your pets, or look for local Arbor Day events near you, you’re exposed to seasonal content. Seasonal content is relevant and useful for brief periods of time. Within this category, this content can be further subdivided into recurrent content and very short half-life content. Recurrent content may once again become relevant the same time next year… and the year after that. An example is a blog post on decorating your home for the winter holidays. Content with a very short half-life is never expected to become relevant once it goes out of fashion. An example is a news story. To be effective, seasonal content needs to have these characteristics:
- Published at an appropriate time (just prior to the spike of interest in the topic).
- Naturally incorporates relevant keywords.
- If recurrent, doesn’t become outdated due to the inclusion of specific dates or one-time events.
Although seasonal content may follow the same formats that are typically used for evergreen content, the following formats and content types are most often used:
- News stories.
- Trends for a specific year (i.e. trends in kitchen design for 2018).
- Holiday-specific information.
- Special promotions or offers.
- Contest announcements.
- Product launch or event announcements.
Benefits of Using Both Evergreen and Seasonal Content
It’s ideal for a content marketing strategy to include both evergreen and seasonal content. The benefit of seasonal content is that it can attract new visitors to your website. New visitors, who may become new customers, can be attracted by a witty blog post or social media post that goes viral, by an irresistible sales offer, or by an informative and entertaining article related to a specific holiday or event. Once the seasonal content brings new visitors to your website, your evergreen content can keep them coming back for more. These new visitors will see your website as an authority in its particular field, and repeated visits will expose them to the benefits of your company’s products and services. Both types of content help potential consumers to move along the sales funnel toward a purchasing decision.
Strategies for Evergreen Content Marketing
There’s no set-in-stone rule. But it’s typical for companies to follow an editorial calendar that’s about 75% evergreen and 25% seasonal. Build your library of evergreen content in a way that addresses the needs of your customers. Create FAQs, tutorials, and tips that are relevant to your products and services. For example, let’s say you own a plumbing company. You can create content that directly encourages sales, such as “How to Select a New Tankless Water Heater.” You can also create content that indirectly encourages purchases, such as “Common Causes of Water Heater Malfunctions.” Customers who are searching for troubleshooting information for their malfunctioning water heater can read this blog post, recognize your company as an authority on the subject, and potentially request a service visit.
Strategies for Seasonal Content Marketing
It’s ideal to have your freelance writing team create editorial calendars that nail down your content strategy for at least the next three months or so. You can ask your freelance writers to incorporate upcoming holidays, “awareness” days, and special sales into the content strategy. Make sure the content is still relevant to your business, however. With a little creativity, a professional writer can make practically anything relevant to virtually any business. For instance, let’s say you’re a home improvement contractor. National Pet Day might not seem relevant to your brand. However, a creative freelance writer will still recognize its potential, and may write a blog post on keeping pets safe during home renovation projects. Balancing the mixture of evergreen and seasonal content is one part of the equation for a comprehensive marketing strategy. Another part of the equation is hiring the right writer to make it happen.
For all of your company’s content marketing needs, you can rely on the pool of talented freelance writers at Writers Work. Browse the profiles of accomplished writers in our freelancing community to hire directly or post your own job ad free of charge. Getting started with Writers Work today is easy and free!