Porter Novelli

(Note: This post originally appeared on the PNConnect blog)

At PNConnect, we’re proponents of the hub-and-spoke model of brand publishing: owning a central content channel like a brand blog, and using social networks (like Facebook and Twitter) as channels that funnel followers back to the hub. This helps ensure that your evergreen content — content that will be relevant for the foreseeable future — is consistently available in an environment you control, where both search engines and your readers can find it, and where you can reshare it for years to come.However, as content marketing programs grow and platforms evolve, it’s increasingly important to publish content crafted specifically for each “spoke” of your publishing ecosystem — for example, native Facebook videos, Vines, and Tumblr GIFs. Tailored on-channel content on each social network is key to meeting the distinct needs of that platform’s audience and standing out in crowded news feeds.But how can you realize the maximum value of this social media content over time and ensure that it doesn’t get lost in the constant stream of updates? Keep these guidelines in mind:

1.

When sharing evergreen content, establish pathways to help followers find it again down the road, and to make it discoverable to new audiences. This means making full use of platform-specific discovery features, and, when appropriate, republishing content to other channels.Some tips:

  • Carefully construct titles, keywords, tags and/or descriptions. Make sure you’re accurately and helpfully describing your content in a way that search engines will be able to interpret and surface. This includes both web search engines like Google and in-network search engines, like Tumblr’s (recently much improved) search functionality.
  • When uploading a video to Facebook or Twitter, also upload it to YouTube, where it’ll be easier to tag and can be catalogued in search results.
  • Collect related social media updates/campaigns and embed them in blog post round-ups. This surfaces them to a new audience and gives them a permanent, centralized home on your owned platform. This is also a great chance to present content shared on different social networks all in one place — Instagram shots next to embedded Tweets next to YouTube videos. Be sure to add any context a reader will need to understand the material.

2.

When you’ve shared something great that followers can enjoy for months or years to come, don’t let them forget about it. The secret is making sure you don’t forget about it either. When you publish any high-quality content with long-term relevance, make a plan for re-sharing it in three months, or six months, or even a year. Add it to youreditorial calendar or set yourself a personal calendar reminder. This helps ensure that newer followers of your brand get to see this past content as well.

3.

Look for contextual opportunities to resurface past content. For instance, you can link to an old video when its subject comes up in a blog post, or tweet a past infographic when making a related product announcement.Tailoring unique content to each of your publishing channels doesn’t have to mean limiting its audience or how often followers appreciate it. With proactive categorization and smart repurposing, your niche content can continue to resonate for months or years to come.

INGREDIENTS FOR EVERGREEN SUCCESS

Publishing evergreen content is a great way to attract new readers through search results and inbound links, while also boosting engagement for existing followers. The optimal evergreen strategy will depend on your specific program goals, but for widespread reach and appeal, make your content:

1. Newbie-friendly: Don’t assume readers have much prior knowledge, either about the content subject matter or your brand. Focus on introductory content, such as how-to articles that answer beginners’ questions, that align with basic search queries.
2. Substantial: Evergreen content is a long-term investment, so take the time to make it great. Over time, content that is thorough, authoritative, and well-crafted steadily expands its footprint, as more and more sites link to it as a valuable resource. Strive to provide the definitive answer to a specific question or problem.
3. Well-packaged: An evergreen blog post sitting in the archives can generate a lot of search traffic, but it’s all but invisible to readers coming straight to your homepage. Look for ways to repackage and elevate your best evergreen content — for example, gather how-to articles into a “Beginners’ Guide” site section, organized by topic.