All businesses want to connect with their audiences and deliver exceptional experiences to them.
One of the most common ways of accomplishing this goal is through the power of content marketing .
This strategy gets valuable information to your audiences in a clear, concise way, and often involves topics, keywords, links, and SEO best practices.
However, many brands get impatient while waiting for their content strategies to pay off.
Content marketing tends to be a long-term game, and a long-term strategy is needed in order to get the best results for your efforts.
In this article, we’ll discuss the value of thinking long-term about your content strategy and go over some of the main reasons why you should implement a long-term content strategy within your brand.
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What is a Long-Term Content Strategy?
Content marketing is a game of waiting for results, not immediate satisfaction.
After all, there’s truth to the saying that good things can come to those who wait.
In this context, a long-term content strategy is a plan that takes time in order to bring in the benefits.
While this can be frustrating to experience, since marketers and executives want to see the results of their efforts and investments immediately, it’s important to understand why a long-term content strategy is necessary.
The basic return estimate is anywhere from six months to a year in order to see content marketing results. Content marketing provides value over time, but there’s a reason for it.
Why Content Takes Time
Content is an asset that is extremely beneficial to businesses, as it doesn’t have a specific end date.
Other forms of marketing like emails or paid advertising have limited times where they are effective before the lifespan of the marketing asset ends.
Content lasts for years and can be repurposed to create new content with less effort.
Content also relies on SEO and search engine algorithms to be found.
Gaining authority on Google and building trust with readers takes time, but once that authority and trust are established, it can last for the entirety of your brand’s life.
The long-term payoff is well worth the time it takes to set up a long-term content strategy.
Long-Term vs. Short-Term Content
Long-term content strategy planning is often associated with long-form content that is more detailed and in-depth than short-form content like social posts or status updates.
Just like long-term planning takes time, long-form content also takes a little bit of time in order to start getting more results.
Your long-term content strategy should include both long-form and short-form content , but the emphasis should be on long-form content like:
- Blog Posts
- White Papers
- Case Studies
- Product Guides
Why Should You Have a Long-Term Content Strategy?
Now that you understand a little bit more about what a long-term content strategy is, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why long-term thinking needs to be at the forefront of your content marketing initiatives.
1. Better Use of Resources
There’s no question that content marketing requires you to spend time and resources in order to plan, create, and distribute content.
If you decide to try and get all of your content done quickly, you might get a boost in results for a few weeks, but then the effort you’ve built up will diminish over time.
Instead, allocate your resources over time in order to maintain steady growth and build your content marketing foundation.
2. Improve Your SEO
Your SEO efforts are intricately linked to your content marketing initiatives.
Optimizing your content for SEO allows you to improve both content performance and SEO rankings at the same time.
Long-term content gives you a chance to write longer content, target more keywords , and improve your online visibility to improve your website’s SEO standings.
3. Increase Traffic Levels
The more content you create, the more likely it is that other websites will create backlinks to your content and your search rankings will improve.
Over time, that leads to more people coming to view your content and increasing your traffic levels.
This also helps boost your SEO performance and create more authority in your website and brand over time.
4. Create More Consistent Momentum
When you first publish a piece of content, there tends to be an immediate jump in viewership as readers find the new content.
In order to keep those numbers going up, some brands try to publish a lot of content quickly, but forget to focus on quality .
That can hurt the lifespan of your content and diminish the value it provides readers. Long-term content planning creates consistent momentum and growth.
5. Higher Value of Content
Long-term content planning focuses on the longevity and the value of content that you create.
Rather than looking for immediate results, you are instead focusing on providing value that lasts over time and will continually provide important information and benefits to readers.
This allows your content to be evergreen and effective for months and even years.
6. Establishes Authority
Authority is an important factor that plays into your SEO and content ranking.
However, like most things related to content, it takes time to build authority on search engines like Google.
As you publish more content over time and grow your website, you’ll be able to provide dependable, trustworthy, and established content that audiences and search engines will like.
7. Provides Important Information
Long-term content is more than just a way to improve your authority and rankings: it also helps provide your readers with important resources and information that they really need.
When someone searches for answers to their questions, they want to have high-quality, useful information that they can read and consume in order to answer their query.
8. More Inbound Links
When you create long-term content, you will be able to improve your internal linking structures.
When you have more pages and articles to link to, you can create stronger structures within your inbound website and improve the overall quality of your web pages.
This helps you improve your SEO and get discovered by more readers.
9. Get Higher ROI
Long-term content provides many opportunities to increase the return on investment you get out of your efforts.
Continually publishing high-value content allows you to increase rankings, get more views and clicks, expand the lifespan of content, and impress your readership.
All of this works together to help you get more customers and leads out of your content marketing initiatives.
10. Build Long-Term Relationships with Readers
When readers know that you are a reliable source of information, they are more likely to turn to you as a source of knowledge and subscribe to your blogs and articles.
They will want you to provide longer, more in-depth content since they know that what you provide is worth the read.
This helps you improve your relationships with readers and find new audiences.
11. Social Media Engagement
Long-term content isn’t just for blogs and downloads. You can also use your long-term content marketing strategies with social media as well.
When you distribute your long-term content on social media platforms, you are more likely to get clicks and engagements from your audiences who are interested in the direct distribution of your content.
12. Longer Content Lifespan
Planning for the future of your brand depends on having content that is evergreen, or that doesn’t have an expiration date.
Good long-term content will last you for years, meaning that all of the benefits that it brings you will last for a long time rather than only a few weeks or a few months.
That ensures that important information can be found at any time of year by your audiences.
You may also be interested in these articles:
- How to Create a Successful SEO Content Strategy
- Google’s New Local Search Features Might Be an Opportunity for Your Content Strategy
- Short-Form Video: The Fundamental Piece of your Content Strategy
When Should You Use a Long-Term Content Strategy?
While there is certainly value in thinking short-term about your content through things like social media posts, quick blogs, and infographics , your approach to content marketing as a whole should be focused on getting those important long-term results.
Whenever you sit down to plan out your content strategy, you should be thinking a few months out at least.
This helps you focus your initiatives on the types of content that will last the longest , provide the biggest returns on investment, and bring the most value to your readers.
While this might mean waiting a while, the benefits of long-term content strategy planning can’t be ignored.
When it comes to content marketing, a long-term approach is needed in order to accomplish your goals and get the most out of your strategies.
However, many businesses have a short-term approach to their content marketing and are missing out on key benefits that come with a long-term content plan .
Once you can adapt your thinking to be structured around long-term benefits rather than short-term thinking, you can get more out of your content marketing program.
There are many considerations that need to be included in your content strategies, including the type of content that you use in your planning. There’s a big difference between short-form and long-form content, so it’s important to know the difference.
To learn more, check out our blog on short-term vs long-term content !
There you’ll learn the difference and explore what types of content are best for which business goals.