If you’re disappointed people aren’t sharing your content, you’re not alone.
You spend hours crafting content you think readers will love and then—crickets.
There’s good reason to want to fix that.
Shareaholic’s data—based on 200,000 websites that reach 300 million people each month—show that 32 percent of the traffic sent to our publisher websites last month was referral traffic.
This is evidence of a change in content consumption behavior. It’s now less about email and RSS subscriptions and more about people finding your content through social media.
Even then, it’s not all about the magic solution of social timing. Your content has to stand on its own and be good enough to motivate your readers to share it.
While there isn’t a strict recipe for content people love to share, there are some ways to identify what will work for your audience:
1. Recognize what works with content analytics.
Before you try a new content marketing strategy, analyze what content worked best for you in the past so you can replicate success. Are there certain topics, keywords or formats that drive the most traffic to your content? If so, change up your content to mirror the success of past posts.
You don’t have to completely forget about your most successful posts once you write them. If the older content is evergreen, continue to link to it in new content to keep new readers engaged.
2. Develop a distinct voice.
The key to writing online is to have a distinctive writing style. You shouldn’t copy your competition’s way of writing—you want your own super fans who will religiously share your content.
It doesn’t matter whether you differentiate yourself by making a few enemies or drawing comics; a unique voice will make people more invested in sharing your content because it comes from you, not just another blog.
If you need an example of a great writing style, go to Spin Sucks. Gini Dietrich has a unique voice you automatically pick up on. She gives you insightful thoughts—without any B.S.—on what’s going on in PR and marketing, and that’s why people keep coming back.
3. Engage with multimedia.
There is a reason Pinterest is now the fourth largest social network in the world. People are drawn to visual content online. People often recommend you include images in your content, but there’s even more you can do with multimedia to drive traffic to your blog.
If you plan to create images or post your photography, make sure you brand your images with the name of your company or blog to increase brand awareness. When people know your blog by name, you’ll see direct traffic improve because your target audience knows where to go for the content they liked on social media. One of our publishers who does this really well is PB Fingers. All her workout and recipe photos have her URL and the name of her blog on them.
4. Include the right social-sharing buttons.
“Include social sharing buttons” is another tip people often share when it comes to content. If you want people to share your content, you have to make it easy for them to do so.
Always have easily accessible and stylish social-sharing buttons on your blog, but be very selective in the ones you provide. We found that the Shareaholic publishers who get the most shares are the ones who add a few social media icons—five or six at most.
Identify the social-sharing buttons you actually need by looking at your content analytics. Determine where social referral traffic comes from and where your audience shares your content the most.
5. Enable content discovery.
We’ve all heard that social media and content marketing can shorten the buying cycle by educating potential customers before they even land on your website’s product pages. Educated prospects can evaluate your product or service more efficiently because they know what they are looking at.
You can speed up this process even more by giving potential customers more content with a related-content tool such as Recommendations. These tools recommend other posts of yours at the bottom of each blog article you publish. This improves engagement for your content and the time readers spend on your site. It also creates an opportunity for each visitor to learn even more about what you offer.
Ultimately, getting people to share your content relies on understanding their motivations for sharing. By following these tips, you’ll better engage with your readers and inspire them to share your content with their networks and beyond.