In recent years a new crop of entrepreneur/freelancer/coach has risen off the back of social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat.
These people use social platforms to distribute their knowledge or entertain people and thus attract clients.
You share some pictures, write short updates, do live videos, and eventually build a following, then a few people sign up as clients or buy your products.
It’s exciting and motivating, but just a day or two later you’re back to where you were – feeling the pressure to make more social media updates to drive more sales.
The problem with these platforms is content released there has an incredibly short half-life – it very quickly loses impact.
- The image you shared on Instagram has almost no impact 48 hours later.
- The Facebook post you poured your energy into got you some likes, comments, and shares, but less than a day later it’s buried in the timeline.
- Your live video might have had great engagement, but after a few days, no one else will ever watch it.
For me as a long-term blogger, I’ve struggled to understand why pure social media marketers ‘skip’ the blog part of the marketing formula.
I wrote a blog post back in 2005 about the 80/20 rule. Thirteen years later and that post still delivers more traffic to my blog than any other post. Can you imagine a Facebook post or Instagram picture delivering that kind of result? Of course not, and it never will.
The question you need to ask yourself is why spend so much of your time, energy and money creating content that has such short-term value, especially when there are other options that deliver longer-term results?
The News Blog Formula I Quickly Gave Up
There was a time during the very early days of my blog where I attempted to write multiple articles a day using a very news-centric style of blogging.
I’d report back latest updates from my industry and throw in a couple of my thoughts along with it. These articles might be 500 words long at most, usually closer to 200.
In some ways, this is a lot like writing short updates for Facebook today. My blog posts were not long-lasting because they covered content that had little long-term impact. The content would never bring in much search traffic because the articles were so short.
This strategy was good to keep my voice active online every day, but it sure was a lot of work. The worst thing was I built no long-term value. I wasn’t creating any kind of content asset in my blog.
Because of this I quickly gave up on the news strategy and went back to publishing long-form ‘how-to’ posts, many of which went on to become the foundation for over a decade of consistent free traffic.
Thirteen Years Of Free Traffic From One Article
As you can imagine, it’s a lot easier to make consistent income when you have consistent traffic.
While not every article you publish to a blog is going to deliver thirteen years of consistent traffic as several of mine have, if you put the same energy you put into those disappearing social media posts and instead published one long solid pillar article, you’d build something with the potential to deliver long-term results.
One of the reasons this is possible is because of Google. Think about it, when was the last time a Facebook post or Instagram story showed up in Google search results as an answer to a query. It doesn’t, and it won’t.
Google values long-form content, content that is the best answer to a specific query. Almost all top responses to search queries come from a blog post, YouTube video (YouTube, of course, is owned by Google), a post in Reddit, Quora, Wikipedia or some other kind of long-form article. If you want some of that consistent ongoing free traffic, then you need to publish long-form content on a blog.
Best of all, you can make sales of your products and services on autopilot when you write a blog post that day-after-day, is read by people who find it through search and referrals. Almost all of my sales from the past three years have come from people who originally found me through one of my blog posts.
If you want consistent income, you must figure out how to bring in buyers without you being there to manually stimulate their interest every time.
Social media is great if you want to be part of the conversation, but to make that work you have to keep talking with fresh content every day. Yesterday’s conversation quickly disappears.
I’d rather say something once and have people come to it again and again, even while I’m sleeping or traveling the world. That’s the foundation I built the last decade of my #LaptopLifestlye on.
You can too, if you decide to build a platform, rather than post ephemeral content to someone else’s platform.
P.S. If you are new to creating ‘pillar content’, content that delivers long-term value (and lots of free traffic from Google), which you can build your own platform on, then you must attend my live training.
I call it my ‘Platform Launch Plan‘, and you can attend for free. Book your seat using the link below: