As radio broadcasters, our thinking tends to be very topical. That's in large part because our on-air breaks are fleeting: a DJ says what they have to say and then it disappears into the ether, unlike books, movies, or podcasts that stick around for a long time and can be consumed long after they were originally created. We assume that people will hear our on-air breaks at the same time we create them or, if they're voice-tracked, not long afterwards.
In short, as broadcasters, we rarely think about creating “evergreen” content — content that has a long shelf life because it will still be of interest to people weeks, months, or even years after it was initially created. Not surprisingly, we bring this mindset to the internet. That may be fine for social media — tweets and status updates tend to be “of the moment” — but when writing blogposts, stations could be missing out if they're only publishing the latest music news and celebrity gossip. After all, once a pop culture phenomenon passes, people move on. In 2019, not many people are looking for the internet's hot takes on Team Edward vs. Team Jacob or Kanye West interrupting Taylor Swift at the VMAs. These blogposts might've gone viral back in the day, but they're not attracting traffic now.
On the other hand, a blogpost that contains a list of ten great places to take kids in your town, or the history of a local custom, or a unique dessert recipe, could attract web traffic for years to come. Even old interviews with big musical artists could drive traffic down the road. So when it comes to creating web content, consider a mix of both topical and evergreen content.
But don't just create evergreen content and passively assume that people will find it. Use these three tactics to resurface old content that listeners may still enjoy:
1. An email drip campaign
Email is a fantastic tool for getting extra mileage out of older content. Spend an hour or two setting up an automatic email campaign that “drips” out content over time and you could see a noticeable lift in your web traffic. For example, your email campaign might be triggered when somebody signs up for your email newsletter. A week later, they are automatically sent a link to the interview your station did with Bradley Nowell of Sublime back in the day. A month later, an email highlighting your morning show's best phone scams of all time is sent out. And a month after that, it's followed by an email driving people to your night jock's secret Bloody Mary recipe. Best of all, it takes very little time to set it up; just be sure to review and freshen up the campaign once a year.
2. Resharing on social media
If you've got compelling classic content, don't be afraid to reshare it on social media. Here at Jacobs Media, we use a WordPress plugin that randomly takes older blogposts and reposts them on Facebook and Twitter. As a result, sometimes these posts drive more traffic to our website when reshared than they do when they're first published. In fact, we've seen a 16% lift in our overall web traffic just from resharing older content. If your station's website isn't built in WordPress, look for an alternate tool for resharing content, such as Buffer.
3. Optimizing for search engines
Radio broadcasters have a bad habit of overlooking search engine optimization — “SEO,” or the art of getting your content to show up in the results of search engines like Google. This is a big mistake, especially with evergreen content. While social media can produce random spikes in web traffic, search engines can be the gifts that keep on giving, driving steady traffic day in and day out. Here at Jacobs Media, Google has overtaken social media as our primary source of web traffic, thanks in part to a handful of evergreen blogposts that are stellar performers.
Using these three tactics to resurface evergreen content, your radio station should be able to increase its web traffic. Give it a shot.
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