With the rise of social media and blogging, content marketing has become an integral part of any online marketing campaign. So what is content marketing?

According to CopyBlogger.com “Content Marketing means creating and sharing valuable free content to attract and convert prospects into customers, and customers into repeat buyers. The type of content you share is closely related to what you sell; in other words, you’re educating people so that they know, like, and trust you enough to do business with you.”

Fresh Content is Key

Therefore the key to any content marketing campaign is to curate relevant, original content with the goal of driving profitable customer action. Great content will only benefit your additional online marketing methods such as:

  • Search Engine Optimization – Search engines love to rank fresh content!
  • Social Media Marketing – You need great content to share!
  • Pay-Per-Click – You need great ad copy to attract clicks!

OK – so you know that content is important. But how do you make it relevant to your audience? And how do you make it go viral? Here is a checklist of 6 essential ways to make your content go viral:

  • 1. Keep it simple.

  • We’ve all heard of the design principle “Keep it simple, stupid.” Keep your content focused and stick to one message. Trying to force too many ideas on the reader will make it difficult for them to pass anything along. Stick to the basics and your content will be transferable.

  • 2. Keep it credible.

  • Without being believable, your content simply won’t be shared. It needs to have some form of credibility embedded, such as using trustworthy third-party data (think surveys, polls & research papers) or using real-life examples (think recent news stories, popular news stories.) When your content is taken seriously your audience has a much easier time passing it along.

  • 3. Make it interesting.

  • Nobody wants to digest boring content. Be sure to choose an interesting topic that won’t bore your audience to death. Be sure to brainstorm thoroughly and come up with original ideas — don’t simply scour popular blogs for titles.

  • 4. Make it unexpected.

  • As much as some of us won’t admit it, unanticipated things do give us a rush of excitement. Our brains are pre-configured to pass over the mundane and familiar. One way to do so is with a shocking headline. Although, be sure to follow it up with content that relates to your surprising headline.

  • 5. Make it relate-able.

  • The best way to engage your audience is to connect with them, and allow them to identify with your content. Be sure to include elements that your readers can relate to, whether by telling a story or including visual elements. It’s always much easier for people to remember a story than some scrap of boring content.

  • 6. Make it worthy.

  • Most importantly make sure your content deserves to be shared. Not every piece of content is going to go viral, so you need to be prepared to fail (quite a few times) before getting it right. It’s all about timing, too — we all remember the famous Oreo tweet during last year’s Superbowl Blackout. which is a prime example of how a rapid-response and well-executed idea can hit it big.

    What do you think is an important element to helping content go viral?

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    Brock Murray

    Co-Founder/COO at seoplus+
    Brock Murray is a digital marketing specialist at seoplus+. He has more than a decade of experience with web design, web programming and online marketing. He has had great success in helping hundreds of businesses establish an online presence with the goal of increasing both brand recognition and targeted website traffic.