Evergreen Content – Creating Resources That Last

If you’re involved with your organization’s SEO, public relations, or other marketing efforts, you’ve likely heard the word “evergreen” before – but what is evergreen content? And, why should you care about it?

Evergreen content is created content which (like the trees it is named for) remains fresh, over time.

It’s a phrase which represents those topics which don’t expire, grow outdated with shifting market trends or industry standards, or become obsolete without frequent updates.

For instance, this article you are currently reading is an example of evergreen content, itself – it defines and outlines a topic which is unlikely to change over the months following posting. In fact, it will likely remain relevant for years to come – offering ongoing value to your audience. On the other hand, an article describing “Best Practices for Creating Relevant Content on Facebook” is only as long-lasting as the standards it’s based on – meaning, it would require updating every time Facebook updates the way they handle content creation.

Why should you care?

Evergreen content offers many benefits. From a management standpoint, it’s the best kind of content, as it requires no maintenance. It can be created once, published, and left alone – while continuing to offer value to your audience, indefinitely. If the topic answers a common question, or addresses a popular issue or subject, it can also be reposted periodically – reducing the need for new content, while still offering insight to your readers.

Evergreen content also benefits your audience. It is best viewed as a resource that keeps on giving – providing the basic information required to provide an overview or deeper understanding of the other articles and resources available on your website. Your evergreen content allows readers with little to no background information to quickly bring themselves up to speed on the ideas and matters relevant to your organization.

So, how does one write evergreen content?

To start, you must first consider the topic. Look for those subjects which represent the founding principles or operating functions of your industry – the subjects which tend to remain consistent and relevant over time. What information might be of most importance to your audience? And, how can you convey those messages in a way which is virtually timeless? For some industries, this will be easier than others. But when you’ve honed your subject to a static topic, you’ll be ready to move forward.

Remember that evergreen content is not solely about providing definitions – it can take many forms. If you find yourself at a loss for organizing your thoughts, you can use these simple suggestions for ensuring your evergreen content remains fresh!

  • When writing How To’s and tutorials, describe a process which is unlikely to evolve in the near future. This will help you offer value to your audience, and help them gain a greater understanding of your work, without requiring ongoing maintenance.
  • When writing resource lists, avoid linking to unstable pages. Stick to industry heavyweights, well-established organizations, and other resources which are unlikely to change. (You’ll still need to check your links periodically to ensure they are active.)
  • When creating audio and video content, stick to broad topics or tutorials, and avoid information which may be subject to change (such as links to other resources). If you reference information which becomes obsolete, you’ll need to record entirely new content.
  • When writing FAQ pages, answer those questions which will offer your audience a broad overview of your most common business functions, or industry basics. This way, you’ll continue to offer ongoing value to newcomers.
  • When writing industry definitions, make sure to clearly define common acronyms and and jargon phrases. This will help your content remain fresh, even if use of common terms shifts over the years.

While the goal of creating evergreen content is to craft posts which benefit your audience indefinitely, it is still important to revisit these posts over time. If done correctly, content should require only minor tweaks periodically, to ensure that you are still using the language and formats which resonate with your audience.

Also, don’t lose this valuable content under a mound of new postings – evergreen content is a valuable resource, which should be featured prominently on your site. Make it easy to locate, by featuring it under “Popular Posts” or a similar search category.

For more information on crafting evergreen content which will meet your audience’s needs for years to come, click here to contact the experts at Strongpages.