Marketing March 11, 2016 Last updated September 18th, 2018 1,480 Reads share

Wide or Deep Content: What Route Should You Take?

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Content marketing is coming on strong in 2016. It’s been here for a while, of course, ever since businesses realized that customers want answers to their questions instead of being served sales pitches constantly. Today, almost 97 % of large companies’ use content marketing in one form or another and content creation process is turning into part science and part an art form.

Sitting down to write, record, or design a decent piece of content is difficult, mostly because people approach it haphazardly, without taking their audience into consideration. Relevance is the caveat of a good piece of content. To create good content you need to think long and hard about who your audience is, and what they want. You have to anticipate their questions and provide useful answers. This becomes easier if we know that there are two different types of content that serve different purposes.

Wide content – primary goal of wide content is to attract a new audience.

Deep content – focuses on enhancing your relationship with the audience you already have.

It’s important not to sacrifice one type of content for the sake of the other. Both have their rightful place in your content marketing strategy. Having a clear-cut goal for every piece of content you create will enhance its effectiveness. At the least, it will give you something to measure.

When you put out an article about ‘Hot new content marketing strategies’ you know your goal is to attract a new audience. Of course, your existing audience members might find this interesting, and that is great. Overlap in interest between those two groups is expected, and appreciated, but wide content will be more successful in attracting people who’ve never heard of you. Shares, tweets, and unique views are the important metrics here that will show you how good your content is in finding a new audience.

On the other hand, an article titled ‘How to use Twitter in your content marketing strategy’ is probably a very detailed piece that offers some great insights into a very specific part of the overall content marketing strategy. Chances are you have a lot of readers that will find this article very helpful and this, in turn, will help you strengthen your relationship with them.

Staying wide

There are numerous benefits of writing wide content, but the first one that comes to mind is that it is beneficial to your SEO. Wide content is often brief and easily digestible, which means you can serve it frequently and with impunity. If that content is useful – and it always should be – it will rank well and signal Google that you are a publisher worth paying attention to. This will, hopefully, increase your page rank, and depending on the keywords you target, Google will start showing your articles on the first page. This is a huge success in SEO terms because it increases your visibility.

Benefits of going wide:

SEO – as we mentioned, writing on a wide range of topics will help you target keywords that people are putting in the search engine. Producing good-quality wide content helps you cast your net wide and grab the interest of readers that are higher in the funnel.

Virality – wide content is easily shareable. Since it often offers a fresh perspective in a to-the-point format, readers are more likely to link to it on their social media profiles.

Where and how to share wide content:

Infographics – wide content is great for infographics. They offer a nice visual overview of the topic, making it snackable, and are more likely to go viral and get shared.

Blogs – Whether it is your own blog or your guest blogging, frequent posts are great for sharing tidbits of information that current and relevant.

Podcasts – podcasts are another great media for wide content. If you’re good at it, then your style alone can get you a lot of listeners. Going off on a tangent here is expected, but make sure to cover to the topic and be fun.

Benefits of going deep:

The quality of leads – deep content is about targeting members of your audience that are further down the funnel. In-depth pieces will interest people in a research phase, and if you can provide good enough answers chances are that you will be snatching up some quality sales leads.

Becoming bookmark-worthy – People will skim through tens or even hundreds of different pages while they are on a quest. If they find your content interesting and revealing, they’ll remember it and come back for more.

Thought leadership – In-depth pieces will help you establish yourself as an authority in your industry. People will trust you and come back for more.

Where and how to share deep content:

One of the greatest assets you have at your disposal is your e-mail list. It can help you immensely in narrowing down your audience and pinpointing exactly who might be interested in what. In-depth content works best in the form of a newsletter, white paper or an e-book.

These three forms allow you room to explore any given topic to the finest detail, and your email lists gives you an opportunity to offer it to the members of your audience that already have an interest in the topics you are discussing.

Also, long-form blog posts can be useful means of distributing your in-depth content, especially if you have already established yourself as an authority on the subject.

Coming up with interesting content that is wide in nature is a challenge enough, but when you add to it the hours of research that go into creating a piece of in-depth content, you might find yourself a bit stretched. There are a lot of online tools that you can use to help facilitate the process of writing. Most of them are easy to use, and some of them are free. All of them, however, will make you a better writer, so don’t be afraid to use them.

Quora – whenever you are in the dark about what you should be writing about, dig deep into Quora. Researching your niche there will give you an idea about what interests your audience. You can use that to create relevant content in real time!

Portent’s idea generator – If you’ve covered everything on Quora, turn to this content idea generator. Type in a subject and it will give you a number of great headlines you can tweak and then use to write some great articles and blog posts that your audience will appreciate. This tool will help you with ideas for wide content you can publish on daily basis!

Soovle – If you want to know what is trending on a global scale, and across a number of search engines, take a look at Soovle! This great tool pools all current hot topics in one place, making it easier for you to hone in on topics that are hot right now!

Hemingway – It’s time to move away from Microsoft Word and start creating content on an app specially designed for content creators. Hemingway lets you write and edit your content online, making suggestions on how to make that even better!

Ilys – Sometimes it takes you hours to write a 1, 000-word article simply because you feel the constant need to go back and edit things? Say goodbye to editing-induced productivity killer by using Ilys. Ilys asks you how many words do you plan on writing and then simply bans you from making edits before you reach that word count! Trust us; it helps you get the job done much quicker!

A-Writer – If you need a truly excellent piece of writing, but don’t have the time to do it yourself, turn your attention to this professional content creation service. AussieWriter grants you access to hundreds of great writing professionals, specializing in a variety of fields. Pricing is flexible, depending on your needs (length, expertise), and you will get grade A content each and every time.

Readability tool – If you want a lot of readers, adapt your writing style and make sure that most people can understand you. This readability score tool will help you eliminate overly long sentences and complicated words so your writing resonates better with a larger crowd.

Un-suck it – Your writing will often reflect your experience, and if you’re in a particular niche it might be riddled with business lingo and jargon. Use Un-suck it to get rid of words that only a handful of people might understand and replace them with common phrases.

In conclusion, make content to fervently and diligently, making sure that every piece is useful and relevant, but mix it up a bit. Cast your net wide by creating content that is geared towards Googlers who are trying to learn more about your industry or company. Keep it light and digestible for them, otherwise, you run the risk of scaring them off. Reserve your in-depth content for you regular readers and people further down the funnel to help them understand what sets you apart from the rest of the flock and why they would benefit from doing business with you.

Images: ”Word content made with block wooden letters next to a pile of other letters over the wooden board surface composition/Shutterstock.com

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