5 content marketing lessons I learned from going viral

What happens after a piece of content you’ve created goes viral? 

Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to find out the answer to this question when a blog post I wrote about the death of the social media manager got a lot of traffic. Within 24 hours, the article had 1,000 views. Mentions poured in on Twitter. I received the most LinkedIn requests I’ve ever received in one week. And my LinkedIn following easily crossed 1,000. By the end of the week, the post has reached over 50,000 views. Today, that post has more than 86,000 views.

5 content marketing lessons I learned from going viral

“Viral” is somewhat of a relative term, but for me, seeing one of my posts get more than 50,000 views in one week certainly qualifies as going viral.

It was an odd experience for me because as a marketer, I often think about ways of extending the reach of my company’s content. I am not alone: many marketers want to crack the code for viral marketing. In fact, it’s the quest for virality that’s driving the popularity of real-time marketing. If we can all be like Oreo, then we’ll boost brand awareness and increase lead count/sales…eventually.

From my experience going viral, I’ve learned some valuable content-marketing lessons. Here are 5 of them:

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Avoid the TLDR syndrome: 8 tips on how to visually break up your blog posts

Use images in your blog posts

I read many blog posts every week. As a social media marketer, I’m always on the look out for great content to share and for inspiration. Reading many different blogs help me do that.

One common blogging mistake that I often see is people not breaking their blog posts up visually. There’s nothing like big chunks of paragraphs that make me want to move on to something else.

I am not alone. Studies show that the TLDR (or tl;dr for too long; did not read) syndrome is real. Most people simply don’t finish reading online articles.

TLDR meme
Photo: http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/tldr

That’s partly because we have shorter attention spans, but that doesn’t mean bloggers can’t do anything about it. It all comes down to formatting. Your blog posts are not academic papers, so stop formatting them as such.

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The smart marketer’s guide to using Buffer for social media efficiency {updated regularly}

If there’s one social media management tool that you absolutely cannot live without, what would it be?

For me, that’s Buffer.

I first discovered Buffer not through their software but through their awesome blog. The folks at Buffer do in-depth, well-researched articles about marketing and life hacks, and more than a year ago, I came across one of their posts. I read their blog posts religiously, and after a few weeks, I was intrigued so I finally tried their software. To this day, the Buffer blog is one of my favorite corporate blogs around.

But Buffer not only has a great blog—they also have a great product. And if you’re serious about having a decent social media presence, you absolutely must use it. I use it to maintain my personal Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. And for me, Buffer is more than just a social media scheduling service.

How to use Buffer for social media efficiency

Whether you’re a Buffer newbie or a regular user, here are some tips and tricks you should try today.

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How to get more done by escaping the culture of busy

Stop prioritizing your career

In my latest LinkedIn post, I share my thoughts on why you should stop prioritizing your career:

I am not suggesting that you slack off at work, but what I’m advocating for is a smarter and more balanced approach. Putting too much emphasis on your career could burn you out, make you less focused and ultimately reduce your productivity. It’s counterproductive to put your career first. If you’re serious about becoming a more productive member of your team, prioritize your personal and family life. Everything else will fall on its rightful place.

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How to schedule your retweets [social media tip]

Did you know it’s possible to schedule your re-tweets? I’m not talking about the manual retweets (RT) where you put “RT” in front of the tweet. I’m talking about native re-tweets: those that use Twitter’s re-tweet button.

A couple of years ago, manual RTs were the way to go on Twitter. In the last few years, however, many Twitter users have come to appreciate the official RT—so much so that for a period of time, some people were publicly shaming those who used the manual RT.

How to schedule your retweets

My personal feeling is that unless you’re manually adding something to the original tweet (for instance, by adding a comment before “RT”), you probably should just use the new RT. It’s the right thing to do—it gives full credit to the original twitterer, and it’s easier since it won’t require you to shorten the original tweet.

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