Open refrigerator with fresh milk, eggs and veggies. Understanding the lifespan on content on different platforms is helpful for keeping your content fresh.Planning, creating and promoting online content can be very rewarding but also very time-consuming. It takes significant resources to produce good content and develop a cohesive promotion plan, whether that involves sharing content on social media or posting it to your own blog or to an industry/partner site. It’s not surprising then that digital marketers often wonder: “What is the lifespan of this content?”, “How will I know when my content is stale?” and “What are some strategies to make my content last?” Being able to address these questions will help inform your overall content marketing strategy.

Consider Average Lifespan

Here is a compilation of stats from various industry sources on content sharing by platform. For the purpose of this article, let’s imagine that a new piece of content was developed and then published across a variety of platforms. Here’s an estimate of the lifespan of that content on each platform:

SnapchatSnaps “self-destruct” 10 seconds after being opened.

TwitterAccording to Moz, the average life of a tweet is just 18 minutes. This was determined by measuring the average span of time in which a tweet is retweeted.

FacebookAccording to Wisemetrics, the average Facebook post makes 75% of its impressions within 2-½ hours, hits 75% of potential reach within just 1-½ hours and receives 75% of engagement within the first 5 hours.

LinkedInSprocket Websites estimates that a LinkedIn post will enjoy the majority of shares within the first 24 hours.

InstagramAccording to Copypress, Instagram posts receive 75% of engagement within the first 48 hours.

PinterestAccording to Webfx, Pinterest pins receive 75% of views within the first year.

BlogAccording to HubSpot, the average blog post will continue to generate (diminishing) traffic for around 2 years, perhaps receiving 75% of engagement within the first 18 months. However, high-performing posts (what HubSpot terms “compounding posts”) that address a specific problem can continue to generate steady or increasing traffic for several years. Likewise, analysis conducted by Scholarly Kitchen indicates that more in-depth academic and professional journal articles receive 50% of engagement within 3-4 years.

bar chart illustrating content lifetime by platform.

* Sources:

Know When It’s Stale

A good friend of mine who is a realtor, likes to say “If you can smell it, you can’t sell it”. This is true not only of real estate, but also of content. Topics that are dated, uninteresting or no longer relevant are unlikely to attract and engage. Based on the HubSpot research mentioned above, it’s a smart idea to regularly conduct a content audit, paying special attention to those posts that are more than two years old. Start by checking Google Analytics to see which posts are garnering the most and least pageviews.

Keep It Fresh

Here are some strategies to drive more traffic and shares with content:

  • Repost old (but still relevant) content on social media for second burst of shares. Buffer has compiled some compelling research showing the benefits of reposting content.
  • Re-optimize evergreen blog content to further improve its performance and help it rank even higher in search results.
  • Revaluate the format of your posts for each platform – content should ideally be specifically tailored to each platform. Likewise, to ensure your content is actually being seen, take a careful look at the frequency of posting for each platform. For example, you may need to post with greater frequency on Twitter than on Pinterest.
  • Repurpose content that has good engagement metrics. If a particular topic has performed well, create similar content with a slightly different angle or a completely new format. For example, a well-performing article could be recreated as an infographic, a checklist or expanded into longer-form content.

Invest in a content marketing strategy that engages and converts. Call 443.475.0787 or contact us today.

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