Blog post about blog posts
For years, the industry rule of thumb has been that most blog posts have a life cycle of approximately 30 days. What methodology led to this 30-day theory? Was it just a random guess based on some marketer’s gut feeling or anecdotal observations? No one really knows. IZEA, recently commissioned a study to scientifically measure just what the lifetime value of a blog post really is. With the help of the Halverson Group, 62,863 blog posts were gathered, of which 500 were randomly sampled. When tracking the performance of these posts over time, the Halverson Group made three very interesting discoveries.
1. The lifetime value of a blog is much longer than originally believed
When calculating impressions, the team found that the lifecycle of a blog post isn’t 30 days, 30 weeks or even a year. What the study discovered is that the lifetime value of a blog post is actually two years. This finding suggests that blog posts hold much more value, over a much longer time period, than even marketers who are already sold on the power of blogging believe.
“Long-form content, such as blog posts created by influencers, are one of marketers’ most effective and cost-efficient tools today. This study has pulled back the layers so that both content creators and marketers alike can realize the full value of this content and contrast it against the other mediums in which they invest,” said Ted Murphy, CEO, IZEA. “With lifespan nearing two years, blog content and content marketing programs that leverage blogs have an evergreen value affect.”
2. Blog posts have three distinct phases of life
Throughout the course of the study, the IZEA team discovered that the majority of blog posts experience three different stages throughout their life cycle: shout, echo and reverberate.
Shout: The “Shout” phase yields an initial steep spike in impressions that occurs within the first week to 10 days, when 50% of a blog post impressions are generated.
Echo: The “Echo” phase begins shortly thereafter and lasts until day 30, when 72% of blog post impressions are realized.
Reverberate: The “Reverberate” phase makes up the 28% of remaining impressions and lasts days 30-700. The Reverberate Phase is important for both content creators and marketers as that is where the long-tail value occurs.
3. The expected lifetime impressions of a blog post can be calculated
According to the team at IZEA, multiplying our blog post’s first month pageviews by 1.4x should give a decent approximation of the total views the post will experience during its life cycle. Obviously, the digital world is ever-changing, and a lot of things can happen in two years, from changes to search engine algorithms and number of backlinks, to additional promotion and a sudden spike in interest in a certain topic. However, the 1.4x multiplier should serve as a good baseline.
Though we all have our own unique blogs, with unique audiences, unique promotional tactics and unique multipliers, if there’s one thing that IZEA’s study proves, blogs may have even more lasting value than we realize. Writing blog posts should be written for more than just today’s audience but also for next month’s audience, next year’s audience and even the audience that will still be making their way to your posts two years from now.