Compelling content for consumers comes in many formats now and leading industry verticals provide endless opportunities for eternally interesting content for their niche consumers. Competition for readers and viewers is stiff in vertical markets that cater to customers in specialized industries, trades or professions. There is a constant need to capture their attention in a variety of media on a recurring basis to maintain an edge.
In today’s world that means going far beyond a print publication and using all available channels of communications, such as eBooks, niche applications and offering vertical-specific websites. However, no matter what the medium, the content must remain relevant and up-to-date.
The automotive industry is a prime example. It’s one of the world’s most important economic sectors, based on revenues. Consumers are always interested in articles about their cars, but content that invites them to reread it or attracts a new audience over time can be a challenge. That’s the difference between what is called evergreen versus ephemeral content.
Ephemeron is short-lived and transitory information, such as news about the features of this year’s new truck models. That’s of passing note and irrelevant to next year’s readers, whereas a well-researched and authoritative article on what to look for in a work truck or tips for buying a new car can remain fresh, or evergreen, for years.
Reusable material should feature useful information that covers a topic that isn’t likely to change and that will stand for a few seasons. It helps if the subject also appeals to crossover audiences, such as those looking for their best buy or value in big-ticket items, combined with the best financing options.
Just as fame can be fleeting, content becomes quickly outdated in many fast-moving vertical markets, such as women’s fashion, technology or sports. However, those industries are hot markets and there is a wealth of opportunity for unique reusable material there.
Fashionistas can be interested in reading about classic wardrobe pieces in “What’s Hiding in Your Closet,” but not “Must-Have Accessories for Fall, 2013.” Likewise, football fanatics will check out “Most Memorable Coach Quotes” over the “Top Ten Teams of 2005.”
Any of those articles can float up in online search results for years, but it’s obvious which ones will attract a new public. Some content never goes out of fashion. It can be written for future reading and posted any time or created for upcoming use to fit in with a marketing schedule. Sustainable content also can be reused year after year to complement current promotions or merchandising plans.
Banking and finance are other leading vertical markets with a lot of interested followers, but both are volatile and changing minute-to-minute. Last week’s interest rates are of no interest to anyone concerned with stretching their money, but they will read about the hidden costs in long-term, low-interest loans or an article on “What’s Really Hidden in Your Wallet?”
Financial content also can cross into many other vertical markets such as real estate and travel and best buys in consumer goods.
Health issues also can have a built-in readership when combined with food articles. Food, restaurants and nutrition are all subjects that lend themselves to FAQs, which provide a base for versatile answers. One example could be “What is America’s Favorite Food and Why is It the Most Fattening?” A story on what leading athletes eat would appeal to a wide variety of readers and fit well in sport, food or health pages.
How-to guides always have a repeat audience. Everyone wants to know the best ways to save for retirement, make their money count, keep their credit cards from crooks or not get bitten by bitcoins.
These popular how-to articles can apply to just about any vertical industry, from education to healthcare. Reusable health industry articles could range from how to find the best doctor or how to know if your hospital is safe. Appealing education-oriented pieces could include how to find the best college for your child or how to beat the stress on a test. All of these themes resonate with certain readers.
Holiday how-to columns are usually well read. Any advice from how to select a Christmas tree to how to carve a turkey or how to host a party can be recycled. Content on how to have a safe Fourth of July, trick or treat or vacation can guarantee a new group of readers every year.
The strategy lies in knowing the vertical market and creating compelling content that can be archived for perennial posting.