Eat some now, save some for later. That was the original message behind the Now & Later candy. The idea was that children didn’t have to eat all the individually-wrapped fruit chews at once; they could eat some now and save the rest for later. Now they are marketed as “long lasting chews.” Either way, the message is that you will enjoy them for longer than normal candy.
This concept also applies to content online. There are two kinds of successful articles online: the Nows and the Laters. Both are good at stirring up traffic and drawing attention to your website. However, the ideal content strategy will focus on both.
These are articles with short-lived relevance. For example, Now articles could include commentary on news stories or a recent court case. These are topics that people are interested in today. They will likely still be interested tomorrow. But that interest will wane. Over the next few weeks, pageviews will rapidly decline. It’s not because the article was bad. It just isn’t relevant anymore.
This style of article is frequently referred to as informational content. You provide commentary and information to an audience that really cares about the issue…right now. In two months, when the story is forgotten, the content will be outdated. But that’s not to say these articles are bad. In fact, you need them. Timely commentary can attract significant traffic to your site, raising brand awareness and your own authority. Your content will be linked to and talked about, increasing your page’s authority as well. That’s the reward for creating good content.
However, informational content isn’t always possible. To be relevant and noticed first, you need to be quick, and sometimes you may just not have the time. When you’re battling against other sites commenting on an issue, it’s entirely possible your content won’t even get noticed until it’s too late. And sometimes there’s just nothing to write about.
That’s why your content strategy should also include content that will maintain its relevance for a long period of time. Kept in its individual wrappers, it should still be good each time someone wants a bite later. This is generally referred to as educational content. It is used to teach readers about a particular topic or answer a specific question. For attorneys, this is an excellent foundation for your content strategy.
Building a large site that covers a broad array of topics relevant to your practice area will increase your site’s footprint and online visibility. The answers to these questions rarely change, so you probably won’t need to revisit these topics for several months or a year. These articles will also help your site’s organic search visibility, because they can be catered to long-tail keywords. You already know the questions your current or potential clients are likely to ask throughout the next year and can address them specifically through educational content.
While users may search in high volume for news-related content, this demand will usually be brief. Educational content generally has long-term demand, as people will continue to search for it. And, even better, the people searching for this content are probably seeking an attorney right now. Your digital strategy should include informational content, but don’t forget to invest in a solid foundation that will continue to work for you. Your long-lasting content should be good both now and later.