A lot of marketers throw around the term “evergreen content.” But what is it, exactly, and how and why do you generate it?

Like evergreen trees, evergreen content stays alive over time, maintaining relevance and providing value. One way to think about evergreen content is that it tends to focus on topics you might find in a reference book about your industry (resources wouldn’t be spent on printing encyclopedias or dictionaries if the information wasn’t valuable over time). Evergreen content is to online breaking news what books are to newspapers.

Why Evergreen?

Naturally, content can’t stay relevant forever, especially in certain areas. But producing the occasional piece of content that can be promoted repeatedly over a period of time enhances your marketing and content strategies.

  • Evergreen stories make your blog, website and other online properties more findable through search. For example, people will continually search for tips like, “How to Design Landing Pages for Conversions,” which might bring them to our 90blog post on the topic by Interactive Art Director Scott Fassett. People will not continually search for information on the Facebook algorithm changes from last year because the algorithms change frequently. While content on timely events are important for a time, they don’t continually drive traffic to your site. Evergreen content with timeless keywords do continue to drive traffic, which also helps to make non-evergreen content discoverable.
  • Evergreen content saves you time. Even during busy stretches, you can have a deck of already published evergreen content to post as a way to remain active on social channels. When posting this content for a second or third time, add a fresh perspective or relate it to current news, trends or events in the text of the post itself.
  • Evergreen content keeps you active on social when things are slow. If you keep a backlog of unpublished evergreen content, you can post during periods when nothing new or noteworthy seems to be happening. Keeping your site and social channels active helps with Search Engine Optimization, reinforcing your expertise and encouraging frequent visits.

How Do You Make Content Evergreen?

Evergreen content isn’t news-y or reliant on statistics or facts that could soon become irrelevant. Tips and tutorials are safe options and still provide great information to your readers.

By generalizing some of your pieces and steering away from statistics, dates and fads, you can build up a file of stories and lists that will be valuable for months and even years. Take the headline, “6 Tips for LinkedIn Marketing in 2016.” To make it evergreen, simply change the title to, “6 Best Practices for LinkedIn Marketing,” and make sure the practices aren’t time sensitive. Other examples of this type of content include, How To Grow Your Business With Digital Marketing In Five Steps, from APRS Media, and, Improve Your Content Curation Strategy with These 5 Tips, from Hootsuite.

Evergreen content is a great way to drive traffic, keep content from becoming dated and save time. Of course, it should be just one part of your content marketing mix. Timely pieces can drive more searches (but for a shorter period of time), allow you to establish your company’s perspective and demonstrate expertise on current topics and trends.

Like evergreen trees, evergreen content stays alive over time, maintaining relevance and providing value.

About the Author

Amanda Christensen

Storytelling & Social Media Intern

Amanda is passionate about storytelling and social media, and she blogs frequently on a variety of topics. She’s currently an MBA candidate at the University of Denver Daniels College of Business.