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How to Write Blog Content that Goes Viral

By June 9, 2014April 21st, 2015Digital Marketing, Inbound Marketing

There is no better feeling in marketing than to watch your creation take on a life of its own. An idea sparks, smolders, and ignites – then the next thing you know you have a full-blown wildfire.

If only every blog we wrote did that! The fact is, the viral blog is the outlier. Most individual blog articles produce a modest amount of traffic. Multiple blogs end up working together to produce something measurable and significant, which makes it worth it.  But any one “average” blog might easily be considered a flop if not taken in long-term group context.

We recently conducted an audit of our company’s blogs and there are 3 articles that produce a tremendous amount of our site traffic. Meanwhile other articles get a small and steady amount of monthly traffic, and some flicker and die.

This blog covers a few tips based on insights from our own blog that may help you take your next article to the top of the charts.

Leverage the Influence of Big Brands:

Brands have strong social web influence and large groups of attentive followers. If you can leverage a brand to promote your article for you, you’re there! Especially if they will promote you over time.

A few ways to leverage brands are to mention or review their products, services, or philosophies. In depth reviews, multi-brand reviews, and competitive reviews (brand X vs. brand Y) can especially grow legs.

Remember to pick brands that are relevant to your industry or to position your article so that it’s relevant to your business goals. Once you post your blog, pull through the support by interacting with the brands on social media several times over the month.

Leverage Social and Professional Networks – Promote Your Content:

If you produce content that is relevant to extremely large and highly dedicated social or professional networks, you should invest in building out and engaging your social network to distribute and syndicate your content. Twitter is most likely going to be your best bet here.

Where There Isn’t Transparency in Business, Blow the Doors Off:

Have you ever tried to do research for an important business decision and been unable to find a good answer on the web? If so, there are probably many others in the same situation.

The web is all about access to information and transparency. Do your due diligence and write a blog about your experience. People will find your article and thank you for it. If you position your article correctly and include strong calls-to-action, they’ll also contact you for business and a certain percentage will become customers.

Bring Clarity to Big Decisions:

This goes hand-in-hand with providing transparency. Whether it’s buying the latest SAAS platform or hiring a service provider, people trust other people – not businesses – when it comes to making big decisions. So when they search for answers or advice – will they find you? If you can put yourself in the position of the advisor and not the business solicitor, you’ll attract traffic and potential customers.

In addition to these best practices make sure that you have a well thought out conversion path. Before you start writing, ask yourself who you’re trying to attract? What’s your ideal customer like? What problems do they have? What do they type into the Google search bar to solve them?

As you begin to build out your strategy for the blog, you’ll also have to figure out how you plan to convert those visitors into leads and customers. Certain blogs may require more creativity than others, especially if the topic is related, but tangential to your business – like our more popular blogs that deal with purchasing PR databases. However, through thoughtful and creative conversion paths, we’ve managed to turn our biggest traffic producers into business drivers as well.

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Andrew Erickson

Andrew is a partner at Alaniz and is responsible for heading up digital strategy and our organizational and technology infrastructure.