“In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.”
That’s a quote attributed to Andy Warhol and is often pointed to as an insight into the existing influencer and social media landscape.
I always say that everyone is one piece of content away from an entirely different life. Whether it’s the Cranberry Juice Guy skateboarding to Fleetwood Mac or the Instagram famous, Drake collaborating, viral dancing influencer named Shiggy — there’s been example after example of people whose careers, lives and businesses changed on the back of one single piece of content.
One blog post can send a ripple that lasts for years…
As much as this is true in the world of personal branding and individuality, it’s also the reality for B2B and SaaS companies. The scale just isn’t as easy to see and / or measure. But maybe you’ve witnessed it. Maybe you know a company that has benefited from it. The simplest way to put it is that the right piece of content can unlock ridiculous returns if a company embraces the creation and distribution of content that their audience finds valuable.
I’ll give you a few examples of how one single asset can provide ridiculous returns in B2B. In 2019, the SaaS giant Atlassian (the brand behind Jira, Trello and more) published an essay titled “An explanation of SMART goals and how to write them.” This piece was shared over 130 times on Facebook, 30+ times on Twitter and pinned 10+ times on Pinterest.
Pretty good, right?
It gets better…
From a B2B standpoint, those are pretty good numbers. It’s rare to see B2B social content generate a lot of traction on social media, but when it does… It’s a good sign that the content is moving in the right direction to solve a real buyer problem. Here’s how this content gets better:
- It has 400+ referring domains
- It generates 37,900 visits per month
- It ranks for 3,500 different keyword variations
- And the total traffic value it generates per year is $85,800
Every single day hundreds of people are going to Google and looking for answers to questions like:
- How do you set SMART goals?
- Examples of SMART goals
- What are SMART goals?
- What is a SMART goal?
Of the 454,800 people who visit this single blog post a year:
Some of these people will bookmark the blog post and come back to it over and over again. Some people will read the blog post, begin to navigate around the Atlassian website and become more aware of their products. Some people will subscribe to their newsletter for information and eventually be convinced to use their products.
One blog post. That’s the power of content.
If this blog post, published back in 2019, converts at just .001% – that would be a total of 450 new sign-ups for Atlassian per year. Not bad for a blog post published 2 years ago…
This isn’t an isolated situation of luck. Brands that create content increase their odds of unlocking long-term value through things like SEO by creating valuable content regularly.
Here’s another example:
I’ve talked quite a bit about how Salesforce has created a multi-billion dollar empire by leveraging content and fostering a strong ecosystem:
- Salesforce’s Impressive $21 Billion B2B Ecosystem
- Salesforce’s Multi-Persona Driven Nav & Landing Pages
But these are just some of the important elements that have allowed Salesforce to thrive over the years. One of the other ways that Salesforce has continued to maintain its SEO moat in the SERP is by investing in ongoing optimization.
Similar to how a good investor will hold onto a stock for a very long time — smart brands like Salesforce identify their wins in terms of content and hold (through optimization) for a very long time.
What does Salesforce offer its customers?
Most people would say — A CRM.
This is correct. And to rank for this phrase would be quite difficult in a world where a new CRM is launched every other month. But Salesforce has ranked for this keyword due to the fact that they were early to the market. So if you go to Google and type in “What is a CRM?” it’s very likely that you will see a Salesforce page:
A page originally published by Salesforce back in 2016 titled: What is a CRM.
At the time, the search volume for ‘what is a CRM’ was quite low in comparison to the 74,000 monthly searches it receives today. But over this time, Salesforce has continued to optimize and maintain this page to drive ROI.
This is the SEO equivalent of a HODL strategy.
You don’t just press publish on a blog post and generate results once… You continue to optimize it once you hit that #1 spot in the SERP and hold on for dear life. Meaning… You make changes just like Salesforce did to ensure that you’re aligning your content with search intent.
Unlike Atlassian and Salesforce; so many companies get into the habit of focusing so much on creation that they forget the importance of embracing optimization. Not just from a search standpoint.
But also from a conversion standpoint.
Innovative brands don’t just publish their content and hope for success. They take the likelihood of success into their own hands by embracing optimization, content distribution and anything they can to help their content drive results.
The key thing to keep in mind is that once in a while if you embrace creation long enough – you will press publish on an asset that completely changes your business. Or if you’re a solopreneur / individual ==> One piece of content could completely change your life.
So keep creating.
Start viewing content less like an expense and more like an investment.
Not sure what I mean?
Here’s a great webinar on the topic:
But don’t forget the importance of content distribution and optimization. It’s through the work that happens after you press publish that will give you the greatest rewards.