Jan Gordon
August 17, 2014

Why Your Content Lives or Dies in 10 Seconds

By Lee Traupel

Content marketing is non-interruptive marketing that engages and informs a visitor. It’s gonna work or fall flat in about ten seconds like a great Sam Cooke song – you’re humming along or tuning it out.

  1. You have ten seconds to get the attention of your visitor. The usability maestro Jakob Nielsen’s Darwinian logic is spot on for content marketers.
  2. Headlines drive the visitor into the text; or not! Be compelling.
  3. Know your visitor – what do they want to read and how do you educate?
  4. Try to integrate some emotion or personality into your content.
  5. Confusion kills: God knows all content marketers struggle with this. Try to be concise.
  6. Text should broken up with headers, bullets or numbers.
  7. People read online in an “F” pattern, starting at top left and moving down.
  8. Go lean and mean with your text. #lessismore
  9. Bullets and Numbers are smartphone friendly – use them or lose the visitor’s attention span.
  10. Use photos, infographics, images; some times the wackier the better.

Best Practices for B2B Content Marketing

  • Start slow: content marketing is a marathon
  • Establish benchmark measurements at the outset.
  • Keep moving forward: don’t get bogged down in the proverbial trenches.
  • Align content marketing with other strategies.
  • Involve your entire organization whether it’s five or fifty people: great content ideas come in all shapes and sizes: sales, customer service and/or exec staff.
  • Great content marketers “newsjack” and “borrow” from others.
  • Mix and match snackable short form (images, under 300 word blog post, videos) with long-form “evergreen” high value content.
  • “Chunk” and repurpose content to leverage costs.


Seven Key Content Marketing Metrics

  1. Stellar curated content still drives engagement: an editorial calendar is just a horizontal tool.
  2. Mobile usage is driving 30-50% of content “consumption” (be mobile savvy) but “brand stories” may drive significantly more engagement: mix and match the size of your content (long or short form).
  3. Content syndication is increasingly more important in today’s “technology drenched’ world: use rinse and repeat cycles to reach today’s distracted consumer and professional.
  4. Personalty still drives content engagement for B2B and B2C brands and it’s becoming increasingly more important to use imagery that gets attention in the marketplace. Note: LinkedIn’s move to an image centric feed.
  5. Content Measurement is Critical: have a finite grasp of these ROI drivers: Unique Visitors, Page Views, Return Visits, Time on Site, Bounce Rate, Engagement/Virality (ReTweets, Shares, Likes, Comments), Revenue or Lead Generation.
  6. Mix and match “snackable” short form content (images, video, infographics) with “evergreen” high value content to drive brand engagement, incremental traffic and revenue.
  7. Build in cross platform marketing on all top tier platforms: Tumblr, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook using plugin to automatically “push” content to other platforms or pure play content syndication cloud based services.

Why Visual Content is Driving B2C Brands

  1. Don’t be afraid to experiment with visual communications – creativity drives engagement with your brand. Start slow and measure back end conversions with your imagery to understand what’s working and what isn’t.
  2. Map your images and content to the platform by creating discrete types of images that resonate with users on a social network. Personalize your visual content and don’t “broadcast” untargeted content.
  3. When/where possible share useful content that addresses the needs of your target market. Use visuals to capture the attention of a visitor and then couple this with text that’s linked out to other sources and/or informs and engages.
  4. For visual presentations don’t forget the “rule of three” – Steve Jobs was a master of distilling complex topics down into three.
  5. Consumers like to see the human side of your brand. Scott Monty (Ford’s VP of Marketing) has been an advocate of “human to human” communications to drive brand engagement.
  6. Tell a story when/where you can – video is of course a great way to use long form content to engage your audience.
  7. Chunk your visual content up and reuse it to leverage development costs. The average consumer sees 3-5K visual messages per day and Google has indexed over 50B pages. Repetitive marketing can be a good thing.


Originally published as Great Content Lives or Dies in Ten Seconds by Lee Traupel of Linked Media World and re-published with permission. Lee is a Huff Post Contributor | Content Strategist| Design Decoder | ROI Herder | Mojo Maker | Techy Not Coder | UX/UI Romanticist | Just Delta Blues | Digital strategist – market honed digital navigator for brands big and small. You can connect with Lee on Twitter or Linked Media Group.

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Top 100 #Socialmedia Global Influencer | CEO of Curatti, Publisher of #B2B #Content | Author/ Digital Marketing Strategist | http://appearoo.com/JanGordon