You are probably aware of what content marketing (or social promotion) is, and just how much traffic promoting your content socially can drive. If you are not as familiar with content marketing and its value in your online marketing strategies, then check out the two articles below before reading on:
I must admit that from the first time I hit the front page of Digg some 5 years ago, even though I was able to get hundreds, if not thousands, of links from content marketing campaigns, it was really the traffic that impressed me the most. I think that no matter what a person’s goals from content marketing are, it is hard not to be excited by the idea of thousands of new visitors on your site for the first time.
It was this massive volume of traffic, that lead to terms like the Digg Effect (which originated from the Slashdot Effect), as sites were taking thousands of hits per second and receiving anywhere from 50,000 to 100,00o visitors in a day after being promoted to the front page of sites like Digg.
Although the traffic Digg can send significantly declined over the last 3 years, there is still a great opportunity to get a volume of traffic from content marketing that would drop most servers in a matter of minutes. However, it is very important to note (even bolded) that this level of traffic from content marketing is not the norm, and most campaigns receive a more moderate level of traffic.
That said, I wanted to share a select few of the content marketing successes we have had over the last year, to help demonstrate just what the high end of traffic succeeding in content marketing can drive today.
1) Man Carves Wife a 6,000 Stair Path in Mountain is a very fun story about a couple who where forced to leave their homes and live in a mountain for 50 years so that they could be together. During that time, the husband carved 6,000 stairs in the side of the mountain by hand, so his wife could go up and down the mountain easier.
This simple feel good article was published and successfully socially promoted four years ago resulting in about 120,000 visits over a week time period.
As you can see below, Digg sent the majority of the traffic in 2007, with Reddit, StumbleUpon, and even Propeller, sending about 10,000 visits each. One thing to note is that since that promotion, the StumbleUpon traffic has grown slowly to around 24,000 visits.
Yesterday, the story again hit the front page of Reddit, sending almost 200,000 visits in a single day. It is important to note that this is also one of the highest volumes of traffic I have ever seen in a single day from content marketing, and it was on a Sunday.
Also it is interesting to note how large Reddit as a whole has grown over the years, to be able to send that much traffic in a single day.
In total, the article has received around 425,000 visits and counting.
2) 14 Cover Songs That Are Better Than The Original was well written and had a nice hook to pull most viewers into the article. This was socially promoted all over, but really had an amazing response on StumbleUpon, receiving close to 850,000+ visits to date, with over 500,000 in one week time period.
3) Is Starting A Business Safer Than Your Job? This is a Infographic we created and then socially promoted in October 2011. Showcasing some really interesting data, the graphic really touched on a topic that many people are curious about, thus it had some great success receiving about 60,000 visits to date.
As StumbleUpon was really the driving force on this campaign, it is a good example to show how StumbleUpon traffic comes in over time building to a peak, and then slowly declining without ever really stopping completely. Even two months later the infographic is receiving a few hundred visits a day.
4. The Dark Side of Success: Google in the Courtroom was a really creative Infographic which we socially seeded back in August. Again, StumbleUpon was really the leader in sending traffic, with about 36,000 visits.
This example again demonstrates how StumbleUpon’s traffic continues to build over time and never really completely stops coming.
These four examples above are only a few of the successes we have had in recent months, and we expect to see many more as these social sites continue to grow year over year.
Again, I want to emphasize that the above are provided as examples of the higher level of success that content promotion can provide. More often than not, you will have a more moderate level of success with your campaigns.