I’m going to show you a screenshot in a moment and I want you to pay extra close attention to one thing: share counts.
The screenshot is of the Freeskier home page as taken on Wednesday, January 21. But more than share counts I want you to look for a common thread between the most shared content:
Let’s recap all the articles that are listed – along with their share counts – to see if it shows up a bit easier:
Do you see what I see? Of these 8 articles, the top 4 have a combined 85,000 shares. The bottom four have fewer than 1,000 shares between them. Lest you think the point of this is some 80/20 split illusration (it’s not), let me point out something else.
Three of the BOTTOM four were Freeskier originals, but ALL OF THE TOP four were created by other people and other brands.
Lesson #1 – Brand Content Wins
This isn’t a knock on Freeskier’s, they are running a smart ship over there. In fact, it’s part of those smarts I want to highlight.
Because the first lesson we glean is that compared to these brand videos with a long production process and high cost and accompanying production value, home-brewed content – no matter how awesome – struggles to compete.
These are the piece of content that are driving massive amounts of traffic for sites like Freeskier and it’s why they way they’ve prominantly integrated these into their site is so smart.
Lesson #2 – What If…
But the real reason I’m writing this post is even more simple, more direct than that. Let’s look at that integration formula:
They create revenue through ads that are proven to sell your products and are, thus, valuable enough to buy. But what if a resort followed that exact same pattern:
What I’m trying to point out is the with the power and volume of brand content rising, the gap between the value a traditional ski publisher creates and what you are able to generate on your own is growing smaller by the day.
So my question is this: What if that was your blog? And writing a post was as simple as a paragraph explaining how awesome the video embedded above it is going to be when they click play? And what if to the side it showed upcoming weather, events, ticket deals, and more?
Do you think it would drive more traffic than that listicle you just wrote? I think so. But it doesn’t have to be either/or in any of these cases.
This stuff drives traffic. You don’t have to make it. Sharing it creates enough value to drive the pageviews resorts are paying to advertise on.
So, simply put, what if you took page from that book and shared it as well?
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