A Guide To Long-Form Content


Meet Sonya: A content material marketer who’s eager on all the most recent fads, like snappy tweets and seven-second TikTok movies.

With all that 7-second content material consumption, it’s no surprise Sonya is hesitant to start out tapping away at 2,000-word weblog articles. She thinks to herself, “Is long-form content material lifeless?”

Then, she reaches this very article that you just’re studying proper now, and identical to you, she’s curious.

From my perspective, fluffy and boring long-form content material is lifeless, sure.

However, precious long-form content material that works – that actually stands the check of our ever-decreasing consideration spans – is all about creating engagement, not size.

So, how are you going to create content material that engages your viewers like a 10-hour Netflix marathon?

Let’s now take a deeper look.

What Is Lengthy-Type Content material?

What involves thoughts whenever you consider “long-form content material?”

Is it a endless weblog article? What a few e book?

Actually, long-form content material can be:

  • 40-minute podcast episodes. (Am I the one one who’s binged advertising episodes to get pumped for my day?!)
  • 20-minute YouTube tutorials.
  • 60-minute webinars.
  • Longer carousel posts on Instagram or LinkedIn.

The extra you concentrate on it, the extra you understand we truly devour a ton of long-form content material each day.

Lengthy-Type Content material Vs. Quick-Type Content material

Let’s deal with the “is long-form content material lifeless?” debate as soon as and for all.

To provide you a little bit of context into what we’re working with, Microsoft reported that 20 years in the past, the common consideration span was 12 seconds.

As we speak, we’re at a whopping 8.25 seconds.

However, we binge-watch a number of 60-minute episodes of TV exhibits in a single sitting (myself included).

So whenever you’re in a dilemma about how lengthy to make long-form content material, contemplate these elements:

  • It’s extra about how nicely you interact your viewers and the worth you present reasonably than merely making lengthy content material.
  • The channel you’re creating content material for closely influences the size (for instance, a weblog article could be the preferrred size at 1,500 phrases as a result of that’s how a lot house it’s good to cowl the subject, whereas a e book may have 250 pages).
  • After analyzing 11.8 million Google search outcomes, Backlinko found the common first-page consequence incorporates 1,447 phrases. Contemplating that Google’s aim is to supply essentially the most useful outcomes that customers choose, this highlights that customers take pleasure in longer content material.

For brief-form content material:

  • Once more, the channel influences the size. As an example, particularly with e-mail advertising, the message must get throughout instantly, otherwise you’ll lower the possibility of getting consideration.
  • With social media channels like Twitter or TikTok which have been made with conciseness in thoughts, character limits drive you to maintain your message brief and candy.
  • Not all touchdown pages should be brief, it’s extra about conveying the essential info your viewers wants.

In accordance with Peep Laja of CXL:

“Fearful that your copy is just too lengthy? Don’t. If any individual is able to purchase after only a temporary skim (having simply learn ~20% of the copy), they will simply skip forward and click on “Purchase.” No downside.

But when any individual reads all of the textual content in your website and nonetheless has questions and doubts, you then’ve received an issue. For this reason long-form copy works nicely for gross sales pages.”

So, whereas there are actually occasions and locations the place short-form content material is a should, long-form content material continues to be alive and nicely.

How To Write Lengthy-Type Content material

Bear in mind Sonya from earlier?

We’ve included Sonya as a result of she’s possible loads such as you: A content material marketer that’s struggling to find out learn how to incorporate long-form content material into her advertising technique.

She creates the story inside this text as a result of she’s relatable. As a content material marketer myself, I’m continually debating over how lengthy to make content material, so I fully perceive her dilemma.

So with regards to your personal content material, how are you going to craft a narrative that brings the entire piece to life?

And the way do you efficiently incorporate long-form content material into your advertising technique?

Let’s now dig into that.

Step 1: Discover Your Content material’s Goal

There’s one thing I must make abundantly clear: Regardless of the size, don’t create content material simply to create content material.

Each content material piece wants a selected intention for a selected viewers.

So, take into consideration these questions earlier than creating content material:

  • What downside does this content material assist my viewers clear up?
  • What kind of individual would learn this text?
  • How does this content material align with, and assist, the remainder of my advertising technique?
  • Which channel am I selling this content material on?

When you’ve received readability there, what you want throughout the content material turns into a lot clearer.

Step 2: Create A Story That Drives Engagement

Sadly, long-form content material has a popularity for being boring, however when it entertains folks, they’ll be looking forward to extra.

When doubtful, all the time bear in mind: If Netflix can create a narrative like Squid Video games, the place subscribers have watched over 2.1 billion hours because it was launched, then you possibly can create long-form content material that retains your viewers glued to the display, too.

You are able to do this by creating related content material that engages folks with a narrative to drag on their feelings and join with their deepest challenges.

The identical goes for B2B as a result of, on the finish of the day – you’re nonetheless promoting to folks.

Actually, the hook (the eye grabber) is likely one of the most essential elements of content material; so when you possibly can weave in a narrative all through, it retains your viewers scrolling till the top.

Step 3: Write Sufficient To Convey Your Message

The aim with long-form content material ought to by no means be to “key phrase stuff” or write simply to satisfy a phrase rely.

The intention ought to all the time be so as to add worth, insert recent concepts, make clear difficult ideas, and finally make folks’s lives simpler.

For instance, take into consideration your favourite advertising podcast – even when it’s 60 minutes lengthy, you’re possible wanting to proceed listening and gained’t cease till the very finish (even when it takes a few days).

If content material issues to your readers, they’ll persist with it till it’s completed.

Step 4: Break Up Textual content With Visuals And A Nicely-Designed Web page

Readers will lose curiosity nearly instantly for those who don’t enchantment to their wants visually.

People like issues damaged up by bullet factors, italics, brief sentences, and visible imagery.

Identical to whenever you have been in 1st grade studying to learn, an entire web page of textual content with no imagery appeared daunting.

The identical idea applies right this moment. Usually, folks prefer to scroll by means of the whole lot of a weblog article to view the details earlier than consuming the entire thing.

So, by preserving it snappy and well-designed, you’ll improve your possibilities of them studying your entire weblog.

Right here’s an instance:

Eddie, the proprietor of VeryGoodCopy, does an distinctive job of preserving his content material brief, candy, and to the purpose:

good copywriting exampleScreenshot from VeryGoodCopy, October 2022

By including pictures, massive dialogue, and brief sentences, he’s constructed his subscriber checklist to over 48,000 entrepreneurs.

Final however actually not least – don’t skimp on the cellular view optimization.

It’s greater than possible your readers are tuning in on their telephones, and if it’s wonky, they’ll exit instantly.

Step 5: Promote And Repurpose

Now comes the enjoyable half – promotion and repurposing.

The entire level of making content material is for folks to learn it. So, shout it from the rooftops, and make sure you put it on the market a number of occasions throughout a number of channels.

A good way to do that is to interrupt up the subjects inside your article into micro-content.

As an example, I may create:

  • A carousel submit summarizing the factors made on this weblog article.
  • A Twitter thread.
  • A brief video on LinkedIn.

3 Excessive-High quality Lengthy-Type Content material Examples

Most be taught by instance, so listed here are a number of of my favorites for extremely partaking long-form content material.

Instance 1: Refine Labs’ Podcasts

Podcast long form content exampleScreenshot from Income Vitals Podcast, Refine Labs, October 2022

Why it’s so superior:

  • Extremely partaking episodes, as much as an hour or extra.
  • Options reside commentary from CEO Chris Walker and questions from the viewers, which builds a powerful neighborhood.
  • Not centered on promoting, however reasonably informing the viewers to really enhance how advertising works
  • Repurposed closely on LinkedIn.
  • Educates his viewers about strategies to really enhance their advertising methods, no matter whether or not or not they ever work with Refine Labs.

Instance 2: Orbit Media’s 2022 Running a blog Statistics

New blogging statistics for content 2022 orbit mediaScreenshot from Orbit Media, October 2022

Why it’s so superior:

  • It compiles actual information based mostly on surveys reasonably than simply summarizing different folks’s analysis.
  • The surveys are from actual individuals who work on weblog articles, so the information is reliable.
  • It’s up to date on a yearly foundation, so info is all the time updated.
  • The useful visuals with infographics summarize a very powerful info in an simply readable method.
  • The subject material professional commentary provides credibility.
  • It’s excellent for producing pure backlinks.

Instance 3: Patagonia’s Documentary Of The “Wolfpack”

wolfpack content exampleWolfpack, Patagonia, September 2018

Why it’s so superior:

  • Makes use of a powerful give attention to emotion, constructed immediately by means of actual folks.
  • Builds a narrative related to the model and typical viewers, however doesn’t promote.
  • Stays true to Patagonia’s model mission of serving to the atmosphere.

With The Proper Technique, Lengthy-Type Content material Can Win

After studying this text, Sonya is now satisfied to take a whack at a juicy 1,500 article – so the place does that depart you?

If you happen to determine to create long-form content material, simply bear in mind:

  • Make sure you’ve solidified a selected goal in your content material.
  • Collect sufficient info to obviously get your message throughout.
  • Make it precious & value your readers’ time.
  • Weave in a narrative.

And don’t overlook to advertise and repurpose it!

Extra assets: 

Featured Picture: Inside Inventive Home/Shutterstock


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