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Longform content and bite-sized content: why you need both

By June 26, 2020Editorial

Why Bite-Sized Content?

In a fast-paced world, where people can be overwhelmed with information, it might make sense to create bite-sized content (articles of 600 words or less and 30-second videos). Such thinking is reinforced by the idea that as technology and media become more widespread, people’s attention spans decrease.

There is a time and place for bite-sized content. Simple ideas with clear messages, such as infographics, provide audiences with what they need to know with minimal frills. Bite-sized content also can be easy to create and it funnels in more traffic day-to-day.

While the clicks can be tempting, there is also the threat of high audience turnover should bite-sized content be all that is offered. For deeper engagement and investment from audience members, long-form content comes in.

Why Long-Form Content?

Long-form content (articles of 1000 words or more, and 2-minute videos) is seen as trustworthy and even authoritative, leading to a desire to find out more about the company. This can create a sense of loyalty and trust that easily-digestible, but sometimes easily-forgotten, bite-sized content does not necessarily invoke. 

Generally speaking, the harder the “sell”, the longer the content should be. Of course, long-form content means more research, planning, and general work. It also doesn’t drive traffic the same way that bite-sized content does.

So, what to do?

As said in the title, both are needed. Variety, after all, keeps the audience on their toes and wanting more. Using bite-sized versus long-form content as is appropriate will provide the texture and depth that drives readers and viewers to your platform over and over again. Not simply to consume, but to invest themselves in what is being offered.

Figuring out when and how to use long-form or bite-sized content is work in itself, requiring insight and research about your target audience. Knowing when to present information rather than telling a story, for example, is one way to decide if long-form or bite-size is the way to go. 

The ability to gauge how long your content needs to be for your audience takes time to customize and can be on-going work as technology and society continue to evolve. Yet, the rewards are almost limitless. 

In short (no pun intended), utilize both long-form and bite-sized content to extract the benefits of each. Drive traffic with bite-sized and easy to consume content, then create back-links and deep engagement with long-form content. The optimization will be unique to each platform and company, but the rule of thumb is the same: The more you invest in your audience, the more they will invest in and engage you.

 

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