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Content marketing isn’t just about creating awesome content. It’s about getting that awesome content shared. When people share your blog articles, your audience will be expanded and your brand awareness boosted. More shares can even help you find new leads that can be nurtured toward a sale.

So how do you get your content shared? Below are several good tips. Some you may be aware of — and some you may make you go “hmmm.”  

Take a look:

Add compelling images

Since images make your content more interesting, this one is a must. According to Buffer, “Visual content is 40x more likely to be shared on social networks.” With so many free image tools now at your disposal, you can certainly find at least one image to include with your content. Make it happen.

compelling photo

Have excellent headlines

The headline being is the first thing people see, so make it one that stands out. At times, people will share articles based on the headline alone. Crafting an awesome headline can be the most challenging part of writing an article, but a great one will go a long way toward getting your work shared. Note: We don’t ever write the headlines / titles for our articles until after the final draft of the blog. And, we typically go through at least three or four ideas before we determine the best one for the content.

Have excellent subheadings

If you step back and take a look at this article, you’ll see the text is broken up with several relevant subheadings. Each heading not only sets the reader’s expectation, but they make the entire article easy to scan and read. The visual appearance of the article itself is critical. If your font is tiny or your text isn’t broken up into short sections, it won’t get read — and then in won’t get shared. Draw your reader through the article with good headlines that entice the reader to keep going. 

Listicles are your friend

Believe it or not, articles based on lists are still shared more often than any other article type. Heck, THIS article is a listicle! It’s simple and straightforward. In our fast-paced world of information consumption, listicles give your readers the ability to digest your content very easily and quickly — making it much more shareable for them too.

Add social sharing buttons on your blog

You know how Amazon makes it incredibly easy to buy something? Just a couple clicks and you’ve purchased a doodad that you were merely pondering just a few minutes earlier. Do the same for your blog content. Make it super easy for your reader to share by adding social sharing buttons to your blog for a variety of networks (especially Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and yes, even Google Plus.)

Auto populate authors

If you’ve ever tweeted an article from Entrepreneur, you’ll see what I mean with this one. Open any article in and then click on the Twitter social sharing button. What you’ll see is: blog title, by <author>, <article hyperlink>, via @Entreprenuer. In the same way, be sure that your twitter sharing button auto populates not only your own twitter handle but the author’s too. It shows you want to give credit where credit is due, boosting both your social proof as well as the likelihood of retweets by the author (and others).

Share with others in your industry

Whatever niche you work in, you likely have a tribe. Your tribe often obtains relevant, industry specific information from online groups that they belong to on LinkedIn, Facebook or other online community forums. Post your article in those places and you’ll find others who will be more likely to share it amongst the masses.

Hitch your wagon to a trend

Ok, you’ll have to be quick with this one, but it can be worth the effort. If you can present an interesting angle that piggybacks on a trending hashtag, you’ll greatly increase the likelihood of getting your stuff shared. Gwen did a great job with this when she wrote about how to properly jump in on viral trends (in this case, #TheDress). Before you include a trending hashtag, be certain your content is relevant. People don’t want to be tricked or waste their time.

Ask and appreciate

No duh, right? Please hear me out. We’ve already mentioned the importance of social sharing buttons. However, those that show counts of shares can sometimes work to your disadvantage. If an article has only one or even NO shares, that not only means that your followers don’t care about it, it means that your colleagues don’t care about it either. Get the authors and others in your company to share articles not just once or twice but multiple times. The more shares it gets, the more likely it will be shared by others. And be sure to thank each and every person who does because it shows that YOU care too.

Influence the influencers

When you can, quote some experts in your content. Even go so far as to let them know you’ve mentioned them. They may like and better yet, share your work as a result.

Get rid of comments

Yep, you read that right. You may have noticed that a lot of influential blogs have turned off their comments on blogs (including this one that you are reading right now). Comments can often sidetrack the conversation or can be full of junky promotional crap. Instead of comments on the article itself, ask readers to take the conversation online to Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus. If they do, be sure to interact and engage with them so their insights don’t go unanswered.

Share and share alike

Share your articles multiple times on social media sites but don’t be selfish and share only YOUR stuff. Share other people’s great content too. When it comes to sharing, the road goes both ways. Pay it forward and you’ll be rewarded with shares from others.

Make your content epic

I saved the best for last. You see, researchers from the New York Times did a study on “The Psychology of Sharing” and they discovered that “Ninety-four percent of people who share a post do so because they think it will be helpful to other people.” So, bring value to your reader. Make it helpful. Write on topics people care about. People share because they are stoked about finding useful information. They share because they think that their followers will find it useful too.

Need help creating high-quality content that’ll get shared? Better yet, need help getting your content shared online? We pride ourselves on doing an awesome job of both for our clients. Give us a shout and let’s chat about how our experienced team can help take these tasks off your plate. We know you have better stuff to do. 🙂