Content Marketing Quality or Quantity? How About Both!

Posted by Ross Andrew Simons

Aug 15, 2015 8:30:00 AM

content_marketing_quality_vs_quantity_why_not_both


In the world content marketing and inbound marketing, there has been a debate raging since the beginning: quality vs. quantity. Specifically, is it better to post more content at a lesser quality (because you spend less time on each post), or is it better to spend more time on making super high quality content less infrequently?

Most people have pre-conceived notions. They automatically assume that one is better than the other, but it's never that simple. 

7 Reasons Why Quality Matters in Content and Inbound Marketing (From the Content Marketing Institute):

  1. Attention is harder to grab. Especially if you're marketing to businesspeople further up the food chain, you won't be able to get by with low-quality, filler-caliber content.
  2. You can't fool Google. If your content sucks, Google will know by monitoring user behavior once they end up on your content (do they read it all the way, do they click other pages, how long do they stay on the site?)
  3. Content lives longer and older content is typically responsible for bring in new visitors. It has higher permanence, so quality matters to preserve brand.
  4. When content makes a business case for your company's offerings, it serves to reduce a prospect's likelihood to focus only on price. Why go cheap with a competitor (who hasn't embraced inbound marketing) when they don't even seem to have a comparably strong solution?
  5. A single high-quality content post can be sliced and diced into an insane amount of content. A single research study might results in 45 social media messages, 12 blog posts, a few case studies, as well as coverage on other sites. (Related Post: 3 Reasons You Should Repurpose Blog Posts Into Webinars)
  6. There's an increased need of ROI for every content piece. A higher quality content piece is more likely to return value than any single post from a quantity-based campaign.
  7. High-quality content will increase your chance of getting new business, because it will show that you know their pain points, have solutions for them, or it will display your thinking (which is vital for services businesses.

As you can guess, most content marketers choose quality over quantity because it feels good and reflects well on them. But just like quantity shouldn't come at the expense of quality, you shouldn't let "I only do quality posts" come as an excuse for low production quantity.

7 Reasons Why Quantity Matters in Content and Inbound Marketing:

  1. Quantity doesn't inherently come at the expense of quality. 
  2. Quality is great, but not if no one is reading. Think: newspapers and magazines. They don't build a readership by developing crazy high quality content. They create repeatable readership through quantity (while maintaining a decent amount of quality) of posts, on a consistent basis. That drives repeat visitors.
  3. You might spend countless hours to outline, write, and design a new piece of content. But it just doesn't have an audience. By focusing on quantity, you can actually learn what your audience is in to, before diving in deeper and pushing all of your resources into a single topic. 
  4. It's easier, especially when dealing with extensive review processes. It's much easier to produce, review, approve and publish twelve 500 word content pieces than it is to get one 5000-word content piece completed.
  5. Quantity forces you to focus your articles if you want to still produce medium-quality content. Our content manager at the agency, Matt Cook, is a huge proponent of this. When you give yourself 600 words and a two-day deadline, it requires you to hone in on a single problem and directly answer it; rather than answering everyone's question ever on a single post.
  6. There is value in being a prolific content creator. While some prospects might think "Wow, this content is crazy in-depth!", others might think "Wow, this cat produces an unreal amount of solid content around my problems!"
  7. Quantity works. When Hubspot combs through their data gathered from the performance of their thousands and thousands of customers for their inbound marketing software, they find a direct relationship between quantity and results. In short, more frequency produces higher results. Seriously, they published their research and you can see it here.
    • The key quote: "As expected, we found that the more blog posts companies published per month, the more traffic they saw on their website. Companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got almost 3.5X more traffic than companies that published between 0 - 4 monthly posts."

Our Recommended Approach as a Platinum Inbound Marketing Agency

It's simple: do both. Like I reference above, producing a lot of posts doesn't mean they have to suck. Quality isn't measured by the word-count, the reading level, or the amount of big words you pack into a small space.

A quality piece of content is one that addresses a specific pain point in the most economical manner possible. If your prospect is facing a specific pain point ("I think I have bed bugs!"), your content should:

  • help them better understand that pain point (10 Signs You Have A Bed Bug Infestation) or,
  • help them solve that pain point (6 Steps for Getting Rid of Bed Bugs). 

 

That's it. It's really that simple. And you can do that with 100 words of 1,000 words or 10,000 words depending on the goal of the content, the scale of the problem, the size of the solution, and the audience you are speaking to.

The "Quality vs. Quantity" debate is a false dichotomy in content and inbound marketing. If you understand the problems of your prospects, you can churn out a ton of content that addresses them without sacrificing quality (as defined above).

This is precisely why the first thing we do with every client is go out and interview customers and previous prospects and learn what makes them tick...straight from the horse's mouth. It's also why we post, at bare minimum, 8 blog posts a month and usually more.

Let us, help you.

Since we're on the subject, why don't you tell me what your problems are? Shoot me an email (rsimons@imrcorp.com) with problems you face (example: "I don't know what design tools to use to make my job easier" or "how can I get my peers to contribute to our company content?").

I'll get those problems on our blogging calendar for our agency. We'll write a blog post just for you, then I'll send you an email once it's published.

3 Questions About Inbound Marketing Everyone Is Asking

Become a better inbound marketer by subscribing to the IMR blog.


Learn to execute marketing better, faster, and easier, driving results and improving ROI. We publish two posts a week, written by 8 of the best inbound marketers in the business. Don’t miss out on these field-tested inbound marketing best practices. Enter your email here and we'll make sure that if we write it, you’ll get it. .

Some examples of posts you can expect to read on our Innovative Marketer's Blog:

  • Demystify Your Low Lead Volume With These 50+ Questions
  • 3 Steps to Transform Your Sales Funnel From Awful to Amazing
  • When Good Blogging Goes Bad: 4 Ways to Get Back On Track
  • And more!

Just fill out the form below to subscribe to updates when we post new blog content.

Let's talk about this! Leave a comment below.

Subscribe to the Blog

Recent Posts