From blog writing time to Google’s war on misrepresentative content: content marketing trends

Average blog writing time increases by 26%

Content marketers’ average blog writing time has risen by 26% since 2015, according to a new study from Orbit Mediablog writing time

But, we’re not just sat twiddling our thumbs; this stat alludes to an important development in content marketing methodology.

Generating high-quality, compelling content is becoming more labour-intensive in a congested market. Here’s how this trend has panned out since 2014:

blog writing time

*Graphs courtesy of Business2Community

So, what are content marketers doing with the extra blog writing time? Additional research and planning are likely to play a role in this new era. As is a greater awareness and understanding of the intricacies of SEO.

But, most importantly, content marketers are focusing on producing longer-form content that provides more value for the reader. This graph charts the increase in average word count:

length-of-typical-blog-post

As you can see, average blog length has increased by over 30% since 2014, equivalent to north of 200 words.

Those who put in long hours behind the keyboard to deliver longer high-quality pieces will see satisfactory results.

Google wages war on misrepresentative content

Google has updated its AdSense publisher policy to clamp down on misrepresentative content, the search giant has announced. fingers_crossed_untruths

The search engine has received criticism — alongside Facebook — in the wake of both the US election and EU referendum. This is for promoting and/or profiting from news posts that severely lacked accuracy.

Google has now set out plans to prevent publishers from “Enticing users to engage with content under false or unclear pretenses (e.g., deceptively presenting fake news articles as real).”

A statement released by Google this week read:

“Users don’t want to be misled by the content they engage with online. For this reason, Google ads may not be placed on pages that misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information about you, your content or the primary purpose of your web property.”

The move will see Google barring any sites found to be displaying fake news from using ads sourced from the Google Display Network.

Critics have been quick to point out that the move doesn’t guarantee the complete removal of misrepresentative content from Google’s news feeds.

People would need to be employed to verify each article. No algorithm exists that could differentiate between real and fake news with sufficient accuracy.

But, there’s a lesson here for content marketers. While misrepresentative content has been used to score quick wins in the past, such black-hat copywriting could sink your whole site in the long-term.

Spotted in the news…

This week, an announcement from Oxford English Dictionary (OED) caught my eye. words_have_power_typewriter

Hot on the heels of rivals Collins revealing ‘Brexit’ as their ‘Word of the Year’, OED have confirmed their favourite lexicographical addition of 2016 is ‘post-truth’.

This word applies to the deliberate misrepresentation of facts, most often by politicians or media agencies — something Google looks set to fight back against.