The results are in, and after 12 months of blogging we can reveal our five most popular blog posts of 2016. By doing this, we hope we can provide some insight about what helps a post find an audience. Here are some of the key characteristics of the blogs in our top five. Our most popular posts have been at least one of the following:
It’s no coincidence that two of our top five are human stories with an emotive subject matter. Whatever the purpose of your blog, you should still find time to write about social problems, as we have done this year with posts on homelessness and fuel poverty. In a sense, we’re lucky that some of the projects we work on give us a reason to talk about broader issues.
Not everyone will have these opportunities, but it’s worth noting that our blog about homelessness was a story researched and written by one of our producers, Sam Lewis, whose only provocation for writing it was a problem he’d seen in our local community. He then reached out to a local organisation, with whom we had no existing relationship, and organised an interview.
People get bored of the same topics and can switch off if they know they’re being sold to. So, sometimes it’s good to reach out to others and produce content that is completely removed from your business aims.
Our aim is that the vast majority of our blog posts are useful, or at least thought provoking. Two of our top five are posts that answer questions for marketers. One of these was a post about online video platforms, which was written in response to several clients of ours who had asked how they should be presenting their videos once they’ve been produced.
It can be frustrating for us when we produce a video which isn’t presented or distributed in an effective way, so we were highly motivated to get some information out there about the different ways you can publish video.
With this and our series on the psychology of persuasion, we made sure that we were giving our readers useful information that they could apply in their own businesses.
The Q & A is something we’ve done more of this year, so it’s really pleasing to see that two of our most popular posts come from interviews. These are easy to read and allow the reader to quickly connect with people and projects. They’re also easy to produce, as long as you’re happy to give some time to organising the interview. The simplest way to do these is a written interview over email.
The most important quality of a successful blog, illustrated by our top five, is that they give people reasons to share them. This could be because they address a common concern or question, or tap into the networks of people and projects outside of those directly involved with your business. If you write about people and subjects which interest you in a way which isn’t self-serving, you won’t go far wrong.
Without further ado, our top five most read blog posts of 2016 are:
Part of a fun and informative video series, this episode talks about the effectiveness of social proof, in other words, the influence that seeing other people’s behaviour can have on your actions.
Around 2.3 million households in the UK can’t heat their homes to a suitable level. In one year, more people die from the cold in their homes than alcohol or traffic accidents. This post raises the issue of fuel poverty alongside a video showing what is being done to tackle the problem, which we produced for the Accord Group.
We hired a new motion graphic designer in 2016. Turns out, he’s quite an interesting chap. This charming interview allows readers to find out more about Will and his career experiences.
A really useful one for marketers. If you’re not sure if you’re using your videos in the best way, this is definitely one for you. The post was expanded into a full eGuide, Video Platforms: YouTube, Vimeo, both, or neither?
If you live or work in Birmingham you’ll see that we have a problem. The same applies to many other cities around the world. In this post Sam Lewis sensitively raises awareness of the issue, whilst the interviews used show what is being done to tackle it.
Thanks to all of our readers this year. And don't forget, when you appreciate an Ember blog, please share it.