If you are a content creator - say a blogger, or a YouTuber - you may have come across the idea of "Evergreen" content.
The concept came up in my Q&A article with Chris, and I want to take a moment to think about what it actually means.
Evergreen content will stay relevant to your audience in the long term. So when a reader visits your blog, they can appreciate your work, even if it is months or years since you hit "Publish".
Certain things go out of date very quickly, like statistics or analyses of current events. But if your content is more general (perhaps a How To guide, or an artwork), then it will have a longer shelf-life.
I have certainly applied the "evergreen" concept to this blog. I expect nearly all the articles I write here will stay relevant for at least the medium term. (Here's hoping that digital preservation gets easier!)
But, here's the thing:
It's about the Content
So you have published something you are proud of and that will be relevant to people long term. Great - your content is "evergreen."
But that is no guarantee that your audience will actually be able to see it forever.
Years down the line, your current platform may be unsupported. Your content may no longer be accessible, or in a usable form. In fact, you should expect this to be the case: technology moves on quickly.
Keeping evergreen content available long-term
The good news is, this is simply a matter of digital hygiene.
1. Make lots of copies of your work, and save them in several different places.
2. Migrate your work to newer formats or platforms every so often.
I'm guessing that your published work is not the only digital stuff that you care about? In which case, I would recommend treating your evergreen content as just one element of your digital archive.
Dealing with everything all in one system will make things simpler down the line. To help you with that, I have written an (evergreen!) article on How to Start Your Digital Archive, and a FREE workbook to accompany it.
Thanks for reading - and I hope you invest a moment in making sure your evergreen content can last long term!