Luck or Skill? The Longevity of Social Media Posts is Surprising

JD Solomon
4 min readDec 28, 2023

Focusing on unique content and updating a percentage of old posts helps longevity.

Post longevity is a function of unique content, tying posts to current events, and updating a percentage of old posts.
Luck or skill? Nearly 25% of our post views in 2023 were from previous years’ posts. (Visual: Canva/JDS Inc)

In 2023, JD Solomon Solutions decided to publish one content article each week to our blog. Given the expanded output, one of the interesting aspects we hoped to learn is the lifespan of our old blog posts. We were a bit surprised — and happy — by the results. We discuss how social media blog posts are the gifts that keep giving.

The Sources of the Articles

The articles we posted this year are based on the most interesting people and topics we encountered in our travels. For the most part, travels include the consulting assignments of JD Solomon Solutions. In some cases, the source of the article is related to the follow-up conversations from a workshop or webinar.

No Particular Order or Predetermined List

JD Solomon Solutions is the for-profit consulting arm of JD Solomon Inc. We are a lean, niche company founded four years ago. We have maintained five staff over the last two years. JD Solomon Solutions has done a couple of international projects, but most of our revenues come from the eastern and central sections of the United States.

Due to our small size and lean approach, we do not have the time to much planning of our content creation. Normally, we simply experience something, and it is left to me to write something about it.

A Focused Effort in 2023

JD Solomon Solutions has provided 155 content posts over the past four years. That breaks down as about one every two weeks in the first year, one every 1.5 weeks in the middle two years, and one per week in the most recent year. Posting a new content piece each week was a targeted goal for 2023.

15 Helpful Articles on Asset Management from 2023

14 Helpful Articles on Project Development from 2023

10 Timely Insights on Environmental Issues from 2023

13 Timely Insights on Facilitation from 2023

The Top “Old” Articles of 2023

We had 114 posts draw more than marginal interest. Of course, we generated 52 new posts in the current year, so some meaningful interest was drawn for the old posts.

We looked at the Top 40 to see how many of the old posts accounted for significant interest in the current year. The old posts accounted for 25% of the posts viewed in the current year. Those old posts also accounted for nearly 20% of the Top 40 views, likes, comments, and follow-on discussions.

Using SOAP Will Save Your Criticality Analysis Time and Money (from 2021)

Three Solutions for Establishing Useful Probability Distributions (from 2022)

Ask the Experts Revisited: Prioritization from A to Z (from 2022; original in 2020)

Environmental Violations and Root Cause Analysis (from 2021)

Fabulous Facilitation: Are You Asking Powerful Questions? (from 2021)

Five Ways to More Effectively Facilitate Root Cause Analysis (from 2022)

Five Ways to More Effectively Facilitate Tree Diagrams (from 2022)

Most Facilitators Miss This, And There Is One In Every Group (from 2022)

Facilitation, Soft and Hard (from 2022)

Five Ways to More Effectively Facilitate Business Cases (from 2022)

The Topics (and Biases) of the 2023 Articles

There are a lot of ways to look at the effectiveness of the old posts in the current year. We like the idea that 50% of the old articles were viewed again in 2023. We also like the idea that 20 to 25% of the top posts came from the old articles.

One key missing point is that in 2022, we caught some lighting in a bottle. Most of the old articles that were viewed were about facilitation. That inspired me to write a book about facilitation in 2023. Maybe the book created some interest in the blog, and maybe the blog created interest in the book. We will never know.

Three Factors That Impact Blog Post Lifespan

1. Unique or “Evergreen” Content

Content unique to you and your business tends to have the longest lifespan. Instructional “how to” guides, fundamental principles, or technical analyses are examples.

2. Trending or News-Based Content

These posts produce the most short-term bang but have shorter lifespans. Tying unique content to current events is something we do about 10% of the time to put a new face on an old topic.

3. Updated Posts and Content

Regularly updating and optimizing older blog posts can extend their lifespan. We try to stay aligned with some of the search engine algorithms. Over the past four years, we “re-purpose” less than 20% of our posts.

Looking to 2024

Continuously updating and refreshing older posts, promoting them on social media, and leveraging internal linking strategies can help increase the longevity and visibility of your content. Tracking metrics and analyzing traffic patterns over time can offer insights into the staying power of your blog posts. The one certain thing is that old blog posts are the gifts that keep giving.

JD Solomon Inc. provides solutions for program development, asset management, and facilitation at the nexus of facilities, infrastructure, and the environment. Subscribe for monthly updates related to our firm.