The Importance Of Evergreen

Main Entry: ev-er-green

  1. having foliage that remains green and functional through more than one growing season
  2. retaining freshness or interest

It’s all to easy to get caught up in what’s happening right now, to obsess over breaking news or new releases. It’s fun to stay on top of the latest trends and use them to capture people’s interest.

What proves to be harder is attempting to create something that will be as relevant a year from now as it is today. To make something that someone can stumble upon a decade from now and still find value.

When you start to blog regularly, you start to hear the term evergreen. You start to look to create things that will get traffic for a bit longer than a week. You start to look for the posts that get to the core of why you spend all of this time at your keyboard. You start to think in terms of evergreen.

When I started the Mikes on Mics podcast with Mike Vardy, we made a few key decisions to help keep it evergreen. We don’t usually put out episodes until at least a week and often time well over a month after recording them. We also break up guest episodes instead of airing them back to back.

Sure, we’ll reference things that are happening in the moment, but we try to take a step back and make something that lasts. Do we succeed at this every time? Hell no. Do we succeed at this every now and again? Probably not. But still, it’s a hell of a lot more fun and more meaningful when we do the work with the intention of making something that will last.

Evergreen is an alluring concept and striving for it can have unintended consequences. When you start to think about your work in terms of it standing the test of time, the mindset also tends to bleed into your life. You look at the life you’re living and wonder if you’re doing things that will last. You end up taking a hard look at the things that you’ve convinced yourself matter most.

It doesn’t really matter if we are talking about your work or your life. If all you are ever doing is living in the moment, both will likely lack the depth you are looking for. So, what are you doing to make your work and your life evergreen?

6 Responses to The Importance Of Evergreen

  1. It’s a good question, mate, yet one I can’t help but feel we spend too much focus on. If we’re deliberately aiming to be evergreen, are we thinking more of future results as opposed to the importance of the here and now?

    Unless you’re tied into a specific time or event, doesn’t all content become evergreen? Especially if you try and make it the greatest shit you can possibly write or share at that time?

    • It’s a really good callout and in hindsight it’s more a matter of some struggle I’ve hand finding that balance between the posts on Google+ and Apple stuff vs. the things that likely really matter :) The first lot can be fun and can even be useful, but they fade quickly.

      I also agree that you can’t force yourself to write something great, but I think if you’re intent is to make things that last, it’s far more likely that you’ll get there.

      • Who chooses if something lasts? You or other people?

        Take this blog post. Who decides its evergreen status? Surely not the blogger but the people who comment, read, share, and discover, yes?

        • I think the audience chooses if it resonates, but the writer can play a major role about if the post will last. Write about a small change in some Twitter app and that post has a shelf life. Write about better ways to connect and that can last. It’s about framing your work in a way that is built to last longer.

  2. So simple, so obvious, so forgotten. Thanks for the keyword that will stay in my psyche long after this day has passed. Not sure how i can share your post easily. Please enlighten me.

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