Why It’s Important to Add an Estimated Reading Time

Blogging is an important content marketing tool for companies of all shapes and sizes. One important key to achieving business blogging success is to identify ways to appeal to internet readers. Adding an estimated reading time to the top of your blog posts is an easy way to help make this happen.

Zippia published some interesting statistics in April 2022. For instance, 77% of internet users read blogs and, on average, read about 10 blogs a day. About 43% of readers skim content, and the median time they spend reading is a mere 37 seconds.

If these statistics are accurate, you need to use every tool in your toolbox to motivate your readers to engage with your content longer. Publishing content is not just about writing words, it also involves strategy. Adding an estimated reading time to each of your blog posts is one strategy that can have a profound and positive effect on your reader engagement levels.

Reasons to add estimated reading time

Most people are time-pressed and don’t want to start reading an article to find it’s going to take them 20 minutes that they don’t have. As a result, they’ll likely close out the link and completely forget about the content.

Letting readers know from the beginning what their estimated reading time is will go a long way toward helping them decide if they can read now or bookmark the page until later. Time is precious to most people, but if the content grabs their attention, they will make time to read it later.

How to estimate reading time

Reading time is relatively easy to calculate. A person reads, on average, 200-250 words per minute. If you calculate the total number of words in your article and divide it by either 200 or 250, you’ll find the number of minutes it takes to read it.

When calculating estimated reading time, it’s best to round up to the nearest minute. For example, if you have an article that takes 1.6 minutes to read, round it up to two minutes. To make calculations easier, use one of the many online tools available.

estimated reading time significantly impacts engagement metrics

What happens when an estimated reading time is added to a blog post?

Adding the estimated reading time at the beginning of an article significantly improves the reader’s engagement with your content. Further, adding an estimated reading time significantly impacts engagement metrics with engagement rates improving up to 40% when the estimated reading time was added; statistics back this claim up. Specifically:

  • The bounce rate dropped.
  • Time spent on site increased.
  • The number of page views increased.

These metrics are the type of results you want to achieve. Sometimes all you need are little tweaks to help boost your analytics. Adding an estimated reading time is easy to do, and it pays big dividends.

What are the additional advantages of adding an estimated reading time?

There are additional benefits to adding the estimated reading time to your blog. Beyond improving your engagement metrics, adding this key piece of information for readers improves your SEO as well.

Impact on search engine optimization (SEO)

Search engines use algorithms to determine where content should rank for a given focus keyword or phrase. Some of the factors incorporated into those algorithms are:

  • Bounce rate.
  • Estimated reading time.
  • Pageviews.

The goal of your content is to be ‘findable. If an individual arrives at your article from one of the search engines, visits your site, reads the article, and goes on to view other pages, the search engines will view your content as relevant and valuable to other searchers using the same search query. In short, it will become even more findable.

This positive feedback will tell the search algorithms to prioritize your content, moving it up on the SERPs (search engine results pages). The more searchers who have a positive experience with your content and website, the higher your article will appear in the SERPs.

If SEO is important to you, you’ll see reading time’s impact on your program. You’ll also more closely coordinate and integrate your SEO and content marketing programs for better overall effectiveness.

Impact on the sales funnel

The benefits of adding an estimated reading time to your blog post go beyond increased engagement and better ranking and have a positive impact on your sales funnel.

The more you’re able to draw your readers to the content on your website, the better educated they’ll become. Your audience will be more likely to read other pieces of content on your site, too. Whether the reader realizes it or not, their actions slowly move them from the awareness stage to the interest stage of your purchase funnel.

A higher ROI can provide you with the financial momentum you need to reinvest more aggressively in your content marketing program.

The bottom line is this: adding estimated reading time requires very little effort on your part. And displaying it can increase reader engagement, improve SEO, and sales metrics. In an indirect way, it can nudge your audience towards the ultimate goal – conversion.


Ready to boost your marketing efforts?

A digital marketing assessment, coupled with a marketing-managed service provider, can help you take your company to new heights. Every company strives hard to achieve an edge with its content marketing program. If you are looking to amplify your online presence, grow your audience, and expand your business,

Tempesta’s Prova digital marketing assessment identifies gaps in your digital marketing program. Prova evaluates:

  • Brand positioning and targeting.
  • Competition.
  • Any direct response gaps.
  • Content marketing performance.
  • Social media presence.
  • SEO performance.
  • Prospect nurturing.

After analyzing about 90 different aspects of your current marketing program, Prova will then identify areas to help you close any gaps. This assessment can be completed within two weeks and will position you to take the next steps to bolster your marketing efforts and achieve your goals.

Finalizing your assessment is your first step. Tempesta Media’s managed solution Bullseye Effect™, can then help you take your business to the next level. Peformica is the perfect solution to grow service businesses as you can eliminate expenses associated with hiring content, influencer, and social media marketing specialists/agencies.

With Bullseye Effect, you can obtain a stronger ROI. Even better, our compensation aligns with your success, meaning, we share both the risk and the reward. To learn more, contact Tempesta Media today.

Want additional information?

If you have a content marketing program or are planning one, download our e-book, 100 Mistakes Businesses Make When Starting, Optimizing, and Scaling Content Marketing Programs.

Our e-book will walk you through the mistakes of hundreds of other companies and the challenges they faced in implementing their content marketing programs.

How to Optimize Content and Avoid Google Penalty?

Undoubtedly every business has faced an issue with Google guidelines, which is why “How can you avoid being penalized by Google?” is such a common search.

When you work hard on SEO optimization to rank at the top of search results, you don’t want to be penalized for unclear reasons. To avoid this unappealing scenario, let’s explore the issue further and learn about some best practices to optimize content marketing that will help you avoid penalties.

Why do Google penalties happen, and what do they mean for you?

Google often penalizes a website due to viewing it as a low-quality site that is not trustworthy. Google also penalizes a site if it detects that it has violated any of the guidelines. For example, if your site is not mobile-friendly, then Google will penalize it. As a result, your site will never rank as high as it did before, and you’ll see a significant drop in traffic. These penalties can be brutal to overcome, depending on the severity of the violation. The issue may be temporary, but it can also lead to a permanent ban from the Google index. Follow the rules below in order to optimize content marketing and avoid Google restrictions.

1. Avoid duplicate content

One option to avoid duplicate content is to use supporting tools. For example, by using the duplicate content filter in the Google Search Console, you can identify content that appears more than once on your site to optimize content marketing. You can then choose to eliminate it or consolidate it with another page. If you remove the duplicate content, try to make sure the remaining content answers the user’s query and provides excellent value.

online presence

2. Be wary of keyword stuffing

The most common cause of penalties is keyword stuffing. In the past, if you typed in a keyword, it would show up in all of your content. For example, if you typed in the word “car,” it would show up in your article about cars, on your About Us page and on your Contact page. Google has been cracking down on this and has penalized websites for including excessive instances of keywords.

You can still include a few keywords without penalty to optimize content marketing, but you should avoid overuse. It’s better to use LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords, which are conceptually related terms and are used by search engines to fully comprehend material on a webpage.

3. The most important step in good SEO practices for optimized content marketing

Nothing is more crucial than developing content that is optimized for the reader in the first place. And don’t forget to check the constant Google Algorithm updates.

There are a handful of ways to avoid Google penalties, and the best SEO practices are the ones you can keep up with. If you don’t know how to optimize your content marketing correctly to boost your ranking while navigating all the guidelines to avoid penalties, Tempesta Media’s managed solution will help. With our outstanding knowledge of best practices, we’ll help you create or expand your content strategy. Contact us today and start benefiting from expert SEO strategy. 

What's the Right Number of Images Within a Blog Post?

Images within a blog post are more than just visual add-ons. They enhance your content in the eyes of both your audience and the search engines.

Images play a critical role in telling your story to your audience. Including a sufficient number of images within a blog post helps tell that story and improves your SEO.

What is the standard minimum quantity of images for one piece of content?

There is no set standard, but placing one image every 200–300 words is sufficient to support most article content.

Too many images within a blog post can distract from the message and story of the content. Too few images will impair some readers’ comprehension. People consume information in different ways:

  • Auditory.
  • Visually.
  • Sensory/kinesthetic.

By including images within your content, visually oriented readers can better understand the material.

What are the advantages of using images within a blog post?

Beyond helping to better tell a story, images represent another form of content that search engines can index. For example, in an article about widgets that uses multiple images to help readers understand widgets, your blog post can get indexed by search engines to show up in search results related to widgets.

In addition, images from your article will also appear in image searches for that type of content. Video content operates similarly. Within any given content, the ideal approach to maximize SEO is to include:

  1. Text.
  2. Video.
  3. Images.

By covering these mediums, you’re checking all the boxes to get maximum exposure for your article from search engines.

images within your blog post

How are images prepared?

Images within a blog post need to be sized according to the web page or the content that the image resides in.
When dealing with digital media, especially content that will be viewed from mobile devices, images need to be compressed in size and weight. If an image’s file size is too big, it slows the page from loading and negatively impacts the reader’s experience. Ensure that your images are correctly sized and lightweight.
Finally, use appropriate alt tags with each image. Search engines use alt tags to understand that an item is an image and to relate it with relevant keywords or keyword phrases.

In summary

Images within a blog post can play a powerful role in telling your story to your audience. With any content, include a reasonable number of images that are relevant, impactful and help tell that story. While setting up your images, use correct formatting and be mindful of the page of content in a creative way.
When you use images appropriately, your content will tell a better story and reap the benefits of better SEO for your site.

Need help?

If you have a content marketing program or are planning one, download our e-book 100 Mistakes Businesses Make When Starting, Optimizing and Scaling Content Marketing Programs.
This e-book will walk you through the mistakes of hundreds of other companies and the challenges they faced in implementing their content marketing programs. To learn more about how Tempesta Media can help you streamline your content creation process and deliver quality content at scale, contact us today.

With Images in Your Blog Post, You Can Tell a More Compelling Story

Relevant, thoughtful and on-point images in your blog post reinforce your message and provide additional insight for your audience.

Having images in your blog post drives increased audience engagement. However, adding images just for the sake of having them can actually detract from the readability of the article and lower your visitor engagement metrics.

Stock images versus original images. Which are better?

Many companies don’t have the internal capabilities to create their own images, so they rely on stock images as their solution.

Stock images can be incredibly effective if they are relevant to the content that you create. However, if you’re merely inserting shiny images that don’t directly relate to the content, they won’t be effective. At that point, you are better off employing only text.

Don’t despair! Quite a few stock image websites are available, and these royalty-free stock image libraries have millions of images. No matter how niche your industry segment is, these libraries have sufficient depth, making it easy to license relevant images.

Images Matter in Your Blog Post

Why does image relevance matter?

The whole point of trying to get someone to read your content is so they’ll engage with your brand and develop awareness and interest in what you’re doing. Ultimately, you want them to take some sort of action, either now or when they return to your site.

If the images in your blog post are highly relevant and add value to the content, you’ll see a higher engagement rate and more brand affinity.

Think beyond the box

Many companies struggle with creating relevant images that they can use effectively. To help, here are a couple of easy hacks that you can do yourself:

  • Charts and graphs. If you use Microsoft Excel, you can create charts and graphs that reflect the data in your blog post. By saving those charts and graphs as an image, you’ve essentially created your own ownable media. Therefore, incorporating that into the article adds more weight to the message you’re communicating there.

Additionally, some people are visual. These types of charts and graphs will help them better assimilate your story.

  • Your company and product images. Another option is using images from your company or from your product. By using them where relevant, you also reinforce your brand with your readers.

In summary

If you add images in your blog post for the sake of having images, you may end up detracting from your overall content marketing efforts. Make sure all images are relevant to your content.

Need help?

If you have a content marketing program or are planning one, download our e-book 100 Mistakes Businesses Make When Starting, Optimizing and Scaling Content Marketing Programs.
This e-book will walk you through the mistakes of hundreds of other companies and the challenges they faced in implementing their content marketing programs. To learn more about how Tempesta Media can help you streamline your content creation process and deliver quality content at scale, contact us today.

Do Images Matter in Your Blog Post?

Companies that include images tend to have better SEO performance than those that purely publish text-only blogs.

Images can play an incredibly important role in achieving success with your content marketing program. Most B2B businesses incorporate at least one image in each of their blog posts. They do this to make the content more visually appealing and to better optimize for SEO.

What role should images play in a blog post?

Images should play an accompanying role to the text content, not overpower it or attempt to replace it. When using pictures within your blog posts, you should have one at the top of the page, prior to the content.

Next, include a supporting image every 250-350 words. If you take this approach, you’ll have a very good balance between readability and visual support of the content that you’re presenting to the reader.

You’ll also have a better chance of connecting with your audience. In fact, while only 20% of people remember what they read, 80% remember what they see. As such, images can help your audience receive more value from you.

How can images impact SEO?

Pictures are an excellent way to boost a blog post’s SEO value. The meta information behind an image provides another signal to the search engines about the content. Here are some of the meta strings that should be included with each image:

  • Alt text
  • Captions
  • Descriptions

Focus keyword phrases should also be included within the alt text of images, along with the descriptions. Including focus keyword phases provides two signals to the search engines:

  1. Content
  2. Image

Images impact SEO

In summary

From a reader’s perspective, incorporating images helps you tell your story. At the end of the day, tell the most compelling story possible and use all the tools at your disposal to do so. If you do, your audience will be better educated about your company, the industry and the solutions that you provide.

Need help?

If you have a content marketing program or are planning one, download our e-book 100 Mistakes Businesses Make When Starting, Optimizing and Scaling Content Marketing Programs.

This e-book will walk you through the mistakes of hundreds of other companies and the challenges they faced in implementing their content marketing programs. To learn more about how Tempesta Media can help you streamline your content creation process and deliver quality content at scale, contact us today.

The Importance of Visual Content in Your Content Marketing Program

Think back to when you were in school reading textbooks. Were you ever excited to turn the page and see that it’s entirely filled with text? Probably not.

Pages with pictures, charts and infographics made the text seem less intimidating. The same holds true for your business content. Ultimately, visuals drastically improve your reader’s experience and can turn a boring article into a post with high engagement rates and more value.

Visual content is good for retention

As a business, one of your jobs is to improve information retention in your readers. That way, they can get the most value out of the content you create. One of the best ways to do so is to include more visuals in your content. After all, our brains process visuals 60,000 times faster than text, which means that you can promote more content digestion by just adding a picture or two to your text.

Additionally, people retain 65% of the information in an article paired with visuals, versus only 10% retention with text-only content. In other words, visuals such as easily identifiable images, compact infographics or short videos can help readers connect main themes and remember important points in your content. This can strengthen your messages and increase the value your content provides.

How to use visual content in your content marketing program

Although visuals provide excellent opportunities for content success, you have to use them strategically.

Don’t use generic images

Avoid using generic stock images as much as possible. They create a sense of indifference and laziness. In fact, that’s one of the first things that your readers will think when they click on your post. If you didn’t bother to finish up the post with relevant images, who’s to say you put in enough effort in the actual content?

Visual content requires just as much thought as the text if you want to create a polished piece that flows together.

To minimize brand associations of laziness or indifference, create your own images to ensure your visuals match the tone of your article. Or, if you don’t have the resources to create your own, gain access to licensed images to help you pick better photos.

Format your images carefully

Besides relevancy to your content, another area of importance in regards to visual content is formatting – both of the actual piece and how it is structured in the text’s layout.

Learn more

Tempesta Media is committed to delivering quality content at scale. Within our platform, we offer a licensed images add-on to further streamline your content creation process.

If you have a content marketing program, or are planning one, download our ebook:  100 mistakes businesses make when starting, optimizing and scaling content marketing programs.  Learn from the mistakes of hundreds of other companies.  100 mistakes walks you through common and uncommon challenges that they faced with their content marketing programs.

To learn more, contact us today.

Testimonials and Case Studies – Do I Need Them?

Case studies and testimonials play a pivotal role in a company’s ability to attract leads.

Whether we want to believe it or not, we’re all influenced by our peers. In fact, consumer who reads personal recommendations about a company’s products or services is 83% more likely to buy. For B2Bs specifically, 90% of buyers said positive customer success content influenced their purchasing decisions.

As a business, you want to showcase your customers’ experiences with your company. It not only helps boost leads and sales but it also broadens your brand’s visibility.

What are testimonials?

Testimonials, used in the business sense, are affirmations about a company’s character, qualifications, quality of products and level of service, to name just a few. They provide honest opinions about your company, and customers usually gravitate towards companies that have solid testimonials from actual buyers. Testimonials can be influential in a potential buyer’s decision to purchase from you because they see real reactions and real outcomes.

Successful testimonials can be presented in a variety of ways, including customer quotes, videos, audio clips, customer interviews, blog posts, peer review sites (i.e. Yelp), social media posts, press reviews and case studies.


What are case studies?

Case studies are a type of testimonial but are structured as comprehensive stories about your customers’ experiences. They are typically written in long-form, exploring different topics in detail. Topics covered in a typical case study include:

  • An outline of the customer’s challenges or conflicts they faced.
  • An account of how they approached their dilemmas.
  • A description of any failures to self-resolve their problem.
  • An explanation of how your product or service helped resolve their problem.

Case studies usually have data points and research integrated into the story to make it more persuasive. These details provide real examples of success and show how your processes and solutions actually work. This type of content is a strategic way to position your company as a problem solver.

How testimonials and case studies help you gain more customers

Including testimonials and case studies in your content marketing strategy can go a long way towards boosting your brand exposure, increasing trust, establishing credibility and giving you a competitive advantage. When potential customers read these types of content, they understand the types of problems you’re able to solve and how you do it.

However, to get testimonials or the material you need to create a case study, you have to ask your customers for help. When you start this process, be sure to do the following:

  • Create a survey or feedback form. It’s a simple and convenient way for data gathering for both you and your customer.
  • Make sure to ask about what you can improve on. It’ll help you pinpoint weaknesses and strengthen your brand.
  • Ensure your customers know what they are filling out. Inform them of your plans for their answers so they are not surprised or frustrated when they see their responses publicized.
  • Consider offering an incentive to those who fill out the form. It’ll promote more responses and benefit both parties.

When planning your content strategy, you have a number of different types of content to choose from. Your best bet is to use a variety of content strategies to keep things interesting for your audience. Case studies and testimonials are often overlooked as a content option, but they shouldn’t be.

If you have a content marketing program, or are planning one, download our ebook:  100 mistakes businesses make when starting, optimizing and scaling content marketing programs.  Learn from the mistakes of hundreds of other companies.  100 mistakes walks you through common and uncommon challenges that they faced with their content marketing programs.

Tempesta Media offers case studies as one of our nine content types. To learn more about how we can help you, contact us today.

What Is the Optimal Format for Blog Posts?

Blog posts are one of the most effective forms of content marketing.

As such, it’s important to structure them in a way that will promote high chances of success. In order to optimize your blog content, be sure to address these factors when formatting them.

Word count

Ideally, a blog post should contain about 500-1,000 words. You want it to be long enough to be informative, but short enough to hold your readers’ attention span. How you determine word count will largely depend upon your audience and their reading level as well as your marketing goals for the piece. However, B2C blog posts tend to be 500-600 words while B2B posts are more in the 600-1,000 word range.

Paragraph length

Balance is the key when it comes to paragraph length. Short paragraphs can make it difficult for readers to connect ideas, and it often interrupts your article’s flow. Longer paragraphs can be difficult to read, and you’re likely to lose your readers’ attention.

Ideally, aim for two to four sentences within each paragraph to hit that happy medium. For longer sections or paragraphs, integrate bullet points to help balance your text readability.


As the old saying goes, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” This definitely holds true with blog posts. Statistics show articles with images get 94% more views. This is not insignificant. When selecting your images, be sure to:

  • Include visual content that relevant to the information you are presenting.
  • Include images that have a clear resolution.
  • Incorporate a variety of image types, including photos, charts, infographics and video (when applicable).
  • Create your images in-house or access them legally.
  • Add captions to any images.

The reason images are so powerful is simple. Pictures help break up chunks of text and improve readability. Articles with images also improve memory and information retention. In fact, people remember 65% of information paired with an image as opposed to only 10% without one.



Writing and selecting images is only a part of creating a successful blog. You’ll also want your posts to be optimized for SEO so you receive better SERPs (search engine results placements). Be sure to include relevant keywords, trusted outbound links and internal links to other areas of your website.

If you’re looking for expert quality content for your blog, contact Tempesta Media to learn more about our content solutions and optimization services.

How to Choose the Right Channel for Publishing Your Content

The success of your content marketing strategy depends on the quality of your content.

It also depends on the content marketing channel on which you choose to distribute it. It’s important to understand the purpose and scope of different channels, explore emerging platforms and select channels that make sense for your goals.audience

Reaching out to your target audience

Demographics data about your target audience can help narrow down what media channel you choose. For instance, Facebook is immensely popular among 25-30 year olds. These people comprise Facebook’s largest user group. On the other hand, teens and young adults are more likely to prefer Instagram or SnapChat.

However, don’t limit yourself to broad statistics to choose the right content marketing channel for your audience. Pay attention to how content performs on different channels. You should also find out about your audience’s habits and preferences.

Content length and format

Some channels are ideal for quick content consumption. An infographic or engaging image would be perfect for social media. On the other hand, a short educational video would do well on YouTube.

Long-form pieces do well on websites. They can be broken into a series of emails or blog posts, published on platforms like Medium to reach out to a broader audience or shared as downloaded e-guides.

Additionally, make sure your published content will look good on the channel you select. Format image sizes and pay attention to character limits for social media and email previews. You should also check that your content loads quickly and is properly displayed. If your content does not format correctly on your chosen media channel, engagement rates will drop.

The Value of a Lede Oriented to Your Target Audience


At the most basic level, you need to ask yourself what your goals are for each content piece. Which channel will help you accomplish these goals?

To increase awareness and engage new prospects, publish content on social media where it’s easily shareable. To boost sales, use your email list to deliver content to qualified leads further down your sales funnel.

And remember: Don’t limit yourself to a single channel! Most pieces of content will do well on various channels. You can usually tweak a few things to make your content easier to consume on each channel you decide to use. For example, if you create a downloadable e-guide on your website, post a snippet of it as a blog post or create a social media blurb that encourages your audience to read the full article.

To learn more about how to choose the best content marketing channel to achieve quality content at scale, contact Tempesta Media today.



How to Choose the Right Type of Content

Choosing the right type of content to distribute to your target audience can be a challenge.

There are several different types you can produce, you can’t just randomly pick one and expect positive results. You want to be strategic. To see maximum results, take the following components into consideration before deciding on your material.

Determine your long-term goals

Before sitting down to create your online material, think about your long-term goals. Do you want to inform people about a subject or do you want them to take action and buy?

Will your information to be easily absorbed and shareable? Does your audience want to sit down and think about a concept? Depending on your goals, consider the following:

  • Blogs are informative.
  • Case studies inspire action.
  • Social media is easily digestible.
  • White papers require focus.

It’s exciting to publish an article you’ve created. However, it won’t help you achieve your long-term goals if it’s forgettable or isn’t designed to achieve purpose.


Define your target audience

You need to identify your target audience first before you begin to write. It’s not a good strategy to attempt to appeal to the masses because it’s likely they’ll ignore you. Determine who you want to talk to. This way, you can focus on those likely to engage with your brand. Then, you can create information that is relevant to them.

Next, think about distribution. Is your audience digitally savvy and apt to visit your website for updates? Or are they more likely to open emails to read your material? If your audience primarily uses social media, identify which networks they use and focus on those for your distribution.

Select your tone, voice and style

Your tone, voice and style make up your content personality. As you get started, you need to determine how you want to sound to your readers.

Do you want to write formally or casuall

y? Will you be knowledgeable and friendly? Professional and authoritative? Or would funny and relatable define your company better?

You also need to figure out what perspective you want to write from:

  • Use first person if you plan to share first-hand experiences and want people to directly relate to you.
  • Write in second person if you want to talk directly to your audience in a personable way.
  • Speak in third person if you want to speak more generally or present a more “business professional” tonality.

Note: Oftentimes, businesses use a combination of first and second person: The company speaks as “we/us/our,” and they refer to their readers as “you.” In third person, businesses refer to themselves as their company name.

The personality you choose matters – a lot. Think about verbal communication. How you speak to others will determine whether they’ll pay attention to you or disregard what you say. And remember: Once you choose your online persona, be sure to stick with it. To be effective, consistency matters.

At Tempesta Media, we help you choose the right type of content for your company. To learn more about our services, contact us today.