Digital Snacking: Satisfying nosh between meaty content meals or empty calorie junk food on the digital highway?

Have you heard of digital snacking? It’s about consuming succinct, interesting, engaging and visually-appealing morsels of content that can easily be digested on a mobile device.

There are numerous examples of sites that serve up digital snacks. Take Buzzfeed for example, a company that runs news snippets alongside celebrity gossip, funny clips and lists. Investors’ confidence in this trend was proven most recently with Buzzfeed’s ability to raise $50 million. Some estimate Buzzfeed is valued at $1 billion, not far from the market cap of The New York Times Company (NYSE: NYT), which sits at about $1.9 billion (source:

Not only does content need to be short and engaging to be a worthy digital snack, but it also needs to be easily accessed on a smartphone. Martin Stoll calls it “The One Thumb Rule”or information that can be retrieved with just the click and scroll of your thumb.

At our firm, we believe there will never be a replacement for the in-depth reporting and thoughtful article writing taking place at great news organizations such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and thousands of special interest and trade publications across the country. But we’re living in a mobile world where people want news in the palm of their hand, and alongside funny videos and memes. To get attention, organizations must embrace the latest digital communication trends and get creative.

So here are some tips on how you can sandwich “digital snacking” between your meals of more meaty articles and content. A little snacking is OK – even good for your content strategy – but make sure you infuse your content diet with a healthy dose of in-depth content too.

A man having a digital snack

Five Digital Snacks to Incorporate into Your Content Diet:

1.    Videos and images – Vine and Snapchat are viewable on mobile phones and encourage sharing if the content is funny, unique or trending. Using images on Facebook and Twitter will yield high share rates. Platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram are perfect for consumer products and destinations, but with a little creativity and imagination they can work well for B2B too.

2.    Snack-sized blog posts – It’s often more difficult to write a concise blog post. But if you want it to be truly snack-sized try these tips:

  • Come up with a short and compelling headline
  • Entice readers with an interesting introduction
  • Use short sub-titles if possible and keep paragraphs short (2-3 sentences)
  • Incorporate a great image
  • Write your opinion on a recent article and incorporate a link to the article

3.    The infographic – Infographics are the epitome of quickly digestible information.  Text is mixed with graphics to communicate an idea or brand message in seconds.

  • Make them easy to share on social media, websites and blogs by providing an embed code
  • Embed them in your own blog posts
  • Share them across your social channels
  • Send to infographic sites

4.    Tips lists – We’ve found people love a good tips list.  Make it 3-5 tips about anything your audience is interested in.

  • Put the number of tips in the headline
  • Use interesting titles for the tips
  • Keep the tips themselves concise

5.    Quotes  – Use quotes sparingly in your content diet – kind of like that chocolate cake, every once in a while is fine. They can help out in a pinch when you need to post something quickly. Start a library of good quotes that convey what you and your organization are about, and use these only when you need to.

This blog post was contributed by Bonnie Shaw, President of Clearpoint Agency PR and Digital Marketing