Annie is the Content Manager here at Express Writers, has managed multiple teams in the past, and has been a journalist and expert copywriter for years.
You want to create great content for your readers but you’re short on time, right?
If you haven’t considered repurposing content, it may be time to give recycling your old work a second thought.
Be advised, though, that repurposing work doesn’t simply mean copying and pasting or rewriting an old article word by word.
In addition to being a waste of time, repurposing content in this fashion will end up being ineffective and frustrating.
As the wonderful Mary puts it:
Responsible and effective repurposing entails careful reformatting, updating and repackaging in order to reach new audiences or simply revive great content. In addition to stretching your hard-won content further than ever before, carefully repurposing content has the potential to give your site an SEO boost among other things.
Here is everything you need to know about repurposing content:
Why Repurpose Content?
Repurposing content can be a great way to drive more traffic to your site and produce increased reader engagement. Unless a piece of old content has been adequately back-linked by high-traffic sites, there is a definite chance that it isn’t getting as much traffic as it deserves. Repurposing that piece of content can fill it with new life and serve the purpose of simply getting it out in front of your readers again.
Additionally, repurposing content in order to develop several pieces of high-quality material around a certain topic can produce an SEO boost. By targeting a specific keyword and producing a high level of quality backlinks from other reputable sites, repurposed content can easily prolong the lifespan of your original post.
Additionally, repurposing content can help you extend your site’s reach in order to connect with new audiences who either didn’t see your original work or don’t frequent the media formats in which your original work was published.
For example, if you typically write blogs but you take one of your blogs and turn it into a carefully crafted podcast, you have the potential to reach an entire audience of podcast listeners who don’t read blogs but may be very interested in what you have to say. By making sure you are utilizing a multi-channel marketing approach, you stand a better chance of engaging various types of audiences from around the web.
Finally, skillfully repurposing old content can help you underline and reinforce your message. Marketing experts have known for decades that, in order for a customer to convert, click or make a purchase, the customer needs to know you and your message well enough to feel as if he or she has a solid sense of what is being promoted through your work. Repurposing content can help reformat and underline your message in order to facilitate better customer understanding and increased conversion rates.
How to Determine Which Pieces of Content Should be Repurposed
Generally, the content that deserves to rise from the ashes of your collection is evergreen content. Evergreen content is content that is perpetually relevant, regardless of when or where it was published. Repurposing an old post about the then-current happenings of the Clinton administration, for example, will not do much good, unless you are committed to seriously re-working the piece in order to make it relevant to today’s population. Evergreen content, on the other hand, will require little or no heavy-duty re-working in order to be relevant to current audiences.
After you’ve determined which content is evergreen, spend some time looking at your analytics software in order to determine which of your evergreen posts have been the most popular. More likely than not, each of these posts will share a common trait that has increased its popularity and made it more readable among your followers. Do your best to identify this this common thread so that you can incorporate it into future blogs.
Finally, determine which, if any, materials within these posts need updating. Regardless of how evergreen or popular a post was, chances are it will still be somewhat outdated and will require a bit of work to update the post.
The Repurposing Process
There are many ways to repurpose content. Contrary to popular belief, however, repurposing content absolutely does not mean that you get to simply copy and paste an old post into a new platform. One of the best ways to repurpose your high-quality content and ensure it stays popular in the future is to transform previously published content by plugging it into a new format.
For example, a webinar can become a video tutorial and a blog can be reformatted and dissected in order to become a podcast. By repurposing popular content into new formats, you can ensure that you reach new audiences, drive more traffic and extend your best content to all of your readers through multi-channel marketing.
Here are some of the most popular ways to repurpose old content in new formats:
Blog Post to How-To Guide
If you’ve written a blog post that got a great reader response, consider transforming that blog post into a how-to guide. For example, if your topic of choice is cloud-based marketing tools and you’ve written extensively on the subject of cloud computing, you could create a short how-to guide for companies just getting started with the cloud.
Keep in mind that an effective how-to guide should include more pictures and step-by-step information than most blog posts. For maximum visibility, consider uploading your repackaged content to Pinterest or a niche-focused forum for increased reach and more reader engagement.
Podcast to Quora Content
Quora is a popular online platform for Q & A’s, and it serves as an ideal place to repurpose old Podcast content. Simply take the transcript from the podcast and use pieces of it to ask or answer Quora questions. Doing so can help drive new readers to your site and further establish you as an authority in your area of expertise.
PowerPoint Presentation to SlideShare File
If much of your previous content has been PowerPoint presentations or video content, consider repurposing it into a SlideShare presentation. Simply upload your hard-won PowerPoint presentation into the SlideShare platform, where it can be viewed, shared or embedded into your website or blog.
Blog Post Becomes a Guest Post
If you have a blog post that’s been very popular on your own site, consider pitching it as a guest post for a like-minded site. Of course, it would be unacceptable to simply copy and paste the content of your old post into a new guest post, but you could very well focus on one or two of the most important points from the original post and expound upon them for the readers of the guest post’s home site.
The great thing about this repurposing option is that there is truly no end to how many guest posts you can write. Take the time to break down your most popular original post in the form of several guest posts for other sites. This allows you to dig deeper into your topic and provide helpful, needed information for your readers while also attracting new subscribers and building strong blogging relationships.
Statistics Becomes Twitter Updates
If you’ve developed a statistic-dense blog post, consider disseminating the information to your followers in the form of twitter updates spread out over several weeks. Add a Twitter-friendly image to the post to encourage maximum reach and follower interaction.
Blog Series Becomes eBook
If you’ve been blogging in a niche for some time, it’s likely you have a pretty extensive catalogue of content built up. Why not sift through some of that content and offer it as a promotional eBook for new subscribers?
By pulling your best content out of your archives, packaging it in an eBook and dispensing it to your new readers, you not only give them a taste of your best work but you also harness the potential to reach new readers by meeting them in the information-delivery method of their choice, in this case, an eBook.
Take the time to beef up your eBook with additional photos, research, and formatting in order to make it a special package that is truly helpful for and desired by new readers.
Long Blog Series Becomes Short Weekly Email
If you have ever written a long, in-depth blog post, consider disseminating the dense information to followers in the form of a weekly email sent through an automated service such as MailChimp.
This repurposing approach can be especially helpful if you are preparing for a large event such as a book or podcast launch due to the fact that it provides your readers with easily digestible and sharable bits of information.
Beef up these weekly emails by adding photos, additional facts, helpful social medial links, social media share buttons and high-quality links to other content. Once you’ve developed the format for these automated emails, send them out to your followers with a call to action that asks them to share the information on social media or forward it to interested friends.
In addition to furthering your interaction with your own followers, this repurposing approach also builds anticipation in advance of large events and allows you to connect with new audiences.
What Not to Do
While there are plenty of ways to responsibly repurpose your old content, there are plenty of things you want to avoid, as well. For example, failure to utilize a variety of different means while repurposing content will produce lopsided results and will likely not result in the increased reader interaction you were hoping for.
Rather than getting stuck in one or two stand-by repurposing formats, be brave enough to experiment with multiple platforms in order to find what works best. Additionally, ensure that you do repurpose your old content rather than simply letting it sit in the dredges of your archives. Although this tip seems simple, it is one of the foremost mistakes bloggers make. Fortunately, it can be easily avoided through a little ingenuity and a willingness to make what is old new once more.
Conclusion: The Case For Repurposing Content
You work hard on your content, and you deserve to get the most out of every post you write. By repurposing your best content, you allow yourself to dive deeper into your content, explore new facets of old topics, equip your readers with higher-quality, more shareable information and, not least of all, reach new audiences.
Additionally, repurposing old content is a great way to get out of a rut and imbue your content with new life by packaging it in a different form, dispensing it to a different reader base or posting it in a fresh, new location.
Although repurposed content has long since been the subject of the evil eye in many blogging environments, all that shade just isn’t justified. While copying and pasting old content or simply loosely rewriting an old post is poor form, there are plenty of effective, responsible ways to repurpose your old content and ensure that it continues to shine with a new vigor.
By dedicating some time and effort to repurposing your high-quality, evergreen content, you ensure that your hard work pays off rather than just festering in the Neverland that is a blog’s archive.
Additionally, adequately repurposing your content ensures that you are perpetually growing as a blogger and that you continue to reach new audiences and experiment with new platforms for communication.