Some things are as good as before — or even better — the second time around.
- Comfort food leftovers, such as day-old chicken pot pie (a local favorite in my neck of the woods, Lancaster County, PA).
- The 2007 remake of the movie “Hairspray” with John Travolta and Christopher Walken as Edna and Wilbur Turnblad.
- Lenny Kravitz’s version of the song “American Woman.”
The same can apply to marketing content.
As you know, creating original content requires substantial time and effort. So why re-invent the wheel all the time when the opportunity exists to extend the shelf life of some of your existing content?
The potential benefits you can gain by repurposing your content include:
- Reduce time and money spent on content creation.
- Improve SEO results.
- Increase engagement from prospects.
How repurposing content saves time
With the heavy lifting done (keyword research, fact-finding, interviews, etc.), you can recreate content in other forms in significantly less time than it took to produce the original work.
How repurposing content can improve SEO results
When you repurpose content in different ways and promote it via email marketing and social media, you increase traffic to your website and boost your business’s online authority. Also, by publishing repurposed content on your blog or elsewhere on your site, you add indexed pages focused on the keywords you’re targeting. You can also facilitate SEO gains by incorporating different variations of your keywords to target long-tail phrases you didn‘t use in your original content.
How repurposing content can increase engagement
Not everyone in your target audience has the same preferences regarding the types of content they like to consume. Personally, I’m more inclined to read a blog post than I am to click through a slideshow. And I know many people who would much rather tune into a video than read an article. Repurposing gives you an opportunity to make sure you’re serving up your best content in an appealing way to people with different tastes.
Ways to repurpose content
Any type of content has the potential to be repurposed — provided the content is relevant and will provide value to the audience you’re targeting.
Because most businesses create blog posts more often than other types of content, there’s ample opportunity to re-invent and use them for other marketing purposes. Pay attention to your website’s analytics, readers’ comments on your blog posts and engagement on social media to help you assess which topics appeal most to your audience and deserve additional exposure.
Ideas for repurposing blog posts
- Combine multiple related blog posts into an e-book or white paper.*
- Take key points or statistics from a blog post and create an infographic.
- Turn blog posts that step readers through a process into how-to videos.
- Incorporate blog post content into email newsletters.
- Republish blog posts as LinkedIn articles.
- Convert blog posts focused on customer case studies into video interviews/testimonials.
* E-books, white papers and free guides that include more substance and detail than blog posts are high-value pieces. Consider offering access to them in exchange for website visitors’ contact information or as an incentive for signing up for your email newsletter.
E-books and white papers
High-value long-form content holds a lot of repurposing potential because it has the bandwidth to dive into multiple aspects of a topic. If you’ve created e-books and white papers, consider how you can break them down into shorter pieces of content that can be readily shared and consumed.
Ideas for repurposing e-books and white papers
- Convert each chapter of an e-book into a blog post.
- Convert each section of a white paper into a blog post.
- Create an infographic from the relevant points and statistics shared in an e-book or white paper.
- Break down each chapter of an e-book into a slideshow.
- Break down each section of a white paper into a slideshow.
- Turn chapters of e-books that step readers through a process into how-to videos.
Infographics are visual eye candy that enables readers to grasp key points, processes, and data easily. Although they are often birthed through repurposing other content, sometimes they’re created from the ground up. In that case, consider opportunities to transform their content and extend their impact.
Ideas for repurposing infographics
- If you have an infographic that is a collection of statistics centered on a common theme, create a “listicle” blog post.
- If you have an infographic that is a collection of statistics centered on a common theme, create a slideshow with individual slides for each statistic.
- Take an infographic that steps readers through a process and create a slideshow with each step captured on its own slide.
- Take an infographic that steps readers through a process and create a blog post to explain the steps in more detail.
Although it might not be as easy to repurpose videos into other types of content, you can still find opportunities to do so.
Ideas for repurposing videos
- Turn how-to video scripts into blog posts.
- Write a blog post that summarizes the content of a video and embed the video in the post.
- Create mini-video clips from a longer video.
- Combine multiple how-to videos into a video course.
Real-world repurposing examples
The ideas I’ve mentioned are just a starting point. You’ll surely find other creative ways to get more mileage from your content, too.
At Straight North, for example, this article started as a series of guest posts on Jeff Bullas’s blog. It was then converted into a downloadable PDF and page on the Straight North website to serve as a writing guide for site visitors.
Another sample is this “Lead Generation Ecosystem” infographic. It began as a rough drawing on Straight North’s chief operating officer’s whiteboard, became an internal training tool and then was polished as an infographic. The infographic has appeared in Straight North blog posts, featured in guest blog posts, shared by other bloggers on their websites, and has been the inspiration for various slide presentations.
The examples above have attracted inbound links for Straight North and are used as informational resources by the marketing community.
Repurpose with purpose
Re-inventing content for the sake of saving time isn’t enough of a reason to do it. You need to consider what you want your repurposed content to accomplish for your business and what types of content will resonate the best with the audience you want to reach.
Also, if you’re repurposing content that has been around for a while, carefully review to ensure it’s still accurate. If it refers to studies, surveys, statistics, technology tools or anything else that isn’t evergreen, check to make sure your re-invented content is up to date.
Lastly, realize that not every piece of content you produce will have what it takes to be successful its second time around. If it didn’t perform well in its original form (failed to generate social media interaction, didn’t draw traffic to your website, was unable to convert prospects to customers, etc.), you’ll want to consider why. Just because you can repurpose, doesn’t always mean you should.
What are your favorite ways to repurpose content and how have they helped you save time, improve SEO results and increase audience engagement? Leave a comment and share your thoughts!