If you rely on content marketing, then you need to be repurposing content. Let’s be honest: People are busy, and no one is paying attention to your latest WordPress blog post, email or social media update. Unless you’re a super blogger with rabid fans, people aren’t just waiting around to see what you post.
You need to work hard to get your content to people, which is why repurposing content is so important. If you’re struggling to keep your website current, then repurposing content can make your life easier.
Repurposing Content in Action
Mark Horvath used to work in broadcasting and is familiar with reruns—he even saw a rerun become more popular than the original broadcast. Today Mark runs the nonprofit InvisiblePeople.tv, which works to give homeless people a voice. Most of the content is video interviews Mark has done with homeless people. He can’t travel like he used to, so he’s not posting as much content and the site’s impressions dropped off.
Mark started repurposing content, using the social media scheduling service Edgar to reshare old content. His impressions doubled, just by repurposing content.
Why Repurposing Content Works
The reality is that people didn’t see his social posts the first time around. And it’s little wonder. How many people do you follow on Twitter? Hundreds? Thousands? And how often do you check in on Twitter? A couple times a day? And how many tweets do you read? A few dozen at a time? Even if you’re checking in on Twitter multiple times a day, you’re likely missing 90% of the tweets people post.
Other social channels may vary slightly. Facebook shows “popular” content, determined by their secret algorithm. If you hit on the right combination you might get lucky and people will see your post. But it’s just as likely that your post will go unnoticed.
So reusing that content isn’t just preaching to the choir. It’s very unlikely you’ll turn anyone off because you’re rerunning content.
In fact, repurposing content is one of the best ways to make sure people actually see it. You can get more bang for your buck when you repurpose content. You invested a lot of time and effort into that content, you might as well get the most out of it.
“There is value in giving content to the right person at the right time.” -Jennifer Bourn
Ways to Repurpose Content
This doesn’t have to be rocket science. Here are a few quick ways you can repurpose content:
1. Share Old Stuff
Do what Mark Horvath did and share your old content. The key here is to make sure the content is still relevant and connects with what you’re doing today. If you’re now a WordPress theme guru, the post about how awesome you are at plugins is probably not so helpful.
This approach brings your quality content to new readers without having to do a lot of heavy lifting.
2. Point Back to Old Content
Another approach is to always point back to old content when you’re writing new content. Pull a brilliant quote from that 2012 post on themes and use it in your new post about updating themes. Link back to the original article. Always reference relevant material and point readers deeper into your site.
This is the same basic thing that a “related posts” plugin will give you when it runs relevant posts in the sidebar. But this is more intentional, more direct. Plus, references or links that are presented in the context of your content are going to get more attention.
3. Rework Old Material
One approach is to completely rework old blog posts. Literally re-write them. Add new content, updated whatever is outdated, add social media friendly images, etc. You could do that reworking slowly over time, or just reboot your entire blog, much like a Hollywood franchise (maybe not the best SEO strategy).
This is a more time-intensive strategy, but you’re bringing new value to the blog post.
4. Switch Channels
A final way to repurpose content is to change formats. Take something you wrote and turn it into an infographic. Transform a webinar into a long-form article. Pull clips from a lengthy video and share short clips with text and quotes. Create social media graphics with pullquotes from a blog post.
Repurpose Content Like a Pro
We could go on and on about all the different ways to rework your content. But it’s not that complicated: Find simple ways to bring new eyes to quality content. That’s it.
Learn more about how repurposing content can be part of your content marketing strategy in this webinar from Jennifer Bourn. (See what we did there?)