Awhile back I did a short video on the importance of republishing your blog posts. Just one aspect of repurposing.
But the fact is, I not only talk about repurposing your content, but am a huge fan of doing it myself. The bottom line is that it works
So here are some ideas and tips to help you as you consider how to get the most out of all of your content no matter what medium it is.
What You Need to Know About Repurposing Your Content
There are so many ways to repurpose your content. I will cover several of them as well as offer some strategic and specific tips on repurposing.
It is obvious that the more content you have produced, the more you have for repurposing. But no matter how much content we have, if there is any way to produce more content with ideas driven by existing content, it makes our lives easier.
Three Important Reasons to Repurpose Your Content
There are three top reasons most people are interested in repurposing their content.
Generate More Content
One of the biggest challenges we have as content creators is, well, creating more content. We all have times when the well runs dry and ideas aren’t coming fast and furious. Repurposing your content means that you have to come up with fewer new ideas. They are already there for you.
Making Your Readers Happy
Repurposing makes your content more digestible for and useful to all readers. But when it comes to specifically attracting new readers, repurposing existing content gives you a chance to meet the needs of people who may not have visited your blog and prefer their content in visual form (think video and transcripts of audio) or by hearing it (recordings).
If Google Is Happy, We Are All Happy
Google loves content. But it must be good content. And what better way than to repurpose some of your content to get even more of it out there. Also, repurposing helps you to build up your inner-links which helps Google to understand your site better.
Updating Your Existing Content
One of the oldest forms of repurposing is updating your existing content. There are several reasons you might want to do this. Take, for example, my site. I talk a lot about WordPress and eCommerce: products and services. And often are updated, in one way or another.
Instructional content is ideal for this. You may have old posts that still get a lot of traffic (and you definitely want to repurpose high-traffic content), but it’s out-of-date. Even though a lot of it may still ring true, there might be things you could change to improve it.
These are the simple ones, where only one or two changes are needed. So you will make those changes and just update the post.
Now there is a caveat here. If you do these small tweaks, you may still want to let your readers know that it was updated. There are ways to have an updated date show up in your meta (next to the original published date) or it can be replaced. But beware. This will happen even if you find a type and update. So will that mean it’s actually updated? I have a post that tells you more about updating your WordPress posts here.
This is the other end of the spectrum. It involves finding the deadwood. Posts that ultimately are useless or need to be totally redone from scratch. You will find the deadwood easier as they can be posts dated around an upcoming event or something that is time-driven and just doesn’t need to be on your site any longer. On the other hand, it may just not fit with your current content and you either toss it or do a complete rewrite based on it, but practically a new post.
Just remember when deleting posts entirely consider redirects as in the end it’s better for someone to end up on another page on your site if they click the old link rather than a 404 page not found.
Rewrites and Edits
This is in-between. Not just a few tweaks or completely useless. Now, there is nothing wrong with republishing with a new date. And often this lies more in the major edits arena.
If you are doing it this way, and using WordPress, follow these three steps.
- Go to the post and change from published to draft.
- Make your changes.
- Reschedule your post.
What’s important not to do is change any of the meta, especially if the post is already ranking well with Google. Do not touch the URL or permalink— or change it. Keep all of your SEO settings the same except if it hasn’t ranked, you might consider reworking your keywords. Keep the title as is, especially if it’s already ranking high.
Repurposing Audio to Video
Whether you currently have a podcast, or are thinking about starting one, if you do audio only, take that next step. There are several different ways you can do this, both with a service and manually. In a nutshell, it’s taking your audio, eg. a podcast, and creating a video. Yes, depending on the content, some people do listen only to videos. Again, it gives you a chance to create your existing content as a new medium and even put it on a site like YouTube. I go into this subject much deeper and the services I have used to do this in this post: How to Easily Repurpose Your Audio Files on YouTube
Extract and Expand From Your Content
This will involved the canonical link, which I talk about later in this post on duplicate content.
Pulling Out the Content
You may have content on your blog, a simple paragraph or two (something more than 350 words to appease Google), that will work great as a stand-alone post. Consider this. You do an interview with someone about Facebook ads. You ask them 5 questions. One of the questions is, what’s the difference between sponsored and ads on Facebook? There you have it. A post in itself. What’s great is that is answers a specific question. So some may want to learn all about Facebook ads, while others may be more interested in simply understanding the differences between the two.
I have a post where I go into this even more here: An Interview Question from Your Podcast is a Potential Blog Post.
Expanding Your Content
Extracting the content is pretty easy. But on the other end of the spectrum, how many posts do you have with 10, 15 or 20 tips about something. Guess what? Depending on the subject and your original post, you can make a longer post out of each one of those specific tips. Obviously, it will take you more, but it provides even deeper content for the reader and allows you to interlink both posts within you site. The same goes for lists.
In both cases, the SEO is going to be good. If you are like me and a huge part of your traffic is organic search, this is a win-win for you.
Video, Audio, Text and Images. Repurpose with Media.
At this point this is a no-brainer. Audio to video or visa versa. Transcripts or posts written from videos. The options are endless.
Let me give you an example. As I mentioned before, one of the good reasons to repurpose is that people ingest content in different ways, including reading text, watching a video and listening to a podcast.
In one of our past podcasts, I offered the content in a post, a video and an audio. You may ask why all of that on the same post.
- When someone lands on that post, they have a choice. And choice is good.
- I can also post the content elsewhere, for example, posting the videos on YouTube and creating a specific RSS feed for the podcast.
- And as I will say again, it’s good for SEO.
I can’t say that I do this with every post, but I can say people love it. For example, my old tutorials on some Genesis child themes had two videos. One showed what they could not do with the theme. The second included how to set it up like the demo and tips on how to go beyond the basic look. Then I followed those videos with screenshots explaining everything I had shown in the second video.
Was it a lot of work to do? Yes.
Did people like the format? For sure!
While repurposing through all these types of media, there are also opportunities to monetize. For example, here are a few ways to monetize your podcast.
Repurposing Using Social Media
In a way social sharing, is, in its own way, repurposing. On a smaller scale, you are putting your content on these platforms.
And when you look at all of these social platforms, you are going to find some unique and creative ways to repurpose your own content.
Here are a couple of examples.
When you share a post on Facebook, LinkedIn or Google+, you do not have a character limit. Sure, you don’t want to overwhelm anyone with your full content, but you can use the first paragraph from your post as a nice introduction and an encouragement for people to click through. Or maybe you will find some other content in your post that will catch someone’s interest.
Then there are LinkedIn articles. This is a great way to pull in a piece of content from a post and lead people to click through to the original post. It may be that single-question interview I mentioned before. Or perhaps you have a post with 10 tips for SEO and you can share two of those tips in the LinkedIn article.
Whatever you choose to do with social, think outside the box and get creative.
How To Avoid Duplicate Content
This is where your canonical link will play into your strategy. Here is what it is in a nutshell, as explained from Yoast.
A canonical URL lets you tell search engines that certain similar URLs are actually the same. Sometimes you have products or content that can be found on multiple URLs – or even multiple websites, but by using canonical URLs (HTML link tags with the attribute rel=canonical), you can have these on your site without harming your rankings.
Here is where you set it in the Yoast SEO plugin.
This is such a critical piece to know and I would suggest you check out this article on Yoast.com to learn all you need to know about duplicate content and canonical links.
So Many More Options for Repurposing Your Content
Think about it, there are numerous options for repurposing:
- Online Courses
- Membership Sites
And that is just the tip of the iceberg
Posts have been written on creating eBooks from your blog, with posts as potential chapters on the same topic. In another example, when we closed down one of our membership sites, we didn’t just stash away all the content we created for it. It came to life on our blog. In fact, you can read more about how to take advantage of content you are no longer using in a way it was intended originally: What to Do With Content That You Are No Longer Selling Online.
Of course, it’s up to you to discover your own sweet spot.
Putting Life Into Those Old Posts
It’s obvious that repurposing your content brings life to new posts. But here are other ways to do that as well as suggested in our post: 5 Tips to Make Your Old WordPress Blog Posts Even Better
It’s Take Some Work
I honestly believe that many people are attracted to the concept of repurposing because they think it will make life easier for them. And in some ways it will. It may even give your brain a break from the hard work of coming up with new ideas. But in the end, repurposing takes work.
But heck, don’t most things that are worthwhile take time? In act, here are a few ideas of how you can work this into your own workflow when visiting your old posts.
An audio option for this post.