What is Repurposing Content?
I’m excited to introduce the complete guide to repurposing content but before we begin, let’s call out what repurposing is: content repurposing is the process of taking existing content and:
- recycling the main concept and pairing it with new hooks, analogies, or stories
- regurgitating older content and getting it in front of eyes that have not seen it before
- reusing it in new ways to create something fresh or more appropriate for different platforms
The 3 R’s are a great way to maximize return on investment for content marketing efforts. By “recycling” content you already have, you can extend the life of a piece of content far beyond its original use. You can repurpose content into different types such as video or audio, or even take one piece of content and break it out into many different pieces of content.
Repurposing content allows you to get more value from the same amount of work and resources you put into creating it in the first place.
Do you need help with a repurposed content strategy–or as I call it, getting the evergreen ROI out of your content efforts? Evergreen + Elevate is a done-with-you program where I help you strategically create content that will stand the test of time. I give you content outlines so you can create topical content, whether that’s video content, audio content, or written content. I then step in and do the repurposing and redistribution for you to create a three-month evergreen content plan for you to rely on between launches or heavy promo periods.
Why Is Content Repurposing Useful?
Content repurposing is an effective way to keep your audience engaged with the content you already have without having to create completely new pieces from scratch, saving you, the creator, quite a bit of time.
Let’s talk about repurposing in terms of baking a cake. You start with the same basic ingredients and then add different spices to make the flavors unique, but still reach the same outcome–a delicious dessert! As any baker knows, you have to keep certain ratios intact, like dry to wet ingredients. But you can go crazy with flavorings!
Best ways to recycle existing content
Recycling existing content and freshening it up is much like finding a cake recipe on the web and zhuzhing a few ingredients. Allergic to eggs? Try substituting a flax seed egg or applesauce in its place. Using this recipe opens the cake up to a whole new world of people who couldn’t try it before.
It’s the same with your popular content–sometimes the opening hook didn’t resonate with a segment of your audience, so pairing it with a new hook will open up the viewers that are interested in what you’re sharing.
Perhaps your best client is shifting a bit–you used to serve all service providers and now you’re focusing on health and lifestyle service providers like naturopaths or nutritionists. Try recycling some of your older content pieces and include a new story about a nutritionist you helped. Change out the case studies from copywriters to naturopaths.
3 ways to repurpose existing content and reintroduce it to your audience
- Pair it with a new hook–if the email subject line “The Demi Moore secret to audience engagement” didn’t result in great opens/clicks, try “Casper isn’t just for your pre-summer body.”
- Add a story into the content; in this article I could talk about a crisis I had last year that caused me to use up all my pre-scheduled content and start leaning more heavily on evergreen content. Personalizing the need for your topic will help drive more action.
- Give a new analogy to help your audience understand the topic, much like the cake analogy I’ve been using here.
Best ways to repost your content
Sometimes, you simply don’t have the time or resources to create fresh content on a regular basis, so it can be helpful to lean on existing content instead. When you’ve created something with real weight to it, repurposing can save you time and energy from having to continually create new content. If you’ve saved your high-quality content in an accessible content database, it’s easy to pull the older content’s assets like short-form videos or graphics for social media posts and schedule them again.
In our cake analogy, this is where you become known for your chocolate torte with black walnut bitters–everyone knows you’ll make it well and they start asking for it. And just like bringing that torte to your PTA meeting or to a family reunion will present the torte to very different groups of people, regurgitating older content gets your social media content in front of new eyes, too. It’s like a second chance for your favorite stuff!
This works best for evergreen content, or topics that stand the test of time rather than refer directly to an upcoming launch or event.
Best ways to reuse content ideas
Content marketers know that creating content is never done in a silo–that is, you never want to create a blog article that has no way to be broken up into smaller chunks for a LinkedIn post or a TikTok. In theory, every content topic can be repurposed across varying platforms! If you didn’t start with video, you’ll need to make some short clips to move from an article to a TikTok, but if your article covers a few main subpoints the headings alone can easily become a three-point video.
Sometimes, your four-year-old asks you to do cupcakes instead of a cake for his birthday. And sometimes, you wonder if you can make your lemon-lavender cheesecake recipe live on as a lavender ice cream with lemon curd spirals.
12 examples of content repurposing on different platforms to gain more reach
Giving your content breath in other arenas is one of the easiest ways to reach more people:
- turn a podcast content into an ebook; use it as a lead magnet or low-priced entry point to your funnel
- each subpoint of a blog article can become it’s own short-form video for Reels or TikTok
- any listicle-style topics easily become infographics
- listicle-style topics also perform well as lives
- break the lives up into several short-form videos for social posting
- summarize each main point and turn it into a LinkedIn article
- write an email to your list with the same content from an Instagram or LinkedIn post
- repurposing blog content into a book to build authority
- each long-form piece of content can be a full webinar, podcast series, or video series
- pull quotes from each piece and use them for stories to promote the long-form content
- create one quote artwork piece as an image for the blog post
- play with the headlines/titles you didn’t use as Pinterest graphics
Content repurposing is a helpful tool for people who have worked hard to create high-quality content. Sharing content in different ways is a way to serve your audience better. By using this technique, you can keep putting out different content without having to start from scratch every time. It’s like getting more mileage out of something you’ve already created!
How to Repurpose Content Strategically
We’ve talked about the best ways to employ the three kinds of repurposing. Now let’s cover how to do it strategically. Repurposing content is one of the smartest ways established businesses can keep up with the Joneses of the busy social media world, but only when done with a plan in mind.
What’s the first step in content repurposing?
When it comes to content repurposing, the first step isn’t actually repurposing content at all! It’s understanding what type of content you already have and where it currently lives. Over the years, I’ve heard from so many clients who had a massive arsenal of content, but looking for it (along with the related assets) took almost as long as recreating it.
That’s why having a central content database is essential in any successful content marketing strategy–even if it doesn’t sound particularly sexy or exciting. Once you know where your existing assets are located, then you can start to strategize about how best to repurpose them for maximum effect.
How do you identify which pieces of content to repurpose?
When it comes to identifying which pieces of content to repurpose, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. However, some key factors should be considered in order to make the best decision for your business.
- Measure the lead-generating activities from already-published content and try to identify which pieces have had the most success.
- Choose pillar content you’ve already created that needs a second chance–evergreen content that can be repurposed into something new.
- Find quality content using these first two steps and check if you’ve already used them across the platforms you have a presence on now.
- Can you create visual content out of pieces that are currently written only?
- Check the current SEO status of written content and see if rewrites will be helpful.
- Look in your content calendar and see if you have any holes–especially of a certain type of content–that you can fill with older content.
Finally, assess how much time and money are required to repurpose the existing content into something completely new versus creating something entirely from scratch.
By doing this, you can determine which pieces of content will yield the best results when repurposed.
Content you create doesn’t have to pick up tumbleweeds. Aim for a flourishing garden with perennials that pop up again and again. Your content strategy can and should be a mix of old, new, borrowed, and blue content. Ultimately, you’ll build more authority with content formats that reach more people. You’ll also build your reputation in your space by reposting content that your fans may have missed the first time around.
More Examples of Content Repurposing Are Available:
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