A Quick Guide to Repurposing Content

If you’ve been reading the Maven, you know how often we raise our megaphone to shout about the benefits of repurposing marketing content. It’s an established best practice of content marketing. It saves time, saves money, and helps ensure a consistent message across different content formats and channels. It can help improve SEO results.

But how exactly do you go about repurposing content? What type of content lends itself well to other formats and channels? We’re here to help guide you.

Starting Fresh with New Content

The way to approach repurposing content is a little different depending on whether you’re starting fresh or trying to repurpose content that’s already in your library.

If you’re producing new content, start by asking if the content you plan to create lends itself to repurposing.

Some content is single-use only. A spec sheet is a spec sheet, right? You can have a PDF and/or a web page of technical specs, but it’s the same content for the same purpose—giving engineers the technical information they want in a clean, comprehensive form. Granted, it’s one of the most important pieces of content you can create.

Other content naturally lends itself to repurposing. For example, if you are planning a white paper that will explain new technologies used in airflow sensors or compare sensor types, the paper will likely touch on a variety of related topics and technologies. Ask yourself how you can “tell this story” in another format or how you can segment out the different sections to create other content.

A webinar might be a good alternative way to tell the entire white paper story. Several short videos might touch independently on how different sensors work. Individual sections can be edited into targeted blog posts.

Another example is if you are producing an original research report based on survey data you collect. The complete set of the data might be analyzed and compiled into the report. Its highlights can be synthesized into a quick-hitting infographic or listicle. A key data point might become a single slide or a graphic.

The important thing about creating new content is to always create with repurposing in mind.

Working with Existing Content

If you’re working with existing content, the repurposing process is slightly different. Start by analyzing your metrics to discover what content is most popular.

You might discover you have how-to videos customers just love. Why not create a PDF of the how-to video that gives step-by-step instructions? Engineers have different preferences for consuming content. Some like to watch, others like to read. Some like YouTube, others stick to your web pages.

Case studies make excellent candidates for repurposing. You can fold them into articles that you pitch for publication. You can extract key quotes for a web page or a slide of customer testimonials. If the original case study is in video format, you can write up the story as text. One caveat: you should have a customer’s permission to use the case study in whole or in part in different formats and channels. That business should be taken care of upfront.

Another approach is to examine your metrics to find out the most popular channels used by engineers to access your content. Top of the list is most likely your website. Any content you have that isn’t on your website can be repurposed into a web page or make downloadable. Other popular channels for engineers are publication email/e-newsletters and your email/e-newsletters.

A Repurposing Example

We don’t just talk about repurposing content at GlobalSpec. We do it, too. Here’s an example: 

This article, “The Benefits of Marketing Visibility,” appeared in the January issue of the Marketing Maven. The team repurposed the article into an infographic offered to our audience via email.

In this case, repurposing the content required having access to a graphic designer and coordinating with email marketing efforts to distribute the content.

For all content repurposing, you’ll need to understand what resources you need. If you don’t have a design person on staff, you can work with your agency if you have one or find an individual designer. Consider trying out a college intern.

You will also need to determine how the repurposed content will be used and what channels it will be distributed on. There’s no sense in repurposing content if you don’t plan to use it properly.

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