repurpose content

How I Repurpose Content

What is Repurposed Content?

Do you repurpose content?

Here’s what I mean by that. Say I write a great blog post (like this one, I hope). If I’m smart, I don’t stop at one great blog post, I create multiple pieces of content from this idea.

If I repurpose content wisely, I can also create a video, an Instagram story, an Instagram multi-image post, a Pinterest post, a podcast episode, an ebook, and, if I’m really feeling ambitious, an infographic. I could also take an old post and update it, adding more timely information and statistics. All from one idea. See how that works?

It’s a bit like buying a tool you can use in multiple ways. My iPad, for example. I invested in a new iPad this year which I use as a teleprompter when I record videos, to preview websites I build on different screen sizes, and to keep up with email and access files when I’m on the go. It’s less cumbersome to carry around than my laptop, so I take it with me most of the time. I also do my crossword puzzles on it, and have been know to play a game or two. Not only does it help with work, it can be an excellent relaxation device. One investment, multiple benefits.

Why Should I Repurpose Content?

Make Your Ideas Work Hard

When you repurpose content, you make your ideas work as hard as my iPad. If you’re anything like me, your time is always in short supply. Anything that makes better use of the time I spend creating content is a boost to my productivity.

Unless you have a large team, you’re probably not going to create a zillion pieces of content each week. Why not use every idea in as many ways as you can?

My audiences on Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter have different expectations. On YouTube I get people who like to watch videos. Those who don’t like videos may find me on my website, or LinkedIn, or Facebook. Relatively tech-savvy folks will probably find me on Twitter.

One idea can expose you to several different audiences and broaden your reach.

Derek Halpern, founder of Social Triggers, says:

You don’t have to create content, day in, and day out. You just have to work on getting the content you already have … in the hands of more people.

Our time is a business investment — it’s up to us to use it wisely and productively. When you repurpose content, you save time, energy, and brain power — your most valuable assets.

Repurpose Your Content if Your Goals Change

Let’s say you decide to pivot your business. If you’re a landscaper, you might change your focus from residential to commercial. Some of your older content could be updated to reflect more of a focus on your desired customers.

If there is content that works for both residential and commercial landscaping, you might touch it up a bit and republish the updated version.

There might be older content that is no longer useful and new articles to be created. When you goals change, your content should change accordingly.

How Do I Create Multiple Pieces of Content from One Idea?

Be sure your core piece is stellar. This is usually a blog post, but could be an ebook, white paper, or other form. Make it thorough and research it well.

Add images that help get your message across. Use as many images, screenshots or graphics as you need.

My Content Repurposing Process

Here’s how I do it. Each week I write a blog post on a topic related to websites, design, and how to create an effective online presence. I add a featured image to my post, which is an image I created from a stock photo I either purchase or have on hand from my own library. At the top of this page you’ll see the featured image I created for this post. After the post is written I do the following:

1. Create the following images from my featured image.

  1. 2560 x 1440 pixels for a Youtube, Facebook, and LinkedIn thumbnail.
  2. 1088 x 1088 pixels for an Instagram post.
  3. 600 pixels wide for MailChimp.
  4. 1920 x 1280 pixels for the blog post.
  5. 1088 x 1920 pixels for an Instagram story cover.
  6. 1200 x 675 pixels for Twitter.

I have a template for these images in Photoshop, but you could do the same in Canva or any other image editing program. This helps keep my fonts consistent and includes a logo and my URL at the bottom of each post.

2. Record a video based on the content.

Once I’ve written the post, it becomes a video script. I paste it into a word processor (I used Apple’s Pages for this) and pay attention to the word count. Give that I know the average speaker’s rate is about 130 words per minute, I multiple 130 by the number of minutes (I try to keep it under 10) I want the video to last. I usually make it about 8 minutes or so, which means my script needs to be no more than 1040 words. Then edit down until I reach the word goal.

3. Embed the video into the blog post and share on social networks.

I use the large size for Facebook and LinkedIn and the image sized for Twitter for my tweets.

4. Create a slide show.

I take a portion of the post and create a slide show in Apple Keynote, and post it as a story with a link to my bio.

5. Add it to email newsletter.

I add it to my weekly email newsletter with a link to the post. Each newsletter features a Video of the Week, which is the previous week’s video with a link to the YouTube page.

6. Publish on Medium.

I stay several weeks behind on this, so when a post goes up on Medium, it’s already been published on my site for some time. I include a statement that it was previously published on my site and a link to the original post.

7. Publish on LinkedIn.

Add it as an article to my LinkedIn profile. Same procedure and link as on Medium.

8. Create an ebook.

I do this occasionally. It’s easy to create a PDF from a blog post and offer it for download.

repurpose content

Other Things You Can Do That I Don’t Have Time For

  • I’ve previously created images (two for each post) for Pinterest, but earlier this year I dropped Pinterest. To be honest, I personally don’t like Pinterest, and I realized it wasn’t worth the effort. If you’re a Pinterest person, add that to your repurpose content process.
  • I also don’t podcast, but if I did, I’d add that to my list.
  • Many content writers create infographics to go with their posts, and I think it’s an excellent idea, I just don’t have the time.
  • Offer an email course. You can repurpose the content of your post into a series of emails that form a mini course.
  • Take a quote or statistic from your post and create a graphic around it. I like doing this and don’t do it often enough.

Do What You Can With What You Have

My plan is on a much smaller scale than larger organizations do, but there’s only one of me, so I want to be transparent about my limitations. Since creating (and repurposing) content is not the only thing I do, I rarely have time to create infographics and there are some forms of content that don’t work for me, like podcasts.

To come up with your own plan, make a list of things you can do easily and with tools you already have. For me, the creation of multiple sizes of the same images is a snap. It might not be for you.

What other forms of content does your audience consume? Or is there an audience you haven’t captured with your blog posts? Think about how you can get those eyeballs and hold their interest.

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