Last week, we talked about two common content marketing concerns—generating ideas for engaging content and having the time to produce that engaging content—and I proposed that part of the solution is content re-use.
By re-using existing content or creating new content that can be re-used in multiple places, we can reduce the time spent on content production and increase the quality.
Sounds pretty simple, right?
But the question remains: where do we get started?
First step: strategy
Whether you’ve got a bunch of existing content to re-purpose or you’re starting from scratch, it’s always wise to get strategic up front.
Start by getting crystal clear on:
- Who your audiences are for each platform or campaign
- What makes those audiences tick
- What those audiences need from you
- What your overall business goals are and what the sub-goals are for your campaigns or platforms
So, you’ve got some strategic foundation…now what?
Once you know who you’re serving and what you want them to do, it’s time to make a plan for content re-use.
If you already have loads of great content…
It’s time for a content audit.
Your content audit, which is usually tracked in a spreadsheet, should ask, at minimum, the following questions about each piece of content that exists:
- Who was the piece written for? (target audience)
- Has this content been re-used before and, if so, where?
- Does this content support a business goal?
- Does this content support user goals?
- Has this content been effective in its current format?
From here, you can start to determine:
- If the content is valuable enough to re-use or repurpose
- Where it can be re-used or re-purposed
- What, if any, changes you’ll need to make to take it from its current format into whatever new format or platform it’ll be re-used in
If you are starting from scratch…
Content re-use isn’t just for those who have thousands of articles just waiting to be sifted through. It’s also something you can plan for when you start creating content marketing pieces for the first time.
How? By answering a few simple questions every time you have an idea or start planning for a piece:
- Who are we writing this for? (target audience)
- What other content marketing pieces does this target audience use?
- What would we need to do to re-use or re-purpose this content in those other content marketing pieces?
- Could those pieces work in tandem or would we need to have a waiting period before re-using or repurposing?
The answers to these key questions will help you determine what content applies to each audience and platform, how much work it’ll take for your team, and whether you need to re-purpose or stagger the release of certain content on different platforms.
Questions? Comments? Tips of your own?
As always, we’d love to hear from you. Have a tip for content re-use, a question about how it works, or something else to add? Leave a comment below!
Looking for more strategic insights? Download our free webinar on how to build a sustainable content marketing strategy.