Content Strategy

Recycle! Stop making your content strategy a one-hit wonder

6 min read
Jeff Large

What if I told you spending less time on your content strategy could bring in more business, give you greater authority, and earn you higher revenues? All of those goals are obtainable by intentionally recycling your content — a key content strategy that gets you more, for less.

How most of us create and distribute content

Most of us create content one item at a time for a single purpose.

For example, your business is going to be offering a new service so you write a blog post to promote the service or demonstrate your expertise in that area. Perhaps you just shot off your monthly newsletter broadcasting the company’s recent happening. Or maybe you record and post your latest podcast episode to continue to gain authority in a market.

If you’re using content for a single purpose, you’re cheating yourself and your audience.

All of those methods for delivering content are good. However, if these blog posts, newsletters, and podcast episodes are only being used once, you are cheating yourself and your audience.

Start recycling your content

I run a few businesses: an e-commerce-focused web agency, my personal digital consulting service, and a board game media company with a few friends. Time is my most valuable resource and finding ways to accomplish tasks with less is always appealing.

One of my favorite methods of doing more with less is by recycling and reusing any content I create.

As a business owner, it’s important for my target audience to hear my voice. I want them to get a feel of who I am before doing business with me. Thus, I write nearly all of our content and host all of our podcasts.

Before I even begin creating anything, I make sure the content I want to produce can be used a minimum of two different ways.

Recycling content strategy: Podcast example

For example, I’m producing a new podcast, Best Kept Secret, that takes a case-study style approach to different niches of business and interviews experts in those niche areas. Seasons run about 8 to 10 episodes and each season explores a different niche.

The easy thing to do would be record an episode, write a summary, and post it to the website. I could promote it via social media or my mailing list but it still would be a one-time thing or single-use post. Instead of stopping there, I plan to get more from the content.

Here are the two ways I currently plan to reuse the podcast’s content:

  1. Post the podcast episode with the show notes to the website.
  2. Because the seasons are broken into topics, all of the show notes will be put into a single document and offered as relevant lead generation at the end of each post to increase mailing subscribers. Something like, “Did you find this episode helpful? Sign up for our mailing list and receive show notes for all the ____ topic for free.”

The episode show notes are written once but are being used twice. The individual podcast episodes and show notes are working to build authority for my brand and the combined show notes document is generating new email opt-ins.

Starting to brainstorm ways you can do this yet? Let’s take a look at a few more examples to help get those creative juices flowing.

This very post is the result of recycled content.

Consider the following:

  1. I gave a talk at a local startup incubator about growing your business on a budget. Of all my points, recycling your content was the crowd favorite.
  2. Based on what I learned from the talk, I wrote a blog post for my personal blog on recycling your content.
  3. After getting connected with the fine folks at GoDaddy Garage, I reworked the information into the new post you are currently reading.
  4. Now that I’m certain of the popularity of this topic, I’m starting to schedule more speaking engagements with this being the sole focus of the talk.
  5. Last, I could easily turn this content into an ebook, online course, or something similar.

That’s a single piece being slightly tweaked and reworked to produce five unique pieces of content. Along with increased authority every time the content appears, the results include:

  • Public speaking opportunities on a proven topic.
  • Improved SEO for the personal site.
  • Income, backlinks and increased visibility from the GoDaddy guest post.
  • Potential income streams from avenues like ebook or online course sales.

That’s a lot of positive gain for a low amount of effort.

One piece of content can go a long way (for everyone!)

Not only am I getting maximum impact with my content strategy, so is my audience. Repurposing content gives your audiences multiple avenues to engage with your content. Some studies state it takes seven to 13+ interactions to deliver a qualified lead.

It’s easy for a potential customer to miss your content if you produce it once, even if they were interested.

The likelihood of engagement is much higher if you have the content available on multiple platforms via multiple formats. Beyond that, if it is a quality lead, they will want to interact with your content in a variety of ways.

It’s up to you.

How are you reusing your content? What content methods or platforms is your business already using? How can you start implementing this content strategy before you make your next piece of content marketing?

Start in one of two places:

  1. Before you even begin creating your next blog, newsletter, podcast, etc., plan at least two (preferably more) different ways you can deliver that content to benefit your business.
  2. Take a look at your most well-performing talk, blog, etc. and brainstorm a few ways you can repurpose it to help your audience and improve your business.

Putting it all together.

Successful business owners know how to use their resources wisely. Recycling content is one way to save time while maximizing your marketing impact. It helps you and your target audience.

How are you already using this content strategy in your business? How do you want to start using it? Please share your ideas and thoughts in the comments below.