You did it.
You’ve been working for hours on the perfect content piece for the longest time. Maybe it was a podcast episode, a video, a long-form blog post, or infographic. You’re proud of it. You put it out there, and to your surprise… crickets.
Maybe you weren’t so surprised - given the volume of content that gets published every day, there’s so much content out there that quality or quantity are no longer substitutes. Along with distribution - quality, quantity and distribution have never been more important to nail as a content marketer.
You may have realised that maybe there’s a way to repurpose your existing content to extract more valuable content assets. The best content marketers make it a habit to always be repurposing content. It’s a smart way to get more content in less time, and also helps to drive coherence and consistency around a topic that you’re looking to build thought leadership around.
Here is the 5 step process to repurpose content for social media that have never been more relevant that in 2019:
Map out what social platforms are important to you
Start with long-form content.
Chop content based on priority
Monitor what works
Consider starting a video series
Map out what social platforms are important you
Do you think your content should be everywhere, or only on specific platforms? I believe that your content should be everywhere you can - because humans (your customers) are everywhere. Yes even on Spotify and Instagram. The good news is that through repurposing content, you will be able to hit more platforms and contextualise the different pieces based on the asset format (for example square or horizontal images) as well as captioning (e.g: business-focused on LinkedIn, vs. cool and casual on LinkedIn). Having said that, when resources are limited, you have to prioritise the platforms that are most important to your business. For most businesses it’s LinkedIn, and one other one.
Horizontal Images - LinkedIn, Twitter
Square Images - Instagram, Facebook
Horizontal Video - YouTube, Twitter (and sometimes LinkedIn)
Square Video - LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook
Audio Podcast - Soundcloud, Spotify, iTunes
Written Content - Your website, Medium, LinkedIn [natively], Quora
1. Start with long-form content
It’s easier to repurpose longer form content pieces, especially video and audio - than shorter pieces. It’s easier to repurpose a video series or podcast episode than to repurpose a one-minute promo video. Long blog posts can be repurposed into a series of infographics or images in horizontal, vertical, and square format. The best long-form content you can repurpose are hands down video series.
By creating your own original series, be it using smartphones or filmed live in your office with you can repurpose those episodes into smaller video, audio, written, and image content. Identify the long-form piece of content you wish to repurpose based on how much value is packed into it which would also hold stand-alone value.
2. Chop content based on priority
If you have a pizza, you can cut it into 6 or 8 slices depending on how many you are (or how hungry you are). Your long-form content (say video) is no different.
Just because there’s different ways to chop something up doesn’t mean you should go for it. It has to be contextualised to your audience which is always the focus.
Think about what formats, topics, and mediums (see point 1) have their attention. Based on that, what would be the best way to repurpose the content? Especially if resources are limited, you may decide to create an article summary of the video episode than to create an image series because you understand that your audience prefers to consume content primarily in written form. Alternatively, you may decide that an ebook or pillar article can quickly be turned into a series of images.
Probably one of the easiest repurposing quick wins you can action is to extract audio from your video episodes to create .WAV and MP3 files that can serve as audio podcasts. For a full list of how to repurpose content, check our guide on this here.
3. Monitor what works
One of the biggest benefits of repurposing content is the ability to have multiple microcontent pieces that all serve under the one campaign.
They’re often easier to consume, travel further, and appeal to your persona in different ways based on their preference in consuming content. For example, someone may listen to your podcast (extracted audio) while commuting, someone else may have just arrived to their office and saw some of your image content which makes them send the article its based off to someone else on their team because they may find value in it. Someone else may come across the subtitled microcontent subtitled videos from your episode during their lunch break which encourages them to start a chat on your website.
The important thing when repurposing content is to have a mechanism by which you can measure, through first-touch attribution, the effectiveness of each piece. An easy way to do this is to create tracking links that track content pieces based on topic, format, and medium. This way, you’re able to provide detailed breakdown to your leadership teams about what seems to be working - making you the new marketing office hero.
Because let’s face it, content marketing is sometimes hard to measure. But with the aforementioned method, you have a foolproof way to deploy, measure, and scale your results based on data and market response.
4. [Bonus] Consider starting a video series
To set yourself up for success, consider starting a video series. An original series - yes, not unlike Netflix. All you need is 1 smartphone to get started and you can start a video podcast, panel series, or even begin filming monthly meet-ups if your company runs them. Having a dedicated original series is an excellent brand asset to build that can supply an endless stream of content. There are plenty of video series ideas out there up for grabs.
We spoke about the importance of balancing quality, quantity, and distribution earlier. By creating a video series, you’ll be able to hit all three in lockstep.
When it comes to quality - having a branded series makes it easier for prospective customers and others in your network to recognize you as a thought leader over time. Naturally, you may consider having guests on your show who are known figures in your industry. This helps to build credibility by association. You can aim for 30 min episodes.
When it comes to quantity, the microcontent pieces that come as a result of repurposing the full episodes come “built-in” every time. This means for every one episode you create, you can always count on a good few weeks’ of content that can come from it.
Finally, when it comes to distribution - you want to make sure that the right people see your content, not just who happens to be your LinkedIn connection at the time. With that in mind, pay close attention to who you bring on to your series, and which circles, communities, and groups you share the content in.
Encourage your guest to do the same through their own networks and their own marketing teams’ content. 2 companies working together to promote content is better than 1. It’s no wonder that LinkedIn has an LinkedIn Elevate, an entire platform dedicated to amplifying the reach of your content by making it accessible to others in your organisation faster.
Hopefully this guide will serve as an initial starting point to getting started with repurposing. Check our other guides on repurposing content below.