Challenged with creating new content? You’re not alone. Developing new content was ranked as marketers’ biggest pain point in a recent PMMI MediaGroup survey, ranking even higher among respondents than finding fresh names or the cost of new leads. (Packaging Supplier Marketing Trends and Best Practices).
The irony is that many companies are sitting on a potential wealth of new marketing content that wouldn’t take nearly the time, talent and budget to produce that one might suspect––if only they would build in the often-overlooked step of repurposing.
Whenever a marketer creates a long-form piece of high-value original content, such as a webinar, white paper or product demo video, it’s important to examine whether mild modification or excerpting can fill additional content needs.
Where to begin with repurposing? The next time you’ve created a significant content piece, consider the five questions below.
Is there an opportunity to version the content for a different audience? Many OEMs serve different verticals. An easy opportunity for these companies to make messaging more relevant is by taking the same high-value white paper and merely swapping out visuals and/or making minor text adjustments to appeal to the different market segments and target the distribution accordingly. Similarly, does your company serve a global audience? A successful use of repurposing is often to take the same video but create versions where audio and/or captioning appears in the language favored by each audience segment.
(For tips on versioning your content for a Latin America audience, see 5 Must-Knows When Marketing Your Brand in Latin America.)
Can you excerpt direct portions of content for use on other channels? Did you create a product demo video for a virtual conference? Consider using shortened clips of the video in prospecting emails or on social. Or perhaps you can extend use by featuring a quote from the speaker in a social media post and then linking to the video embedded on your website. The audience for high-value content almost always reaches beyond one event.
Is there an opportunity to change the content’s format? Many marketers will turn a webinar into a white paper or vice versa to appeal to prospects’ varying information consumption preferences. Also, many marketers will transform a detailed slide from a presentation into a brief article or blog post by merely adding light narrative.
Can any portions of your early-stage content be used elsewhere to answer the questions of late-stage buyers? Many marketers will transform Q&A articles with technical staff into follow-up checklists or fact sheets that serve as part of sales collateral. Or a webinar where staff discuss trends and challenges can then form the basis for developing bottom-funnel content focused on how your products help address the trends and challenges discussed in the webinar.
Does your content piece have any “nuggets” of note? Sometimes the best repurposing ideas occur simply by noticing snippets that stand out as particularly interesting or engaging. Can you extract data for a mini-infographic? Is there a strong quote you can feature in social images or ad copy? Or perhaps you’ve developed a case study where the end user’s experience can translate into a testimonial.
Of course, not every content piece will align well with repurposing. That’s why the following tips are useful.
Prioritize value over volume. Some types of content work only for particular purposes or simply won’t be helpful enough to prospects to be worth repetition. Don’t put content out there simply because you have it on hand—you need to be deliberate in making sure that what you create ties to your marketing goals. Otherwise, you risk muddying your messaging.
Consider a project’s repurposing potential when weighing it against others and choose a versatile format. Some topics will lend themselves to greater extension potential. Case studies or interviews that you can mine for quotes or pieces that are rich in statistics provide more “nuggets.” And content that is organized using bulleted lists or step-based sections generally lends itself to repurposing better than a piece developed in a streamlined expository format.
Don’t be short-sighted. It’s easy to get pulled into a very linear content creation process, where you’re focused solely on planning for a specific number of content pieces with designated start and stop dates and distinct distribution plans. And while this approach will shape the majority of your creation efforts, it’s also important to pause occasionally and look back to past pieces to see if they hold new value. For example, could stats shared in a presentation or white paper make the difference in crafting an upcoming press release that would make the content more appealing to editors? Or could a series of past articles and videos be combined to help create a new content piece of value, such as a customer on-boarding toolkit? Keeping an eye toward repurposing your content is an ongoing effort.