5 Ways You Can Win Big With Content Marketing Reuse

How To Beat The Once and Done Content Syndrome

Win Big With Content Marketing Reuse-Heidi CohenContent marketing isn’t one size fits all. To maximize your business results, you must adapt your content to meet your prospects’ needs in the context of the specific media platform.

Unlike television ads that are aired again and again to a broad viewer base to attract prospects, content marketing must be tailored to meet its specific audience’s needs in a given environment or it’s never seen.

75% of ideas on average (mode) are turned into a content asset, published once, and never reused or repurposed again according to 2015 Kapost data. Content Marketing Reuse Chart

The problem with this is that it uses up your marketing budget and resources with limited results.

3 Best-in-class experts who win big with content marketing reuse

To extend each content marketing effort to yield maximum results, best-in-class marketers plan their content marketing reuse in advance.

1. Todd Wheatland of King Content and author of SlideShare aims to maximize the power of every story. Depending on your business, strong new stories that interest your customers and attract prospects may be limited. Therefore Wheatland believes in creating at least 20 pieces of content from each idea.

2. Rebecca Lieb, author of Content Marketing refers to content reuse as “recombinant content.” While Thanksgiving turkey” is the main event, leftovers get transformed into other turkey meals. Similarly “main event” content can be broken into constituent parts for extended use across channels and over time.

3. Top Rank’s Lee Odden, author of Optimize plans not only for content reuse but also for related content creation.

Odden is the king of epic content curation. To support conferences, Odden teams up with the owners to create one or more high performing ebooks. Before creating the content, Odden plans for content reuse and related content.

For the 2014 Content Marketing World conference, Odden and his team created 4 ebooks and related blog articles winning a DemandGen 2015 Killer Content Award. Leading up to the conference in mid-September, this yielded:

  • 145,000+ views on SlideShare
  • 20,000 page views on TopRankBlog
  • 2,000+ PDF downloads
  • 800 leads
  • 200+ event referrals

Here’s an example of one of the Content Marketing World ebooks and related posts. Note that Odden always has a theme for the content that enhance the text, images and presentation.

Audience Development for Content Marketing eBook #CMWorld-2-1-2

Related Curated Content

Lee Odden Interview with Heidi Cohen

Audit existing content marketing before you start

To maximize content marketing results and minimize resource use, audit your existing content across your organization, both online and offline. Here are 7 of the top content audit questions to consider.

  1. Do you have sufficient content to meet your prospect and customer needs at every step of the buying process? Think in terms of the 5 basic types of content customers actively seek.
  2. Do you have good content that would need to be adapted for additional marketing channels? This means your content is too focused on a specific media platform.
  3. Do you have content that needs updating or revision? Does it target your audience’s current needs and platforms?
  4. Do you have content that should be deleted? Is the product still available? Is it content cheaper and/or easier to create from scratch?
  5. Does your content need to be adapted for different content media channels including owned, social media, third party and curated media?
  6. Where are the holes in your current content?
  7. Does your content have appropriate metadata? To find this content when you need it add metadata so that you can curate it on your owned and social media.

Once you’ve audited your organization’s content, keeping track of your content should be an on-going process through the use of good metadata and organization.

5 Content marketing reuse options FTW

To win big with content marketing reuse takes planning upfront to minimize resource and budget use. Doing this while you still have the original content creation resources minimizes effort and maintains consistency. Win Big With Content Marketing Reuse-Heidi Cohen

While you can adapt your content post-publication, it’ll take longer and require more efforts.

1. Change your content format.

This type of content reuse has the biggest impact because it not only looks different but also significantly transforms how your message is conveyed. Here are 5 major ways to modify your content format.

  • Text. Is highly versatile but can appear difficult to consume to your average readers.
  • Image. Pulls people in because we’re visual beings. Don’t limit yourself to photographs. Incorporate graphics, drawings, charts and infographics.
  • Video. Emulates television and has been gaining ground on smartphones. We’re used to seeing video action.
  • Audio. Gives your content a voice so that you can speak one-to-one to your leaders. Make it easy for your friends to share.
  • Presentation. These can be given live during a conference or event or they can be created as an ebook. 

2. Modify content length.

People have short attention spans online. The average human attention span is 8.25 seconds in 2015 according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information. People read just 28% of the average online page containing 593 words.

To attract attention you must place your content where people will see it. To this end, consider what your audience is doing when they come across your content and the type of content consumption they’ll be using.

  • Short. This type of content may be viewed on the go or as time fillers.
  • Medium. Can fill the time when people are waiting for something else.
  • Long. People tend to save longer content for weekends when they can focus. Bear in mind that they may never read it.

3. Develop new headlines.

As tests by Upworthy have proved, titles tend to do the lion’s share of the work to attract and hold reader attention.

  • Use new headlines for each new platform to give your content additional life.

4. Add attention-getting images.

People are visual beings. We see images 60,000 times faster than text. Therefore add at least one image to lure your reader in. This is a great element to modify when reimagining content. Use a variety of different types of visual content.

  • Photograph These are the most popular form of content.
  • Illustrations. Use these to show your thoughts.
  • Charts. Visually communicate data in an easy-to-consume manner.
  • Infographics. Compile complex data into one area.
  • Cartoons. Show your lighter side visually.

5. Include both keywords and hashtags.

  • Add key search terms and hashtags to enable prospects and customers to find your content where appropriate.

Need some additional content marketing reuse inspiration? Here’s 56 options.

To increase your content reach with a little incremental investment, adopt your content to different formats

At a minimum, content must be adapted to maximize its effectiveness based on the platform where it’s distributed. This is particularly important for social media where audiences vary by network.

What forms of reused content marketing work best for your business?

Happy Marketing,
Heidi Cohen


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Photo Credit: (c)2015 Heidi Cohen (HeidiCohen.com) Reuse permitted with link to this post.

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  • Peter Pawlus

    We took a 29 page static pdf research report and repurposed it to an interactive infographic, an assessment and an interactive white paper http://bit.ly/1uDfUlN .