Why You Need Up-cycled Content Marketing Now!

5 Tips to Up-Cycle Your Content Marketing

5 tips to up-cycle content marketing Today is Earth Day. Do you know what the difference is between recycled content and up-cycled content?

Recycling changes waste materials into new products with the goal of reducing raw material consumption and energy use while decreasing pollution and related issues.

By contrast, up-cycling converts waste or useless materials into something new of better quality that’s better for the environment.

Like content creators, knitters use both recycling and up-cycling.

  • Knitters recycle old sweaters back into yarn by unraveling it, rewinding it and washing it so that the yarn can be reused.
  • Knitters up-cycle t-shirts or shopping bags by cutting them into thin strips to create a yarn like material that can be knit into useful objects.

As consumers, we’re so used to up-cycled content from television, music and film that, as marketers, we don’t necessarily notice it. Up-cycled content comes in a variety of forms such as behind-the-scenes views, interviews, outtakes, bonus tracks and clips, and off-camera explanations.

When it comes to content marketing, upcycled content can be more effective than recycled content.

Recycled content is like leftovers. Using the example of Thanksgiving turkey, content marketing authority Rebecca Lieb calls it “recombinant content.” Recycled content requires little creative input or cost since you don’t have to think about it. But, like leftovers, recycled content doesn’t perform as well as the original. 

Up-cycled content re-imagines the content you discarded or haven’t used. As such, while it doesn’t require the same level of resources and budget as new content, it helps reach new audiences and re-engages the audience acquired with your original content. (BTW–Here are 20 ways to use up-cycled content for blog posts.)

Up-cycled content marketing example

Kapost leveraged the power from their Masters of SlideShare presentation into a new, related campaign entitled, How We Made The Masters of SlideShare. This upcycled content marketing effort included a SlideShare presentation, webinar and articles. Up-cycled content marketing example-prime content-Kapost

Kapost Up-cycled content example - Actionable Marketing Guide

Up-cycled content benefits: Kapost was able maximize their interactions and drive more prospects to their content without the need for brand new ideas and information. Further, it provided additional new content to the audience it acquired through the initial Masters of SlideShare presentation.

Why up-cycle content? 5 tips to up-cycle content marketing

  • Your target audience wants up-cycled content because it feels fresh and original!
  • Up-cycled content requires creativity to re-envision and extend your extra information.

Additionally up-cycled content has the benefit of feeding your current audience as well as attracting new members. As a result, it requires less resources and budget and is more effective than new content.

By contrast, recycled content feels stale and mechanical.

5 Tips to up-cycle content marketing

Here are 5 ways to up-cycle your content marketing.

  1. Appeal to the voyeur in your midst by showing the behind-the-scenes views. Show your audience how you created your content. Project Runway uses this as the core of their show.
  2. Let your followers get close to the people in your content with in-depth interviews. Extend your content offering by talking with the key players in your quality content. At the Oscars, this takes the form of the red carpet interactions. For your marketing, you can talk with industry experts, executives and/or customers.
  3. Give your audience more of what they seek with outtakes. Let your followers decide which elements of the content you’ve created they want to engage with. Allow them to see the unedited version in the form of outtakes.
  4. Extend your content with bonus tracks and clips. Understand that some portion of your target audience wants more of the same. So give it to them. Often film and music companies use these elements to entice new buyers for different content formats.
  5. Provide your viewers off-camera explanations. This works well for B2B buyers who want to understand how to use your products and what you’re doing. This is what Kapost did.

Incorporating up-cycled content into your editorial calendar helps you to keep content creation costs—resources and budget—down while invigorating your information with new ideas.

Up-cycled content means you don’t need to continually create more new information. You can extend the content you’ve already created to re-engage your audience while attracting new readers.

What types of up-cycled content have you tried and what have your results been?

Happy  Marketing,
Heidi Cohen


Heidi CohenHeidi Cohen is the President of Riverside Marketing Strategies. You can find Heidi on , Facebook and .

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  • http://www.rollerbanners.co/tom/ Tom

    Dare I be the first to say it… “ORIGINAL” content is best. Like you say: don’t re-cycle