Audit and Recycle Existing Content for New Blog Posts
Not every blog post you write has to be created from scratch. There often isn’t the time or resources available to research a fresh topic and then write about it, but the good news is, there’s often no need to. Your company may already have a rich library of content you can look to repackage, or you may find existing blog posts can be given a fresh lease of life through a polish and update.
Perform a content audit
Start by taking an inventory of your existing resources. You’ll want to record this in a spreadsheet, which will give you easy access to your library. You could simply record each piece of content – its title, type and where it’s situated – but if you have lots of content to catalog it pays to put a bit more effort in to make it easy for you to find suitable content as and when you need it in the future.
With this in mind, record the following information in separate columns:
- Column title (data type): description
- Content title (text): the content’s title or a short description
- Tags (text, separate each tag with a comma): tag the content with keywords that will help you find content based on whatever criteria you choose, such as product names, content type (sales or support, for example) or subject.
- Content type (dropdown menu): the content type, such as email newsletters, support articles, white papers, printed materials, videos and even posts on other social networks (such as LinkedIn’s new publishing platform).
- Content location (text): where the content is stored – if online or a folder on your hard drive, use a hyperlink to jump to it quickly.
- Rating (number): grade your content by its suitability for repurposing and how much additional work would be required to convert all or some of it into a blog post.
- Repurposed (date): once you’ve repurposed a piece of content, record the date it was used here. This allows you to revisit the content after a suitable period has passed.
How to repurpose
With your inventory in place, you can now look to tap into your company’s resources for blog post material. Some content can be quickly and easily imported into your blog with minimal editing and updating, but it’s likely you’ll need to be creative with repurposing other content. If you’re wondering what kind of repurposing can be done, consider these areas:
Support articles: these are perfect for repurposing, as they provide a rich source of genuinely useful content for your audience while also highlighting your company’s commitment to customer support. Don’t forget to highlight your brand’s FAQs and support services as part of the post.
Newsletters: if content is written exclusively for your newsletter then it offers a great starting point for blog posts, particularly as the original audience will have been much smaller than those visiting your website. You’ll probably need to flesh out the content, but at least you won’t be stumped for content ideas.
Video and audio: link to the original material, and then use the post to provide an edited transcription of any highlights.
Updates: revisit old blog posts and other content to see if any could be updated. If you provided a stats-packed blog post 12 months ago, for example, revisit the topic now, updating the figures to bring it bang up to date. Has a new model of a product been released? Check the support articles to see if you need to update the previous model’s FAQs to take into account any changes, then use that as the focus of a new blog post.
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