5 creative ways to repurpose content

Getting your posts in front of readers’ eyes is one thing; it’s important to modify the focus—and even the format—to extend their life and expand your audience.

If we want people to read our content, we’ve got to tell them about it. A great way to do that is to repurpose content as part of a content marketing program.

There’s a good case for repurposing content beyond content promotion: For me, writing—specifically blogging—is thinking.

Often my best ideas come after I’ve written a post. Creative PR is part art and part science. It’s also cumulative, which means one idea leads to another—that’s the art.

Repurposing content is also practical; it extends the shelf-life of content. To that end, maybe “repurpose” isn’t the right descriptor. Perhaps “multipurpose” is better suited, especially if we publish with the initial intent to repurpose—that’s the science.

Though this article is specifically about repurposing a blog post, there are myriad useful ways to repurpose content. I’ll list a few easy ones below.

First, some useful guidelines:

  • Add value to the original content at each step; there’s always room for improvement.
  • Limit repurposing to the top-performing posts.
  • Vary the time of publication of repurposed content.
  • Avoid being a noise nuisance-don’t overdo it.

Here we go—a protocol for repurposing content:

1. Select a well-performing post. I wrote 6 Creative PR Ideas for Blended Media a few weeks back and it has earned respectable traction. Because it’s easily broken down into six small case studies, it makes a great baseline for a presentation.

2. Turn the post into a presentation. As I created the presentation, I tweaked the title and plugged in some elements that I thought added value. There are new memes so the presentation has a different set up and conclusion. For an easy way to make memes, I like Quickmeme (with a hat tip to @lspaventa). Because my SlideShare account is connected to my LinkedIn account, any new content I publish to SlideShare is automatically shared with my acquaintances on LinkedIn.

3. Embed the presentation on micro-blogs. By micro-blog, I specifically mean Posterous or Tumblr—which I like to think of as something less than a blog, but more than a tweet. In many ways Google+ has incorporated similar capabilities, but I don’t think people or brands should attempt to use Google+ as a blog. Separately, I have my Tumblr account set up to post a link on Twitter anytime I update my Tumblr account—and because it tweets the headline and a link, I adjust the title accordingly.

4. Pin images to Pinterest. I took a meme from the presentation, pinned it on Pinterest, and then posted a link to Twitter and a Facebook page with which I’m experimenting. Pinterest and SlideShare also enable you to pin an entire presentation—and viewers can scroll through it—which I have also done. The meme you see below is rendered using the Pinterest embed code.

5. Embed Pinterest pins elsewhere. Memes tend to perform well on social networks, and people gravitate toward short, interesting points. It’s easy to understand why: If a picture is worth a thousand words, then memes have both. I can’t get enough of the “Philosoraptor.” I took the same meme as above an embedded it on Posterous—which again automatically posts new content published to Twitter—and separately posted a link to the Posterous post on Google+.

So what?

Take that last point, and let’s use the tweet as the starting point. A person clicking through from Twitter goes to Posterous, which leads to Pinterest, which leads to SlideShare, which leads to the original blog post. In other words, these are all breadcrumbs—or social outposts as Joe Chernov aptly calls them—aimed at pointing people back to this blog. For brands, I’ve long held and many agree, a blog is the center of a corporate online marketing framework.


The measurement is easy in Google Analytics (GA)—the first place I check is referral sources. For me, referral traffic (44 percent) in the last few months from social media sites has outpaced even Google search traffic for the first time. Analytics are easy to measure on other sites as well.

  • SlideShare has solid analytics for free.
  • Posterous offers page reads-or you can embed Google Analytics.
  • Tumblr offers a range of free templates in which you can embed Google Analytics.

Seven additional creative ways to repurpose content

The only limitation to creative content promotion is our own minds. Here are a few easy tactics:

1. Break up white papers into blog posts.

2. Turn quotes from your content into pins on Pinterest.

3. Transform a series of blog posts into an e-book.

4. Make a meme of an old blog post for Facebook. Once a week make a theme in which you promote an “oldie but goodie.”

5. Explain a post in a video; SEOmoz’s “White Board Friday” is a great example that’s been copied by a lot of brands.

6. Redevelop a mediocre post into a powerful guest post.

7. Explore. Lee Odden has an evergreen post with more than 30 different tactics that can all be mixed and matched for creative content marketing.

So, should I turn this post into a SlideShare presentation? What are some creative ways you’ve repurposed content? Please offer your thoughts in the comments section.

A version of this article first appeared on Sword & the Script.


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