One of the challenges content marketers face is the necessity to consistently come up with fresh content. One of the easiest ways to do that is to recycle content by re-using what has been used already.
The concept seems simple at face value: You use content you’ve already published but in a new way, which makes it fresh. However, not all recycled content is created equal. There are a few requisites to making old content new again.
So here are three easy ways to effectively recycle already-published content:
Mine for your evergreen stuff
In the world of content, “evergreen” means timeless. This is content that is created with no true time constraints. It doesn’t depend on current events or what’s necessarily trending. It’s likely that content creators have a collection of content pieces that fit the bill, but you might have to sift through your older content to find them. It’s worth the effort.
That means looking for pieces that don’t include dates or dated events. These pieces tend to be general advice, historical lessons or human-behavior content that transcends specific points in time.
Once you have identified these kinds of pieces, they can simply be re-published. Write one intro paragraph that says something like: “This is from (fill in the date), but seems worth a reminder today,” and just re-post the content verbatim. If you have enough evergreen content to do it, you could even publish a weekly “From the archives” or “From the vault” piece.
Re-address from engagement
Chances are if you once published content that evoked the response you were looking for, your comments section was active. Revisiting the comments section of older content can often provide you with avenues to re-address already published content. Mentioning when it was first published, then posting reaction to it and responding to that reaction can provide you with new content forged from old, with only a few short new paragraphs.
This can be done more efficiently by going through past posts and honing in on those that got the most engagement. Doing so means you both select posts that were meaningful to your audience originally and that provide you with the most feedback from which to craft a fresh take.
Play devil’s advocate
It’s not difficult to take a piece of content that establishes some sort of position and examine that position from another side. If you have content that is opinionated or leans toward one way of thinking, you can simply re-post the main emphasis of that content and take a contrarian view.
What if what you posted as gospel earlier wasn’t true? What if your once-solid assumptions were false now? What if you said that which might happen would never happen? Taking up the opposite side of your own argument can make for great content, and it doesn’t take much. Copy and paste older stuff to establish one side, and publish a few thoughts to the contrary. You now have new content in a short amount of time.
The pressure to come up with fresh content is often a real struggle for content marketers. But existing content can be a gold mine for fresh ideas if you know a few simple tricks to make recycled content as good as new.