When I talk about repurposing, people often get scared that their audience will think they don’t have any new ideas. I often hear comments like, "I don't want my audience to keep seeing the same thing."
It's a common misconception that content repurposing is sharing the same thing over and over again.
Repeating content isn't effective repurposing.
Effective repurposing is when your core content is the jumping-off point for presenting new aspects of your message, in new ways.
So, I’m going to share with you some techniques I’ve learned to help you repurpose more effectively and avoid sounding repetitive.
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Repurposing myth: repurposing is repeating the same content over and over again
I’ve shared lots and lots of content over the years, you’ve probably noticed I like to talk about content repurposing…a lot.
One thing I always aim for is to not sound repetitive, repurposing shouldn’t mean you sound like a broken record. My repurposed content always has something original to keep it fresh.
Here are six techniques to avoid sounding repetitive with your content repurposing.
1. Change the content format
Content comes in a wide variety of formats, podcast episodes, videos, emails, infographics, slide-shares, polls, surveys, eBooks, blogs, social media posts, membership content, online courses... To name a few.
Why stop at the original format, when you could turn it into something else?
Let's say I wrote a blog post about my “Top Ten Red Wines from the Napa Valley”. I could repurpose it into an illustrative Pinterest infographic, an informative LinkedIn carousel post, or a conversational podcast episode.
The creativity that it takes to change your content format will make it interesting in a new way. And it might catch the attention of a new audience too.
If you don’t have a copy yet, be sure you check out my book, Content 10x: More Content, Less Time, Maximum Results, there are literally hundreds of examples how you can repurpose any type of content into something new.
2. Dig deeper into your message
Focus on the message in your core content, is it possible to break it down into stand-alone separate messages?
I could turn my “Top Ten Red Wines from the Napa Valley” blog post into a podcast episode, but I could go a step further by turing it into ten podcast episodes featuring one wine per episode – and creating a ten-episode series!
Alternatively, I could showcase my thoughts on social media. I could share my opinions and details of each wine by publishing them separately on LinkedIn.
By really digging deeper into your message, you might find that just one piece of content can go so much further.
3. Find a new angle
Repackaging content from a new angle can bring fresh energy to your message.
Storytelling, for example, is a relatable and entertaining way to make a connection with your audience.
YouTube is a perfect storytelling platform. I could use my blog to create a vlog, where I talk about my Napa Valley wine experiences, and publish it on YouTube or across a platform-specific storytelling feature, like Instagram Stories.
Another way to change the angle is to think about how different audiences consume content.
Some people are too busy to read a blog post, so need high-level messaging to persuade them that your content is worth their time.
So how about creating content that skims the surface of your message?
Short, simple conversation starters, like a Tweet, can go a long way in helping your audience begin to think about your content topic.
Make sure your posts are easy to respond to. Opinions that could polarize your audience, or that are slightly controversial, can start a conversation and maybe even spark an exciting debate! For example, Merlot is the best red wine, agree or disagree?
4. Involve your audience
Interactive features are a no-brainer for audience engagement, but have you ever thought about using them for repurposing?
Starting a poll, posting an ‘Ask Me Anything’ box, and hosting a livestream are all great ways to engage directly with your audience. Do people agree with your wine choices? Do they have any questions for things you might not have covered?
Imagine if I repurposed my ‘Top Ten Red Wines from the Napa Valley’ post into a livestream where I guide my audience through a live wine-tasting. Now that would be engaging, and a lot of fun!
5. Use different titles
We already know that making tweaks to your content is the key to repurposing. Changes to the title, however, are crucial.
If you’re repurposing something like videos into shorter, teaser videos, using different titles for each video really highlights each part of the message.
This technique can also help to reinforce a shift in style. If I repurposed ‘Top Ten Red Wines from the Napa Valley’ into a storytelling piece for Medium, I could republish it as "My Favorite Red Wines from Napa Valley."
6. Don't share all your content at the same time
Promoting your content is a really important part of publishing online but if you publish and share all of your repurposed content at once, it may feel like you're repeating the same message.
A great way to avoid this is by creating evergreen content – content that isn't related to current events and stands the test of time.
You can promote and share evergreen content over a much longer period without having to make any changes to it. You may even be able to share it years from now!
Spreading out your content promotion will mean that you won't feel like you're repeating the same message and it could also help to fill up your content calendar weeks and months into the future. Bonus!
One more time for the people at the back…
If you keep these 6 techniques in mind when you're repurposing, your content is going to be original and engaging.
Your creative approach to repurposing will actually bring more value to your audience. And with new angles and more details, you're never going to be in danger of repeating yourself.
So, next time someone says that repurposing is just repeating, you can repurpose this post into a response!