When it comes to content on your digital platforms, treat it like a water bottle and not go for the disposable option.
Why spend so much time creating something that you only post once?
I’m not talking about simply republishing the same content, but rather tweaking it to keep it relevant, fresh, and engaging – and you can open up a whole new market for you and your business.
If you’ve never heard of evergreen content, here’s a crash course for you. Evergreen content is content that can be easily updated to stay fresh forever. It can also work wonders in driving traffic to your website and helping to build and maintain a loyal following.
The point is not to copy and paste it over and over, but to add some subtle tweak or additional information to keep it relevant. It could be a blog you wrote about mental health a few years ago that you can revisit and update in light of the mental health crisis we are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact.
Why evergreen? Well, the evergreen tree is a symbol of perpetual life because it keeps its leaves month after month year after year after year – evergreen content is considered sustainable and permanent.
We know what you’re thinking. “All content is evergreen because once it’s online, it’s there forever.” true (just ask anyone who was vilified for a tweet they posted 5 years ago), but when we talk about evergreen content, we’re talking about content that keeps its relevance and continues to draw engagement and traffic after it is first published .
We love this quote from Salma Jafri, and we’re pretty sure you will, too, especially when the thought of creating a content planner fills you with dread and hits a creative wall.
In essence, it’s work smarter, not harder philosophy; Generate less content, but make sure more people see and engage with it. In many cases, your original content may only have made a splash with one demographic. So if you change a format to adapt it to a different platform, you will automatically connect with new people over and over again. Meet new audiences where they are!
Not to mention the fact that repetition builds reputation. When you publish high quality content on a topic, you gain additional authority and notoriety, which means that you position yourself as an expert in the field.
Do you need more persuasion?
Buyers need to hear your message seven times before they can take action and close a deal – SEVEN TIMES – using your content again can speed the process!
Where can you find content that deserves reuse?
Rather than start creating evergreen content right away, go through your content catalog first and you will be surprised how much you already have that can be rechecked.
First, take a look at your blogs and see what topics you covered that are timeless and full of relevant information that can add value to your customers and followers.
Do the same with any linked articles that you’ve published, then go through your posts again on Instagram. If you take a look at Insights, you can see which posts have the most engagement.
Check your website analytics to see which posts have performed best over the past month and year. As you look at your monthly report, look for key content that was published before the start date of your report, such as: E.g. a January post that leads the charts of your March content.
When you’ve highlighted the content that you think fits the bill, see if you have more to say on a topic. Have your opinions changed, research supported you, has there been a development that makes the content appear ahead of its time, have you received a comment or feedback that you can incorporate to give the article a new twist to spark another conversation?
The world is constantly changing and changing rapidly. Now is the perfect time to take stock of your previous posts and breathe new life into them.
Everyone takes in information differently
Think about it when you go clothes shopping – how do you buy one?
Walk around the store, touch every item you like, or stand at the door and take a look before you decide you don’t like anything. When you go to the grocery store, do you walk straight to the aisle you need or do you pace up and down each aisle exploring everything you need?
Everyone perceives the world around them differently, and online is no different.
Some people respond better to a blog post, while others prefer small snippets of information, and others are excited about videos or animations. Just because you prefer Instagram or Snapchat doesn’t mean your dream customers will. By using your content for other platforms, you have access to more people – more potential customers.
Will I be penalized for duplicate content?
First of all, reusing content is NOT duplicating content … The purpose of reusing is to freshen it up, give it a new perspective or a new opinion on an ongoing topic.
However, it is estimated that around 29% of content on the internet is duplicate or repetitive (from blog posts to white papers to social media shares). Neil Patel explores the issues on his 3 Myths About Duplicate Content blog.
Google (and other search engines) have the right to penalize your website ONLY if it contains a large amount of plagiarized copies that are used in a “manipulative way”. Content reuse is all about building brand awareness, which means you don’t break any guidelines.
Top 10 Tips for Reusing Evergreen Content
If content reuse is a good way forward for you, then you need to start planning.
Go through your archived content and consider other topics that you can use as a starting point. Go through each topic / article and highlight any key insights that you can really shout about. Facts, results, quotes, etc. are all good attention grabbers.
Once you have your plans in place, put them on a content calendar and get on with it!
Still stuck a bit? Here are some top tips to help you along the way:
Do you have a cool infographic or blog full of facts? Check out LinkedIn SlideShare. Take the most important information and create a series of engaging slides that show your insights or facts and reach a whole new audience. SlideShare engages around 70 million users each month and many of them accidentally stumble upon it through organic search. This tactic also gives you an SEO boost.
Spend some time browsing your Instagram feed. Are there any pictures and posts that really stand out? Have you published a number of top tips or topic posts? Give them the moment to shine and turn them into eye-catching Pinterest boards. Curate the collections perfectly and share them at relevant times of the year – or at different times of the month if they aren’t necessarily time dependent.
When you’ve completed a survey or got some cool comments on a post, turn them into visuals. Create a quote post or testimonial from a customer that can be added to your Instagram feed or story. You can also tag the person who left the comment to increase the chances of getting more engagement and ask them to post again (if they are happy to).
When you’ve completed a series of tips on a topic or have a batch of related articles, it’s time to create an eBook or PDF download and give it away as a gift. The free advice, help and support from your customers or followers cannot be underestimated. It’s a powerful way to connect with your audience and solidify yourself as an expert. You are also more likely to have customers shop with you if you’ve provided valuable assistance for free in the past.
Setbacks aren’t just on Thursdays! Revisit previous work before and after pictures or share your journey from your starting point to your current location – who does not remember the picture of Jeff Bezos in his first office with an adhesive table as a desk?
Revisit old blogs when they become relevant again. Did you write an article about recruitment in your industry a year ago? Given the COVID-19 situation, which has probably changed now, go back and update your current thoughts and advice or predictions about how things will develop.
Speaking of blogs – take the headlines and create posts for your social networks – the key here to reusing content and making it a long read is to republish it in a way that is fresh and completely different than your original post. This is done through visualization, presentation and choice of words.
Is there a blog post or series of guides that you have published that have received a great response? Turn that set of written elements into a podcast – or if you have a podcast, take attention grabbing takeaways and create posts for your social media platforms … not just a promotion for the episode, but breaking news and quotes that are covered . You could even get your guest to write a guest blog for your website!
If your podcast is only running on an audible platform like Spotify, you can turn it into a YouTube show too. Get a decent camera and zoom in on the interviews if it’s an interview style. If it’s a solo podcast, it’s even easier because you don’t have to worry about zooming. Hug video; Edit compelling snippets from your longer videos, which you can then share on other platforms like Instagram or LinkedIn.
Video is so important in building engagement with your brand – it really is not to be underestimated. Take a look at your content and see what has worked well in the past. Use this as a starting point to create short videos for Instagram stories and roles and take advantage of TikTok!
Consider doing a number of Insta Live sessions that people can drop by to ask questions or just watch for help or inspiration.
So there you have it – content reuse is a simple hack that can help you generate more content and make your brand accessible to more people.
What are you waiting for?!