We all know the importance of creating original content, but the reality is, it’s hard.
Out of necessity many content marketers have developed their skills at “re-imagining” (h/t Ann Handley) their content to extend the life and value it can deliver.
Beyond the value extension of content through repurposing is the function of personalizing content for different markets and using a modular approach to segmenting useful information for specific audience targeting. Reusing content is efficient and it’s also effective when architected through a smart strategy that sees beyond simply publishing the same thing 3 ways.
At the B2B Content2Conversion conference in New York this week, my friend Pam Didner (Global Integrated Marketing Strategist at Intel) gave an excellent presentation on repurposing content.
Before you repurpose, reuse, and refresh content there are a few things to think about first.
- Personas: Who is your audience?
- Editorial: What topics will you use to engage with them?
- Content: What materials to use to engage with them?
It’s essential to know who you are creating and repurposing content for in order to create a more useful experience for buyers and to be more effective as a marketer. A few ways you can better understand your target audience include:
- Buyer research
- Seller interviews
- Keyword research
- Social listening – sysomos
- Direct observations
Intel created a CTO persona for sales engagement, but marketing’s focus is on IT Managers. The CTO persona is used to help educate the sales team on how to talk to CTOs. For marketing, the focus is not on the CTO, but on IT Managers. As a result, the targets for sales and marketing will probably need slightly different content. For customer targeting and persona’s it’s important to see the difference in who marketing and sales need to connect with.
In the case of Intel, the persona they created is global. How can you do that? Focus mostly on the commonalities across regions and countries for that segment.
When identifying personas, also include who their influencers are (roles, vendors, companies). A good persona provides insight for content ideation, creation and marketing.
- Personal profile
- Job description
- Challenges or desires
- Content needs
- Preferred media to receive information
How Personals Provide Insight into Editorial Planning
- Pain points
- Keyword research
- Jobs description
- Used to brainstorm content
Be focused, but understand you cannot please everyone. Say “no” with a plate of cookies.
Editorial Topics & Content Continuum. Talk about content that relates to what customers care about relevant to your products and services. When you have to create a large amount of content, start with broad topics. Find a balance between content that is helpful and content that sells.
- Yearly – Strategic
- Monthly – Strategic
- Weekly – Social and Paid Tactics
- Daily – Social and Paid Tactics
- Hourly – Social and Paid Tactics
And example would be to create a calendar of topics and overlay a calendar of events (if your company is active with events) as triggers for content topics.
Select content planning tools:
- Divvy HQ
- Gather Content
- Compendium (Now Oracle Marketing Cloud)
- Opal Moments
An example of repurposing content
One 18 page white paper can be repurposed as:
- 1 podcast interview author
- 1 shor video animation
- w white board video
- 5 short blog posts
- 3 infographics
- 1 presentation
For social media – break down long form content into smaller pieces for social sharing.
Another example of “Hero Content” that is repurposed was the Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to LinkedIn.
BTW, this campaign won a Killer Content Marketing Award at the conference! Congratulations to Jason Miller, Deanna Lazzaroni and the team at LinkedIn Marketing Solutions as well as the agency teams (including TopRank Marketing‘s work with the eBook) that produced this amazing campaign.
Elements of this campaign included a consistent visual them repurposed in multiple formats for multiple specific audiences:
- Print book
- Blog posts
- Global versions of the eBook in different languages
- Vertically specific versions – CMO’s, Healthcare, Event Marketing, etc
This was done over a period of months
Repurposing content is time consuming and it can be expensive. With no budget, you need to wear multiple hats and you’ll need to get partner support.
Resources to find freelancers:
1. Evaluate your content, start with promotion in mind
2. It takes time, budget and effort to repurpose, reuse and repackage. You must prioritize!
3. Create a RRR (repurpose, reuse, refresh) plan.
Start with flagship content and connect the dots by pulling in materials form different pieces of content.
Here’s Pam’s full presentation below and a blog post as well (see how she practices what she’s preaching?).
How is your company incorporating repurposing content in your content marketing planning? Have you seen any great brand examples of reimagined, repurposed, reused and refreshed content?