The Rules for Re-Using “Old” Content

Written by Nick Stamoulis

The highest content marketing priority is always quality. Never sacrifice quality for quantity. However, the frequency in which you publish content does play a role in your content marketing success, which is why you should allot as much of your marketing budget to content as possible to keep both quality and quantity at appropriate levels. When you’re publishing content on a regular basis it’s impossible to think of a brand new topic every single time. There’s only so much you can say about your industry or niche. That’s why it’s absolutely OK (and necessary) to re-use your “old” content as long as the topic is still relevant.

Here are a few guidelines for re-using content:

Never copy and paste
When we say re-use content, we don’t mean copy and paste and call it a day. Whether the content is for your own website or blog or it’s being published on a third party site, it should never be EXACTLY the same as the last time it was published. That’s creating duplicate content (frowned upon by the search engines) and essentially de-valuing that first post. Instead, there are always creative ways to re-write something. For example, if you wrote a post about how to do something, turn it around and write about how NOT to do it.

Turn it into a new format
What’s great about this approach is that most of the heavy lifting has already been done. The content is there you just need to present it differently. Turn blog posts into videos or infographics and vice versa. This will help get your content in front of people who have different preferences. Some people would prefer to read instructions while others would prefer a visual demonstration.

Make updates
When you re-use “old” content, always make sure that the content is still relevant. In some industries, all of the content may be just as relevant today as it was three years ago. In others (for example, the technology industry), content from 3 years ago is probably no longer helpful. This might not mean that it has no value whatsoever; it probably just needs a few tweaks here and there in order to make it current.

Re-posting to social media is OK
While it’s a big no-no to copy and paste content on web pages, it’s a different story with social media. Social media feeds are full of so much information that it’s easy for your post to get lost in the shuffle. It’s recommended to post links to your content more than once in social media. As long as your content isn’t dated, links can be shared over and over again for years (again, as long as the content is still relevant). The same thing goes for sharing links to content in email newsletters.

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