Content is definitely king; however, at some point, you may find that it becomes difficult to continually come up with new content on such a frequent basis. This is where recycling your old content can come in very handy.
Creativity is not always an easy thing to tap. It would be great if you could come up with new and exciting content every time you sat down to write; however, unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way. If you are like many business owners today, writing content is not the only thing that you have to do all day. You are most likely busy running your business (although creating content is an important part of your business’s success) and unfortunately, writing is not always at the very top of your priority list.
If you have been writing content for a while, the chances are very good that you have accumulated quite a bit of it. If you do plan on eventually recycling your content, it is a good idea to follow a few rules when you are initially writing the content. First of all, try to avoid writing articles that are time-sensitive. If you do write time-sensitive articles, you will be restricting when you can post them, depending on what the exact time context happens to be. It is important to remember that valuable content comes from many places and your ideas will not necessarily become out of date quickly. You should bear that in mind when you start to write. Another thing to avoid when you are writing your content is a lot of statistics. The problem with that is that the numbers may change (depending on what the numbers represent, they may change quickly or they may change slowly but they will change). If you do plan on recycling content, there are several different approaches that you can take:
Start with your own content
The first place that you will want to go is into your own archives of content. You can draw content from your printed materials, brochures, flyers, white papers, graphics, etc. Remember, of course, to review the material that you are planning to recycle before you actually post it anywhere. You want to do this so that you ensure that everything is up to date. You certainly don’t want to have any content posted that has errors or inaccuracies. That will make you look like you weren’t paying attention. If you don’t feel like you can use your content as is, you need to figure out exactly how to repackage them so that they get the most attention from your audience members.
Work the customer service angle
Whether you want to admit it or not, customer service is an extremely important part of business. If you are trying to come up with interesting content that you feel your audience will appreciate, having an in with customer service is an excellent idea. You would be surprised at how much interesting information you can write about as a result of your customer service interactions. You should incorporate the customer service perspective into your overall content strategy. You can present the information as Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), bullet points (people love to read valuable nuggets of information that they will remember), blog articles, etc.
Consider the customer
Potentially, there is a wealth of possible content that originated with your clients. You can use information from letters, comments that you clients have left on articles that you posted, and testimonials. A great way to generate the information from your clients is to ask them questions. You will find that there is a willingness to respond and you may come across some gems. It is a very good idea to encourage your clients to communicate with you on a regular basis. You can draw ideas from their communications.
Really examine your content
It is critical to your business’s success that you take a very close look at your content and figure out how to use it most effectively. Try to see your data from several different perspectives (if at all possible). You never know what exciting and creative ideas you may be able to come up with and interestingly, you may not even realize what a wealth of information you have at your fingertips.
Do the research
A wonderful way to gather information that you can use and use again is by doing extensive research. The research will reveal all sorts of interesting things, such as pairing products and/or services with different people, getting to really understand people’s needs and wants and figuring out how to solve their problems most effectively, and looking at new ways to present ideas.
Recycling content is an extremely valuable and sensible thing to do when it comes to your business. With that said, however, you must remember that recycling content doesn’t mean that you use it over and over again verbatim. An advantage to recycling is that you are constantly calling on your creativity and you do less work and get more results. It is important to try to look at it with fresh eyes and a fresh perspective each time that you consider posting it again.
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Carolyn Cohn is the Chief Editor of CompuKol Communications LLC. Mrs. Cohn has a wealth of experience in business writing as well as having a strong editorial background. She manages all of the company’s writers, journalists and editors as well as writing, editing and publishing several business articles a week on a consistent basis, which are syndicated globally.
Mrs. Cohn has run several editorial departments for other companies. She has over 25 years of editorial experience and her expertise covers a wide range of media, such as online editing, and editing books, journal articles, abstracts, and promotional and educational materials.
Throughout her career, Mrs. Cohn has established and maintained strong relationships with professionals from a wide variety of companies. The principle that governs her work is that all words need to be edited.
Mrs. Cohn earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo.
Mrs. Cohn is a member of the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA).