How to repurpose and recycle content (without repeating yourself)


Tired of the content game?

You’ve been shelling out content like a badass.

Every day, every week, you’ve got new ideas flowing. You’re stoked, because you know this is going to get you to new heights in your business.

… but after a few weeks or months, you start running out of ideas.

Your editorial calendar feels too full. Your content strategy looks a bit outdated. Your brain feels empty despite the copious amount of almond milk lattes you’ve been feeding it.

You’re running out of steam and you’re not even sure you care.

You’ve hit a content dry spell.

What’s a content dry spell?

You know you’ve hit a content dry spell when you:

  • Feel your mind go blank at the thought of writing

  • Can’t think of a single topic you haven’t already written about

  • Start writing, but get stuck on a single idea

  • Kill your previously consistent publishing schedule

Let me first say that hitting a dry spell with your content is totally normal. It happens to millionaire bestselling authors all the time!

The difference between you and Stephen King or J.K. Rowling is that you’re writing for your business. And the whole millionaire thing on the New York Times bestseller list.

The way you share your message and become known in your space is by becoming prolific with your content. So, you can’t afford to take a year off for inspiration’s sake.

Instead, you need to source new ideas. Luckily, the world around us makes for pretty amazing inspiration.

The clients you talk to, the coffee shop conversations you overhear, the podcasts you listen to, the books you read, the graffiti art you see downtown — that can all be your inspiration!

But sometimes, we just don’t have the headspace to start from scratch.

Repurposing vs Recycling

The good news is that you don’t always have to create something new when it comes to your content. You, of course, want you content to be fresh and engaging, but there’s no requirement for newness. Rejoice! 🎉

Instead, you can choose to repurpose or recycle your content.

What’s the difference?

Let’s break it down.

Repurosing content

You can repurpose by taking a complete piece of content and simply changing the wrappings. The content remains the same, just the external aspects change.

Think of a piece of content that you’ve already published. Whether it’s on Instagram, your website, or in a Facebook Live, choose a piece that’s performed well. That is to say, you’ve gotten a lot of engagement and positive feedback from it.

In short, choose your most popular piece of content out there in the world right now.

These are the pieces that you should repurpose into other formats, mediums, and deliveries.

What does all that mean?

If you delivered that content as a blog post, repurpose it into a podcast.

If you delivered it as an email sequence, repurpose it into a lead magnet.

If you delivered it as a video series, repurpose it into a mini course.

You’re not changing the content itself, just the format, medium or platform, and how you deliver it.

The reason you should start by choosing your most popular pieces of content is… well, because they’re your most popular.

A content piece that your audience is already loving and engaging with is likely to attract more of that audience you want to pull in.

Beta test by repurposing

It’s also a great way to test out new mediums!

Have you been thinking about starting a podcast, but not sure if your audience would go for it?

Beta test by repurposing your weekly email newsletter into an audio version that your readers can download and listen to on the go!

Have you been toying with the idea of starting your email list, but not sure you have the time to create a giant email funnel?

Beta test by repurposing your most popular blog post into a downloadable guide that you can use as a lead magnet.

Recycling content

You can recycle your content by converting it into something else. This will inherently take some time — though less than starting from scratch.

It’s different from repurposing, because you are changing the content you began with.

Instead of moving it to a new platform or updating the format for a new purpose, you are pulling different segments of content pieces and stringing them together to make something new.

The good news is that, again, you’re not starting from scratch. In fact, you likely have several pieces of content that you can pull segments out to create something totally new.

Let’s say, you’ve written 4 blog posts, 7 tweets, and 3 Facebook posts on various topics, but each one has tips about business accounting based on your own experience. Pull out each of the segments pertaining to business accounting and create a blog post (or video or mini guide etc) on business accounting best practices. ✅ Voila!

Or perhaps you have published copious Instagram posts in a Q&A style that have gotten a ton of engagement. You can compile those into a single article on the most frequently asked questions that you answer for your audience. Better yet, you can repurpose that into a “Start Here” page on your website. 💥 Boom!

Recycle to zoom in and out of subjects

Recycle is a fabulous way to take different perspectives on topics and subject you’ve already covered — even the ones you’ve talked about ad nauseam!

You can drill into a subject to explore the nitty gritty, zoomed-in details, which is great for how-to content that guides the reader to the ins and outs of a known topic.

Or you can take a high level view of that same subject to explore overarching themes and discuss the why instead of the how, which is great for introducing new topics.

The beauty of recycling to zoom in and out of subjects like this is that you can tremendously increase your online authority by linking these related pieces of content together. Heck, yes, SEO! 💪

Ideas to start repurposing & recycling your content asap

I am a huge fan of repurposing and recycling your content. It’s a great way to beta test what your audience wants, discover how you like to deliver content, and capitalize on the themes and topics that are getting your business traction.

And, it’s also an awesome way to save oodles of time on content creation! 🙌

I love nothing more than an actionable tip at the end of a chipper blog post, so here are 7 ways you can start repurposing and recycling your content today:

  1. Turn popular blog posts into hands-on guides

  2. Convert email newsletters into podcast episodes

  3. Transcribe Facebook Live Q&As into website FAQ copy

  4. Transform Instagram posts into a downloadable checklist lead magnet

  5. Turn your client testimonials and results into case studies

  6. Convert recorded webinars into evergreen tutorial videos

  7. Convert your most popular blog posts into an email sequence

Did you notice any individual tips that you could totally pair together or even create a chain effect for your business?

Nice! You just discovered the next step in the repurposing/recycling lifecycle of content. Now, go create some awesomeness!

Leave a comment below and let know if you’d like more tips and resources on repurposing or recycling ideas for your business!