Article by Jerry Low
Geek dad, SEO data junkie, investor, and founder of Web Hosting Secret Revealed. Jerry has been building Internet assets and making money online since 2004. He loves mindless doodling and trying new food.
I don’t mean to shoot myself in the foot, but this topic is just too important not to address. Besides, “going green” continues to be increasingly important in our society – and recycling is a cornerstone of green living.
And what’s more green than online recycling? No trash!
Don’t trash a great idea or discard one just because you wrote something similar. Some topics just deserve to be revisited – it’s that simple. Save your sanity and save the world one blog post at a time – with recycled content.
Recycling content isn’t so much about being lazy or not having the time to create a fully original post on a fully new and original topic (though that might be your inspiration – and that’s fair). It’s about revisiting important topics, updating information, and continuing the dialogue.
Perhaps you previously wrote a blog post about a timely topic – odds are that there are more recent developments on that topic; those developments are likely of interest to your audience. Or maybe the information or recommendation on a previous post has changed. Or you wrote a high-traffic post that has had tons of traffic and visitor comments.
There are plenty of reasons to recycle blog content… though you really aren’t recycling the content; you’re more giving it a facelift and recycling the initial intent. You aren’t disposing or copying – you’re turning the original into something new.
Recycling content is all about making something new out of something old and about extending the lifecycle of an existing piece. There are many ways to recycle content in ways that provide high value to your blog and its readers – here are just a few of my top content recycling tips.
This is a great way to extend the life of an existing blog post that either had high value and high readership or that has had new developments.
A part-two brings multiple benefits
When using this tactic, I recommend using the original title along with “Part Two.” Doing so is not only beneficial for SEO purposes, but it also helps to catch your readers’ eyes and draw their attention back to a topic they are already familiar with and interested in.
When doing a “part two” follow-up post, make sure that you include at least one link back to the original post. For transparency and relevancy purposes, it’s best to do this in a clear, straightforward way.
For example, “For more information about ________, see the original post, here.” This not only gives your readers a reference point, but continues to direct traffic to the original post.
Typically, when you develop a quote for use in print (be it virtual print or actual print), you put quite a bit of effort and time into developing the perfect wording that represents the perfect tone and conveys the intended just right. Extend the value of that quote (and the time you invested in developing it) by repurposing it into posts.
You might develop a full post around the quote, focusing on the larger issue at hand, or you might use the post to explore the quote in more depth; explain to your readers your position and where the origin of your opinion. Don’t have a quote of your own to write on? Write on someone else’s that has inspired you.
Most of the time, if you write a guest post the understanding is that you are writing 100 percent unique content for that blog – however, there is nothing wrong with updating that post and revisiting the themes on your own blog.
Explore an updated stance or select one topic from the original post and expand upon it to create a new post.
As a rule of thumb, it’s considered “good etiquette” to link back to that original blog and the post – it helps the other blog’s traffic and SEO.
Most blogs have some sort of sidebar or side column included in the layout – this column is the perfect spot to highlight previous, relevant content.
Don’t let your best posts die off too soon
There are numerous ways to do this. You can consider featuring older posts that simply had high traffic for starters (noticed how I create a ‘Best of WHSR’ at the siderbar?). Alternately, perhaps you have older posts that are relevant to a current event – these are great contenders. If you write about a topic that includes recurring events, the Oscars for example, you could highlight your roundup from last year’s event – it makes a great reference point and pre-party item for the current year.
The great thing about social media is that it makes everything current. Just because your content was written a few months ago doesn’t mean that it isn’t relevant – a good post is often still a good post.
Old blogposts, new traffics
Revitalize web traffic by promoting that content on social media. Rather than developing Tweets specifically promoting the post as “new,” consider using one of the plugins, such as Tweet Old Posts. This app allows you to schedule tweets, including hashtags and links, to extend the life of your posts. Choose the time between tweets and select how many tweets are issued. Automating the promotions not only keeps your content alive – it saves you a ton of time.
One of the most valuable kind of posts is the good old round-up post. These round-ups are a great way to get additional eyes on particularly noteworthy content while also providing an easy topic for you. Visitors love them because they can quickly digest the information and can easily access the items that are of particular interest to them.
When doing a round-up post, make sure to – of course, link to the original post. Also, add a relevant image for each item and consider using the original titles. One of the most straightforward and easy to read ways to do round-up posts is to develop an introductory paragraph and then list each post in list format. Write a teaser paragraph or two alongside an image used in the actual post – pair it with the original post headline and you’re good to go.
It’s quick, it’s interesting, and it provides value – win-win-win.
Update and re-post your old content to forum; or, quote yourself and post your old writing as reply in forum discussion.
Your blog posts don’t have to stay in the (blog) house – let them out into the great wide open. Get involved in online forums and post your blogs – or relevant portions of them, at least, as part of your forum responses.
Consider updating one of your blogs and posting it to start your own forum thread.
Quotes work as well as blog posts do for this one
It’s all about extending the long tail and providing valuable input on the topic at hand. As long as your blog post content and/or quote are relevant, you’re good to go. Just make sure that you revisit the forum after posting to stay engaged in the discussion and remain part of the conversation. Who knows – there may be an opportunity to share even more content.
As a rule of thumb, it’s generally a good idea to post a link back to the original post on your blog. What you post in the forum likely acts as a teaser, so by linking back to your blog, you are able to give the reader a more full view – not to mention that you may secure additional readers as a result.
Recycle your blog content into something even more dynamic. Use a blog as an inspiration to create a video or relevant infographic.
You’ll likely need to do a bit of work and research to get it to this point, but doing so provides an opportunity to paint a different picture of a topic that is already important to you. For example, this is what I did out from my web web hosting beginner guide.
There are tons of ways to recycle old blog posts and content into something new, noteworthy, and relevant to your audience. Focus on posts that important to you, timely, and that offer something new – remember, recycling is not the same as reusing.
Have you done any recycling job recently to your blog? Share your story in our comment section below!