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    Why Recycling is Not Just Good For the Environment

    Content Recycling—Why You Should Be Doing It

    You may have engaged in the kind of brainstorming where you start with one theme and then try to find as many ideas connected to that one central theme as possible—or you’ve been part of a brand line extension. You know the exercise.

    Recycling or repurposing your marketing content for greater return on investment (ROI) is right out of the brand extension ideation playbook. Start with a successful product or service and one, two, three—GO! Maybe you’ll need to invest additional resources in its introduction and distribution, but not as many as starting from zero to build a new brand or new marketing content. Extend the recycling or repurposing concept to content marketing and you have the formula for greater revenue generation. And to scale your output, you must produce more content from a single idea.

    The Power of Content Marketing

    If you’re not already creating content as part of your marketing efforts, let’s review a couple of statistics that might get your attention. (Just so you know some of why content marketing should be at the top of every B2B marketer’s strategy. We are not alone in this belief. You can find content marketing advocates in B2C, as well as B2B, and they, including Forbes and well-known SEO tool provider Ahrefs, are out there demonstrating its value.  

    RELATED: Don’t Let Your Company Make These Content Marketing Mistakes!
    • Content marketing generates more than 3x as many leads as outbound marketing and costs 62% less, according to the Content Marketing Institute (and multiple other sources). It’s the process of publishing written and visual material online to attract more leads to your business or company. 
    • B2B companies who blog consistently receive 67% more monthly leads than companies who don’t blog regularly, Demand Metric reports.

    If you don’t need to be convinced that content reigns supreme, but you are limited by resources—time or team members—to create quality content for your company, business or brand, this information may be a sanity saver. The more you can stretch your content (without losing the context), the better your investment. The more ways you can chunk your content and repurpose it, the greater its reach and longer its life. It’s a simple tactic that can produce remarkable ROI.

    Content is King

    It doesn’t make sense in content marketing to recycle something poorly made from poor materials (although we do encourage that for environmental objects!). Consistent quality content leads to audience retention, increased brand awareness and conversions, generation of industry authority and thought leadership, higher SERP rankings and loyal brand advocacy, HubSpot reports.

    Plan Your Topics, Goals and Approach

    Every content effort must have a clear, definable purpose and it can’t be “to make money” because that means everything and nothing. For example, if your goal is “to demonstrate” a product’s use, you’ll probably initially create video content for your products’ web page. But you can reuse it in social media and in emails. Have a purpose for why you’d distribute it in different channels and identify what audience you plan to reach.

    RELATED: How to Create Content Marketing That’s Less Self Serving

    Since the objective of content marketing is to measure business results, you first need to define what you hope to achieve, according to digital experience platform software company Optimizely. If your goal is brand awareness, your content repurposing will be different than if you’re interested in improving brand health. Likewise, conversions and audience loyalty may require different content recycling—or the channels you use to reach those audiences. (Consult your metrics to see what works best from which scenario.)

    The idea that you repurpose for different audiences isn’t new, but it’s key to kicking up your ROI. As discussed in multiple blog posts, it’s important to consider your buyer personas and buyer journey when producing content. Adjusting your content with minor tweaks to accommodate for different stages of the sales cycle is an excellent way to provide more significant insights to your audiences.

    If your goal is to build thought leadership, turn a whitepaper (your industry authority!) into a recorded webinar or podcast for people further along the sales cycle or at different points in their understanding of a concept or trend. Depending on your goal and audience, you could chunk the whitepaper’s main points and use them in an infographic on your website or on multiple social media posts.

    Listicles are hyper-digestible and easy to skim. Boil down big topics into a simple list and add a “learn more” call to action, or take basic information from a list and expand it into a deeper, more focused post.

    Compile round ups. Take any series of social posts about a product, service, or industry trend and compile them all in one information-rich blog post or eblast, so your audience members who value information in this form can consume all the content at once.

    User reviews and testimonials in social posts are repurposed gold, or you can use them to create a blog post that speaks to a repeating pattern in testimonials (if there is one), or build a case study to feature on your website. Remember that it doesn’t need to be all lights of being. Sometimes problematic reviews can provide you with an opportunity to address a weak spot in your customer service, or just help audience members feel heard.

    RELATED: Content Marketing and Database Marketing for Building Product Manufacturers

    An example comes from frequent feedback of a reclining chair made by a major manufacturer that reviewers repeatedly dinged for a specific feature they found problematic. Because it wasn’t a quick fix in the manufacturing process, and reviewers loved the chair overall, the company wrote a blog about how best to deal with this questionable feature—then crafted “how to deal” snippets, including short videos, for social media. It wasn’t ideal, of course, and the manufacturer had to fix the flaw. But generating content that made the chair reviewers feel listened to (as well as those who disliked the feature, but hadn’t reviewed the chair) was valuable. Case study, anyone? 

    A planned and educated approach to repurposing content is tidy and sharp, as certain types of content work best for specific audiences or industries. Knowing to whom you’re speaking and how those people prefer to receive information can help you determine the right recycling (as well as original) methods to use.

    Any content marketing should be thoughtful, measured and evaluated,  Forbes writes in its content marketing overview, but effectively repurposing content means you need to understand quality content at its core. If you need a more in-depth refresher (refresh, recycle, repurpose!), consider this thorough guide from HubSpot or call us to start a conversation.


    What is content marketing?

    Content marketing involves publishing written and visual material online to attract leads to your business, generating brand awareness and authority.

    Why is content marketing important for B2B companies?

    Content marketing generates over 3x leads compared to outbound marketing, costing 62% less, according to the Content Marketing Institute.

    How do consistent blogs impact B2B companies?

    B2B companies that blog consistently receive 67% more monthly leads than those that don’t, reports Demand Metric.

    How can repurposing content increase ROI?

    Repurposing content extends its reach and lifespan, improving return on investment and engagement.

    What’s the role of quality in content marketing?

    High-quality content drives audience retention, brand awareness, conversions, industry authority, and better search engine rankings.

    What’s the importance of defining goals in content marketing?

    Clear goals give purpose to content creation and dictate its distribution across different channels and audiences.

    About The Author

    Elton Mayfield

    Elton's career spans media, production, digital and building industry expertise. His diverse experience makes him nimble, innovative, and curious – always pushing the envelope to create extraordinary work that delivers real results for our clients.

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