Evaluating the return on investment (ROI) value of a single content piece is time consuming. Measuring your entire content marketing strategy doesn’t go without it’s broader challenges.

Even after tracking down the myriad metrics captured by analytics tools and you correctly attribute conversions to individual pieces of content, things like brand awareness, trust, and brand equity — all of which can be bolstered by a consistent content marketing strategy — are nearly impossible to quantify. In fact, a recent survey found that 65% of marketers can’t quantifiably demonstrate the impact of their content.

In this blog, let’s explore the benefits of content repurposing and how to repurpose content efficiently to get the most out of your efforts and improve your overall content marketing strategy ROI.

Content repurposing: How (and why) to extend your content lifecycle

Creating net new content often seems to be the logical next step for brands looking to level up their content marketing strategy. However, content repurposing is often the easier and more cost-effective path toward content marketing efficiency since you’re not starting from scratch.

Content repurposing is the process of recycling — or extending the life of — a piece of great content already published or archived in one of your backend systems. Repurposing old content for your target audience can take many forms. 

Repurposing can simply be reformatting a piece of content intended for one channel into the format required by another, such as adapting blog posts into video content. It can also mean inserting one content type into another (e.g. an image used in an infographic can be reused in a webinar). You can combine smaller pieces of original content to create a larger, in-depth piece; or vice versa to break up a large piece into smaller digestible pieces, such as taking section headers from a blog post and turning them social media posts. 

There are many more ways to repurpose different formats to support your marketing efforts. 

When you consider the cost of a single piece of content and the added potential ROI if it is repurposed at least once elsewhere in your brand digital experience, you’ll want to reconsider your current content strategy of create, publish, and forget. This is especially true when you think about various content formats like video, graphics, and images that are often more expensive to generate than written content. 

The keys to an effective content repurposing strategy

Once your marketing team is on board with the idea of extending both the life and the breadth of your content usage, it’s important to ensure you don’t have any technical barriers to content repurposing. These barriers often take the form of poor content management infrastructure or a lack of cross-functional digital asset management capabilities. You want to empower your content creation teams and stakeholders by providing them with the ability to quickly find, edit, and publish content.

If you’re facing technical challenges, the following key considerations can help you to sidestep them as quickly as possible, so you can deliver compelling content at scale.

First things first — measure what matters

Assuming you have a customer journey map and you’ve aligned the high-quality content you produce to it (social media for brand awareness, a whitepaper for the bottom of the funnel, blog content for post-sale engagement, case studies for your landing pages, etc.), the places to start are reach and engagement.

For each type of content, you’ll likely want to measure unique visits, devices used (mobile, desktop, voice), and geography. The classic engagement metrics are page views, bounce rates, organic traffic, and time spent on page. Social sharing is also a good metric to track. For your email marketing and social media channels, like LinkedIn or TikTok, you’ll likely want to add sentiment to this metric list. You’ll want to track conversions for all of your content. 

But be careful not to go overboard. There are a lot of tools out there to help you measure — well, almost anything. But just because you can measure it, doesn’t mean you should.

To help marketers hone in on the essential metrics and weight them appropriately, Sitecore created the Engagement Value Score. Whether you use this or another model, just ensure you’re measuring what’s needed and not getting lost in a data storm of your own creation.

Start with your best performing content

This will ensure your repurposed content is of high quality. High-performing content has a much higher ROI potential than content that didn’t perform well the first time around. And it likely includes nuggets of useful information, which you can expand on across various channels. 

The great thing is that repurposing your best content often leads to better content than creating content from scratch with an unpredictable outcome or that competes with existing campaigns.

Map out your content repurposing strategy

Once you know your source content, it’s time to map out the process of repurposing. For instance, you could begin with a string of videos from a recent event that has received a lot of engagement and views. Your next step could be to turn them into short videos for your social media marketing campaigns, or extract the audio to turn the content into a podcast or transcribe it into a series of blog posts. 

Alternatively, you might begin with testimonials that answer some of the common questions your sales team gets and then turn them into email newsletter content, a podcast subject, or a series of social media posts.

It’s OK to map out your content use after the fact, but ideally, you’d have a plan for repurposing your content before you start the process to remain on goal. You should also consider the specific channels where you’d like to publish, so that you can break your long-form content down into smaller modules or pieces of microcontent that are much easier to reuse.

Modularize your content

Modularized content is created with the intention of reuse in mind. Breaking down the content you create into microcontent that forms the building blocks of larger content pieces is ideal for maximizing reusability. This is especially true with some of the latest touchpoints growing in popularity — like voice-enabled devices and chatbots — which work best with bite-sized pieces of content used in a conversational form.

Modularizing content also helps with personalization efforts. Instead of recreating whole pieces of content for your different target segments and channels, modularization allows you to tweak only certain sections that pertain to the target segment and channel – while reusing the other sections as created.

Another benefit of modularized content is the consistency it brings. By reusing smaller snippets that have been reviewed and approved, shown strong performance, and been frequently refined, you’ll ensure the repurposed content you publish will continue to be on brand and contain quality information.

Select the right technologies

Determining the content you want to repurpose and having a digital marketing strategy to do so still requires the right technologies in place to effectively get your repurposed content from start to finish.

For one, content repurposing is made easier when you have all of your organization’s content stored in a central repository, properly tagged, and managed via a headless delivery model. If you can’t find the content, you’re not going to be able to repurpose it. And your marketers should be able to tag and add metadata to content (and microcontent), enabling them to pull from multiple areas inside and outside your technology stack.

Beyond making content easier to find, maximize the life of each asset with a CMS that enables you to create it once and deliver it anywhere. You’ll want to consider a content management system that is API-driven. 

This means your teams will be able to push to more channels without having to re-create content for each one. For instance, if you want to use existing content for an Alexa Skill, you can leverage APIs to feed the Skill with written scripts that you’ve produced from blog posts and whitepapers.

Content repurposing at scale: How Sitecore ticks all the boxes

At Sitecore we realize the cost of content creation and the value of repurposing content to reach new audiences, speed delivery, and increase scale. Which is why we offer our Sitecore Content Cloud suite to help marketers easily manage content from strategy to delivery.

  • XM Cloud – Sitecore’s enterprise-level hybrid CMS that enables flexibility to create content once, and publish everywhere with real-time analytics. 
  • Content Hub ONE – Sitecore’s lightweight content management system that streamlines content operations.
  • Content Hub DAM – Sitecore’s digital asset management system for creating a central content repository with AI-powered search.