Blogging has many steps — writing, rewriting, editing and writing again. The key to working smarter — and not harder — is to make sure that one of those steps includes recycling your best insights so that you get the most ROI from your efforts. Here are eight ways to reuse your hard work.

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It’s a well-know axiom that writers enjoy “having written,” rather than relishing the struggle of writing itself.

It’s a lot of work, and legwork: There’s the research and thinking things through to come up with your unique perspective. There’s the writing, and the rewriting and the editing — are you getting exhausted just thinking about it?

If you’re doing your job right, there’s also the very important step of promoting your work. It’s only natural to want to make the most of the blood, sweat and tears you pour into your blog posts.

So you should do all you can to maximize the exposure to your ideas.

One way you can do this is by finding all the niche audiences you can, so that as many people in as many kinds of markets can gain access to your brilliant insights.

You can also do this by giving your old posts new life when you can — especially when you’re stuck for new ideas.

Spread the love

You’re not done when you upload your blog post to your site. Sure you can celebrate for a few moments, but then get to work on getting it out there for the world to see.

  1. Promote the piece based on the most salient facts or quotes: Once you have a piece you’re proud of, make sure it gets seen far and wide. Social media may be obvious these days — you’re going to want to link to your post from all your social channels. But when you do so, lift out salient quotes or juicy factoids to share as separate pieces. Send your article out in an e-blast to your email database.
  2. Wield some influence: Send your piece to any influencers in your field. If they think it will interest their audience they might share it for you. It’s good to have friends in high places.
  3. Expand your channels: There are lots of places you can repost it and gain exposure to a whole new audience. Medium is a great outlet, or answer your own question on Quora. Your LinkedIn account is also a great place to share your content. And don’t forget your brokerage — it might want to promote your piece as well.
  4. Syndicate and specialize: Look for services like Outbrain, Zemanta and Taboola that offer syndication to get your article out there. Also consider submitting to specialty publications related to your topic. (Inman anyone?)

Piece it together

Don’t think of your article as one static piece, but instead, remember it’s made up of smaller components that you can easily mix or match to build something new. (Kind of like Legos, but the green ones are headlines, the yellow ones are words, the black ones are quotes, the blue ones are facts, and the white ones are pictures.)

  1. List it: If you’ve written a piece of perfectly crafted prose, try turning those headers into a list. Got a killer list? Flip the script, and channel your inner wordsmith to expand it into a full prose article.
  2. Learn how to create an infographic: You can also give your written content new life by making it visual. Transform the basic concepts of your article into an infographic, or even make it into a simple video slideshow.
  3. Give them an encore! If you want to write a follow-up piece, the topic could be right under your nose. After you publish, check the comments your readers leave. Your post might have stimulated follow-up questions or even a discussion on a new angle you might not have considered. Bingo, new post idea!
  4. What didn’t make the cut? You’ve probably heard the expression “left on the cutting room floor.” (If you haven’t, it’s an old film term from the days before the advent of Final Cut or Premier editing software when they really did literally cut the film to edit it. Scenes that didn’t fit were left on the floor.) If you’re looking for new material, go back, and consider what didn’t make the cut in your first piece. Maybe you sacrificed a little bit of magic to make your word count, and now you have a whole new piece to explore.

Reduce, reuse, recycle. It’s all good

It’s tempting to sit back and relax after you finish your blog post, but if you’re serious about your marketing efforts, your initial post is just the beginning. Get it out there, and get creative about new ways to present your ideas to reach the widest possible audience.

Brenna Humphreys is co-founder and creative director at Walkthrough Productions. You can follow her on Twitter (@brenhumphreys) or LinkedIn.

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