The answer to, “How do I get more engagement, more traffic, more search engine authority, more sales,” or more of anything else of what you want is often: “Publish more content.”
But there comes a point when creating more content is a recipe for flat-out exhaustion.
I had a fun conversation with copywriter and teacher Belinda Weaver last week, which you can check out on the Copyblogger FM podcast: How Copywriting Teacher Belinda Weaver Reenergized Her Email List for Massive Engagement.
She had a great archive of blog posts, but they weren’t really doing much for her business or her audience.
Robert Bruce, in a site review over at Rainmaker Digital Services, gave her some advice:
Take that content, turn it into an ultra-engaging email sequence, and load up your autoresponder.
(For more details on that, give the podcast a listen — Belinda shares lots of the details that made the strategy work well for her.)
The technique didn’t just work — it far surpassed Belinda’s expectations. She dramatically improved her audience engagement and responsiveness to her programs, without creating anything new from scratch.
You don’t have to have a long archive like Belinda does to get more value out of the content you’ve already created. Try one (or all) of these methods to get more authority and audience engagement out of the work you’re already doing.
Try a more robust email strategy
You might try what Belinda did, and turn your strongest content into engagement-building email sequences.
As Belinda described in our conversation, she typically takes a single post and turns it into three, five, or more quick email messages.
They let her touch base with her audience frequently (Belinda emails every weekday), but because each message is short, she’s not overwhelming her audience.
As she works through her archive, she’s also cleaning up and refreshing early posts, updating images, and correcting old information and broken links. The result is a content-rich site that’s audience-ready and pleasing to search engines.
Belinda has years of blog posts to draw on, but even if you have a smaller set of favorites, repurposing them into email autoresponder sequences can get your best stuff in front of new eyes for years to come.
You can even apply a little smart automation to what you create, so that each subscriber gets the material they’re most interested in.
Organize your work by theme or reader type, then create a few branches for your emails to keep your messages relevant to each individual reader.
One of the biggest challenges when creating good automation sequences is the volume of content needed to make them work.
New email marketing tools make it easy to resurface the most valuable gems among the great stuff you’ve already created, and deliver them to the most interested members of your audience.
Try some new media
I’ve written a lot of posts.
Seriously, gang, a lot of posts.
Some time around my 80th or 90th episode of our Copyblogger FM podcast, it occurred to me that our listeners might enjoy hearing a few of those posts as audio content. Now that’s become a regular part of my content schedule.
I start by copying the post into a text document, then adapting, expanding, or snipping content as needed. Just like Belinda does with her email repurposing, I take advantage of the opportunity to make any needed improvements to the original material.
I then record it, adjusting the wording on the fly if I feel like it could be a bit more conversational.
All of that original thinking, research, and wordsmithing now finds a brand-new audience … and I get at least as many folks approaching me at events with kind words about the podcast as I do about the blog.
(Observant readers will note that in this case, I started with a conversation recorded for the podcast, then developed insights and additional points for this blog post.)
Your old blog posts can also be great starting points for creating videos.
If you’re a little intimidated about taking the leap to video, take a tip from Cheryl Tan and create a Facebook group of one — then hold a few Facebook Lives for yourself. You’ll sort out the details like sound and lighting, and get those initial nerves under control.
For more thoughts on getting started with video, check out Cheryl’s post, A Quick-Start Guide to Video Content: Become Confident on Camera in 5 Steps.
Try a new business model
Over the years, as you research, write, and start conversations with other experts, you’ll probably find that you learn a lot about your subject.
Blogging for a few years won’t make you the world’s leading expert — but you don’t need to be.
The sustained work of writing and learning you do as a content creator can often give you enough valuable knowledge and experience to teach other folks what you know.
Go through your past work for a “first draft” of your most important teaching ideas, and use them as the seedlings for a new course or membership community.
Real talk: Creating a good online course isn’t the easiest thing you’ll ever do. But if you’ve got the discipline and interest to create a content archive, it’s a great bet that you have what it takes to create a valuable digital course.
And in my experience, teaching online is one of the most enjoyable forms of business out there. You meet great people, help them achieve their goals, and learn even more about your own topic.
If you’d like more guidance on specifically how to put a course or learning community together, Brian Clark’s course Build Your Online Training Business the Smarter Way will walk you through the process step-by-step.
He doesn’t just show you how to create a course; he also talks about how to test and market it.
Get more value from the work you do
Creating excellent content requires a lot of thinking and care. So it’s just smart to get all the value you can out of every piece you create — and widen your audience by providing your ideas in the formats they like best.
Why not give one of these a try? You can make a strong start on any of these strategies in a weekend or less … and be on your way to a much greater audience impact.