Reuse and Recycle Your Marketing Content

But definitely, don’t reduce 🙂

No company can exist without people who are willing to pay for its products or services. But people need to be aware of—and have positive feelings about—a company before they will choose to give it their business. That’s why a critical part of any organization’s operating budget covers marketing and public relations.

For decades, print ads (handbills, newspaper notices, posters, billboard, etc.) were the primary venue for this outreach. Eventually they were joined by radio spots and then television commercials. And in recent years, digital advertising has become a major player on the marketing scene—as you no doubt already know if you’ve ever faced an inbox full of spam or viewed a website teeming with banner ads and embedded videos. All of these kinds of media vary in many ways, but they all have one thing in common: they cost money to produce.

The hefty financial investment needed to produce marketing materials and the ever-increasing options for distributing them mean that more and more companies are looking for ways to get the most bang for their buck. One option that savvy organizations are exploring is repurposing the same materials for different media.

For example, many companies produce polished white papers. But why keep all that great data locked in one single document? The audience for a multipage paper is already a bit limited: in this age of quick sound bites, not everyone is willing to spend more than two or three minutes to read something. So the best way to spread that information (and get the most value for the money invested in it) is to make it available in multiple formats. A blog post can summarize the paper’s findings, for instance, or an eye-catching infographic can present the highlights.

White papers, blog posts, infographics, newsletters, and other similar marketing materials are all very well suited to print formats. Branded and custom magazines, with their emphasis on visually appealing graphic design and high production values, are particularly effective at attracting and retaining the attention of their audiences. It’s an easy (and, in the big picture, cost-efficient) next step for companies to take the materials they already have and convert them for magazine pages.

But at the same time, even though print is one of the most powerful tools available in the marketing department’s toolbox, organizations should not limit their outreach efforts to that format. For example, video advertising took the marketing world by storm a few years ago and remains a dominant (and growing) presence. Video works well to convey powerful narratives, such as client testimonials and employee stories. And if you don’t think that a white paper or other seemingly “dry” content wouldn’t translate well as a video, think again: most TED Talk videos are basically presentations of white papers!

The key to getting the most bang for your buck is to think outside the box. Don’t limit yourself to thinking that the content of print marketing has to stay on a page or that video content can’t be translated into print. Keep your eyes open for opportunities to reshare, reuse, and redistribute your content as widely as possible. After all, if you’re investing time and money into marketing materials, why not get as much value as you can from that investment?

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