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A Comprehensive Guide to Repurposing Content Into Videos

Jul 6, 2021 7:31:07 AM

It takes a lot of time, energy, and money to create fresh content.

You have to create so much material, of different types, and for different platforms. 

Plus, the more growth opportunities you aim for, the more content you need to produce.

This is a lot for a small team.

Here’s an idea: What if you can repurpose and reuse existing content to drive better results?

With the content volume that needs to be published to edge competitors, for higher efficiency and cost-effectiveness, there’s no other way but to repurpose one piece of content into multiple forms for distribution across diverse channels. 

In this comprehensive guide, we take you through the basics and best practices of repurposing your written content into videos. 

Why video?

Viewers spend 7 hours and 55 minutes per week, on average, watching online video content. In 2021, an average person will spend an estimated 100 minutes watching videos online daily.

There's a reason why 61 percent of marketers say videos are "very important or extremely important" for their marketing strategy, and why many plan to increase their video spending this year.

If you’re not investing in video marketing, you’re losing out on a ton of opportunities to grow your business and maybe even dominate your industry. 

What is content repurposing?

Repurposing content is when you redefine an existing piece of content in a newer format to drive more value out of it. Note that while many use the terms “content repurposing" and "content reusing" interchangeably, they do differ.

With repurposing, you aren't merely re-using older content, you're repurposing its format, context, and/or possibly objective. 

This is comparable to the difference between content repurposing and content recycling. When you're recycling content, you might not necessarily be redefining the format and context of the content. Instead, you're just re-using it to drive the most value out of it. 


Which existing content should you repurpose?

This varies based on your needs and goals.

For example, if you want to drive more attention or traffic, repurpose top-of-the-funnel content.

Similarly, if you want to repurpose a blog post for a LinkedIn video, pick a blog post that matches the demography of that social media platform.

There are factors you should consider when deciding what existing written content you should repurpose as video.

Here are some tips to get you started:

  1. Pick blog posts that get the most traffic. Since they’re already in “demand”, there’s a good chance your video will also do well.
  2. Repurpose parts/sections of your extensive pillar content. Embed these small videos into the same pillar content, as well as create a separate video series of your pillar topic for distribution on different channels.
  3. You have your digital marketing goals defined. Go to your analytics and check which blog posts are helping you achieve these goals the most. Repurpose them.
  4. Which social media is delivering you the best returns? Find the demography of that platform and then pick content on your blog for video-repurposing that matches that demography.
  5. Create a content repurposing plan. List down the content based on its importance in helping you achieve your defined goals. One-by-one repurpose them.
  6. Check out the most viewed videos of your successful competitors. Have you published written content on that same topic? If yes, repurpose them.
  7. Ask social media. Run a poll. List two published topics and ask readers what they would like to see in a future video version. 

What types of video can you repurpose content into?

Once you know what content needs to be repurposed into video, it’s time to pick the right type of video.

Here are five types of videos you can use:

  1. 2D/3D animation - Animation is one of the most popular types of video today. Even big brands are investing in animation. 2D and 3D animation is able to connect with nearly any demography-- provided they have the right storytelling elements. Work with an animated video production company to repurpose your content into interactive and interesting animation.
  2. Whiteboard video- Whiteboard animation is great for explaining complex ideas, problems, and solutions. So if your content is explaining something in detail, and these details are streamlined and connected with each other, a whiteboard animation video might be the perfect choice.
  3. Motion graphics- This is effective when targeting a younger demographic that prefers highly colorful and engaging visuals. Motion graphic videos work wonders on social media. And if done right by your animation company, they can drive high returns.
  4. Typography video- Also called moving text videos, typography videos are quick and simple to make. They are perfect to plant a seed thought, convey a brief message or evoke emotions. These videos work great with a demography that likes to read; especially those in their 30s and 40s.
  5. Live-action- Sometimes you have to take matters into your own hands and get in front of the camera, or hire an actor. Live-action videos are a go-to choice for explainer content. They are more interactive and provide more opportunities to build an easy-to-recognize brand. 

Where to distribute repurposed content?

The next step is distribution-- it’s time to decide which platform you should distribute your video on. 

Different social media platforms have users of distinct demography and psychography. On LinkedIn, for example, you’ll find working professionals with academic backgrounds. Meanwhile, TikTok has younger users who prefer quick, small-form videos and prioritize entertainment value. So it’s important to keep your audience type in mind.

Also, you can distribute the same videos across multiple platforms. You can embed them in your landing pages, or in the same written content that they’re repurposed from (in case visitors prefer watching a video than reading). And finally, you can run ads with these videos.

Don’t be afraid to experiment. Try a mix of different and multiple channels and platforms if you’re not sure where your video will work best. 


9 Tips to Repurpose Existing Content into Outstanding Videos

Repurposing existing written content into videos seems like a straightforward task. However, if you’re looking for greater returns and outstanding outcomes, you have to pull the right strings and take smart measures.

Here are 9 tips to help you with that:

Don’t undermine the importance of “quality”

When you repurpose your written content into a video, remember that it’s not an extension, but a standalone piece of content. Many people make the mistake of treating the video like an add-on accessory, rather than the centerpiece. 

This means the quality gets compromised as well. And that is something you shouldn’t gamble with-- regardless of the type of video you’re putting out.

Poor quality video will not only NOT bring the desired return, it may even hurt your brand identity.

Create multiple videos from the same piece of written content

One blog post doesn’t mean one video! You can take the same written content and repurpose it into multiple videos, based on your goals and distribution channels.

For example, your video’s message or approach could be different when you’re addressing the LinkedIn audience as opposed to Facebook users. So you can create multiple distinct videos from the same content to target different channels and demography.

Similarly, if the blog post is a long guide, you can split it into multiple sections and create multiple standalone videos for each section.

In short, don’t assume that one piece of written content means only one video. 

Get the video duration correct

This is one of the basics that make a big difference. The length of your video impacts its views and effectiveness. It needs to be just the right duration.

Like a lot of aspects of animated video, there’s no hard and fast rule for what makes the perfect running length. It depends on many factors, including the type of video, its objective, who it is targeting, where it will be distributed, and so forth.

For instance, for social media platforms, especially Instagram and Snapchat, short-form videos do wonders. But if you want to publish to YouTube or your lead-gen landing page, a longer duration video works better.

So the right length can make or break your video’s performance.


Define clear objectives for each video

Don’t repurpose written content into videos just for the sake of it.

Yes, video marketing is popular and promises great returns. But without any defined objective and goal, you will end up with disappointing results. 

So, before you repurpose any content, make sure you have your “why”. Why are you doing it? What do you plan to achieve with this video? What KPIs should you follow to measure the success of this repurpose effort?

Take a moment to be sure you’ve got the “why” down before getting to work on the how and where.

Stay away from DIY video-making tools

There are many do-it-yourself video-making tools. While some of them are great, do not rely on them. Video is not the kind of thing you can do all by yourself.

Think of it like this: you could, in theory, design your company’s website all by yourself. Anyone can put up a website on their own with a little effort, people do it for fun. A little Googling research or maybe a YouTube tutorial and you can learn how to do it.

But would you try building your company’s website all by yourself? No, you’d trust a team of professionals to do it for you.

It’s the same with video.

So hire a video production company and take their help in repurposing your written content as videos. You’d be amazed at the fresh ideas they will pitch you, and they will help turn your efforts and investments into a big success. 

Track results and improve accordingly

Don’t just create a video and be done with it. Focus on distribution and promotion. You have worked hard to convert your content into videos. Make sure they deliver greater value and for a longer period.

Track the results of how the video is performing, keep an eye on all the relevant metrics, and then accordingly make improvements.

Analyzing the numbers can also provide you with key insights for your next videos to drive maximum value.

Maintain visual consistency for brand-building 

This isn’t strictly necessary but if you’re also focusing on building brand identity, it’s a good idea to have videos that are visually consistent. 

For example, if you make colorful videos, don’t switch to black and white format. If animated videos are bringing you good results, don’t go produce other types of video in large volume.

Include your brand name in the video as a watermark. Have the same kind of intro and outro of the videos. If there’s a voiceover, it’s nice if that voice remains the same in every video.

Consistency will help people remember and relate certain elements of the video with your brand. So, the next time they see that element, they would instantly recall your brand name.


Avoid stale topics

This is obvious enough but needs to be said. Avoid repurposing written content that hasn’t performed well in their goals. Content with boring topics won’t have high engagement rates. This is especially true if you’re limited in resources.

Focus on topics or content that have a proven track record of good traffic, engagement, and conversion.

Don’t spend too much time and money repurposing content that doesn’t have adequate market demand. 

Bet big on short-form video content

Short-form videos are everywhere. Their consumption is high and they drive better outcomes in comparison.

So bet big on such videos and double down their distribution on all relevant social media platforms. Increase their production volume.

Short-form motion graphics animation videos are very popular nowadays. They are interesting and people love to engage with them.

Plus, creating short-form videos doesn’t take as many resources, so they’re cost-effective.

Final Words

Hopefully, this guide provided you value. Now you know why and how to repurpose your existing written content as videos. 

So take your first step today! Identify the content that you want to repurpose. And then move on to create that video. Get in touch with a video production company and get the wheels rolling.

All the best!

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