Robert Rose, CMI’s Chief Strategy Officer, teaches marketers in all of his master classes:
You’re not creating a blog post, a video, or a white paper … you are telling a story. That story can be told in a myriad of ways to help extend your content marketing strategy.
Every content idea involves a story you are trying to tell. If you remember that the story can and should always be told in many different ways, you’ll have a leg up on the competition.
In the fall of 2013, I committed to publishing my third book, Epic Content Marketing. Between my blogging schedule (I published original content once a week) and my speaking schedule (approximately two speeches per week), I was having trouble making the time. I needed 60,000 relevant words in six months.
Enter the “blog to book” strategy. I figured I needed about 25 chapters, of about 2,000 words a chapter, over the next six months to complete the book. And I had about 25 weeks until the due date. So every week I wrote an article that would be published on either the Content Marketing Institute site or LinkedIn. Each article filled a hole in the book’s table of contents, and ultimately became part of the book.
In six months, the book was complete. I was able to fulfill two of my content creation obligations simply by planning ahead.
Most businesses simply don’t think about repurposing ahead of time. They think in the terms Robert discusses above: “I need a blog post. I need a white paper.” They don’t think of how one story idea can be told in dozens of different ways depending on the content needs of the organization.
Case Study: Jay Today
Jay Baer publishes a three-minute video show called Jay Today. It covers Jay’s ideas about business, social media, and marketing. Jay’s team at Convince and Convert publishes a number of content pieces, including daily blog posts, research reports, podcasts, and more, but, according to Jay:
Jay Today videos are among the strongest performers … and have become a linchpin in our initiative to further atomize our content.
How does a three-minute video become the staple of a publishing empire? Each Jay Today video becomes eight different pieces of useful content.
Let’s walk through this process and the resulting pieces of content.
After each episode is complete, they post the show to five different places:
iTunes video podcast
iTunes audio podcast
They also transcribe every episode using a service called Speechpad, which costs about $1 per audio minute for transcription.
If that’s not enough, then Jay begins the process of atomization.
For each Jay Today episode that has been transcribed, my team and I rework the headline and copy three different ways, and post the video and written content as a blog post on Linkedin, Medium, and on [our website], where I take the best episode of the prior week and rewrite it every Wednesday.
A post on Convince and Convert
A post on LinkedIn
A post on Medium
- A Google+ post
- 2-3 tweets
- 2 Linkedin shares
Nothing of what I did with my book or what Jay does is complex. The difference from what most businesses do is that it was planned — that there is a purpose behind all of the content created.
Next time you have an idea for a blog post or a video, just remember that’s not the case … you have an amazing story to tell. The next step is to come up with all the ways you can tell that story.
Want to learn more about the model dozens of successful entrepreneurs have used to create a profitable business using content? Download our guide, 6 Steps to Building a Content Inc. Empire.