I like to encourage lawyers to ‘repurpose.’ Repurposing is using what you have already done (including legal work) in new and different ways to attract the attention of a new audience or to provide valuable reminders to your existing audience. Lawyers can leverage what they are already doing to get more mileage out of their work. For example: taking a recent case and creating a case study or turning a CLE presentation into an article for an industry trade publication.
Re-issue existing content in a new form
Another way to repurpose your old content and give it new life is by re-issuing it in another form. If you’ve created lots of text content, turn that content into audio or video (and if you’ve got an assistant, you may not even have to do much of the work – just delegate it to your assistant).
Turn articles or blog posts into audio by reading them (or having someone else read them) and record them digitally, then post them as audio links or podcasts. If you are reading them yourself, you can record yourself speaking about the topic on video. This has the added benefit of helping your audience get to know you better by seeing you ‘in person.’
In the alternative, you can have someone else create a video for you, using images and bullet points from your article, post or presentation. While this might sound difficult, it doesn’t have to be – if you already know how to use Powerpoint, you can use that, Windows Moviemaker or Google’s presentation software to create your video. If you have already recorded audio, use it to accompany the slides. Upload to Vimeo, YouTube and your own website and get even more traffic and inbound links. Then post links through your social media outlets to this ‘new’ content, or post it on your LinkedIn profile using one of their presentation apps.
Link to old, but valuable content to get new exposure
In addition to re-using your work in new and different ways you can also maximize the impact of content you have generated in the past. You are probably using social media to get the word out about recent content, but what about your “old” content? If you have created authoritative content that is still relevant to your audience, why not promote it too?
Blogs and other content marketing are effective because they provide keyword-rich fodder for search engines and because they are updated regularly. They also help a lawyer establish their expertise and showcase their unique voice, develop a rapport with readers and demonstrate knowledge of the problems faced by their target market, and their approach to solving them.
But much of that expertise (and the content that demonstrates it) is built over time. It’s not always the newest experience or the most recent content that is the most relevant to a potential client or referral source. Often, the “oldest” content you generate is the most basic, but that is exactly the kind of content someone who is unfamiliar with the law or who has never encountered this particular issue before is looking for. Keep that content high in the search engine rankings and ensure that it gets lots of exposure.
Post status updates on LinkedIn and Facebook that link to useful tips or information on your site. Tweet links to older blog posts or articles of interest to your audience. Do you have old content that discusses an important issue but is slightly outdated? Stuck for an idea to write about? Take a look at an old article or post and see if you can update or refresh it. Have there been recent or important changes since you originally posted? Can you add on an introduction or a new twist on an old theme?
It takes some time for your blog or website content to gain traction and loyal readers. Maybe you have content written on an issue that wasn’t ‘hot’ when you wrote about it, but it has become more high profile now – perhaps due to recent news attention to the issue or some other resurgence of interest in the topic. Take advantage of that by marketing that old content again and get the page views you may have missed on the original post.
Even if your blog does enjoy a loyal following, you are gaining new readers all the time. With the proliferation of content on the web, even your regular readers may not have had an opportunity to read content that was posted before they ‘discovered’ you. Give them the advantage of seeing that old content by posting links to it now.
If you’ve written a number of different articles or posts on the same or related topics, do a roundup. Write an introduction to the topic and then place links to those posts all in one place. This makes it easy for those who are interested in that topic to get your perspective on it and find all of your posts on that topic without having to do a full scale search of your blog or website.
Social media affects SEO. Although the links posted on social media themselves are generally ‘no follow’ links, designed to be passed over by search engines, social media links are still important. They drive traffic to your content, provide exposure to a wider audience and generate attention, which gets others to share the links elsewhere, creating ‘do follow’ links.
The major search engines are now beginning to index social media content, including Tweets, Facebook ‘like’ data and other social media updates. Why not take advantage of this by posting social media updates about your older content as well?
An added bonus: since the content is already completed, you can schedule several of these social media updates so you can “set it and forget it” and make time to focus on creating new content, while still generating activity on your social media platforms.