No matter how long you have been blogging, you already have some old content. You surely want new readers to check it. Here you have my 5 tips to freshen up your previous articles and turn them into smashing ones!
Things are constantly changing. New technologies appear all the time. What was pure excitement yesterday may have become dull today. This happens in life and in the (social) media. Unless you have a (weird) taste like mine, you will probably not choose a soundless movie over the latest hit on the big screen. That is how the world turns and how we live. The older we get the stronger is the feeling of trying to catching. Sometimes it might be easier than others, but we somehow make it.
Now let’s forget the world out there and focus in our dearest blogosphere. That is the world where we, bloggers (amateur, professional, personal, technical etc), live. And we spend A LOT OF time in it, don’t we? Blogging is a constant learn experience. It is not that we cannot find information in the beginning. Yet, we discover new things every day.
How long have you been inhabiting this area of the cyber space? Or are you starting fresh? Have you been hanging around for longer than you can remember? Is it your first experience? Do you collect blogs as some people collect stamps? Aside from how you answered to these questions, I am pretty sure that you have been blogging already. You may have hundreds of articles in your archive, or not. Still you have already published something.
Let’s Play a Game
When was the last time you read your very first entry on your (active) blog? Take a look at it now. I will wait…
… How did it feel? How did you experience this short trip back in time? Did you like what you read? Was the look pleasing? Would you write it again exactly how it is?
Now compare that same article with your latest and/or favorite one. Go ahead. I will still be here when you get back…
… And? Do they look like they were written by the same person? In fact, were you the blogger that you are today when you put the first one together? Does it look like your recent work? Confronting, isn’t it?
I hope you do not feel bad about this exercise. We should not live in the past, but taking a look at it every once in awhile does not hurt either. What have you learned from it? What has changed in your style, layout and approach? Which do you like best: the “before” or the “after”?
If your answer is the “after” it means that you are in right path of growth. There is nothing to be ashamed about. On the other hand, you can use the knowledge you have acquired in the past weeks, months and years in your favor!
George, we recycle!*
Bringing old posts to the spotlight might be an awesome idea to increase traffic. The material is already out there. You have already done the hardest part that it was putting the article together. Now it is only a matter of making small adjustments here and there to refresh your content.
You do not need to overcomplicate things. Follow these 5 steps and you will be strengthening your brand with previous writings. Here we go!
Let’s start with the looks of your old blog. Did you have any images? If yes, are they pin worthy? Well, now you know they must be. So in case the article does not have the looks of your brand, it is time to freshen it up.
Create new images the same way as you do for a new entry. Be attentive to the layout, colors and anything that helps you compose the look and feel you share nowadays.
If you already had great images, just make sure they are still in line with what you post now.
In case your blog has been transferred from one platform to another, you might want to check the fonts as well. The old style is generally moved along with the text. You do not want to keep it this way when updating the content.
Many writers are shy in the beginning. They compose a blog as if they were writing a school assignment. As time passes, and after lots of experimentation, they build their style. While others may be too blunt venting their thoughts instead of sharing them constructively.
Check the vocabulary you used. Are there too many difficult words? Unless that is the subject of your website, I would recommend that you switch them for accessible synonyms. Are there slangs? Or are there no slangs at all? Have in mind that there is no right or wrong here. The goal is to streamline your old content, not to judge your style.
Think of paragraph length, presence (or not) of subtitles, bullet points and numbering. Be consistent.
Going through the same exercise as I put you through above:
- I have been a blogger for longer than I can remember
- I have have collected blogs like some people collect stamps
In the beginning it was all about writing, getting my thoughts out there and sharing knowledge. To me, it is still a matter of sharing great content, but a lot changed in the meantime.
Part of these changes were brought to us in the form of plugins. Those sweet applications help us in the background and improve the look of our posts. I have my favorite ones and I am sure that you too. So why not using them in your old material? There is no reason for holding back.
Did you have links in your article? Are they all still active? Did you find any broken ones? It might happen that the sites move to new domains or do not exist anymore. You can update the existing ones or simply remove the connection depending on the situation.
On the same level, you may want to add new internal and external links to your text. If you have now an affiliate url coherent to the subject or wrote a blog recently that could expand the conversation, add them. Take advantage of the work you are doing now to get even more out of your content.
Once you have completed the mission of updating your content, make sure you let others know about it. I plan the “relaunch” of my old content exactly the same way as I do for new blogs. There is no difference in the way I promote them.
I do not post new stuff on a daily basis. So I take advantage of “recycled” articles to fill in the blanks of my editorial calendar. It is true that I do not get the same amount of visitors as compared to a day with fresh material. Still, it is way much better than not getting anything out there at all.
Note that in no moment I wrote anything about the quality of your content. My intention is to show you how to get old content to attract new readers. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced blogger, I am assuming that you have wrote great stuff from day one. Even if your writing style has changed, the material is still fresh and worth the time of your readers. Because if it is not the case, I would recommend you choosing another text to play around.
If you feel tempted to update the URL, make sure you will not be creating any broken links. Also check for ping backs. Unless you think you have a lot to win by editing it, I would recommend you stay away from the link (or eventually hire someone to do that for you). Your Pinterest images will also need to be reindexed.
Have you ever reused an older blog? If yes, how did you to get old content to attract new readers? If not, would you consider doing it?
Grab the button on the sidebar and spread the word! I am sincerely looking forward your participation. I cannot wait to learn from you.
And talking about the Tip Tuesday Link Party, I have a little question for you all:
Do you prefer a monthly or a weekly Tip Tuesday Link Party?
- Weekly (86%, 6 Votes)
- Monthly (14%, 1 Votes)
Total Voters: 7
This poll is open until May 31st. I really appreciate your feedback to keep on improving the link party. Maybe you think that once a week is too much. Or that having it just once a month is hard to remember. Thank you all in advance for your participation!
Have a great Tuesday!
* You can also find me on:
Google+: https://plus.google.com/+Debbieinshape/ (em português)
* Yes, I am a coffee fan. But no, I am representing Nespresso or its products (even though I love them).