Quick guide: How to optimise historical content

Curated by Niclas Wicksell Bakke November 12, 2018
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You can actually afford to become lazier when it comes to producing content – if you spend the time you save wisely. Here is our quick guide to historical optimising and how you can implement a strategy for it in your business through the two methods remixing and ROPS.

One of the best things about content marketing is that it can generate leads and customers for your company throughout months and even sometimes years – if you manage to keep it updated, relevant and interesting. Here are two methods to help you do just that: ROPS and content remixing.

You’ve probably heard it before: Work smarter, not harder. If you’re a content marketer or a marketer who regularly has to contribute to the content production, take a deep breath and let this sink in.

Yes, you can afford to become lazier when it comes to producing content – if you spend the time you save wisely. Here is our quick guide to historical optimising and how you can implement a strategy for it in your business.



What is historical optimising?

What is historical optimising?

Before learning how we must first know why. So what is historical optimising and why should you do it? Historical content optimisation is simply taking the content you have previously published and making it new again – and, hopefully, better.

Rather than filling the publishing calendar only with new blog posts, you should often plan on republishing old content that has been changed. These can be smaller or larger changes, depending on the original article or piece of content.

By continuing to optimise your content, you will not only increase your rankings in search engines, but you will also make sure that the content gives your company value through generating a whole lot of leads – for months and months to come.

Search engines are not the only ones who will reward your evergreen content. Distribution channels will also give evergreen content more likes, comments and shares – not to mention leads and customers.

It’s as easy as this: Great evergreen content that is kept updated will not fall out of fashion, thus it will continuously generate results for your business whilst you focus on other things.

So who should be doing this?

The easiest answer would be everyone. However, that’s not entirely true. If you have just started building up your company’s bank of content, this might not be relevant for you at this exact moment.

What businesses should focus on content optimisation:

  • Those who are producing a lot of new content but finds that views and conversions are coming from old blog posts.

  • Those who have a lot of content and also a lot of competition on those topics.

  • Those who find that most traffic and leads from the blog are coming from blog posts published six or more months ago.

  • Those who grow their business and work on scaling their reach from content creation alone.

And now, the ultimate question: How do you do it?

Two ways for optimising existing content: ROPS and remixing

Two ways for optimising existing content

1) The ROPS process

The ROPS process stands for:

  • Rework

  • Optimise

  • Publish

  • Share

Start by looking at the data and see how your content is performing: is there any room for improvement?The answer to this is always yes.

You can always take a piece of existing content and make changes to increase its value.

Identify which blog posts you should take a look at first. This can be:

  • Blog posts with a high number of views or a high conversion rate

  • First-page ranking (present or potential) blog posts

  • Blog posts with a high keyword search volume

  • Blog posts with outdated or misguided information (products/services changes, statistics change, industry changes)

Specifically update blog posts that already rank in the first page of Google, as Google will appreciate and reward this.

Now, how do you move forward? There are a number of ways you can do this. It might involve smaller changes to the blog post or other pieces of content such as changing the CTA, updating the text itself and include new research and links or updating the text with new internal links.

Are you using the right keywords? Are there any links that no longer work? Is there any outdated information altogether?

You can also combine two blog posts in one, change the title and the format. This way, you can either get “fresh” content out of existing content or you can get entirely new pieces of content with the same information packaged in a new way.

A blog post can, for example, become a short video. Or perhaps an interactive infographic?


Download: 10 content marketing trends for 2018

When working on a live blog post, don’t unpublish it whilst reworking it. Instead, create a draft with the edits in the existing blog post. Moreover, don’t simply hit update when republishing – change the date to reflect the freshness.

When sharing the content, ask yourself the following question: How can you take this piece of content and get it everywhere possible? Is it possible to make it into a video for social media? Identify every possible format as well as distribution and sharing method.

2) Content remixing

Content remixing is, in many ways, very much alike content optimisation. It entails taking existing content and making new versions to get a new result. Instead of making edits to an existing blog post, you create a brand new blog post based on the existing one.

Thus, you find new ways to use old content. But how? You can create email series based on a blog post or a downloadable content, you can break down one blog post into several social media posts or you can create a short video out of a blog post.

These are just some of the ways you can use content remixing. Once you start implementing it into your strategy, you can also do content remixing for lead generation and lead nurturing or for brand awareness.

Content remixing for brand awareness

Use the content you have published on your blog or other website pages and create webinars, seminars and other events so that you can create brand awareness. You can also use content syndication; publishing other company’s content and giving them the credit.

Content remixing for lead generation and lead nurturing

Use existing content in new emails that you send out to, for example, new blog subscribers. You can also, as mentioned earlier, make shorter videos out of existing blog posts or make email courses based on content you have already made.

5 tips for optimising old content

5 tips for optimising old content


1) Spend half the time you have set aside for writing new content to optimise existing content.

2) Do keyword research before you start optimising: What keywords are ranking the highest? Optimise content around these keywords.

3) If you change the URL: Set up a redirect.

4) Merge blog posts that are tailored around the same keyword to help them build each other up rather than competing with each other.

5) Give a blog post 90 days before republishing with a new approach or title.


Need help with your content marketing strategy? Download our content marketing starting kit to get template for publishing calendar, a checklist for SEO and  a presentation for the content workshop.



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