How to Repurpose Content Without Getting in Trouble

What once was old can always be new again, and that includes your content. Here’s what you need to know about repurposing content safely.


  • Repurposing is great for both your bottom line and your content’s visibility.
  • Penalties for repurposing content don’t work quite how you think, and that’s a good thing.
  • Focus on adding value when repurposing old content, and your audiences won’t get bored.

Whoever said, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks,” never repurposed their content. My name is Anna, and I am a strategist at Convince & Convert. Today, I want talk to you about repurposing content. Let’s go.

What Is Repurposing Content?

Repurposing content is an approach that takes existing published content, refreshes it, remixes it, and puts an entirely new spin on it to create something totally new and wonderfully different. I’m a huge fan of repurposing content for two main reasons.

The Benefits of Repurposing Content

1. The first one is that, contrary to popular belief, creating content isn’t free. In fact, it’s actually quite expensive. It costs a lot of time and a lot of money. And those are things that not every marketing department or brand has excess amounts of. Repurposing content can help maximize the existing investments we’ve already made.

2. The second reason I’m a huge fan of repurposing content is because thanks to the rise of content marketing over the years, most brands are sitting on mountains of content. And the problem is when we’re so focused on creating new content, we keep adding to that mountain. And that means that old content, even if it’s good, doesn’t get seen by users because it gets buried under all that new content. So repurposing content really can take a lot of that great old content and give it a breath of fresh air.

Dispelling the Myths of Repurposing Content

Now when it comes to repurposing content, there are a few myths that are swirling about out there. These might be the reasons why you’re not focusing so heavily on repurposing content.

1. The first myth for repurposing content is that you’re going to get penalized for having duplicate content. This is a touchy subject. Obviously, we don’t want to be penalized by any search engine or even cause any frustration to any users by having duplicate content. But, remember, repurposing isn’t just duplicating. Repurposing content isn’t a copy and paste approach. It’s a remix and refresh approach.

When you remix and fresh your content, you’re taking a white paper and turning it into a blog post series or taking a blog post and turning it into an infographic. You’re not copying and pasting— you’re providing something new and different. Search engines and users aren’t going to see that as the same content.

In addition, even if you do run into some duplicate content issues, which can technically with repurposing content, you would have to repurpose incredibly large amounts of content and also be seen as being malicious with your intent for duplicating that content. It’s not even as much as duplicating a footer or a boilerplate language—it would have to be copying and pasting acres worth of content in order to even get flagged by users or by any search engine.

2. The second myth is that you can’t reuse other people’s content. This simply isn’t true. We take inspiration from everywhere. And we never know where inspiration is going to strike. Sometimes this comes from other people, and that’s okay. If somebody created a framework or published a blog or has an infographic that you have feedback on or you can provide your own take on, by all means, you should use that content and provide your point of view on it. But there are a few rules to follow in order to do so.

The first rule is always give credit where credit’s due. In fact, you should probably just go ahead and ask that person for permission and let them know what you’re going to do with their content. And then, when they give you permission, make sure you credit them in the final published work. It’s the right thing to do. Also, remember, theft isn’t cool, but paying homage is.

3. The the third myth is that your audiences are going to be bored. This myth is quite common but it’s just that — a myth. Remember, content repurposing isn’t copying and pasting. If you publish and post the same content, on every channel, over and over and over again, yeah, your audiences are going to be bored. But, as we talked about before, if you take an infographic and you turn it into social teasers. Or if you take a white paper and turn it into that blog post series, it’s going to be new and it’s going to be different. And as long as you’re adding value and your providing a reason for readers to read that content again, you’re going to be okay. Your audience is not going to get bored. Also, focus on other channels as well. You don’t have to keep republishing in the same channel that that original content was published in.

Just like Doc Martens, vinyl records, and acid wash jeans, what once was old can always be new again, and that includes our content.

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