As marketers, we're always looking for new ways to improve our content marketing efforts. To accomplish this, we typically place a lot of emphasis on creating and launching a brand new resource from scratch – a white paper, infographic or video, for instance. But sometimes, there are numerous opportunities to attract qualified traffic and convert visitors to leads right at our fingertips! These opportunities simply come with updating and re-promoting our old blog posts.
All of PMG’s clients publish posts on their respective company blogs, most for many years. Needless to say, they've accumulated a plethora of blog topics that they can refurbish and repurpose. For most B2B businesses, a lot of the content produced is evergreen – or content that will be relevant for months or even years to come. It's just a matter of updating the material and making sure it aligns with current data and best practices.
Today, we’ll discuss four blog strategy tips for updating old posts.
Tip #1. Choose a post with the best opportunity for success.
In general, selecting posts that are at least two years old allows for enough time to have passed for there to be new insight and information you can include to add new value to older posts. Determining which posts to republish will involve analyzing your posts with three key criteria in mind:
- Ranking keywords
- Blog posts with high views
- Blog posts with high conversion rates
Ranking keywords – Choosing to update "high opportunity" blog articles—those that are already ranking for your priority keywords, but are not on the first page of search results—is a great place to start. Since these posts are already accumulating SEO weight, updating and republishing them will give you a better chance at a boost, possibly pushing you onto the first page!
Blog posts with high views – We advise choosing blog posts in this category that exhibit conversion rates lower than your average blog post conversion rate (meaning someone has clicked on a Call-to-Action in the post and proceeded to fill out a form to download more content, thus becoming a lead). Review the post, and consider reasons why it may not be converting so well. Perhaps it’s a long post, and it could use an additional CTA part way down the article. Or, perhaps the CTA messaging could better match the subject matter of the blog.
Blog posts with high conversion rates – In this case, you want to ensure you are driving as much traffic as you can to these high converting pages. Updates to these posts could include stronger keyword optimization or a new and improved image. You can also consider driving people to this page from other posts and pages. Of course, these posts should continuously be checked for accuracy of information.
Tip #2. Update your post utilizing best practices.
The blog strategy here is to make your post current. Update the content to ensure the industry jargon and company messaging for the topic is on point. Are stats and links relevant and working? More often than you might think, an article you linked to from a post once upon a time may no longer be active. Use a free broken link checker to scan your website for link problems.
Also consider: Is the CTA still the best offer that you have in relation to this topic? Can you better utilize the keywords, or add versions of the keywords with stronger search volume? These are all areas for improvement that should be reviewed and implemented where appropriate.
Tip #3. Implement like a pro!
The details are key to republishing properly. Follow these steps and you’ll be good to go!
- Don’t change the URL. You don’t want to reset the page rank.
- You can slightly change the title if you need to.
- Don’t forget to review and update the meta description for keywords, accuracy and general snazziness!
- You should place a footnote at the bottom of the post that tells the audience this is a republished post offering updated content.
- Republish to the current date.
- If your blog sends blog notifications to your subscribers automatically, republished blogs may not trigger this action. In HubSpot for example, only new posts trigger blog notification. So, if you receive a lot of views from email notifications, you may want to send this out manually.
- Don’t forget to promote! Treat this like any new piece of content and be sure to promote it across your social media channels, in your eNewsletter, etc.
Tip #4. Track results & build on improvement.
HubSpot wrote about this blogging tactic in 2015 and enjoyed great results by implementing this strategy in their own blog. We recommend planning a few republished blogs into your content calendar and tracking the results. Do the republished posts gain traction in keyword ranking or CTA conversion? If so, you may want to ramp up this blog strategy. You could potentially spend 2017 republishing and reaping the rewards!
Let us know how this works for you. Any questions? Let us know in the comments below.