Let’s say you committed to blogging. You’ve been posting one post per week for three years. That’s about 150 blog posts on your website. They’re probably bringing in a fair to good amount of organic search traffic. That’s a main benefit of blogging consistently for a long time.
Plus, you’ve probably learned a fair amount about blogging. What works well for you as a writer. What your readers want to read. Etc.
But can you do more with those old blog posts?
Here are a few thoughts…
When it comes to social media, I’m a big fan of snippets. I wrote about this strategy back in 2013. It wasn’t something I came up with. It was something I saw smart people doing on social media. They recognized that social media platforms wanted to get as many people as possible on their platforms and keep them there for as long as possible.
Everything a site/app like Facebook does is for this purpose. They may do a few things that seem counter to it in the early days of their existence, but the long-term play is always to get people to their platform and to keep them there.
As a content creator, it’s good to lean into this. If you only share the title of your blog posts and a link on these platforms you’re not going to get much traction.
Instead, create a regular habit of creating ~3 snippets from each of your blog posts. Go back and do it with your old blog posts. And share that content regularly on social media. The snippet is made to live on social. It’s made to get engagement.
It’s a win for all involved:
The platform gets content.
The users get content.
You and your brand get engagement.
2. Internal Linking
Another way to get more traction from old posts is to link to them with new posts. I did that in the last section by linking to a post that is nearly a decade old.
Part of this strategy comes from aiming to create timeless posts or evergreen content. If you try to write things that will likely be useful for a long time you can link to it over and over again for years. Sometimes you can do that with old news-type posts. Maybe you’re writing an updated news item today and it would help the reader to link to a previous related news item.
That’s the key with linking, you want to be helpful to the reader. Link to old posts that may add value to the topic that they’re interested in.
3. Email Newsletters
Many businesses will create email newsletters for recent posts. It’s relatively easy to setup this type of email newsletter with your blog’s RSS feed and a service like Mailchimp. And I would recommend doing that.
But I would also regularly add an old post or two to emails. You’re probably getting new subscribers to your email each day. They will want future content, but they probably don’t want to miss out on all the great older stuff you’ve published.
I can think of a golf teacher that was creating great instructional content on YouTube for years. I discovered their content in about 2018. I subscribed to be able to get future content, but I also dove into their archives and spent months watching.
Let’s say that teacher had a newsletter. They publish a new piece of content on a topic like slicing the driver. They probably had other content from the past on the same topic. They could send the new piece out in an email and link to the other content as well.
Old content is not worthless. In fact, it can be the core of what brings traffic to your website and brand. I remember reading about the music industry and how their catalog material, aka: old songs and albums, was what kept the lights on and allowed them to continue to search for new hits.
Think of your blog in that way. Use the old content to get more traffic while you also work to get future hit content.