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More Views, Less Work: Content Repurposing Tips to Boost Your YouTube Channel

Picture of Sinuhé González
Sinuhé González

YouTube Strategist, Guitar Hero

Any decent YouTube Content Marketing Strategist will tell you that consistently publishing high-quality videos is key to growing your YouTube channel. But with budget constraints and competing priorities, it can be challenging for marketers and brand managers to keep your content calendar and channel as active as you’d like. If you’re facing an empty content calendar and have run out of ideas, there’s a simple solution that can help you maintain momentum on your channel, boost your YouTube SEO and amass more watch time: repurposing old content into new, longer videos.
Content Repurposing on YouTube is taking old content by combining several existing videos and stitching them together to have a new piece of content.

It’s like upcycling old material and putting it under a new “package” – the package in this case being a new title and thumbnail. This repurposing can reinvigorate your channel and allow you to continue to drive engagement where you would otherwise have nothing – all for the low cost of simple editing.

How Does Content Repurposing Benefit Your YouTube Channel?

Repurposing old content has several benefits, one of them is that it works as a YouTube SEO booster. This is because it allows you to optimize for broader search terms and target a different audience. For example, if you have several 2-3 minute videos on how to make different cocktails, you can combine them into one longer video titled “Our Favorite Summer Cocktails” or “Top 10 Cocktail Recipes”. This way, you’re targeting a broader audience that’s searching for general cocktail content, rather than a specific type of cocktail.

Content Repurposing also gives you the opportunity to hit on more niche search terms all from one piece of content. 

You can break down longer videos into chapters, each targeting a different search angle or commonly asked question. This makes it easier for viewers to find the information they’re looking for, and it also helps improve your YouTube SEO. Here is an example of this from Toyota, one of Touchstorm’s clients.

Example: How Does Content Repurposing Benefit Your YouTube Channel, using Toyota as an example.

Google search results highlight YouTube video chapters as “key moments” so users can see if there’s a part of the video that has what they’re looking for and be more likely to engage with it.

Brand Example: How “CNBC Make It” Boosted Their YouTube Content Marketing by Repurposing Old Videos

One example of a channel that successfully repurposed old content is CNBC Make It, which has 1.7 million subscribers. They recently published a 30 minute video that was actually three older videos put together with minimal editing.

The result? The video received 390,000 views in just one month, using content that was two years old.

Brand Example: How “CNBC Make It” Boosted Their YouTube Content Marketing by Repurposing Old Videos

Creator Example: How the Educated Barfly Maximized the Potential of Old Videos Using Content Repurposing

The Educated Barfly is a YouTube channel with videos on how to make various cocktails. This channel’s creator took this approach to the extreme; he created a 30 minute video titled “50 Cocktails you NEED to know!” The video is actually 50 of his most popular cocktail tutorials edited together. Not only did it perform, it is the 4th most successful video on his channel to date with nearly 900,000 views. For contrast, those 50 videos include content dating as far back as 2017 and combined have about 6 million views — that’s a 15% return in 9 months from content that’s around 5 years old!
Content Repurposing: How the Educated Barfly Maximized the Potential of Old Videos Using Content Repurposing
Providing URL to each chapter inside a video
Following best practices, the video is properly chaptered and he even added URLs linking to each segment’s original video for transparency.

How to Repurpose Old YouTube Content

Content repurposing on YouTube is easy. Here are the steps you can follow to turn your existing videos into longer, more engaging content:
Break down longer videos into chapters on YouTube

What to Watch Out for When You Repurpose Old Content

  • Transitions between segments: Viewers can be impatient and skip these parts which will hurt your retention. Opt instead for very concise, to the point transitions that make the content flow seamlessly into each other. CNBC Make It used an “Up Next” animation that lingered for a few seconds. The Educated Barfly added some sound effects and an image of the cocktail + recipe to introduce each segment.
  • Stay true to your brand: Depending on how old the content is that you’re repurposing, it may show old branding elements that are no longer relevant today. Be aware of this and edit as necessary to achieve a consistent tone and visual style that reflects your brand accurately.
  • Use content repurposing as a supplement, not a replacement: Eventually you’ll run out of things to repackage and should be used as a way to supplement your overall content strategy while giving you time to create new content. It simply can’t be the only source of content for your channel.
  • Keep an eye on performance: After you’ve hit “publish” on your repurposed content, it’s crucial to monitor performance. Is the click-through-rate on par with your channel’s benchmark? Remember that the title and thumbnail are part of the new “package”; If CTR is lower than usual, try testing different title and thumbnail combinations.
  • Be transparent with your audience: Make it clear in the video description or in the video itself that the content is repurposed from older videos. This can help maintain trust with your viewers.

Repurpose Old Videos for Ongoing Success on YouTube

Another way to repurpose content is by converting your top-performing shorts into long-form compilations. Give your viewers something to come back to, something to binge on, and something to share with their friends. By striking a balance between short-form and long-form content, you can create a solid YouTube content strategy that maximizes your potential for growth.

Content Repurposing is an effective YouTube content marketing strategy that can help you keep your channel active, drive more views, and optimize for more search terms. This strategy will help you reach a new audience and in turn increase your views and watch time. That’s channel growth by squeezing more views out of existing content without added production costs.

Touchstorm provides full YouTube growth strategy and services for global brands, optimizing Paid, Earned, Owned & Commerce. We specialize in Organic Channel Growth, a practice we invented that is now industry standard.

Get in Touch with Us for a Consultation on Your Brand’s YouTube Strategy