Whether we’d like to admit it or not – we all fall into blogging ruts every once in a while, and struggle to find inspiration for new posts. There are lots of great ways to brainstorm ideas, and revisiting your old posts is a great one. But, even if you’re not in a rut, revisiting your old posts can be great for a number of reasons. Not only do you get a chance to polish up your old content, but you can recycle old posts to bring in new traffic – just like new posts all over again.
I’d say that you should make time to go through your old blog posts at least once a month. Of course, that’s in an ideal world, but it’s something to work towards! Here are a few reasons why I like to revisit my old posts.
Update Old Content
The number one reason you should visit old posts is to touch up the content. We all know that brainstorming, writing, editing, and publishing something all within a few days means that errors get lost in the rush. So, looking back at an old post with a clear head and new eyes (because you’ve probably forgot what you wrote anyways) means that you can edit out any errors you missed before.
This is also a great opportunity to update the content with things that you have learned since then. Maybe you wrote a post about Ten Sites to Get Beautiful Free Photos, and since then you’ve discovered a few more that you want to add. Maybe you’ve written a tutorial on How to Create A Child Theme, and since then new ways have come out that you need to mention in your post. Looking back on any post is a great way to update, whether you are adding new content or changing old content that is no longer relevant or correct.
Push yourself – Start at the beginning. Go back to your first post ever and read through. While you read, take notes on things that you could expand upon, on pieces of information that maybe aren’t right or relevant anymore, and things that you’ve learned since writing that you could add to the post.
Rebrand With New Graphics
In an ideal world, we’d all have our visual brand set out before we launch our blog, and only have to update every few years. But we all know, the world is just not as ideal as we’d like it to be. The truth is, that many of us update our visual brand fairly often in search of something that’s really beautiful and captures attention. But, when you change some aspect of your brand, that might mean that some of your older posts no longer match your brand. So, look back at your older posts and do what you can to update them visually. Maybe you’ve changed the formats of your feature images, so you need to update older posts, or maybe you’ve just change the way you visually lay out your posts. Updating things like this are usually a bit time consuming, so set some goals for yourself. Update 1 post a day if that’s all you have time for – and eventually down the road all your posts will match and be visually cohesive again.
Push yourself – If you’ve recently rebranded, or maybe just changed up your feature images, go back to your first post. Rebrand it to make sure it matches your new content, and then work your way forward until all your posts are cohesive. If you haven’t rebranded since launch, you’re ahead of the game. But still go back and look at your first post. Do you layout the text of your posts differently now then you did then? Consider updating one post a day to match!
Re-share Old Content
If you’re only sharing new content on your social networks, then that means that your new readers are never seeing your old content – unless of course they scroll through your archives, but who has time for that?! Going back through your old content and re-sharing it on your social networks is a great way to bring in more traffic and remind new readers that you’ve been around for a while. And to be perfectly honest, readers aren’t usually looking at the dates of your posts, so it will also make you seem really productive, and like you’ve been writing new content non stop.
Push yourself – Go back and find five posts that you are really proud of. If you’re proud of all your posts, just start at the very beginning. Go to whatever scheduling tool you use (I like Hootsuite) and schedule those posts to be shared numerous times throughout the next month.
Finding inspiration and coming up with new blog post ideas is never a bad thing. Heck, if you have too many you can just make a list and refer to it whenever you need to write a new post. Reading other blogs in your niche and browsing the web is a great way to find inspiration, but it’s also helpful to look back at your own posts. Each post you wrote likely has a handful of tangents that you could build on, that you never thought of when you wrote the post for the first time.
Push yourself – Go back and read one of your old blog posts. Come up with at least two new post ideas building off the post you read. If you did this once a day, you’d have a huge list in no time!
Build A Series
Looking back at old posts is a great way to find inspiration for new posts, but it’s also a great way to build a series. Maybe you read an old post and it makes you think of ten more posts that you could write that are closely related. You could turn that into a great series to keep readers coming back, or maybe even into an ultimate guide to offer exclusively to your newsletter subscribers.
Push yourself – Go back to one post you really love, and think about ways you could build a series out of it. Think about posts that are tied closely into that topic, but different enough to warrant a new post. Then think of a great catchy name for your series and add it to your to do list!
Looking back at old posts will never be a bad thing. With all the great inspiration you can find and the new traffic you might be able to bring in, it’s definitely worth the time! Push yourself and set goals that you know you can meet. Maybe once a month you go back and look at a week’s worth of posts and go through the list above to make sure you are updating them and extracting all the inspiration you can.