Content Outage? Don’t Panic, Here’s Your Back-Up Plan
What do you do when all the blog posts that are scheduled to be published that day aren’t ready to go?
It happens to us all.
Despite detailed planning, clear directions and a generous timeline, blogs, articles and other content don’t arrive on time and you’ve got nothing to publish. What do you do? It’s important to have a back-up plan, but if you don’t, there are several things you can do to create quality content — quickly.
Repurpose Old Content
If you’ve been publishing for a while, you likely have a ton of content gathering dust in your archives (see also: 4 Ways to Repurpose Evergreen Content). When all your plans go out the window, it’s a great time to look for ways to reuse already published content. Is there an email newsletter that might make for a good blog post? A few blog posts on the same general topic that you can cut, paste and edit into a new article? Here are a few ideas:
- Create social media posts on the same topic. Feel free to include a link back to the content these posts are referencing — promoting old content is okay as long as the promotional posts are new.
- Follow up on a previously successful post. Has anything changed since it was first published? Add new information to what you’ve already written.
- Make a best of post that highlights the most interesting or most read articles so far that year, or even that month.
Write a Content Curation Post
Curated posts are good to use, especially when you’re in a bind. Content curation involves writing an article based on select information from a few blogs, websites, videos — any kind of content, really. A good curated posts culls information from a variety of reliable, but distinct sources to make a broader point (see also: Original Content Vs. Content Creation: Which is Best for Your Content Strategy). For example, if you wanted to write about pollution where you live, you could find air quality data from the Environmental Protection Agency, the impact of pollution from a local environmental advocacy group and background information from a local news site.
Do a News Roundup
A news roundup is by definition curated content, but it’s exclusively focused on ongoing news stories. To write a news roundup, find articles on a few recent news stories in your field and summarize each story in a new post. Be sure to check Facebook and Twitter before you get started, as they are great sources for finding topics that others care about.
Answer Questions from Your Fans
Check your Facebook or Twitter news feed. Have many of your followers asked the same questions or made the same comment more than once? Create a post that directly answers those questions or responds to those comments. Be sure to include the original social media posts in the body of your article.
Prepare Posts for Content Emergencies
Finally, it’s a great idea to keep at least one evergreen article ready for just such an occasion.
Content emergencies have probably happened to you before and it’s likely they’ll happen again. Keep these tools in your arsenal so you don’t panic on days where everything seems to go wrong.
What’s your content emergency back-up plan? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.