How to repurpose your event content like a pro

Two Women talking about content strategy for event industry
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Episode description

Content doesn't have to go to waste. 

Rather, its shelf life and value can increase over time.

In this episode of Great Events, join host Felicia Asiedu and content strategist Victoria Akinsowon as they dive deep into the art of repurposing event content. 

They discuss practical tips for identifying the most resonant event themes/messages and how to repurpose them into various formats––from turning event sessions into engaging blog posts to creating captivating video snippets for social media.

They also tap into the significance of audience feedback and use real-time insights from events to guide your content strategy. They leverage tools like AI for efficient content repurposing and share insights into measuring the success of your repurposed content across different platforms.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to utilize your event content to the fullest potential by using real-time audience insights and feedback to create meaningful content
  • How to leverage a variety of content formats and channels to extend the lifespan and reach of your event content
  • How to stay agile in measuring and adapting your content's impact across different channels

Things to listen for:

00:00 Victoria’s startup background and passion

04:00 Repurposing content: transforming one format to another

06:11 Why event planning and content organization are critical

09:16 How to put your audience first

14:18 Creating sustainable & impactful content

18:29 Reusing event content on social media & blogs

22:14 Considering multiple content channels

23:48 How to plan by learning from past experiences

26:45 Why events offer real-time insights & repurposable content

Meet your host

Felicia Asiedu, Director, Europe Marketing, Cvent

Meet your guest host

 Victoria Akinsowon, Team Lead, Content Marketing, Cvent

Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Victoria Akinsowon: When I'm thinking about content and how we repurpose it, it's always thinking about, you know, what are those messages and themes that resonated the most with the people there? What were people talking about the most at the event and how can I create content around that? I really love looking at the polls and the Q& A from our sessions because that gives me a good insight into where our audience's mind is at.

[00:00:23] Hosts: Great events create great brands, but pulling off an event that engages, excites and connects audiences well, that takes a village. And we're that village. My name is Alyssa. I'm Paulina. I'm Rachel. And I'm Felicia. And you are listening to Great Events, the podcast for all event enthusiasts, creators and innovators in the world of events and marketing.

[00:00:49] Felicia Asiedu: Hi everyone. What's been going on in this wide, wide world of events? My name's Felicia and welcome to this week's episode of Great Events. So, following the theme of Earth Month and sustainability, we thought we'd look into how you can reuse and recycle your event content to save your own energy and make the most out of content that you're producing. Now, I came from a content background and I used to repurpose content all the time, but what's even better than that for me now and I tell you it's a blessing, is that I have a wonderful Content Lead on my team in Victoria and she's joined me for today's episode. So say, hi, Victoria.

[00:01:25] Victoria Akinsowon: Hi Felicia. I'm really excited to be here, so thank you.

[00:01:27] Felicia Asiedu: Ah, no worries. It's a pleasure to have you and it is a pleasure to work with you. You kind of think like me. Is that a bad thing to say?

[00:01:35] Victoria Akinsowon: I think that's a compliment, to be honest.

[00:01:38] Felicia Asiedu: I love how you think about content. I love how you plan it. So before we get into this whole idea of repurposing content, why don't you just tell us a bit about yourself and your journey into content marketing and how you think about content now?

[00:01:51] Victoria Akinsowon: As you mentioned, I'm a Content Lead here at Cvent, so I'm primarily a content strategist, so that means I spend a lot of time thinking about what types of content would resonate most with our audience, really thinking about the themes, and the topics, and the challenges that our audiences are experiencing and how content can best help them address those. But prior to that, I come from a startup background, so really cut my teeth in terms of understanding the power of content in those roles to really educate and also entertain people. So I have a real passion for content and it's not just the written stuff, it's videos, it's audio, like this podcast that we're doing, and I'm sure we'll touch on all of those different types of formats later on, but I really am a believer that content has a real power to drive brand and help educate people like I mentioned. So yeah, a bit about me.

[00:02:47] Felicia Asiedu: Love it. Thank you. And I was going to ask you to define for us what is content, but you just did it. It's like video, written. I always feel like everything's content. That's why I feel so powerful when I can say, "Hey, I look after the content," because isn't content everything

[00:03:01] Victoria Akinsowon: You're right because content is so large and it can encompass everything from the copywriting aspects of emails and things like that, right to like I was saying, blogs, and infographics, and videos. And so I think that is both a power, like a blessing and a curse in a way. For me, it's really about understanding how can we best get our message through in as many different formats as possible. People consume content in different ways. So I think that's the main thing for me. Some people love a blog post or an ebook, but other people just want to have the same information in video. So I think that's the underlying foundation is like what is your message and then how can you get that across as many different ways as possible?

[00:03:45] Felicia Asiedu Paulia?: Awesome. So let's kick into this idea of repurposing that then, because you've just mentioned different content formats. So I know this is not something we've kind of really discussed because we take it as almost like a given, but for those that don't know, what is that? What is repurposing content?

[00:04:00] Victoria Akinsowon: Put simply, content repurposing is literally taking one content format and transforming it into another. An example of that would be you might have an event session with a really great speaker and it's a great topic and you're thinking, "Okay, how can I get this same information out to maybe people who weren't at that event?" So you might want to turn that into a blog post. And so, one way to do that would be you've got the recording, putting it into a software that can then turn that audio into a transcript, and then you've got that written transcript. And from that you can get either yourself, or a writer to then take those key bits from the session and turn that into a blog post. And the benefit of that is with SEO, and people can find that through search, through Google, but also it just means that people have another way of consuming that same content and you're getting your message out there.

So that's really just one example, but there are many different ways that you could repurpose, and it's not just video to blog. You can take that video itself that you've got and maybe cut it down into snippets. And the great thing about that is that you can then transmit that out and distribute it into other social media channels. Again, it's like thinking about how can I take the most of this content that I've created for this event, for example, or that effort that's gone into it, and how can I make sure that I get the longevity and the mileage from it? So.

[00:05:28] Felicia Asiedu : I mean, I love that so much, and as you know, obviously we work together. It's stuff that I've wanted to do for ages and sometimes without a resource to think about it ahead of time. I don't think it's so easy to repurpose content. I think if it becomes an afterthought, like say someone's listening to this podcast now and they're like, "Yeah, I made that last year. Let's start repurposing it." You definitely can, but it's so much better. I think when you think about what is the life of this going to be, and how can I enable something that I'm going to do today to live on in different ways, in different places. And so when you're thinking about creating a piece of content, how important is it to you to think about the lifespan of that content beyond the day of creation? Is it always important?

[00:06:11] Victoria Akinsowon: I think it's really important. The last thing you want is to have your event, and now you've got all of this stuff, all of this sessions and all of this footage, and you're like, "Okay, where do I even begin with trying to figure out what to do with it?" And so that's why I agree with you, planning is so important and I think we've got our annual Cvent CONNECT Europe event for example. And I bring that up because that's an example of an event that has so many sessions and so much great content in it.

And so for me, it's always a case of even before the event begins, once we have an agenda, once we have an idea of what those topics are going to be, it's like, "Okay, I'm already thinking about I can produce X amount of blog posts from this." Or what I did do with our event last year was we had a great speaker talking about how to use AI for event marketing, her name is Timea Kadar, and it was a great session, but even before that I knew that I wanted to have more content around that topic of AI.

And so with her as a speaker, I did an interview with her really quick and turned that into a blog post. She then did the session at CONNECT, so it's all interlinked and now the blog is up on our website and I've taken her session, which we've put on our YouTube channel and embedded that into the blog post because it's a very similar topic. So it's all about thinking about the whole journey, to your point, of that piece of content. And thinking about the themes as well, I think that's the most important thing of like, "Okay, you've got a theme. You understand what the session's going to be, you understand the topic. Now I can break it down into those content formats that I want to transmit those messages into." So like I said, we've got the blog post, we've got her session, which is in the blog post, and there's so many different ways, also thinking about the ebook that we've got coming out around AI and her interview is in that it's all interlinked and interspersed really.

[00:07:59] Felicia Asiedu : I love that. I did something recently where I spoke about nostalgia from events. You've just given us from that content perspective as you should because that's your role. This is how I think about it, this is how it lives on, this is how I plan for it, this is where it lives, this is why it lives, which I think is amazing. But what I really like about it all and what people sometimes don't understand is, and I think you said it earlier, you're doing it to satisfy the need of your audience. You're not just doing it because, hey, I'm a content lead and I can plan like this and I can make content live on. You're actually thinking about, well, hey, people consume things in different ways. Some people love an infographic, other people, they find it a bit maybe gimmicky, so they're like, "I just want to watch a video."

Other people don't have time and they want to read and consume it that way. So tapping into that audience need, and then also the nostalgia. So let's put those two concepts together. How do you relive an event? How do you come back to it again and say, "Oh yeah, I remember that." Even if you were in the session, how do you ignite that feeling in someone again where they're like, "I forgot that," or, "Good to know." So I think when you're thinking about that plan, how much are you thinking about the people that you're making it for your audience, or is it just, "Hey, I could do this 10 times so I might as well repurpose it?" What do you think?

[00:09:16] Victoria Akinsowon: No, I think when it comes to content, it's always audience first. It's always putting the needs of your audience first. And I love what you said about nostalgia, because to your point, how do we make sure that that atmosphere lives on beyond the event? And it's simple things like we have our on-demand page where we have the most popular sessions from Cvent CONNECT Europe available for you to rewatch and relive. And I think that's a great thing because what it does do is it not only gives those people who are there the nostalgia aspect from it, but it also gives people who might not have been before a taste into what they can expect from the event. So I think that's a great way. And pairing that with YouTube as well because I think you can say YouTube is another search engine, and so having your videos up on your YouTube channel available for people to refer back to and watch is great.

When I'm thinking about content and how we repurpose it's always thinking about what are those messages and themes that resonated the most with the people there? What were people talking about the most when we were at the event and how can I create content around that? I really love looking at the polls and the Q&A from our sessions because that gives me a good insight into where our audience's mind is at. And paired with nostalgia, it's also prioritizing what are people actually talking about and not what you think that they're talking about. Because I think sometimes people can get into that trap of, I really want to talk about this topic, but it's not necessarily aligned with what your audience is passionate about. I still see it as a Venn diagram of what your brand wants to talk about, but what your audience is also really keen to hear about and the overlap is where the content creation, the magic comes into it.

[00:11:04] Felicia Asiedu : Brilliant use of the Venn diagram there. Things you learn when you're studying, but you know what I've just heard in what you've said about leaving space. So even though we've just spoke about planning, making sure you have structure, but leaving space for those with the knowledge that's going to come from the day of the event. So you only get that knowledge because people answer the survey or you heard them over talking in the bathrooms and it's like, "Wow, did you see that session?" And then that should trigger something in you that says, "I think I should pick up on that and maybe do something with it afterwards."

[00:11:36] Victoria Akinsowon: I just wanted to jump in there because you did a really great session at an event last year around the event technologist, the role of the event technologist, which is an emerging one, and what does that mean for our industry? And it was great because you said back to me that there was a lot of interest in that and people coming to you and talking to you about, "I feel recognized, I feel seen." And that was a really good insight for me to then say, "Okay, we should definitely be developing content, not just about the role, but also targeting this type of person because there's clearly an appetite for it there." So it's also that feedback loop I think. So for me also understanding from the people who go to and speak at events, the events that we host as well, getting that feedback just to understand and stay up to date with what is happening in our industry, that's how you create authentic content in my opinion.

[00:12:30] Felicia Asiedu : Agreed, completely agree. And I know we started this with it's sustainable we should repurpose. And the reason why, because some people will say, well, how is that sustainable? How is repurposing content sustainable? If you think about your time that you put into coming up with brand spanking new concepts and testing them and proving them and whatnot, I think what you've kind of just hit on there is actually, yes, I made new content from it, I made a blog, I made an infographic or whatever, but how do you feel your time is impacted positively by feeding off of concepts that are born already out of an event or born already out of that kind of feedback you were just talking about? Do you think it is more sustainable?

[00:13:09] Victoria Akinsowon: I do. I think that it saves me a lot of time. There's a lot of time that goes into brainstorming ideas and trying to think of new ideas, and I think that being able to recycle topics and recycle themes is really a time saver because you're not thinking about things from scratch. And to give you another example of that, I know we did a recent partner report with ICE around corporate events and there was a finding in there around more event teams reporting into marketing, and I thought that was such a great insight. And then I was thinking, "Okay, we have an upcoming event that we need to speak at, what should we talk about?"

And there's this finding from this report and it just made sense to use that to talk about how event and marketing teams can collaborate together with this in the context of this survey. So for me, it would've taken me, I think a long time to try and come up with a unique brand new idea, whereas I had the content there and that was the spark for coming up with this session that you were the one who actually presented on it at ConVEx and it went great. So yeah, it's a real time saver.

[00:14:18] Felicia Asiedu: For those of you who are not watching the visual with this podcast. I was smiling a little as Victoria was talking because I was like, "Yeah, that is something I spoke about." And a lot of people think that I go out to, I speak at a lot of events and people I think sometimes think I've gone out and I've written all my own stuff. Quite often I do, but I'm so lucky to have Victoria on the team because she's able to do what she said, tap into those surveys that we've done and then come out and pull out that pertinent information and then arm me with things that I can go to events with and all of our sales team and a lot of our leaders with things that are really important to our audience. So like you said, it's that journey tying it all back in together and I think time being saved, again, someone might ask how is that sustainable?

But if you look at the 17 SDG goals, they're not all around carbon footprint, and I do believe you can save on carbon footprint by recycling content as well because you're not sending out more emails to get more data to bring in more. There's that element, but actually the SDG goals talk about people and looking after people and making sure that from that perspective people are, well, wellbeing is in there, but sustainable for your business, for your growth, for your development, for your marketing team, for your content cycles. There's all sorts of ways to look at sustainability.

So I'm just giving you a tip out there. I'm encouraging you don't just be like tunnel vision. Think about what's good for your team. Are your teams at a size where they need support and they don't want to have to come up with concepts every two seconds? Like Victoria, I know you work with a wider team across the event, but you also work primarily as a one content person in the UK. So we spoke about saving time, but as a team structure, do you think that repurposing content works well across the globe with your global team mates or how does that work from a skills and a team perspective?

[00:16:09] Victoria Akinsowon: I think that it does have a real impact because even in a bigger team, resources are still what they are. You're not working with an unlimited budget. That's the other thing as well as developing videos and all of this type of content that new comes with a budget to it, so it does have ramifications. And the great thing at Cvent and the teams that I work with is that I'm able to leverage ideas that might come from, for example, from our North America team and think about how can we take that and repurpose it into different ways? An example from that was a recent campaign that we ran last year all around cost savings. And it's like, okay, we had a blog post already written and it went into all of the different ways you can reduce costs when it comes to your events. And I was thinking at the time, "Okay, how can we actually do more with this to support the campaign?"

And so what we did from that was create an infographic that had similar ideas of how can you reduce and save costs [inaudible 00:17:15] events, but in a more visual way. And then we also created a video from that and you have to also think about what works well on these different formats. So it would've been a very long video if we included all of the 10 different ways you can save on your event. So we reduced that to three ways and we're still using that video to this day, and it's been really popular, across all of our different programs globally.

So I think leveraging the expertise that's coming out of the different teams to then think about how can I make this relevant for my region or how can I take some of the core concepts from this and distill it into other ways of communicating the same message? Does mean that we are not always cranking out new stuff all the time, which if you think about the bandwidth of the different teams, it would take too much time and it just means you're leveraging what's already existing. Yeah, that would be my two cents on that.

[00:18:08] Felicia Asiedu: Excellent. So I'm going to get us to a point of, let's give some practical tips. If you had to give some tips around, I'm going to say choosing the right things to repurpose. How do you do that? And then how do you go about it? What would be the steps that someone would need to take to think, "Okay, this is how I'm going to do this."

[00:18:29] Victoria Akinsowon: For me, again, thinking audience first it goes back to do you know... If we're saying repurposing from an event like you've done and you're trying to take that content, what were the most popular sessions? Do you have feedback in terms of session ratings, what people were saying? What were those questions that were most upvoted, for example? What were the polls that you ran and the results? Because you can even take those poll results and put them on your social media or you can ask the same question that was asked a session and put that on your social media accounts. And even from that, it's your own little piece of original research that you could potentially pull content from. I would also say if you've got great speakers speaking at your event, use them. Can invite them to do a webinar and go into even more depth on the topic that they spoke about at your event, or you should do what I did and do an interview, do interviews with them for your blog as well.

I think it's just really about taking the core themes from your sessions and thinking about, "Okay, this theme works really well from a blog post." I use Descript and we use that internally and getting that transcript from the session. And from that written transcript, you can then put that into a blog post. You can also take the full session, put it into bite-sized clips and put that on your social media accounts as well. So I think I've gone from thing to thing. I hope that was helpful. Those are some of the ways I'm thinking about it.

[00:19:59] Felicia Asiedu: Love it. And Victoria mentioned the script there. I think that's a really good point to get onto, which is AI. I don't want to belabor the point because it's not an AI podcast, but there's AI in everything these days and using your AI tools to chop things up. I was telling Victoria recently in Descript that I saw it said blog and I was like, "What is that?" Because script is where you put, well, for me, you drop a video in, you can snip it and clip it, but Descript as she said, also transcribes. And I was like, "What's this blog thing?" So she said, "Right, I'm going to go off and use it." So what happened when you went off and used it?

[00:20:31] Victoria Akinsowon: It did turn that transcript into a blog. Now I have to say, and it's not just a thing with Descript, it's just AI tools in general, what you will get is a draft that might not be great. And so that's something to keep in mind, but it does do away with the blank page syndrome, I think some people called it of like, "Okay, I don't even know where to start with writing this." So what AI is great, as you mentioned, is just giving you something to work from and edit. So yeah, in that example it was really great. I had a draft that I then worked on rewriting and making sure that it actually sounds like it comes from a human. So I think you're right in terms of AI tools there and things like ChatGPT as well. You can also ask it like, "I had the session, it's about this, it targets this audience. What do you recommend I repurpose this into?" And you'd be surprised at some of the insights you get from it.

[00:21:20] Felicia Asiedu: I love that. That's really cool. I always love when people use ChatGPT for interrogation rather than just like, "Write me this, or write me that prompting and let's get the right prompt." But to interrogate, "Tell me the top three things that would resonate with an audience that is watching this via video two days after the event." That's just such a really cool thing to be able to interrogate and use ChatGPT for that.

[00:21:20] Victoria Akinsowon: It's so helpful too because a lot of us are working hybrid or remote. So if you don't always have access to that colleague that you can just take for five minutes and chat to, you can just put the same question into ChatGPT and you get something that you can work with.

[00:21:58] Felicia Asiedu: Top tip, ChatGPT is your friend when you're at home by yourself.

[00:22:03] Victoria Akinsowon: Exactly.

[00:22:04] Felicia Asiedu: So you've repurposed the content, how do you know it's working? How do you know that what you're doing is having an impact or are you just ending up with 10 snippets of something? What do you do?

[00:22:14] Victoria Akinsowon: Before I answer that, I think it's also worth saying that you need to think about your content channel fit. So it's not just about taking random clips from your session or just writing any old blog post. You really need to think about will this work on the platform on the medium that I'm trying to repurpose it into? So I think that's really important. And I mentioned that because then if you're creating a blog post, you want to SEO optimize it, make sure that people can actually find it in search. And the metrics that you measure for a blog post will be things like page visits, will be things like are you getting your SEO rankings in there?

And that's why I also mentioned YouTube because that also is linked with SEO. So those are the metrics that I'm looking at in terms of what's the page visits, what are the Dutch rankings when it comes to things like social media clips and that we put our sessions onto what's the watch time, how many views are we getting on it? Things even engagement metrics such as are people commenting, are people liking? That can give you an indication as to whether this resonates and whether you should continue to talk about the same theme in different ways. Things like infographics or ebooks, you are measuring things like downloads, people downloading it. So that's a long-winded way of saying how you know that it's working will depend on the channel and the metrics that you measure each channel by really.

[00:23:37] Felicia Asiedu: And have you faced any challenges there? Have you done some things where you're like, "I thought we were going in this direction, but actually we've had to stop and go somewhere else?" Or what kinds of challenges have you faced in doing this?

[00:23:48] Victoria Akinsowon: I think the initial challenge, and this was my first Cvent CONNECT Europe a couple years ago where I just joined. So I had found myself in the situation that I warned about earlier on of like, "Okay," the event had ended and there's all this content and I hadn't had a plan for it. And so it was like, "Okay, I don't know what to do with all of this stuff." And so it was almost random in terms of thinking, "Okay, I'll just take this session and make a clip from it and we'll see what happens and we'll see if it works." And it wasn't necessarily as thought out as now it has become, that's the learning of making sure you're planning ahead.

Yes, you're leaving space as we were saying for those spontaneous moments and insights gathering, but having that plan was the learning from that particular situation. I think another challenge can also be understanding what content will resonate the most on these different channels because what you might put out on LinkedIn might not have the same reaction as what you put out on YouTube, for example. And so some of that is a bit of trial and error and you just have to test and understand what works on these different platforms as well.

[00:25:01] Felicia Asiedu: That is such, such good advice almost to land us on, we're almost done. But I just think that last piece there about knowing the difference between the platforms and seeing and measuring, and I would add to it just being quick to make a change. If something's not working in our digital world these days, you don't have to carry on with it. You can chop and change it, re-upload something with some change to it just to make sure that it's doing what you want it to do. We spoke about metrics of measurement. Big thing for me in my role is lead capture. Not all of it's lead capture for that purpose, but essentially I do want to feed my sales team as most marketers would want to.

So if your content is helping to feed the sales team, both from leads, but also for the sales team being able to give that content out, they sometimes can also give you that feedback of, "Man, I put that thing that you made out and the response I got was great and now I'm in great conversation with this client." So there's so many different ways to measure, but being quick to react I think is a good thing as well, so that you can make the most out what you're measuring, not linger as a statistic, which a lot of people do.

[00:26:08] Victoria Akinsowon: No, I completely agree and I think you're spot on when it comes to don't just continue to do something if you're seeing that it's not really having the impact that you won't be agile in reacting and responding and that will set you up for success, I think.

[00:26:23] Felicia Asiedu: Love it. So you've given us lots of stuff to think about from channels, to different types of formats of content, to some challenges and hints, and tips, and tricks. So if you could leave this audience with just one thing, and remember we've got event planners here, we've got marketers, so a nice broad audience, but what would be that thing that you would leave people with for some advice?

[00:26:45] Victoria Akinsowon: I would say that see the events that you're running as a treasure trove for your marketing teams and other teams. I think events are such a great channel to get those real time insights from your audience in person. Or if it's webinars that you're running, you can get inside the mind of your audience so quickly. And so don't see that as that one event. It's done, it's over. Let's move on to the next one. I would say really think about how you continue to drive the message home that your event is promoting through all of these different channels that we've talked about. I would end with saying repurposing content is a way of just scaling your efforts. It's a really scalable way to promote your brand and drive that engagement and awareness with your audience. So yeah, those are my thoughts.

[00:27:36] Felicia Asiedu: That is a wonderful thought to leave us on. Thank you so, so much for joining me today. I'm so glad we get to work together every day, but I'm even more glad that you joined us for this podcast. So thank you, Victoria.

[00:27:45] Victoria Akinsowon: Thank you so much. This was fun.

[00:27:49] Felicia Asiedu: Good. I'm glad that's what it's meant to be. And thank you all for joining us. Bye. See you on the next one.

[00:27:56] Hosts: Thanks for hanging out with us on Great Events, a podcast by Cvent. If you've been enjoying our podcast, make sure to hit that subscribe button so you never miss an episode. And you can also help fellow event professionals and marketers just like you discover great events by leaving us a rating on Apple, Spotify, or your preferred podcast platform. Stay connected with us on all your socials for behind-the-scenes content, updates, and some extra doses of inspiration. Got a burning question or an epic story to share? We want to hear from you. Find us on LinkedIn and send us a DM or drop us a note at great events at cvent. com. And a big thanks to our amazing listeners, our guest speakers, and the incredible team behind the scenes. Remember, every great event includes great people. And that's a wrap. Keep creating, keep innovating, and keep joining us as we redefine how to make events great.