When most people (or businesses) start a blog they continue posting regularly, sometimes for years, and eventually develop a large body of work. The trouble is that despite their usefulness, very few readers will use the links or buttons at the end of a post to see what came before or after the one they are reading. If a reader does use these buttons he will probably only read one or two more posts before leaving the blog. Even when similar posts are recommended the likelihood that anyone will go on to read any of them is slim.
My point is that by and large, older content is just that - aside from occupying space in your blog's archives, your older content really isn't doing you any favors. Occasionally a popular piece will pop up in search results from time to time but that's as much attention as any of you older content will receive. After all of the hard work you have put into your blog is this really where you want to leave off?
What if I told you that there were a few ways that you could turn things around and put this content to work for you all over again?
Give Your Content a Makeover
One of the easiest things you can do with your older content is transform it into something new. A very popular solution is to take some of your most popular posts and compile a "Best of" ebook. If your blog is fairly popular overall with a large number of readers and subscribers this might be a great way to give them a taste of what you have to offer and what kind of content they can expect out of you in the long term. This might also revive interest in your blog as people wonder what other great information your archives might hold.
You can also revisit some of your most popular posts from the past and compare them to currently hot topics in your niche. If anything you have covered in the past is relevant to your audience today and current events or industry news you can take your older post and refresh it. Republish it with new thoughts, insights, and opinions and tie the old in with the new to create an updated post for your blog. Readers will enjoy seeing how you have grown as a blogger and how your opinions may have changed or evolved from the time you published your original post.
Remind People Your Content Exists
If you're not really interested in performing a makeover but still want to get it out there again, why not consider the use of some handy widgets and plug-ins that are available for your blog that can help you spread the word? There are plenty of plug-ins available for WordPress blogs that allow you to share older blog posts via your social media networks, and that's a great SEO service blogs will always benefit from. This is an opportunity to remind people that you've done some great work in the past and can be an easy way to attract readers if done correctly. And by correctly I mean clearly marking them as older content so that readers don't get confused about the age of the posts you're sharing.
Get the Most from Your Older Content
Even the briefest scan of your analytics should be able to show you which of your older posts are the most popular, or were the most popular when they were published. You can use this information to inspire new posts for your blog, and can even link to your older posts as references in your new post if the information is relevant.
If you take on thing away from the article, I hope it's that your older content is a valuable resource just waiting to be put to use all over again. Don't ignore it. Find a way to make that contact work harder for you.