For years now, marketers have been tossing around phrases like, “content is king” but what does all of this really mean for you and your business? 

Instead of focusing on these catchphrases, let’s examine some startling facts from Google. First, Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt turned many heads when he noted that, “Every two days, we create as much information online as we did from the beginning of time up until 2003.” Layer that with Google’s Zero Moment of Truth research which tells us that online shoppers are now consulting twice as much content as they were just a few years ago.

From here it’s no big surprise that the Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs report that most marketers — across industry sectors — are creating more content than they were last year.

As very few organizations claim content creation as a core competency, many are wondering how they should go about developing all of these new blog posts, videos, and images required by today’s customer.

Here are four content creation hacks every marketer should be employing.

1. Relentlessly Repurpose Your Content

In Content Rules, Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman encourage every brand to be a “content chop-shop” by always looking to get multiple uses out of a particular piece of content. You should strive to relentlessly repurpose all of the content you create.

Pew Research does this by sharing individual data points on Instagram, which point to a longer blog post about the research, which then invites you to download the entire study. As expensive as formal research is, it makes sense to repurpose as much as possible. This also provides an opportunity for you to get the team involved. Make re-imagining your content an internal challenge by encouraging others to offer ideas on additional forms of content you can create.

2. Utilizing Historical Content

If your business has any kind of history, chances are there are boxes of old photos in some closet or storage facility. Have an intern digitize this old-school content so that you can give it new life online. Whether it’s #ThrowbackThursday on Instagram or populating Facebook’s timeline feature, these content classics can be a tremendous asset.

For examples, check out what Herman Miller is doing on Pinterest with their history board “107 Years and Counting.”

3. Curating Your Content

Beyond finding ways to repurpose as much of your brand’s internal content as possible, there are other sources you can leverage outside your organization through content curation. Examples include a blog post or email newsletter that rounds up the best articles on a particular subject. With budgets spread thin, curation is a viable part of the mix for many.

Avoid thinking of curation as simply a low-cost alternative to content creation. Both should be viewed as complementary approaches to the same overall strategy — providing your community with useful content.

4. Encouraging User-Generated Content

The final external source for content is your own community. User-generated content is valuable in more ways than one. First, it’s content you don’t have to create that you can turnaround and share again, which brings us to our second point. User-generated content is powerful as it demonstrates in a very public way that your audience is engaged.

After seeing fans share photos showing their love and happiness around their product, Ben & Jerry’s put out a call for fans to share their best euphoric photos by using the hashtag #CaptureEuphoria, with favorites featured in ads for the brand. More often than not your community will participate if you ask them.

All four of these approaches — relentlessly repurposing, utilizing historical content, content curation, and user-generated-content — provide useful hacks as you work to simplify the complicated task of content creation both internally and externally.

What hacks to you employ as part of your content creation efforts?

Shameless Plug: If you feel like upping your content creation skills, attend one of our upcoming Content Marketing Boot Camps or consider bringing this workshop to your boardroom or your next event. Learn more >>

Photo via Flickr user conniewischussen