Editor’s Note: Updated January 2019
Doing something just because other people are doing it can get you in trouble.
(Especially when it comes to your fashion choices.)
Sometimes, though, you’ve gotta stop and consider why they’re doing what they’re doing. When you understand their reasons, it might turn out that their strategy makes a lot of sense!
When it comes to social media marketing, one strategy that gets more and more popular with time is repeating your content – and with good reason.
The majority of marketers plan their social media content at least a day in advance, and 25% of them plan it a month or more ahead of time with specialty social media automation tools. When you’re planning ahead and putting so much time and energy into creating killer updates, it only makes sense to share them more than once and increase the value of each one – which is why major brand names are doing exactly that.
(Why don’t most people notice? We’ll explain in a sec.)
If the thought of posting the same update multiple times feels too much like scribbling a cheat sheet on the palm of your hand before a big test, this post is for you – let’s take a closer look at just a few of the brands on social who are doing it, and why!
Reaching (and testing with) different audiences
When you publish a new blog post, its traffic tends to drop really, really quickly – and that makes promoting it more than once pretty important.
Just look at how Darren Rowse from ProBlogger promotes a new post:
Same image, same text, same link – this is the same exact tweet sent six times over the course of six days.
There’s engagement on every one of these, because every time it gets posted, it gets seen by different people – people who missed it the other times, and might never have seen it at all if he hadn’t shared it more than once.
Fewer than half of all Twitter users check the site even just once per day, so posting the same update once per day isn’t too unusual. In this case, it might even provide some valuable insights as to the best times to post – by sharing a tweet at different times on different days, you can look for trends in your impressions and engagements.
You might be surprised by the times that end up being most popular – here’s an example.
Take a look at Social Media Examiner’s Twitter account over a period of about 30 hours:
Your eyes aren’t playing tricks – for more than a day, they posted the same promo copy with the same image and the same link over and over, and nothing else.
On paper, that might sound a little too broken record-y, but when you take a closer look at how they did it and what the results were, it makes a LOT of sense.
By spacing out their updates, they were able to hit a wide range of followers – and it paid off.
Social Media Examiner promoted the same post five times over the course of a day and a half, but those promos were all shared several hours apart – including at times you might not expect many users to be online.
For example, one of these tweets was published at 6:05 AM Eastern – and it got the most retweets out of all five. Another was posted at 2:05 AM – it got the second highest number of retweets.
Experiment with your audience by posting the same thing at drastically different times, including times when you don’t necessarily expect it to succeed. You might learn that thanks to time zone differences (and caffeine, probably), your updates have a lot of potential around the clock!
Making the most of your evergreen content
Sitting on a goldmine of evergreen blog posts that aren’t getting the traffic they deserve?
Sharing those posts again and again – like BuzzFeed does – makes sure they don’t go to waste.
(Side note: here are some tips on coming up with more ideas for evergreen posts.)
BuzzFeed is a perfect example of the value of repeating updates, because they don’t necessarily NEED to.
After all, they publish somewhere in the vicinity of 10 gazillion posts per day. They’re not exactly hurting for content to share, and if they wanted, they could do the bare minimum by promoting each thing once and moving on.
But instead, they do this:
When BuzzFeed has evergreen posts – or even evergreen-ish ones – they share them on social more than once. In the cases above, they shared the same updates again three days after sharing them the first time, and they performed almost exactly the same.
With just a few clicks, BuzzFeed made each of those posts double in value.
(Wouldn’t you like to do the same with YOUR content? Heck, that’s why we built a tool that automatically re-shares your updates for you!)
Whether you’re sharing something again just a few days later, a few weeks later, or a few months later, it can make a big difference!
Getting the word out
Evergreen posts are useful, but not everything you write has to have a shelf life of forever. Even updates promoting timely news benefit from being repeated.
Take a look at The New York Times:
The Times makes its name as a resource for timely news – but a piece of news stays relevant for more than a few minutes. Their Twitter profile frequently repeats itself, so that their latest articles get as much attention as possible while they’re timely!
Even entertainment sites like MTV News do the same:
Are any of those tweets going to be relevant forever? Absolutely not – but while they are, they’re worth being shared multiple times, and racking up dozens (or hundreds) of interactions each time!
Who else have you noticed doing it?
It’s easy to not notice when someone shares the same update over and over – even if they’re a huge brand!
Have you jumped on board with this strategy yourself? Have you noticed that it’s becoming more popular? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Updated January 2019:
Since we originally wrote this article, Twitter has updated their terms of service to no longer allow duplicate tweets. So while you can no longer share the exact same tweet over and over, you can re-share your content in different ways and stay within Twitter’s TOS.
Edgar introduced variations so users can quickly create multiple variations of tweets for their content. All you need to do is click the “Add Variation Button”
You can add as many variations as you’d like so you can keep sharing that specific piece of content on Twitter and you can keep your posts fresh on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Once you’ve hit “Save to Library,” Edgar will save all your different variations into your library.
Because of Twitter’s TOS, variations for Twitter accounts will automatically expire after they have posted so you don’t have to worry about any variations violating Twitter’s terms of service!
Edgar will also save all of your variations in one batch and he won’t pull from the same batch twice in a row so you don’t need to worry about posting the same content over and over. Just be sure you have other content scheduled in that library!
Now you know how to easily create variations, you might be wondering, how can I vary my content?
It’s actually quite easy to create variations! There’s no need to complicate it!
Here are a few ideas:
- Rephrase what you say.
For example, you could turn “Our latest blog has just been posted!” into “Our newest blog has just been posted!” It’s a small change but enough to keep you in line with Twitter’s TOS.
- Change your media
Add different GIFs, videos or images to your content for an easy variation.
- Pull different quotes or stats
Do you have a few juicy one-liners or stats in your blog? Use each of them for a different variation. That way your content stays direct, to the point and you have multiple variations.
Check out this post for even more ideas on easy ways to create variations in your Tweets.
And if you really need help creating variations, let Edgar do it for you. That’s right! With our Auto-Variations feature, Edgar can now write your status for you!
All you need to do is create one variation with a link and then hit the “Autovariation” button for you. Then, Edgar pulls key phrases and sub-headings from your content into your different variations, in just a matter of seconds. From there, you can edit, delete or add variations as needed.
This feature is perfect for when your brain is fried and you can’t think of one more way to vary content or you just need some help jump-starting some creativity.
How do you vary your content?
If you have examples of how you create different variations on your blogs or articles, let us know in the comments, below.
I’d love to read an update on this. It seems like big brands — including Social Media Examiner — aren’t doing this so much anymore. I wonder if it is because of the In Case You Missed It feature on Twitter? Users catching on?
Not necessarily – especially because it all just depends on where you look, and nobody’s strategy has to be the same 100% of the time!
For example, The New York Times still repeats itself, sometimes just a few hours apart:
Darren Rowse does the same, although a little more spaced out (you don’t have to actually open all these – they’re all the same):
When you look at any brand, though, there are a lot of factors to consider. For example, how timely is the update? Is it something that they might want to share several times in a short period (like a timely news article), or something with a longer shelf life? Or, similarly, how much of their content is evergreen, and how much time might pass before an update repeats itself? (For example, we might recycle a post once every few months – it isn’t easy to notice when that happens.) Strategies vary from place to place, and not everyone tries the same tactics at the same time!
You must keep repeating. If you see the same thing more than three times at different times you begin to remember it.
Why do you think you often see certain brands? So you remember them and you will trust them.
Repeating is therefore important.
This definitely is a plan for Twitter but what about Facebook? Does it work as well on Facebook?
It does! Because Facebook algorithms limit organic reach, it’s very common for brands on Facebook to share and re-share their content over time there, as well. (We broke down how Facebook determines who sees what in this post: https://meetedgar.com/blog/how-facebook-decides-who-sees-your-updates/)
Hi Tom, I just tried to find this blog and got an error message. Did the link change?
Hi Christine! We moved domains a few months ago, so instead of meetedgar.com/blog, it’s at meetedgar.com/blog — if you’re using the old URL, it should redirect, though!
I definitely share my posts over and over, but I can see where I haven’t been sharing as much as I could. This is a great post! 🙂
Thanks a lot, Amanda!
Great write up but dont you think posting same article is anoying just saying my view becsuse i get upset seeing same post of some blogs all the time and i think others feel so
Not necessarily – most of the time, people don’t really notice! The pros outweigh the potential cons so much that posting the same link multiple times is industry standard by now.
I also take older evergreen post from waaaaay back when and add them into the mix. New subscribers haven’t had the chance to see these, so it’s like new content to them.
If we agree that the half-life of a tweet is around 20 minutes, then seeding content over and over again to reach different time zones, segments, audiences, seems downright logical. What I’d love to see from Edgar is a way to see when content was added to a Category–this would help with cleaning out older content that, by examining analytics, is no longer engaging as it had while in rotation. It gets tricky to do this when you shuffle your content within a category.
A little housekeeping is always a good idea! Un-shuffling your posts will show you their original order, so you can prune your older stuff and then re-shuffle what’s left: https://meetedgar.groovehq.com/knowledge_base/topics/how-do-i-un-shuffle-my-posts
“Experiment with your audience by posting the same thing at drastically different times, including times when you don’t necessarily expect it to succeed.”
The past month, I have been posting on LinkedIn in the evenings (when I’d least expect it to do well) and I have seen a huge increase in reach as well as engagement. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c90e382d891f63ff7741b1b1756d703518b679880935cf5c0784c5833afb0a8f.png
Nicely done! What a perfect example – thanks for sharing it!
Edgar doesn’t make it easy to send out the same post in a day multiple times, because it rotates the category after you post it. Unless you use the Use Once and schedule it 5 times on the calendar. Any ideas?
That’s true – Edgar is designed specifically for long-term repeating! If you want to heavily promote a new blog post over its first few days by repeating the same update again and again (like in some of the examples above), here’s one idea that would work really well:
1. Create a new category (for example, “New blog post”)
2. Put that category on your schedule multiple times
3. Add one status update to that category, so that Edgar repeats it at every time you scheduled
4. When you’re ready to heavily promote another post, switch that last update to a different category (for example, “Evergreen blog posts”), and replace it with a new one
That way, you’ll only have to write one new update per blog post, you can use it as much as you want automatically, and when you’re ready for it to go into your normal, long-term circulation, it’s easy to swap it out with something new!
Great idea, knew you’d have a workaround. I really wish that Edgar had a measuring tool for how frequently each status has been posted, so you can know if you need more content in that category or if you need to skip it.
Have you seen your different options for viewing an update’s posting history? Should help with that! http://help.meetedgar.com/knowledge_base/topics/how-do-i-see-stats-for-my-updates
That shows some things I didn’t know I could view. The menu at the left of the post on your library shows the date and time each post went out. Say a post went out at different times 5 times in the last 3 months. It would be SOOO great so see the engagement/reach for each post, to measure the time and date for posting. FB doesn’t give you this either in their insights, so really looking for somewhere that aggregates this, vs manually inputing into a spreadsheet
Definitely get what you’re saying! Are you looking under the Posts tab in your Facebook Insights? It should be giving you the engagement and reach for all your updates there!
But unfortunately this removes a lot of the automation. I use Zapier to push my content into Edgar when it’s published, but I don’t believe there’s a way to REPLACE something in a category like you suggest?
If you’re looking for a quick and easy shortcut for deleting updates (or moving them into different categories), Edgar’s bulk editing tool will do the trick: https://meetedgar.groovehq.com/knowledge_base/topics/how-do-i-edit-my-updates-in-bulk
Will, I use this exact process with a client of mine. We have two categories – one for older posts/articles that will rotate through, and one for brand new articles/posts that we want to highlight. We keep the brand new posts there for a month or so, with Edgar posting them multiple times a day (due to that category having its own schedule). Once we have a new blog to share, we use the bulk edit feature to move all the month-old posts to the second category (Older articles/posts), and then add brand new posts again. Super easy and works really well!
That’s a really great strategy – and literally the exact same thing we do with our own blog posts! (Glad to hear it’s working so well for you!)
Great insights. Does this work on Facebook? I thought you get penalized and get fewer views when repeating posts on there.
You won’t get penalized just for repeating posts – but if the posts you repeat aren’t getting much engagement, that could have a negative cumulative impact. We wrote a breakdown of how Facebook determines a post’s reach right here, if you’re interested! https://meetedgar.com/blog/how-facebook-decides-who-sees-your-updates/