Recycling Social Media Content is Getting Out of Hand

I get it. I understand the need for more content to serve to an ever-growing flow of content consumers. The art of recycling content is important, particularly on sites like Twitter where a piece of content can and should be used multiple times in order to get the message out to everyone. It's a chronological feed, after all, and posting it once will only get it seen by an extremely small portion of your audience.

With that said, it's getting out of hand. I have been finding posts that are months old and no longer relevant hitting my feed from car dealers around the country. There's a limit. Old news is old news. In the case of the Tweet above, the article posted on Twitter by a Toyota dealer on March 30, 2014, is a link to an article from July 4, 2013. That's too long for this type of news.

When recycling posts on Twitter, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Is it relevant? Old posts are find if there's context that makes it work today. For example, posting an article about Tesla's early days in trying to launch with dealerships would make sense to post considering their current stance.
  • Is it timeless? Some posts, particularly advice posts that give the reader information they can use today, can be posted up until the point that they're obsolete. An example of this would be a video that demonstrates how to change the batteries in a key fob. Until they change the way you open the key fob, it still makes sense to post for months, even years after the original.
  • Is it nostalgic? There are times when old posts are even better than new ones. A picture of an old Honda ad from the 70s would play well to show how far the company has come over the years.
  • Has it been posted very recently? This is one of my biggest pet peeves. If a post comes through today that is just a different wording on something posted yesterday, than it's not acceptable. The exception: timely events. If you have a big sale or charity event this weekend, then posting a different variation of the same thing over and over again is acceptable and demonstrates focus on the event.

As more companies use content libraries to keep the feeds flowing, it's important to keep in mind that the libraries must be refreshed. They must be pruned. In the case of the post above, it's simply not acceptable. That was news for about a month. There is plenty of content out there in the form of current news about every manufacturer and the local area. Don't get stuck beating a dead horse with your posts.

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Comment by JD Rucker on April 7, 2014 at 4:48am

Thank you for the reply, David. It's all a matter of timing. Have you ever clicked on a link to something interesting, something that was new to you, only to find out that it was old news? While the news was important and had a longer shelf-life than most articles, 6 months is too long for a news piece, let alone something even older. There's plenty of evergreen content available.

Comment by David T. Gould on March 31, 2014 at 3:42pm

JD, (10 Million Toyota vehicles sold... seems news worthy of recycling to me as a Toyota salesperson) Could "Recycled content" be "Original content" to an audience that has not been exposed it prior? For me personally, I find the "Duplicate content" to be more annoying... ie... dealership newsletters being sent; same day / same area / same subject line / same content BUT from different dealers. But that is just me... I enjoy your insights. Good Selling, DTG

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