19 Ways To Squeeze Every Last Drop From Your Content (+ Free Printable 90 Days of Awesome Content Prompts!)

If you’re anything like me, you’re working hard. You’re excited for what you’re creating and it shows - all of the photos saved on your phone, notes scribbled with new project ideas, drafts of blog posts and listing descriptions… it is a LOT.

Eventually, it can become overwhelming and a just dissolve into a hot mess if you don’t figure out how to work smarter and not harder. Today is all about getting the most out of your efforts, and finally having time to move on to that next project you’ve been dreaming about (and rescheduling) the last 6 months.

Below are 19 ways to make the most out of the content you’re already creating - those blog posts, product photos, and awesome Instagram captions can live a new life and give you a little extra oomph (or free time) and I promise it’s all without cheating. No one will notice or mind the content being re-worked a little - especially if they missed it the first time!

 
19 ways to squeeze every last drop from your content (plus, a free printable checklist of 90 days of awesome content prompts!) from danielleandco.com
 

BONUS: If you’re looking for a ton of content prompt ideas without having to rack your brain, I’m sharing a 90 days of awesome content prompts printable with you - so next time you’re sitting there with the laptop open and just feeling OVER IT you have a back-up plan. They are written specifically for artists and craftspeople. Just sign up at one of the links below!

I’ve sectioned these out a bit by topic, but arranged them loosely from the easiest/most feasible right now to a few more long-term strategies.

I also share 7 weekly content prompts on Instagram every Friday, so you can follow along with those too!

 

Your Photos & Videos

#1: Have a great photo you’re excited to post to Instagram? Do a quick re-work of it for all the other platforms, too! You can make a quick template in Photoshop, Illustrator or whatever you’re most comfortable with and have it ready to go every time - it takes just seconds to pop a new photo into your templates, save it, and spread that image all over the inter-webs. Below you can how I used the Layout app to create a grid of my new camp mug products. Then, I popped it into a template for Instagram Stories and shared it there. Then, I popped it into ANOTHER template for Pinterest, and shared it there. That’s 3 times the reach it would have gotten just as an Instagram post. Actually, I guess I just used it in this blog post too, sooo… 4 times.

Would you be interested in some premade templates just for this? If so, comment on this post and let me know! It’s on my list of project ideas, if there is any interest.

The same little grid of my camp mug listing images, working hard to make the most of my time! 19 Ways to Squeeze Every Last Drop From Your Content at danielleandco.com.

#2. While you’re taking those awesome photos of your new work, zoom in and snap a few close-ups or detail-shots too. Those little details and behind-the-scenes insights are often the things I most enjoy seeing, as a follower. It also creates a whole new set of images, making good use of your time. If you do a multi-image post on Instagram, the close-ups don’t have to show up on your grid permanently (if you don’t want them to), but they will still pop up on your follower’s feeds.

Word of caution - be sure to know what your followers like and go with it! If you notice your close-ups are getting all of the love, share more of those - if they seem meh, dial it back.

You can also step back and take a “behind the scenes” photo of your process for photographing your work, and share it on Instagram Stories - it feels very meta, but followers (especially other creative business people) love to see your methods and hard work in action.

#3. Coming up with well-designed and attractive header images can be daunting. In the early days of your business, your aesthetic can evolve repeatedly making updates more frequent than you can keep up with. Why not take your best recent photos and create a collage or grid? Below is a Facebook header image I whipped up in a few minutes using my Instagram posts. Keep a template saved in Photoshop or another program, and you can update it as often as you need to for use on Etsy, Facebook, Spoonflower, and more.

I just popped three of my favorite recent Instagram images into a template and have a fresh new Facebook page header. 19 ways to squeeze every last drop from your content, on danielleandco.com.

To keep your website homepage up to date without having to constantly swap out images, you can insert your Instagram feed. It will automatically pull in your most recent posts, so your webpage is dynamic and shows your most recent work at all times (and as a bonus, encourages social media followers!)

#4. If you create videos for social media or blog posts, you can upload those into a YouTube channel (or Instagram TV, now that it’s catching on!) and reach a whole new target audience. This is especially fun if you tend to feel bummed by how much video you have to cut (to keep it to 1 minute for Instagram); go ahead and ‘Gram the shortened version and let the full-length one live on YouTube in all of its glory!

#5. If what you really need is a little extra cash, you can turn some of your photos into stock images. Sites such as Creative Market or Etsy make it easy to sell them to other creative entrepreneurs! Just make sure you’re really okay with them being used by others, and that they are general enough (they don’t show your specific art and sharing them won’t undermine your brand). For example: take a beautiful staged photo of your knitted hat with Christmas ornaments and knitting needles scattered artfully, and then remove the hat but leave the pretty set-up. It could be perfect for someone else looking for a general knitting + Christmas themed photo.


Kick your content up a notch with a free 90 days of awesome content prompt sheet! from danielleandco.com

Your Blog Posts

#6. Make it a point once a season or so to go back and spruce up your old posts. Nothing makes a website look unprofessional faster than broken links and error messages! Once a blog post is linked somewhere like Pinterest, it can keep bringing in new traffic for years and that traffic is good traffic! Read through the post and add updates anywhere it would be helpful (such as if you recommended an app but since then found a better one), check links are working and swap out any images that are now totally off-brand for you.

#7. The next time you dive into content planning, take a moment and check your analytics to see what’s been working for you. Review a popular blog post and see if there is a point buried in it you could expound on (to create a whole new blog post). When you’re generating ideas, blog posts can be planned out in series to get the most bang for your buck as you’re writing, and that could even go on to be a little e-book if you’re really looking to squeeze every drop of content-goodness out of it.

#8. This is an easy one - refer to your older blog posts in your new ones! You’re likely already doing this, but try to make a point of taking one last look at your new post before you click publish and see if there aren’t opportunities to link to other content (not just old blog posts but also social media, affiliate product links, etc.). It not only will capitalize on past work you’ve done, it’ll be helpful for your readers too.

#9. Make your blog archives more interesting! Most websites have an archive somewhere, linking back to past content - usually sorted by tag or date. Kick it up a notch by highlighting your past content in a unique way. For example, you could curate them onto a “Start Here” page, with your most helpful blog posts in the order you think would be most beneficial. Or, you could have start things off with a list of your most popular posts (like Kelsey did from Paper & Oats, shown below).

#10. If you’re looking to gain more experience and get your work in front of new audiences, there are many websites that accept articles (or even pay you a little bit for them!) so those old blog posts you have could be re-worked a bit and then submitted to your favorite online magazine or resource. Just make sure to follow the guidelines for the site you’re working with, which may require you to re-write it to a certain level of originality. Publishing your blog posts on Quora is an option too - check out this post on SmartBlogger, which gives you all the dets.

#11. Create a newsletter welcome series, and start subscribers right off with your most useful evergreen blog posts. All of the major email newsletter hosts (Mailchimp, ConvertKit, and so on) offer a feature where you can schedule a series of blog posts to be sent when someone signs up. Having a little set of your best blog posts sent right to them is a great way to welcome new followers! Chances are if someone is just signing up, they haven’t read all of your older stuff so you can get them caught up quickly.

#12. Turn those blog posts into something bigger. Make it a webinar, e-course, e-book, podcast… the list goes on! Brainstorm a list of topics you want to teach OR see if there is a theme you can pull from your blog posts. For instance, if you have 6 past blog posts all about selling at craft fairs you could gather those babies up and launch an “Ultimate Craft Fair Success Guide” e-course or booklet. Just be sure to add original content too, so your long-time followers still find it relevant.

 

Your Artwork

#13. Waste not, want not - if you have old paintings, printed photos or materials you’re ready to recycle, go ahead and turn them into cool and creative packaging. I’ve admired how Ingrid Sanchez of Creative Ingrid takes the beautiful watercolor-painted papers she is finished with and uses them for packaging (shown below, from her Instagram). I can only imagine how delighted her customers are to have this lovely little bonus arrive!

#14. If you’re a photographer, painter or create any two-dimensional work, consider creating designs for products. It’s a way to open a whole new income possibility and reach audiences who might not be in the market for original artwork or prints. It can seem daunting (or even like cheating) to many artists, but I can say from personal experience I’ve really enjoyed the process. I love to watercolor paint, but giving them new life by creating a pattern or design is actually my favorite part. You don’t need to take on all of the work, either - there are plenty of professional print shops and print-on-demand companies that take part of the profit in return for most of the stress. As you can see, a little painting of a whale tail can become mugs, prints, scarves… and so much more.

19 ways to squeeze every drop from your content, on danielleandco.com.

#15. Use product samples wisely. If you’re already selling products, you can take a sample of your work and then have it live on in so many helpful ways! If you’re using a print-on-demand company, you can often get discounts to order samples for yourself - if you hand-make your product, of course you already have some samples around. Say you have designed a mug - you can take one of your mugs and have a photo shoot to create listing images to sell it online. Then, snap some pretty pictures of it in action for social media. Keep it in good shape, and you could offer it as a giveaway prize to gain followers after that.

 

Your Work As A Whole

#16. Round it all up in a newsletter with a little original content sprinkled in. It’s like a bonus for your followers, and ensures nobody is missing out on anything. Whip up a little original content to start it off and then use it as an opportunity to highlight the best of your social media, link to new blog posts and new podcast episodes, and even offer special discounts or a first heads up on shop updates. This is a great way to encourage people to keep following you while making sure none of your content is lost and forgotten.

#17. Plan your blog post or social media content strategically, with an end collection in mind. I know coming up with fresh ideas of what to post about can be hard for a lot of busy entrepreneurs, so I post a weekly set of content prompts every Friday on Instagram. While I tweak how they look depending on the week, I try to keep the format consistent so when they are compiled they make sense together. For anyone who needs more than a handful of ideas at a time, The Content Archive page (shown below) has it all in one place. This is a way to offer a service to others without having to generate any new content, and it takes me approximately 1.2 seconds to upload the new prompts every week.

The Content Archive  page is a collection of weekly content prompts from the  danielleandcopaints  Instagram account. New content prompts are posted on Instagram every Friday, but the whole collection lives on here at danielleandco.com!

#18. Recycle content seasonally. For example, late November is a great time to begin linking to gift guide posts from previous years. Update any links for products no longer offered, but as long as you do your best to keep content evergreen, most things should carry over for awhile!

#19. Share with your friends! I don’t recommend joining a fake Instagram pod thing, but I know I like to shout-out people who I authentically appreciate and they feel the same way. You could ask a close friend if you could swap products or services and share the results with each other’s followers, or write genuine testimonials you could each use on your websites. Often if you start appreciating and highlighting other artist’s work, you’ll see a return on your investment and you’ll feel good doing it.

I hope these 19 ideas will help you get every single last drop of awesomeness out of your amazing content! The most important thing is to find what works for you. Reflect on what your community responds to and what you enjoy creating, and do more of it.

What content is most successful for you? Comment below and share your tips with the rest of us!

— Dani


Kick your content up a notch with a free 90 days of awesome content prompt sheet! from danielleandco.com

Rewind: What I Did In September & Why

This post contains affiliate links, which means I make a small commission if you purchase an item using one. Thank you for supporting danielle & co.!

Looking back over the past month can help me celebrate accomplishments, and take note of ideas for how to improve moving forward. My creative business is still starting out, so I'm learning at warp speed! Every blog post I write or graphic I design, I learn about 1k new things and when I feel like I failed, I remind myself that it's just a lesson for the next step. I'm hoping that sharing not only what I did over the past month, but why I made the decisions I did (and how it turned out for me) will help you as well! I know I love it when others share "behind the scenes" of their creative business (some of my favorites who do this regularly are Paper & Oats and Elle & Company) so I'm sharing with you!

 
I'm breaking down the decisions I made for my creative business (and some fun stuff too!) in September, and sharing the whys!

I'm breaking down the decisions I made for my creative business (and some fun stuff too!) in September, and sharing the whys!

 

Blogging

Below are the three blog posts from September; I had specific reasons why I wanted to blog on each of the topics!

I shared 12 Ways to Use Those Cool Digital Art Patterns because I had just started creating seamless patterns myself, and as I share them on social media and in online shops I wanted to have a targeted idea of how people would use them and what demographics they would appeal to. After researching some of the different uses, I shared the information with others and even added a link to the blog post in my Etsy pattern listings. Hopefully, if someone is considering purchasing a pattern but hesitates because they aren't sure how useful it would be, this blog post will give them some additional ideas.

Occasionally, I like to go through the lists of hashtags I keep in the Notes app on my phone, and update them. These are the hashtags I copy and paste over to Instagram whenever I post, to help others find my content and follow along. As I come across new applicable hashtags or as trends change, I make sure to go in and refresh my lists so they are all ready when I need them. I shared 100+ Hashtags for Painters & Calligraphers after realizing it might be helpful for others to have a round-up!

Early in September, I shared 10 Business & Art Apps On My Phone Right Now, where I explained why I use particular apps to get business done while I'm out and about, including blogging, social media, task management, and more.

Ideas for using digital seamless patterns!

Ideas for using digital seamless patterns!

My favorite 10 apps for getting business done while on the move!

My favorite 10 apps for getting business done while on the move!

If you're sharing content on social media, check out these hashtag round-ups!

If you're sharing content on social media, check out these hashtag round-ups!

Painting & Design

I really pushed myself to paint a whole variety of different subjects this past month. I had a "landscape week" over on Instagram, focusing just on comparing wet-on-wet and wet-on-dry painting techniques and sharing the pros and cons. I dug into some autumn-related subject matter with fallen leaves and magic potions (thinking a little ahead to Halloween). Just to stay warmed up, I also painted some bright floral paintings in a little larger of a size.

My favorites were definitely the more detailed painting of an American Goldfinch (process videos are over on Instagram) and these tiny little botanical illustrations. I plan to list the American Goldfinch as a print on Etsy (not sure whether digital or physical - thoughts?) and am thinking the botanical ink drawings could be part of an illustration pack or tattoo sheet. Input is welcome!

Business Stuff

New Etsy listings in September included the four patterns below. I'm working on some illustration packs and new prints, but making the patterns is so much fun. I even shared a process video on Instagram of my creating a pattern in Illustrator (it should hit YouTube soon too).

One attempt I'm on the fence about was Etsy Promoted Listings. I tried it out for a few listings and definitely saw the amount of clicks and engagements go up, but not actual sales. As soon as I turned off the promoted listings, the engagement immediately plummeted. I don't feel like I'm at the place yet that putting up funds to promote listings makes sense, but it is just so hard to reach customers otherwise!

I just finished the process of uploading patterns to Spoonflower and ordering proofs. I'm excited to offer prints for fabric and more very soon!

Not everything's about work, right? Let's talk about fun stuff.

Reading

I ordered a whole stack of new books on Amazon in September, and it was the best feeling ever. I always forget just how satisfying a tall stack of unread books is! Three books I recommend are below.

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware is creepy without being over-the-top, and if you enjoy books like Gone Girl or Girl On The Train, I think you'll like this too.

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena was nerve-wracking for me as a parent, but suspenseful and a fast read. I was reading it while cooking spaghetti at one point, to find out what happened next, so that should indicate a solid review!

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed was so enjoyable and uplifting. A collection of articles from her advice column Dear Sugar, her responses may be specific to the letters she received, but the guidance and insight is universal to all of life's struggles.

Knitting

In August I began hosting a craft night at our local library in Newfield, NY twice a month. September had the first really successful one, and it was awesome to bring along my knitting and get to hang out with some new people! If you're in the area, please stop by! It's the 2nd and 4th Thursday evening every month.

After a hiatus of knitting regularly, I think I'm back at it. I'm currently knitting Jane Richmond's Pasha Hat pattern in Madelinetosh DK and am starting a new pair of socks using Hermione's Everyday Socks pattern and Socks that Rock yarn in lightweight.

Life in General

September is a big month in our house; school starts (see my little goofballs on their first day, below), we have a birthday in the family and our wedding anniversary. It's fun but also a lot to take in all at once!

I managed to sneak in a picture of my children.

I managed to sneak in a picture of my children.

Check out the timelapse GIF of this on my Instagram feed!

Check out the timelapse GIF of this on my Instagram feed!

Do you use Spoonflower or Etsy Promoted Listings? I'd love some input!

Wishing you an awesome October!

- Dani