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

12 Ways to Use Those Cool Digital Art Patterns

Right now, it seems like the world is FULL of funky, cool, quirky downloadable patterns. Anything your heart desires has been turned from a painting or linoprint into a pattern; woodland creatures, polka dots of every type and size, floral designs of every possible garden variety... digital art patterns are ubiquitous. Part of the reason must be that they are just so fun to make. After I created a few of my own and listed them in my Etsy shop, it occurred to me... what all do people do with these things?

A few of the uses are obvious, such as putting them on fabric and them sewing with them. After a little research I found there are so many other possibilities, I thought I'd share it with you, too. Surely there is a quirky owl pattern you've been eyeing and have just been waiting for the perfect opportunity?

(FYI, this is not a sponsored post - just my own ideas and links to artists & services I admire!)

12 Ways to Use Digital Art Patterns

1. Fabric. Yep, just like I noted above. With so many designs on the market from so many amazing artists, there's no need to limit yourself to whatever designs your local fabric shop has in stock. You can design a seamless pattern out of your own artwork or purchase a digital one from an online seller and have your own fabric whipped up! The most popular service for this is Spoonflower. While the fabric will likely end up costing more than what you'd pay for something off-the-rack at your local craft store, the design options are just so much better.

Spoonflower  has an easy-to-use interface, and offers more than just fabric.

Spoonflower has an easy-to-use interface, and offers more than just fabric.


2. Home decor. What do you do with all that fabric? Cover your home (and the homes of your loved ones) in it, of course. You can make pillows, tea towels, wallpaper, curtains, dust ruffles for under your bed... you get the idea! Below are two examples of artists who used their painted designs to create a pattern they then applied to home goods. Yao Cheng (one of my favorite artists and sources of inspiration, ever) sells throw pillows and tea towels on Etsy and her own website. Kelly Ventura has worked with Chasing Paper to share her designs on wallpaper.

Check out  these lovely throw pillows  in Yao Cheng's shop

Check out these lovely throw pillows in Yao Cheng's shop

Kelly Ventura's collection on Chasing Paper  offers both colorful and muted options

Kelly Ventura's collection on Chasing Paper offers both colorful and muted options


3. Invitations & events. Whether you go DIY or work with a designer, there are lots of opportunities to use patterns to add color and interest. Check out the wedding suite below from Freshmint Paperie on Etsy, that uses a pastel floral pattern. You could DIY something similar with a pattern of your own, and for a cohesive look coordinate similar patterns and colors into decorations, favors, or even fabrics at the event.

A pattern can make invitations more or less formal, depending on what you choose. I think this suite by  Freshmint Paperie  strikes a great balance between the two!

A pattern can make invitations more or less formal, depending on what you choose. I think this suite by Freshmint Paperie strikes a great balance between the two!


4. Website design. As someone who loves to paint AND blog, this is my favorite way to use a digital pattern, hands-down. You could use one as a background pattern on the site as a whole, but whenever I see someone add it to smaller design elements, I can't help but notice. On Rebecca Atwood's site, pictured below, doesn't the pattern behind the "Join Our Newsletter" just make it stand out? Paper & Oats uses a pattern in some of her blog post images; it's a great idea when you write a blog post but you don't have a photo available that makes sense to share with it. (Side note: Paper & Oats is a great website to check out if you are running your own creative business, she shares so many useful ideas and guides!)


The neutral pattern on  Rebecca Atwood's site  keeps it looking professional and calming, but adds so much interest.

The neutral pattern on Rebecca Atwood's site keeps it looking professional and calming, but adds so much interest.

Paper & Oats  shows how you can use patterns in your blog post images; I love the modern and professional black & white look.

Paper & Oats shows how you can use patterns in your blog post images; I love the modern and professional black & white look.


5. Personalizing electronics. I just recently took 10 minutes to update by iPhone, iPad, and Mac backgrounds and feel a little ridiculous for not doing it before. My favorite source for ready-made iPhone & laptop wallpaper is Design Love Fest's Dress Your Tech series. Below is a great example of using a pattern to make these, so don't be afraid to make your own as well! You can use Canva's templates and not even have to worry about the dimensions.


This pattern by Melanie Johnson  available via Design Love Fest uses a tone-on-tone pattern and is definitely worth a download!

This pattern by Melanie Johnson available via Design Love Fest uses a tone-on-tone pattern and is definitely worth a download!


6. Presentations. Whether it's for your own small business, a presentation for a corporation, or a slide show at your kid's graduation there are so many opportunities to improve your PowerPoint slides! Canva offers presentation templates that incorporate free patterns they provide, but you could swap them for a pattern of your own, or just insert a pattern into any PowerPoint or other presentation software you use! My favorite is that watermelon print. I can't imagine a scenario where I sit through a presentation on eating watermelon, but still. It's cute.


7. Scrapbooking. Whether you print out the papers for a traditional physical scrapbook or add it to a digital one, patterned paper is a scrapbooking staple. Craft stores may offer a plethora of different papers, but finding ones online open up a lot of more options. You can get as specific as you want; I designed patterns of watercolor cabbage and lettuce, so if you're a... cabbage farmer?... there is a paper just for you! (You might want to google "digital scrapbooking" because there are some pretty cool things out there I had no idea about.)

8. Party decorations. Hop on Pinterest for a ton of inspiration in DIY party banners, cupcake toppers, table centerpieces, and more. You could use your own custom-made patterns or one you've purchased to design and print all sorts of things - I think this can be especially handy for a very specific party theme. If your kid is really into the dentist or moths for instance, why limit their party theme to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? (Those may have been weird examples.)

9. Art prints. One of my favorite pieces of art hanging in our house is a print-out of sample African patterns I ordered on Etsy years ago. I don't think it was designed with the intention of being framed, but there is something eclectic and different about it that I enjoy. A pattern can work especially well as wall art, because it gives the sense of continuity and fills out the frame in a way most images don't.


This navy pattern  is so bold and really makes a statement, from Hello Gorgeous Wall Art on Etsy

This navy pattern is so bold and really makes a statement, from Hello Gorgeous Wall Art on Etsy

Amistyle Art Studio on Etsy offers prints of  this colorful leaf pattern

Amistyle Art Studio on Etsy offers prints of this colorful leaf pattern

This Scandinavian pattern  is modern and really sophisticated, from Stellaire Studio on Etsy

This Scandinavian pattern is modern and really sophisticated, from Stellaire Studio on Etsy

10. Photography backdrops. Whatever you're photographing, an interesting backdrop can make the difference between ending up with a professional, unique image and something amateur. Below you can see examples of using a patterned fabric or paper as a photography backdrop for product images and flat-lays, but a quick search can turn up adorable newborn photos and other subjects using the same techniques. Besides, doesn't that same white background on every single Instagram photo start to look boring?


Clip It Up a Notch shared their  tips & tricks for food photography , using this patterned backdrop

Clip It Up a Notch shared their tips & tricks for food photography, using this patterned backdrop

Pixel Steps shared  20 flat lay photography background ideas  including this bold print

Pixel Steps shared 20 flat lay photography background ideas including this bold print


11. Personalized gifts. Finding the right gift is always tricky, but personalized ones always feel extra thoughtful. Notebooks and planners make great gifts for just about anyone, but especially someone starting a new job or school where it's likely to be extra-useful. Sonia Cavallini creates and sells various stationary (see below) using her whimsical patterns and sells them on Etsy. If you're looking to make your own, services like Vistaprint can create custom notebooks and make it easy and affordable.


Check out  Sonia's website  for more inspiration!

Check out Sonia's website for more inspiration!


12. Packaging design. If you're someone to makes & shares things (whether as a hobby or a business) it can be extra fun to offer personalized and creative packaging. Whatever you make (knitted items, candles, homemade spice mixes...) you could incorporate a pattern or design into gift tags, wrapping paper, cards, etc. I've even made holiday gifts for friends and family in bulk, and then added little extra packaging to make it feel special. The tea company Saudade kicks their packaging up about a 1000% with their colorful, bold patterns.

Saudade Tea packaging that is borderline psychedelic

Saudade Tea packaging that is borderline psychedelic

How cheerful are these Saudade tea packages?

How cheerful are these Saudade tea packages?

If you're looking for a good tutorial on how to make your own digital patterns and textures, I highly recommend you check out Teela's tutorials on her blog Every Tuesday, particularly How to Create Hand Drawn Seamless Patterns in Illustrator and Create Seamless Watercolor Patterns in Photoshop.

You can check out some of the digital patterns I've designed myself on my Etsy shop.

Are you a digital pattern designer, or just love to collect them? What all do you use them for?

- Dani

A round-up of creative and affordable ways to use those fun, quirky digital patterns you see everywhere! from danielleandco.com

A round-up of creative and affordable ways to use those fun, quirky digital patterns you see everywhere! from danielleandco.com


Smart Creative Technology: My 8 Favorite Photo & Video Editing Apps

A creative business person has to get pretty... well... creative, sometimes. Not just the inspired sort of creative that generates innovative ideas and beautiful artwork. You need the type of creative that can make something look amazing for $1, take your work to the next level without having to take out a loan, and use what you already have to get what you want. Today I'm sharing how I'm getting by without an expensive DSLR or fancy video camera, and using 8 free photo & video editing apps on my iPhone to produce quality images for my blog and Instagram.


8 Favorite iphone apps to edit photo & video

A Color Story: This is the app I use the most, for photo editing! There are so many photo editing apps out there, but this is the one I find myself returning to every time. Most photos I take from my iPhone are for social media purposes, such as Instagram, and A Color Story feels like it was designed just for that! Created by the bloggers of A Beautiful Mess (who are certainly Instagram famous) it not only has a variety of free filters that go oh-so-well with Instagram, the editing tools themselves are pretty robust! I do have Adobe Creative Suite, so any photo editing that is going to a client or used for marketing is edited there. However, a quick shot taken with my phone can be significantly brightened and the colors made bolder by 30 seconds of work in A Color Story. You can even save your editing so you can apply the same steps and tools to other photos, to achieve a consistent look.

Choosing from the free filters in A Color Story

Choosing from the free filters in A Color Story

Using the A Color Story app curve function

Using the A Color Story app curve function


Canva: I have heard from so many people that Canva is a lifesaver. Oddly, I use it much more in my day job as a college administrator than I do in my work at danielle & co.; having access to Photoshop and Illustrator, I've created templates for blog post images and other marketing that I can use every time for an efficient and consistent result. Canva has a lot of advantages, though, and occasionally it's nice to be able to generate something already sized perfectly for each specific social media platform. I especially enjoy the variety of fonts and that you can add little "design elements" so easily.

Canva has templates for a variety of social medias

Canva has templates for a variety of social medias

A peek at Canva's extra design elements

A peek at Canva's extra design elements


iMovie: This is the app I edit 99% of my Instagram videos with. It's free, easy to use, and offers features I haven't found anywhere else. Most of my videos are taken using an iPhone mounted on a tripod, and in order to have it turned to where there is decent lighting, I need to rotate the video later. Instagram wants your videos square and centered, but the iPhone doesn't shoot video in a squared format. So, I use iMovie to rotate and zoom in the video so it is just-right for Instagram. I also use it to speed up the video and to cut out parts that no one wants to see (like a pause where I stop to talk to one of my kids, or the cat jumps up into the screen). It took me awhile to figure it out, so here is my pro tip: If you want to speed the video up more than the max iMovie allows, speed it up to the max, save it as a finished movie, then speed it up all over again! It doesn't let you go all the way to the max again (that I can figure out, at least) but I've done this process with a video up to 3 times to achieve the speed I wanted.

Adjusting the speed in iMovie

Adjusting the speed in iMovie

Editing clips within a video in iMovie

Editing clips within a video in iMovie


Layout: This is a free app created by Instagram to create collages of photos. The ease of use is amazing (it is just so intuitive), and of course it turns out results perfect for Instagram. That being said, it isn't my actual favorite app for collages. That is...

Fotor: This is my default collage-making-app. I appear to make a strangely large amount of photo collages. Sometimes it's personal, such as photos of my kids on the first and last days of school or before and after photos of weight loss I wouldn't show anyone but myself. It can also be great to whip up a collage of different projects or art supplies I recommend to share on Instagram. Fotor has a few advantages over Layout, such as being able to adjust the thickness of the borders. It's a small thing, but I appreciate it.

A peek at the Layout app

A peek at the Layout app

Choosing collage templates in Fotor

Choosing collage templates in Fotor

Adjusting the border width in Fotor (one of my favorite features)

Adjusting the border width in Fotor (one of my favorite features)

ImgPlay: This app is a must for showing a good "before and after". It takes a series of still photos and turns them into a GIF showing each step. I love it for looking at my own house project before and afters, but also for showing the different steps in a work of art (such as sketching it out, inking it, painting it, etc.).

Hyperlapse: This app offers a way to take videos for Instagram that are sped way up right off the bat, without having to use an editing tool like iMovie. The app can take up to 45 minutes of footage (assuming your phone is charged enough!) and can speed it up to 40x the original playback speed. Recently, I've mostly used iMovie as I'm still figuring out lighting and camera angles, and enjoy the extra editing ability. Hyperlapse saves time and energy, however, and produces a smoother video since it has an image stabilization algorithm to get rid of the jitters.

Boomerang: This is a "goal" app for me. I have tried it out, and it is so fun! It takes a little bit of practice to get the timing down just right, so I'm hoping I can practice with it more in the future. It takes a very quick video, and shows it as a fast and fun repeat.

Of course, the starting place is the standard camera app. The iPhone camera has come a long way in terms of quality, but the other function I use the most is to choose the "square" option prior to taking photos. This feature has saved me a lot of time cropping photos for use on Instagram! I know many people use the "live" photo feature, but I find it uses up too much space on my phone and hasn't had a lot of practical purposes.

If you’re hesitant to start a creative endeavor because of lack of resources (money, time, a subscription to Photoshop), I encourage you to see what you can get done with what you have! What free apps or resources do you use for photo & video?

- Dani



Photo in blog post main image by Jordan McQueen on Unsplash