What do Friends, Bravo and Howard Stern have in common?
Reruns! Repeat! Replay! Re-purpose!
There I go with the RE's again...
Whether you love him or hate him, Howard Stern has done something right! And as a fan myself, the guy has evolved over the years and moving to Sirius in 2006 definitely opened doors for a guy who had been knocking down doors for others in his industry!
When Stern, moved to satellite radio, he not only took the staff that helps keep the wheels turning, but he and Sirius were able to negotiate a back catalog of past shows logging almost 23,000 hours. If you aren't familiar with his show or the set Stern has two stations, which run all day every day. Aside from vacations and holidays, he does a show 3 days a week, about 4 hours a day, but his two channels run 24/7. That is 336 hours of programming per week but only 12 hours of new material per week produced. The other 324 hours are filled with replays of shows, snippets of past shows, long time listener requests and the list goes on! They have found ways to re-purpose past content over and over and over and they are making a fortune! The hard work in the beginning of their careers, 20 plus years ago is still paying off for them today. One other point I want to make regarding Stern's backlog of radio shows, is he just finished a book, released last year which is a compilation of his favorite interviews. Perfect and simple example of re-purposing. He wrote an intro to each interview and used excerpts of the live interviews he completed. The book is fantastic, by the way!
I am a Bravo girl! I love reality TV and I am not ashamed to say it. Bravo created a solid line up of favorites and each week, they replay shows. It seems weird that they would replay these shows throughout the week because we all have DVRs right? We can record anything we want to watch but I can tell you more than once, I happen across a show "because nothing else was on" that I loved and now am hooked! How often has that happened to you?
Part of the recipe to their success was building an audience for each show through repetition and taking a chapter maybe from Howard's book of re-purposing. Andy Cohen who if I am correct is the mastermind behind many of these hits, hosts Watch What Happens Live each night. This show is brilliant in the way it reuses content from shows through the week. Whether it is a live survey they are doing or a word of they day, or asking celebrities that we love and hate for their opinions regarding scenes from these episodes, they are hitting us with all that is great in their shows!
I was 18 years old when Friends aired it's first episode in 1994 and it had a fantastic run of 10 seasons, 10 years and 236 episodes. Guess how many episodes I watched during that first run? If you guessed zero, you are right. For whatever I had going on in my life during that time, I just wasn't into or interested in it.
Fast forward to 2019, my 14 year old daughter ended up hooked on the series. She was born AFTER the series ended. She has binged the series at least 4 times and I finally decided to check it out! I loved it! One of her Christmas presents from a friend this year was a Friends coffee mug. She was over the moon when she received it! 16 years later and they are still selling merchandise. I was completely surprised to read a report that each "friend" makes 20M each year on reruns. WHAT???? Replaying this series found two new generations of audiences. My 14 year old daughter who wasn't even born during this hilarious original run and myself who was preoccupied with who knows what when it originally aired!
So my original questions was what do Friends, Bravo and Howard Stern have in common?
They continue to expand their audience through different platforms and reuse their past content in a variety of ways while they continue to build new content. How do you or how can you reuse your content?
If you are a Crafter, have you put together a downloadable book, of your favorite holiday crafts - not new crafts, crafts you have already profiled? If Lifestyle is your niche, how about a downloadable book of table decor over the years or over the holidays - you don't have to set the tables again, you already have all of it - or do a survey of your readers favorite tables-cape? What about you chefs out there sharing a recipe or a video of you cooking is great, but have you hosted a virtual cooking party - you don't have to recreate the wheel on this one, use an old favorite post send out the grocery list ahead of time and cook together on Facebook - answer questions live. If you blog about travel, go back through your travel posts and pull together each pizzeria you visited in every town and pull together a top 10 Pizzeria's around the world post and ask some of your top fans ahead of the post to share theirs so you can include (remember, we are all have a little bit of narcissism in us especially with social media these days so work it - watch for more on this in another post later)
Of course there are other examples of people who reuse content well, and as we speak, there was an article about Julia Roberts in my Facebook news feed from May 2019. I believe it came from Oprah Magazine, but guess what, I checked it out. I didn't see it when it first came out but they got me with it this time!