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PwC’s Global CEO Survey Shows How to Recycle, Repackage, Redistribute

Each year for the last 13 years, PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) has published their much-anticipated Global CEO Survey. Released at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos each year, the PwC CEO Survey gives us access to over 1,000 business and government leaders—and in the last two years has been a valuable barometer of business confidence.

Last year, for the first time, PwC began to offer the survey in multiple formats, including customized reports by industry and geography, as well as multimedia versions of specific sections.

Marketers can learn a lot from how PwC manages to use this single research activity to produce dozens of sub-reports, multi-media presentations and events. They have perfected the art of content multiplication.

How PwC repackages its survey content

Let’s take this year’s 13th annual report as an example. From the survey of 1,198 company leaders and government officials from over 50 countries, PwC managed to publish nearly three-dozen reports/formats, including:

  • An in-depth, 52-page main report, including charts and analysis.
  • Sub-reports by industry and region (19 in all).
  • Key issue data sets. For example, if your focus is regulatory reform, you can pull survey data based on that single issue.
  • Video interviews of six global CEOs—speaking out on some of the biggest findings of the report.
  • Video interview of PwC’s CEO, Dennis Nally.
  • Transcripts of full CEO interviews.
  • Various other customized reports, such as “Government and the Global CEO” and a data-rich report for quant-jocks.

I believe that many organizations invest serious time and money into thought leadership research and reports, only to have those reports languish after they have been sped out to market. PwC’s survey is a flagship piece of thought leadership not only because it touches on issues that people are hungry to read about, but also because PwC has figured out how to customize their report for their diverse audience and push out content in dozens of formats. In this way, the survey can be a broad-based view of CEOs’ views of the economy and business, or a highly customized report about the auto industry in the current climate.

How PwC uses a microsite for its survey

Also worth a peek is the PwC Global CEO Survey microsite, which houses all the various report iterations and serves as a springboard to other areas of the PwC site. From the microsite landing page, viewers can navigate to those areas of the survey they are most interested in, and have access to video formats for bite-sized servings of analysis.

You’ll note that PwC does not assume you will want to read the full 52-page report. The download page allows you to choose those sections that you may find interesting–another simple but beautiful idea from the content marketers at PwC (and something I’m not sure I’ve ever seen before…why didn’t anyone else think of this?).

Do you agree that the PwC model pays higher dividends or is this strategy overkill? Do you aim to create multiple formats from a single thought leadership report? What other examples can you point us to?