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How To Reformat, Repurpose and Resurrect the Existing Content In Your Organization

Creating good content is hard work.

Don’t make it harder than it needs to be.

With a bit of effort, you will likely find that plenty of valuable content already exists within your own organization–you just need to train your eyes to see it.  And then you can reformat, re-purpose or resurrect that content and put it to work for your organization by training an employee, hiring a new one, or outsourcing the work to a firm or freelancer.

Resurrect presentations

There is likely someone within your organization who has numerous PowerPoint presentations just sitting on their hard drive doing no good at all.  Sites such as Slideshare and Scribd can breathe new life into those presentations.  Upload them, tag them properly and then embed the presentations on your own website or blog.

If there are particularly good individual slides that contain infographics, graphs, charts or otherwise valuable and helpful information, consider saving them as an image and uploading them to image sharing sites such as Flickr.

Repurpose research

I know a guy who writes content for a company that creates “bovine medication.”

That’s correct–he publishes content about the medications and pathology of cattle. I asked him the obvious question:

“Who (in their right mind) reads that stuff?”

His reply:

“People who work in the cattle industry, raise cattle, and are otherwise interested in the health of cattle read it.”

Didn’t I feel stupid.

Turns out most of his content is repurposed research from within the organization–charts, graphs, control groups, hypotheses–the whole nine yards.

He repurposes otherwise flat research findings into talking-head video, infographics and written articles that are surprisingly interesting.  And there is a niche of people out there that can’t wait to get their hands on the next “bovine medication” article he will publish.

Transcribe online video of interviews

If the mainstream media or someone internal to your organization is interviewing people within your organization for a publication of any kind, look for opportunities to reformat the interview and squeeze all the possible value out of it.

A cheap hand-held Flip or Kodak Zi8 camera can capture an interview with a subject matter expert within your organization, which can then be broadcast through multiple video sharing sites such as YouTube or Vimeo and embedded on your own website.

The audio of the interview could be lifted and placed on your site as an mp3 podcast and could be uploaded to podcast directories such as iTunes.

The transcription of the interview could be repurposed into an article or a series of tweets.

Reformat images

Images are often overlooked. Here are some examples of how you can reuse images.

Images of corporate events can be:

  • Uploaded to your Facebook page
  • Placed in a Flickr stream
  • Posted to your own website to aid in the humanization of your company

Infographics can be uploaded to sites like the aforementioned Scribd, Flickr, Facebook or YFrog for sharing on Twitter.

Groups of photos can be stitched together to make amazing (and amazingly easy to create) video via Animoto.  This video can then be shared via video sharing sites and embedded on your own website or blog.

Reuse newsletter articles

Newsletter content that is sent only via email is a tragedy.  Those newsletter articles can be reused as blog posts, grouped together to create free reports, ebooks or white papers.

At the very least, consider archiving your email newsletters on your website where they can be found and indexed by search engines such as Google.  This will give you the SEO value that the content cannot give you when it is only sent via email.

Rework training and policy manuals

Training and policy manuals are tools designed for new employees or newcomers to a department within your organization.

They often contain information about the culture of your organization and also seek to educate the employee about processes, rules and regulations, culture and history of the organization.

A good content marketing plan will educate the market while simultaneously telling that market a story about the organization’s values, beliefs and culture.

Your training manuals, with a bit of editing, could be gold mines of content waiting to be delivered in the form of articles, video or audio.

It’s your turn.  What content could you leverage that already exists within your organization?  What tools and media would you use to reformat, repurpose or resurrect that content?  What advice do you have for this community about reusing using existing content?