I want to include a big section on how nonprofits are repurposing content in my new book, so I need your help. Can you share your experiences with repurposing content at your nonprofit? - Thanks!  ~Kivi

Stuck in a bucket by table4five on flickrNonprofits have always had many content buckets that needed to be filled regularly, from print newsletters and other direct mail to reports for boards and funders. Then came along your website and email newsletter. And now, with social media, you may be producing content for a blog, video channel, Flickr group, podcast, Twitter feed and Facebook page.

It can feel like you are trapped inside those buckets with little hope of ever getting out, especially if you are working under the illusion that everything you create has to be 100% original content.

Here's the answer: Repurpose your content! It's smart marketing and a serious survival skill for nonprofit communicators.

I'm sharing 12 of my favorite ways to repurpose content . . .

1. Use a different channel. If you’ve written a blog post, is there something you can do with that elsewhere?  Three short blog posts can be combined into one longer newsletter article. You can use a top 10 list you published in your email newsletter as a starting point for a video script.

2. Edit for a different audience. Also think about your different audiences and how you can put a slightly different spin on existing content to make it more relevant to a different segment of your audience.

3. Make short stuff longer. If you started with a 200 word blog post or even a quick tweet or Facebook update, flesh that out into a newsletter article by adding some examples. Add more descriptive details, get quotes from people, or share opposing points of view.

4. Make long stuff shorter. Pull the headline and use it as a status update. Reduce your paragraphs to bullet points. Publish a teaser and link back to the longer piece.

5. Change the lead. Simply start the article in a whole new way. Move something that was lower down in the article to the top. If you didn’t use a quote in the first paragraph before, use one now. Open with a trend or other big-picture explanation.

6. Change the perspective. You can also change the perspective, so you tell the same story, but from a slightly different point of view. Maybe you’re talking about three people who your organization has worked with and you’re emphasizing one of them. Tell the same basic story, but just emphasize the other person in the story this time.

7. Change the format. Start with live audio, and record it as a podcast, video or webinar recording. Have the recorded audio transcribed. Pull text from that. If you’ve written a how-to article, turn it into a top ten list. If you’ve written a top ten list about how to do something, rewrite it as an opinion piece or as a review.

8. Update the numbers. Lots of nonprofits publish information that really stays the same from month to month, or even year to year, except for the statistics. Grab that old article and just update the stats and republish it!

9. Round it up. Group several like items together into a new piece with a theme that you can use in a new headline and lead paragraph.

10.  Integrate the comments. This works great on content that was originally posted in social way, such as a blog post or Facebook update, where people could add comments. As you repurpose the article, fully integrate some of what you heard in the comments into the newer version.

11. Add Your Opinion. Much of what you publish is likely "just the facts, ma'am." Repurpose a newsy article by adding your commentary to it.

12. Recast it.  Take something completely unrelated and tie it into your content. Tabloid magazines are great inspiration for this . . . can you tie the latest hot superstar, scandal, or headline to your content in some unexpected way?

This is how you reuse, repurpose, and remix your content — and save time and your sanity.

Want More?

Learn about the 50-50 rule for content creation.

P.S. You guessed it! This article is repurposed content. I published a list with seven repurposing tips on my blog last year. To create this new article, I added five more ideas to the list, including one suggested in the comments on the original post (thanks Hoong Yee!).

Share Your Content Repurposing Stories!

Please take this survey on how your nonprofit repurposes content and I could use it in my new book!