I meet many entrepreneurs who are being told they should write a book, but they struggle with finding the time (or sometimes the heart) to commit to what should be a serious undertaking. For that matter, the very word "content" can bring a cringe...because creating good content is indeed hard work.

Likewise on the marketing end of things, between media outreach, blogging, interviews, and social media, making time (or finding resources) to manage the multiple components of a content-driven marketing plan can quickly become a challenge.

For most entrepreneurs, monetizing content is really about visibility and generating leads to fill a sales funnel, not strictly selling a content product itself.  The good news is that there's often more content available for you to leverage than you realize, and on occasion you can actually use it for both leads and income.

So take a step back from "content" and think in terms of ideas. Your ideas have likely already manifested in all sorts of content formats. First things first, you'll need to turn over every proverbial stone to inventory the content you currently have.

List your articles, white papers, interviews, blog posts, videos, presentations, infographics, webinar recordings, and even your methodology frameworks in a content matrix and note the subject area, format, intended audience, and length of each. Once you know what you have to work with, we can look at a few ways to best leverage that content.

1. Blog Posts to Podcasts
Blog posts are a great starting point for podcast script material, and podcasts continue to increase in popularity year over year. Tools like Audacity make podcasts relativity easy and inexpensive to produce.

Find the posts with the strongest engagement or social sharing - what is the common thread you can draw through them? Thinking through this will help you put a finger on the niche you'll serve.

Next, outline the basic points of your posts. Then, identify the areas within the post where you can go a little deeper. An interview format works well here, and bringing in another well-chosen expert can add both credibility and the benefit of another thought leader's network to drive downloads.

Smart podcasters have additional value-added content to offer listeners, whether it's used to drive list sign-ups or sold to drive revenue.

2. Processes & Frameworks to Train the Trainer
Certain types of entrepreneurs can translate process frameworks and procedures into train the trainer programs, a way to sort of franchise your methodology and brand.

This approach has to make strategic sense but can be an effective way to create revenue through licensing fees while also creating a network of people to teach your approach, making you a bit more scalable.  Train the Trainer programs are commonly structured as regional licenses, but the approach also works well online, which brings us to...

3. Train the Trainer to Membership Site
A subscription site built around teaching your methodology may include access to a community of like-minded learners and a coach who has been certified through your program - freeing you up to focus on other things.

Effective membership sites deliver high-quality content on a schedule; premium resources, and the support of fellow learners in addition to periodic access to appointed coaches or "guides" through one-to-one sessions or teleconference calls.

4. Presentations to Webinars and Partner Sponsors
Longer content like presentations can often be repurposed into webinars with the help of some quality graphics to serve as slides.

Webinars present a unique opportunity to invite a sponsor partner to co-present, either for a fee (to get in front of your audience) or as a way for you to strategically increase the visibility of your webinar event by tapping the partner's audience.

Choose a partner whose business complements yours and whose alliance creates extra value for the audience you serve.

5. Articles, White Papers, Blog Posts to Ebooks
Perhaps the most straightforward way to repurpose existing written content is to organize it into an ebook. It's easy enough to produce an ebook and list it for sale online, but for most it will be more strategic to offer it as a premium download on your website to drive email list building and/or lead generation.

Use an editor to ensure the content has a structure and flow. You may need to write a few transitional elements to tie some material together, but it's worth the extra effort to create strong value for your reader.

The more focused and niche your ebook is, the more likely you are capturing your specific target audience and also giving them value.

Put these points to work to take your existing ideas from their lonely home in an archive file to a purposeful place in your marketing or revenue strategy.