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Creating a Content Machine: Tools, Models and Tips
Posted on April 12th 2013
Curating content is an important activity and central to those brands who are looking to give their audience something useful.
By spending time to find, filter and enhance content – which is shared across social media – you’re building interest and value in your brand. But what is the value for your business? Content curation gives your visitors reasons to re-visit, refer and interact.
What is content curation?
The definition of content curation: the publisher researches and gathers the best content on a niche topic that is aimed at a certain audience. The content is relevant for their business, and they can add comment and opinion; and so, enhance it.
Curation isn’t about repeating information; it’s about re-interpreting, re-telling or re-shaping earlier stories. The personalisation makes the content valuable and compelling. If done well, content curation makes the content feel new and unique, instead of just a rehashed article.
Of course, content curation cannot exist alone; you need a presence across the relevant social networks and industry events whilst still generating original content.
Why do we need it?
Curation can play a central role when creating awareness and credibility for your brand. The amount of content curation you partake in depends on your strategy.
Clever content curation can help you:
- Improve website engagement
- Become a crucial part of lead nurturing and conversion, through email and social marketing
- Become a ‘go-to’ resource for a particular niche
- Develop your brand as a credible source of information
- Become known by influencers in your sector
- Grow traffic and search engine visibility
This model focuses on exploring what’s out there, making sense of the material and circulating to your social networks. It was created by Beth Kanter. She came up with The Three S’s of Content Curation:
- Seek. Keep up to date with news from your field
- Sense. Make sense of the information
- Share. Exchange resources with those around you through suitable mediums
Top 5 Content Curation Tips
Use video and images
Since the launch of photo sharing sites like Pinterest, the curation of images and videos has become a popular pastime. Use your own images and repin or repost other user’s images. Add video content where relevant to keep people interested.
Create online magazines
Sites like Storify and Scoop.it are two of the main tools currently being used to create a free online magazine. For this type of curation your content needs to be really useful and relevant. If done well, your magazine could be the one stop shop for all the best content relating to your industry.
A blog can be curated in various ways. One of the most common ways is to curate content and then add additional commentary or expert analysis throughout the day. Therefore you’re adding value to the original content with each post.
It may not seem the obvious medium for content curation, but e-newsletters work as well as online magazines, and it will be directly received by an intended database.
To gather information and organise your content you need somewhere to manage it. Here are some popular tools for content curation:
- Google Alerts – Set up Google Alerts for a specific keyword relating to your business.
- Delicious – Bookmarking site Delicious allows you to search what other users have published.
- Pinterest – Build content around images and videos. You’ll also see vibrant and educational infographics on this site.
Your curated content needs to be high quality and reliable. Take time out to check your sources and their sources. Make sure the content accurately reflects your brand and its values. Do all this and content curation can help take your business to new heights.