Every digital marketer will say that content is king and rightly so. Content marketing is the most effective marketing strategy that can improve awareness and drive the most engagement from a target audience. Depending on the audience, content can be educational, informative, entertaining and, at times, a bit of everything. Most importantly, content has to be of top quality and highly relevant to its audience.
However, to have a successful content marketing campaign, businesses don’t always have to put time and effort into creating their own unique and original content. Content curation can oftentimes be just as effective as original content at driving business goals, such as exposure, page views, return visits and so on. What exactly is content curation?
Simply put, content curation is identifying and sorting through existing content on the Internet and presenting the most useful and relevant pieces to your audience. What’s more, you can categorize content into specific topics to make it more available to different audiences. Curation helps you make use of content that’s lost or neglected in the online world and even establish relationships with its creators. Here’s a guide to smart content curation.
The value of content curation
Before you delve deeper into this strategy, you need to understand the value it brings. Content curation is cheaper than creating original content, which means that it can be greatly beneficial to businesses on a tight budget. However, curation doesn’t mean you’re claiming existing web content as your own. Instead, you’re providing additional information to your audience that will be of interest to them, while mentioning or quoting the original source.
That way, your strategy is more ethical and it allows you to leverage relevant sources to improve your own reputation and visibility. Aside from being able to drive engagement from your audience and improve relationships with them, it also enables you to start partnerships with the creators of the original content, especially since your boosting their exposure and awareness.
Identify relevant content
Content curators don’t just grab anything they can find online and publish it to their audience. As mentioned earlier, the content you publish needs to be highly relevant, in order for it to be appealing to the audience. That’s why you need to look for online content that will be of value to your readers. Think of it as helping your audience find relevant resources and information, without having to conduct excessive online research themselves.
Instead, they can find everything they need neatly categorized in one place, such as your social media pages, email newsletters or a blog. Furthermore, you need to have a good understanding of your target audience, as well as their expectations. Conducting a survey to found out more about their needs is a useful tactic, especially when they can earn money online by participating. That way, you’ll be able to provide the best resources you can find and drive the most engagement and satisfaction from your viewers.
Organize the content
It’s important that you organize the content you find properly, in order for it to bring the most value to your viewers. You can sort content into categories or groups that relate to the specific topic and share it with your audience. For instance, you can organize the most relevant blog posts you found and share them on your own blog. Also, you can include curated content your subscribers will most likely find useful in your email newsletter. Moreover, you can also publish it on your social media channels.
Just make sure you have the authorization to copy content on your channels in order to avoid copyright infringement. Furthermore, you can mix curated and original content. For example, if you run a travel-related business, you can add free travel photos to your posts to add more value to your content. It’s safe to share links that lead back to original source, just ensure you mention the source and give a detailed explanation about content’s importance and why you thought your viewers might find it interesting.
Content curation requires a lot of effort and dedication. More importantly, it demands consistency. It’s important to understand that there’s plenty of content in the digital world. As a matter of fact, there are well over 1.5 billion of individual content units being created each day. That’s why finding the right content for your audience requires continuous effort. What’s more, your audience has certain expectations regarding content updates, which you must meet or even exceed, to remain relevant to them and maintain your online reputation.
Therefore, if you want to maintain consistency you must have a smart strategy in place for content curation. Be specific about what you want to accomplish with content curation and make sure you have means of measuring the effectiveness of your efforts. Also, be realistic about what you can do – no one can scour the Internet for content overnight. In addition, create a time frame that will be attainable with your efforts, so that you don’t leave your audience in suspense.
Content curation is a fairly new concept in the world of digital marketing. Not only does it help you provide useful and relevant information to your audience, but it also saves you money on creating your own content in the process. However, it doesn’t mean you should avoid making original content altogether. Instead, content curation helps provide regular means of engagement to your audience, while you develop your own strategies and campaigns.
Lauren Wiseman is marketing specialist, contributor to bizzmarkblog.com and entrepreneur. She helps clients grow their personal and professional brands in fast-changing and demanding market, strongly believing in a holistic approach to business.