Learning to curate content for social media is a valuable and learnable skill. What is the content monster? This is the void for content marketers between content creation and content sharing. The content monster needs to be fed consistently. Content marketing is a great way for brands and small businesses to reach their clients and prospective clients. If you are creating your own media or blog content, content creation is a time-consuming and important task. Most blogs and businesses aren’t producing an original video or blog article each day. If you do have the time and talent to produce great quality content, you still need to share more than one thing per day on social media. So, how can you feed the content monster and curate content to share?
First, I’ll explain a few social media terms so you have a good understanding of my topic and then I’ll dig into where you can feed your content monster.
Content curation is finding targeted, interesting content to share on social media. To build a solid, trusted social network, you need to enhance your original content with other content. This content should reenforce your brand message, boost your social media presence, and help create topic authority with social media optimization.
“Content curation is the process of sorting through the vast amounts of content on the web and presenting it in a meaningful and organized way around a specific theme. The work involves sifting, sorting, arranging, and publishing information. A content curator cherry picks the best content that is important and relevant to share with their community. It isn’t unlike what a museum curator does to produce an exhibition: They identify the theme, they provide the context, they decide which paintings to hang on the wall, how they should be annotated, and how they should be displayed for the public.
Content curation is not about collecting links or being an information pack rat, it is more about putting them into a context with organization, annotation, and presentation.” from Beth Kantor
What is Content Creation?
Writing a blog post, producing a video, designing a graphic. Creating original media to share with the world. These are all forms of content or content marketing:
- Vine videos
- Telling a visual story on Instagram
- Pinning on Pinterest
- Long form posts with images on Google+
- Visual content with text on Tumblr
- Short form micro-blogging on Twitter
- Facebook posts
- YouTube videos
What is Content Marketing
The process of creating media to share who you are and what you are about without a hardball sales approach.
“Content Marketing means creating and sharing valuable free content to attract and convert prospects into customers, and customers into repeat buyers. The type of content you share is closely related to what you sell; in other words, you’re educating people so that they know, like, and trust you enough to do business with you.” from Copyblogger.
How to Curate Content and Feed the Monster
The amount of quality content that you create will be far less than the social media content that you’ll share which creates a need for more content curation. Sharing a balanced mix of your own content and other’s people’s content is important.
A few reasons a good idea to share other people’s content:
- They’ll appreciate it and hopefully reciprocate by sharing your content.
- It can start a conversation with the person or brand.
- Being generous is always a good thing.
- It reenforces your brand message when you boost it with other expert opinions.
- Provides value to the people who follow you.
There are many different places that you can find content. The key is to create a plan before you start looking so you know what you’re looking for. Create a social media marketing editorial calendar so you know how many different types of posts you’ll be creating and what your brand message is so you stay on target.
Where Can You Find Great Content to Share?
Theses are a few of my daily go-to sources for great content.
Alltop: A fantastic content curation website co-founded by Guy Kawasaki. Alltop is “the online magazine rack of the web.” It’s populated by the TOP blogs from around the web and hundreds of topics are sorted alphabetically for easy search. It’s the ultimate content curation site since you can add the feeds from your favorite blog (they must be on Alltop) to create a personal page of your favorites. When you come to the website, go to your custom MyAlltop page and voila, great information to read and share with your followers.
Feedly: Feedly is an RSS reader that pulls in previews of thousands of blog sites. This is your main view on Feedly. You can view your content all mixed into one big group or be even more organized and search by topics you create. You can create different little sections for easily finding content that you want to read and share.
Using the left side bar navigation, you can select different tabs and view each section separately. You populate each tab with the blogs that you want to be sorted into that topic. Being organized when you set up Feedly will make your content curation a breeze!
StumbleUpon: Is a unique discovery site. Using the StumbleUpon Chrome extension, you can give posts that you like a thumbs up (positive review) and this helps StumbleUpon find great content for you. You also choose topics that you like and can Stumble by topic. StumbleUpon is fun because once you’ve put some time into StumbleUpon, it finds really relevant and interesting content for you that is pre-liked by other Stumblers. It’s like hitting a big randomizer button for content and then BAM a great post, video, or photo pops up.
Content can truly go viral on StumbleUpon getting hundreds of thousands of views – even up to a million! Wow! Using StumbleUpon to help find content will also help your blog perform better on StumbleUpon as you build your own Stumble mojo.
Within the Hootsuite dashboard or using the Hootsuite Hootlet Chrome extension, you can add any RSS feed to an RSS syndication within Hootsuite. With a few clicks, you can add your favorite blog content to your Twitter feed, Facebook, Linkedin, or Google+ Page.
If you like email, Guy Kawasaki and I send out an email with our raw curated content on a daily basis to a list called Help a Socialist Out or HASO. We call it your daily dose of shiitake worth sharing. You can sign up here to receive eight to ten cool things to share with your social channels.
Pinterest: is the ultimate in content curation. You can use the search box to find interesting content or search by topic.
Pinterest also recommends content to you in several ways: by showing other places that pin has been pinned and recommending similar pins below the pin you are looking at. You can use your Pinterest boards to save your curated content and find it easily in the future.
The Keys to Good Content Curation
- Don’t share everything at once! You need to organize your content and share it at optimal times on your social channels.
- Get organized with Hootsuite, Sprout Social or your favorite content management platform.
- Be consistent and share relevant content on a daily basis.
- Follow interesting people and brands. Share their content.
A very important thing to remember is that you are curating other’s content NOT stealing it. Per Steven Rosenbaum, “Take the time to give attribution, links back, and credit. The sharing economy works because we’re each sharing our audiences, and providing the value of our endorsements. If you pick up someone’s work and put it on your blog, or mention a fact without crediting the source, you’re not building shared credibility. You’re just abusing someone else’s effort.” I would also add that this goes for tweets, posts or any other content. It is actually easier to share on Twitter, Google+ and Facebook than it is so cut, paste and steal someone else’s work. Hit retweet or share. Be cool. Don’t steal.
I hope this give you some ideas on how you can feed the content monster and really rock your content curation!
5 Tips for Using Alltop
Photo credit: Big Stock Photos