Today’s post is the first of a series on content curation and deals with curation fundamentals. In subsequent posts I will compare a number of curation platforms, interview curation experts and talk about how to become a curator.
With the constant stream (who am I kidding, flood is more like it) of content that most of us are faced with parsing through each day, content curation has become an increasingly popular topic. This mix of algorithmic + human filtration, selection and publishing of niche-specific content may not only provide a more manageable solution to our dilemma, but gives superhero status to those who take on the responsibility of becoming curators. They are the miners who find diamonds hidden in the mountain of coal.
Content Curation Defined
What is content curation? Definitions abound, but my favorite comes from Content Rules, a book by Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman.
“[Curation is] the act of continually identifying, selecting and sharing the best and most relevant online content and other online resources on a specific subject to match the needs of a specific audience.”
Content Curation “Fun”damentals
I call these “fun”damentals because curation can be just that, fun. Let’s define “fun” as “I don’t have to pull all this content out of my a**, I can borrow from other sources (so long as it’s properly attributed).” That sounds like fun doesn’t it? (All you beleaguered bloggers who have hit the proverbial “what do I write about today?” wall can relate, right?)
A Little History
If you look back to blogging’s early days, you’ll find that blog posts consisted primarily of lists of links. Over time, those lists became annotated with the blogger’s commentary. (Such list posts are still in use today.) Later, blog carnivals became popular, and consisted of posts that contained links to other articles covering a specific topic. Both were early forms of curation. In a manner of speaking what goes around comes around, only with better tools and processes.
Balance, Daniel-san, Balance
As cool, hip, trendy and fun as curation may be, I believe balance is required, which I define as a mix of original and curated content. I see curation as a supplement to, not a replacement for, original thought. Further, I do not view curation as a stepping stone to thought leadership absent original content. That is, unless your goal is to be thought of is as an expert curator. (You still retain your standing as a superhero in my book.)
Eating the Curation Dog Food
Now that I’ve covered a few basic fundamentals, it’s time to eat the curation dog food and share what others have to say.
Curation in content marketing. Visual curation can grab your audience’s attention like nothing else. In part 1 of my introductory guide I gave an overview of content curation and how to go about it. Today I’ll focus on some easy-to-use free tools. First thing to say is that there are more tools than you can … This tutorial by Adam Troudart is a little old so the interface may be slightly different, but it has all the basics. That’s for the free version. If you want to consider the paid …
Curation as Part of Your Content Strategy.
Content Curation vs. Thought Leadership: What’s the Difference? by mtilly1. September 5th, 2012. The fundamental point of this article is that “thought leadership” does not come from merely curating various articles onto your site. … If you need to grow content volume by sharing relevant information in demand generation and marketing programs, start by narrowing your target audience and focusing on the content that helps prospects and clients solve a particular, meaningful problem.
This is the best presentation (PPT) on the basics of content curation that I’ve found.
The next post in this series compares three popular curation platforms: Rebelmouse, Scoop.it and Paper.li. Look for it early next week.