THE WHAT, WHY, AND HOW OF CONTENT CURATION
What is content curation?
Content Curation is the online expression of something, which is in the same nature of human beings: the need to collect and catalogue only the most interesting things about a subject so to share it for the common benefit.
I did a quick glance through all my social media posts on Facebook and Twitter, and about 90% of all my posts were ”curated” pieces of content. Most of the things I shared with my social network were things I found interesting and knew that my social network would find them interesting as well. I also realized that I was creating a “library” of sorts which I referred to now and then.
Content curation, then, forms a big part of our digital lives. It is driven by our need to share things with people we know. In the supercharged and mobile world that we currently live in, content curation is also driven by our need to be the first to break the news.
Why content curation is becoming important?
I was reading this article on gigaom about the iPad versions of Huffington Post and the iPad-only, digital newspaper, The Daily. The article claimed:
Whether media companies like it or not (and they mostly don’t), much of the news and other content we consume now comes via links shared through Twitter and Facebook and other networks, or through old-fashioned aggregators — such as Yahoo News or Google News — and newer ones like Flipboard and Zite and Prismatic that are tailored to mobile devices and a socially-driven news experience. Compared to that kind of model, a dedicated app from a magazine or a newspaper looks much less interesting, since by design it contains content from only a single outlet, and it usually doesn’t contain helpful things like links.
What really stands out from the above is that the way that we consume content has drastically changed. Not only that, content creation has become so easy that there is just too much of it to digest. In this age of digitally supercharged content creation and consumption, the only way to stay “sane” is to be able to get the most relevant content. Hence, the need for trusted content curators who collect and share content that is relevent and interesting to you. You choose the curator who you think shares the best content.
Leave aside the human side of it, from a business perpective, content curation is about showing your audience that you are “connected” to your industry. It shows your industry, that you are willing to collaborate and grow together. You build a brand, you build a band, and you build market leadership.
How do I curate content?
Personally, I do not have any set plans or goals when I share content. I find something useful, I share it. Although I did find a whole bunch of articles that listed tips, tricks, and tutorials on content curation. Here are some that I found to be curate-able:
- Content Curation Tips for Stellar Social Media
- 12 Most Helpful Tips for Curating Content
- 5 Tips for Great Content Curation
However, I do have a workflow that I tend to employ for my content curation (and creation) needs. I do most of my social media on my iPad and iPhone which have some great apps for this purpose. (I shall leave my Apple fanboy sermon for another post and another forum ) Here’s a quick step-by-step of my content curation workflow:
Step 1:Discovery: Discover “shareworthy” content via Google Reader and/or apps like Flipboard. I get all my social netwroking feeds into Flipboard, and I highly recommend Flipboard if you still haven’t used it. The discovery is a constant process, as I might notice a particularly good piece of content at any time.
Step 2:Review: Since I am constantly discovering content, I dont always get the time to decide if its curatable. Hence, I first save all these into Pocket (formerly Read it Later). This is a great service for cataloguing and archiving stuff. An equally good tool is Instapaper. These tools are great because you can save a bunch of content, review them later, and then decide whether you want to share them. (P.S. Sharing good and relevent content takes time and effort)
Step 3:Curate: This is the easy part, but there are a whole bunch of options:
- You can copy and paste the content directly to your social networks.
- You can Buffer the stuff if you want to follow a schedule. (Recommended)
- You can create a email with a bunch of these content, just like the daily newsletters you might be getting from Twitter and LinkedIn.
- You can CREATE a blog post out of a few related pieces of content. (PSST: You might have noticed that I did just that with this post!)
HAPPY CURATING!* Please feel free to share your tips, tricks, advice, etc on content curation.