Content marketing has quite literally changed the way we engage our customers. Instead of traditional promos, discounts, and advertisements, businesses are forced to supply content that entice, engage, and interest their customers.
The reason for this is that 77% of Internet users don’t actually engage in online advertising. The recent shift from “push” to “pull” marketing has now forced businesses to supply interesting articles, graphics, and videos on a regular basis. And since original content is difficult to generate, it often falls on the shoulders of a “content curator” to source that content from the web.
The upside to this style of marketing is that it’s cheaper. The downside is that it requires constant vigilance and an inherent knack for what’s interesting and what isn’t.
Though there’s no strict formula to being a content curation expert, there are a few things you need to be able to follow in order to supply the best content for your followers.
Be Your Own Target Market
It’s important to be genuinely interested in the industry you’re curating. New, original content is being generated on a regular basis and simply seeking it out during “office hours” will severely limit what you’re going to find. But if reading up on the latest industry news and features is something you do on your free time, then you’ll have a better idea on what issues and topics are relevant for your target audience. With no hint of irony, you become the target audience.
Source Your Content from Different Sources
Twitter, Google+, and Facebook are the usual suspects when engaging your audience, but when it comes to looking for original, relevant content, it’s best to go off the beaten path. Content aggregators and hosting sites like Pinterest, Vimeo, Tumblr, Flickr, Instagram, Scoop.it, and Digg are great sources of content, even if they don’t have the critical mass of the more commonly used social media sites.
By utilizing those resources alongside RSS feeds and Google Alerts, you can assure yourself of a steady stream of content. It might feel like too much content too soon, but part of being a good content curator is being able to pick through the harvest for the ripest of fruits.
Look for Things You Don’t Know, Rather Than Things You Do
Even as an expert in your field, you can’t know everything. And even if you do spend the time to generate original content for your business, your content will be limited by what you know. Because of this, spend time to seek out areas of your industry you’re not too sure about, or would like to know yourself. Chances are, your readers would like to know, too. If you don’t happen to find the content you’re looking for, that’s a good sign for you to generate it yourself.
Give Your Own Original Insights
Don’t simply regurgitate content on a daily basis. Instead, pick out the hottest topics and issues and give your own two cents on it. You don’t even have to agree with a certain issue to discuss it. Sometimes, disagreeing will generate more interest.
An insightful opinion will generate conversation, which will prompt it to be shared among interested circles. While it’s not encouraged to dissent for dissention’s sake, a well-placed insight can easily turn a recycled article into an original editorial.
Content curation isn’t as simple as bookmarking your favorite websites, but it’s managing to stay ahead of the curb. By giving your followers content they wouldn’t have found otherwise, you set yourself up to be a thought leader in your chosen field.