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The Ultimate Guide to Content Curation for Social Media

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*The Ultimate Guide to *

Content Curation

In today’s competitive content scenario, content curation isn’t just a neat option. It is an important part of engaging your audience on the social media front while also reaping other important benefits.

But randomly curating content and following a strategy for it are completely different things, yielding results that are worlds apart. A Google search on “curate content” will result in varying advice on curating content for different purposes.

If you haven’t benefited from curation yet and are not sure how to begin – don’t worry -

because that is exactly why two companies passionate about content and social media, DrumUp and Pole Position Marketing, have come together to create this step-by-step guide that can help you get started.

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*About DrumUp *

& Pole Position Marketing

Built in 2013, DrumUp is a top content marketing and social media management platform that can help you amplify your social media presence with ease. The app consists of an intelligent content suggestions/curation module, an advanced social media scheduling and management module, and an employee advocacy platform.

[* Cut social content management time by 90% and sign up for free today at *]

*drumup.io *

Established in 1998, Pole Position Marketing is a leading digital marketing agency specializing in organic SEO, pay-per-click (PPC), website development, content marketing, social media consulting, web analytics, and more.

*Fuel your web presence via targeted digital marketing. Contact us today *

*polepositionmarketing.com *

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Index

Chapter 1: Social Media Today and the Case for Content Curation………….……………..1

Chapter 2: Problems Curation Solves………………………………………………..…………5

Chapter 3: How to Curate Content – A Stepwise Guide……………………………………….7

Chapter 4: A Checklist of Content Curation Dos and Don’ts…………………………….…..26

[*Chapter 5: Final Word…………………………………………………………….……………..28 *]

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*Social Media Today *

and the Case for Content Curation

Note: If you are already familiar with the basics of content curation, you could skip to the

‘Curate Engaging Content’ section.

We don’t have to tell you how ingrained social media is in our society. Chances are, you found this ebook through social media. It’s how we keep in touch. It’s what we do when we are waiting in line or at the doctor. It’s our entertainment. It’s how we get news and information.

In order for brands to succeed in this environment, social media must also be ingrained in everything they do, from marketing to customer service. But it’s not as easy setting up profiles on the most popular social networks and shouting “Buy From Me.”

Social media success depends on the development of a clear strategy. This ebook will explain why content curation needs to be a part of that strategy and how to effectively apply it to your social media marketing mix.

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The growth of social media has really been quite impressive.

The Current Social Media Scenario

In the past decade, the use of social networking sites has increased 10-fold, with 65% of adults participating in them.

For the 18-29 year-old-age group, that percentage jumps to 90%.

Source: PewResearchCentre

With statistics like that, you can see why it’s so important for brands to have a strong social media presence. But those statistics also reveal another truth: The social media landscape is CROWDED. Consider, for example, the fact that there are 500 million tweets

sent on Twitter each day. That means 6,000 tweets are going out per second!

So as it becomes increasingly important for brands to engage with their audiences on social media, it will also become increasingly difficult for those brands to stand out. In order to do so, they must post consistently with content that is of extreme value.

The value is key because, in addition to the glut of constant posts, social networks are also making it more difficult for companies to get organic reach. They are constantly tweaking algorithms in an attempt to deliver more of what they believe their audience wants…and to drive businesses to their advertising platforms.

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Tendencies of the Current Audience

The other challenge brands face in social media is marketing without overtly selling. This isn’t like the old days of TV or radio where you could bombard your audience with ads and they had little choice but to listen.

That won’t fly on social media. People turn to social media to, well, be social, not to be sold to.

But that doesn’t mean they don’t use social media to make purchasing decisions. Quite the contrary. Buyers are increasingly turning to social media when researching potential

purchases. In fact, nearly half of digital buyers worldwide report that reading reviews,

comments, and feedback on social media has influenced their shopping behavior.

Much like your reaction when you are approached by an overzealous salesman at a car dealership, buyers are turned off by the hard sell online. Therefore, it’s important to build

credibility and trust before you even make the pitch.

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The Value of Content Curation

Clearly, there is an opportunity and a need for businesses to engage with their audiences online, but the question is, “How?” There are a number of successful tactics and best practices to employ, but our focus here is on content curation.

Simply put, content curation is sharing content from other trusted experts with your audience. In doing so, you provide valuable, desired information to your audience, which helps build the authority and credibility that we already said was important. By sharing content from other experts, you show that you are someone who keeps up with your industry and that you are a go-to resource for information.

The more valuable the information you provide through curation is, the more your audience will engage with you, creating a loyal fan base. Not only are these people more likely to buy from you when the need arises, but they will be your best brand advocates, referring friends and families who need your solutions.

But it’s not just potential customers and advocates you will reach. You will also catch the attention of those whose content you are sharing, who could be influencers in your industry.

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Problems Curation Solves

Additionally, content curation can help you overcome some common challenges in social media marketing:

1. Not being overly self-promotional

As stated previously, social media users are sensitive to the hard sell. A brand that constantly promotes itself on social media will quickly be ignored—by both users AND

social media algorithms.

The 80/20 rule is often quoted in regards to businesses’ social media activity. Per this

rule, only 20% of your social media posting should be self-promotional. Content curation is a great way to help fill in the rest of the 80%, along with posting educational (non-promotional) material of your own, behind the scenes posts, actual engagement with your audience, etc.

Apart from being overtly promotional, there are a couple of other things that you should

steer clear from on social.

2. Having enough content to share

Even if it was kosher to constantly promote yourself, who has that much content? If 6,000

tweets are going out on Twitter per second and you are only posting once or twice a day, what are the chances that you’re going to reach a large part of your audience? Not good.

Over 6,000 tweets are sent out each second! (Source Internet Live Stats) 5

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By curating content, you can continue to offer good information to your audience even when your own well runs dry.

3. Time

Creating content takes a lot of time, or at least it should, if you are doing it right. There is only so much time to create quality pieces of content that will resonate with your audience.

Even though proper content curation requires sufficient planning and vetting (we’ll get into that later), it still takes significantly less time than creating content from scratch. So instead of being a content factory constantly cranking out new articles and media, you can focus on making each piece you create killer.

If you are still not convinced, Heidi Cohen makes a good case for curation with the support

of case-studies.

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[*How to Curate Content – *]

A Stepwise Guide

If you’ve reached this section of the book, you’re ready to begin planning your brand’s social media content curation process.

Before we begin, ask yourself the following question.

What would you want to see on a brand’s social media page?

Imagine you’re a prospect looking at a brand’s social media page. What would you like to see on it? You might get turned off if the brand had only promotional content on it. You certainly wouldn’t connect much to a page with a lot of random and commonplace information either. You would only get excited if the content was interesting, fresh and relevant to you.

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It is no coincidence that the people most followed on social media are also the ones who share genuinely useful and relevant information – and with personality, but we’ll get to that part a little later.

Take a look at Maersk Line’s Twitter page. The shipping giant curates news and content

created by partners that applies to their audience.

How do you attract and build a receptive and engaged following on your social media pages?

No matter how you look at it, the answer remains the same: Curate the right content. To do that efficiently, you need a process.

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*Why Curation is Best *

*When Organized *

Content curation is a time-intensive process. If anyone has told you otherwise, they’re either lying or not using curation to its full potential. Think about it. Over 2 million blog posts are published each day. Without an organized approach, identifying the best ones to post on a daily basis is an imposing task.

A process will allow you more control over the distribution of content and the possible advantages of following themes, including trends and analyzing the impact of the content that you post.

To attract bees, you need honey. The more you understand about the content your target group consumes, the better placed your curation efforts will be.

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*Who is Your Social Media Page *

[*Set to Attract? *]

It doesn’t matter if you have 10,000 followers on your social media pages if only 100 of them are actually likely to buy your product.

Clarify your content curation efforts by answering these questions: What types of content will you share?

What impact is it likely to have on your brand and sales? Which searches do you want your company’s profiles to show up on?

It is important to curate content that caters to target groups in different parts of your sales funnel. People who are yet to be introduced to your services need broader and more generic information, while people who know what you do may need facts and figures that can nudge them to make a purchase.

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You can define your content by making a list of “keywords.” Sometimes the perfect combination of keywords is all you need to be discovered by the people who matter.

DrumUp, for instance, is a content curation and social management platform, so we focus

on social media and content marketing. Take a look at our blog and Twitter page and you’ll easily discern our niche.

Tactical tip: Ask yourself who you’re trying to attract, and curate content with utility for your audience.

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Identify Shareworthy Content

Be warned. The quality, variety and appeal of the content your curate is just as important as that of the content you create. Even if the content you share isn’t created by you, it still goes up on your social media accounts and represents your brand.

Share diverse content and include multiple formats to keep your social pages interesting and engaging.

Also, remember that each industry has its quirks, and some types of content suit some industries better than others. For instance, a financial consultancy may want to post more news and guides than videos and GIFs. Explore all possible content types and prioritize the ones that fit your niche best.

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Types of Content to Curate

*1. Industry news, trends and novel concepts *

No matter which niche, professionals are constantly chasing the latest news and the trends emerging from them to stay ahead of their competition. Discover that content and

always be the first to share it with your audience, and you’ll win their favor.

Since you can’t spend your day watching out for important news releases, you could use a content curation app to monitor the news for you. Set the right keywords and add RSS

feeds of top news sites to your app to have all possible content collected in one place for you to post.

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*2. Tips and guides on important concepts *

Actionable ideas are what matter. Help your audience break professional barriers and succeed in their business, and you will make loyal followers out of them.

Think about it. You don’t have to be the one writing this content, it only has to help your target audience. In fact, sharing content created by experts in your niche is a great way to initiate relationships with them.

The trick to posting the most relevant guides and tips is identifying the questions that your audience members are asking and the roadblocks that they are currently facing in their careers. Plan the content you share so it addresses those questions and concerns.

You could curate content that answers FAQs on popular communities in your industry, or just keep an open communication channel with your audience so they can make requests for what they want. Before you post anything to your accounts, ask yourself, “Is this answering an important question?”

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3. Research and case studies

Social media is teeming with click bait-ey posts, leaving social users hungry for reliable information. Research and case studies come with tactical tips that have been previously proven, making them the perfect type of content to stand-out in feeds crowded with unreliable content. Case studies can also help you build your brand authority on social.

Case studies are invaluable because they provide lessons on how to succeed at something specific, or how to avoid making the mistakes that others have made.

If you have identified reputed research organizations or niche websites that often share case studies, you could use an RSS feeder to collect their content.

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4. Visual content – Images, infographics, gifs and videos Tweets with images receive 150% more re-tweets. Enough said. Visuals are also picked up by the human brain much faster than text.

Want to catch your audience’s attention on social media? Supplement your text with an eye-catching image.

Companies with visually appealing products and services (for instance online couture shops, bakeries or vacation rentals) should definitely include a lot of visual content in their curation mix.

If you aren’t confident about your design abilities, you could always rely on a graphic design software that also stocks built-in templates and clip-art for ease of use.

Canva, Piktochart and Venngage are great examples. Apart from them, there are plenty of

other graphic design software and photo editors you can use.

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5. Quotes from industry experts

Quotes are very popular on social media. If you’re active on social media, you probably come across at least a few quotes each day. If you happen to discover quotes relevant to your industry, you could quickly place them on simple backgrounds with simple design tools and schedule them out of your brand’s social media accounts.

[*Tactical tip: *]Diversify the content you curate with splashes of a variety of content formats to keep your audience interested and engaged.

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*Recognize Trustworthy Sources *

Industry trends are tricky, and there’s always the possibility that they’re wrongly predicted.

News can be fake, or wrongly represented.

That’s why you have to ensure that everything you share comes from credible sources with stellar reputations on the internet. It isn’t just the trends and news, but all content in general. The quality of content you curate depends on the source you curate from, so you should pick your sources carefully.

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Imagine you spent 2 hours and listed 50 top industry sources for content. That’s enough to run a successful content curation effort for your business. Your sources list could include newsletters and agencies, top industry blogs, social media influencers, research organizations and content agencies.

You can gauge the quality of a blog by website feel, the relevance and usefulness of content on it, its Moz rank, Alexa rank or Page and Domain authorities. You could also do a quick search on social media to see how popular the site’s content is.

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Alternatively, you could use a curation app and let the app discover content for you based on keywords that you set. Some apps, like DrumUp, also let you attach RSS feeds of the blogs that you like to your dashboard so you can receive all your content on the same platform.

While curating, remember: What you share reflects your opinions and represents your company on an official social media account. You have to be selective when you screen sources and content.

Never share a post with opinions that you don’t agree with. That will affect your audience’s perception of your brand and its ideals.

Tactical tip: Either screen and create a long list of sources for your social media content in advance or set keyword alerts on a keyword monitoring tool or content curation app to curate your content.

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Build an Online Content Reserve

While you could dedicate time each day to search for content to share, there’s a less time consuming alternative. You could search for content and house it in an easily accessible digital collection.

If you’re on sites like Scoop.it or Stumble, you could curate content there, simultaneously earning your brand additional exposure.

You could also store content pieces on your scheduling app for direct access when you want to schedule them.

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For instance, on DrumUp, while you scroll through your content recommendations, you could save the ones you like to the Content Library for future use.

When creating your digital content resource, it is useful to build categories, so you can easily find the right content when it is time to share. Doing that can also help you build a diverse and engaging social media page with ease.

[*Tactical tip: *]Build an organized digital collection of content to retrieve from.

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Add Your Voice to Curated Content

As Susanna Gebauer aptly puts it, “Content curation has little value without your voice.”

You can use content curation to build a brand identity and an engaged community by adding your voice to everything that you share.

Add your opinion, something you think the author left out, an interesting fact, a hand crafted introduction or your own image to the curated content share to add your value to it.

All that this tactic really requires is some unique text in those 140 or 400 characters of your social media description box to make an impression on the person who reads it.

You can even help your audience by summarizing the article in your social post description, or sharing with them an insight that you gleaned from reading the post.

Emojis or similar tools of expression work very well with curated content.

Small touches like these with just the right content can help you strike a chord with your target audience.

[*Tactical tip: *]Add a unique image, insight, description or summary to the posts you share.

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*Monitor, Analyze *

*and Refine Your Content *

Analytics is an essential part of content curation. Unless you monitor your audience *members’ reactions to your content, you can’t consistently optimize your efforts. *

Most experts advise you to steer clear of promotion and selling in your content curation efforts because it is not well received by the general social media audience.

Your goal of analytics for content curation should be to understand the impact of your curated content and share more of the content that is resonating with your audience.

On DrumUp’s analytics module, you can view the total likes, shares, retweets, and clicks of any post on your social media accounts. You can sort posts by date or popularity. You can also study social media engagement over a time interval of your choosing.

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[*The most important thing to identify: Patterns. *]

What type of posts does your audience seem to like? You could even do two versions of a social media share (A/B testing) and see which visual or text description your audience liked better.

Repeat the tweets that perform well. There is a study that says successful tweets receive just as much engagement when repeated.

Also pay attention to the anomalies. They are full of valuable insights.

Finally, monitor your social media referrals to see which social media platform your content is performing best on to allocate most of your time and resources to it.

These insights can be applied to not just your curated content, but all of your content in general. In fact, curated content is a smart way to test content because you can draw insights on what your audience likes before putting in any effort into content creation.

[*Tactical tip: *]Monitor the engagement on your curated posts to refine your curated content and lead the way for your content creation strategy.

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*A Checklist of Content Curation *

Dos and Don’ts

Do’s:

❏ Add your own take to each piece of content you share

❏ Curate content on all social media channels at your disposal (if your resources permit it)

❏ Curate relevant and specific content for social media communities (Facebook and LinkedIn groups, Twitter chats)

❏ Read what you curate so you know what you are sharing

❏ Always attribute your sources

❏ Be selective; Only share high quality content

❏ Build an accessible content hub on the internet

❏ Add a CTA leading back to your website or content hub where it makes sense

❏ Always personalize the description text, and image when possible

❏ Share content that answers FAQs

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Don’ts:

❏ Avoid being you-centric. Curate content for your audience

❏ Never use cryptic jargon in your descriptions

❏ Don't clutter your descriptions with too many hashtags or @mentions

❏ Don’t rely on curated content as a substitute for original content

❏ Avoid being monotonous in sharing (add some variety)

❏ Never go overboard with curation (spamming is not by any means okay)

❏ Don’t mechanically share the exact same content (craft your descriptions, add an opinion)

❏ Avoid sharing content that your competitors are already sharing

❏ Don’t share outdated content (source the latest must-reads in your niche)

❏ Never share a piece that goes against something you believe in 27

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*Final Word *

A well-formed content curation strategy can help you maintain a great social media presence with minimal effort, attract members of your target market, and initiate relationships with important people. You could also see it as an ice-breaker with influencers and the people who follow your social pages. Assistance from a content curation software can help you organize and streamline the process better.

All you really require is an understanding of what you want to accomplish with curated content and how you will set yourself apart from competitors who may well be sharing similar content. With that discerning factor and clear goals, there is a lot that you can accomplish with content curation.

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Meet the authors

As DrumUp’s Content Marketing Associate, Disha Dinesh manages growth, communication and content for the app’s blog and social media pages.

As Pole Position Marketing’s Social Content Liaison, Julie Graff is in charge of content and social media strategy for the agency and its clients.

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The Ultimate Guide to Content Curation for Social Media

  • Author: DrumUp
  • Published: 2017-04-17 12:55:17
  • Words: 4241
The Ultimate Guide to Content Curation for Social Media The Ultimate Guide to Content Curation for Social Media