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Getting Started with Content Curation by Scott Scanlon

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In this episode we’ll talk about getting started with content curation. Specifically, let’s say you’re just getting started and you really want to have success right away with content curation be it if you’re just getting started with content marketing, or you’re a seasoned content marketer. I’ll share with you some tips right now so that you can have the most success if you’re just getting started with content curation.

Setting Your Goals

So, let’s start with the first thing. In any form of digital marketing or any marketing whatsoever, you should start with your goals. With curation there’s a couple goals that you can really realize, I should say, and that’s probably not the way to say that, but you should be able to realize with curation. The first one is authority. If you get known as finding good stuff on a consistent basis and helping your target market gain clarity or your niche gain clarity, you will build authority. Authority is one of those things that’s built over time and it’s trust.

Authority is Built Overtime and Content Curation Builds Authority

Really, that’s what it is. Authority is I trust you to have some kind of knowledge in a market; that I look to you as a leader. So, curation works really good for that because as you hone your ability to curate and as other people realize that in your market they will trust you. In a way, and this is what you really hope for, you want them to rely upon your curated content, rely upon your ability to find stuff that they need to know about. 

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If you look at the example of, and this is the drudge report, I use this example every now and then, really that the drudge report has the ability to set the story, be it culturally or politically, on any given day. That’s a lot of power and just simply by creating the top story can create what people talk about, what news organizations talk about and what, really, sometimes the internet talks about. That authority is something that you want to think about for your market or for your niche.

Curation Captures Traffic You Wouldn’t Ordinarily Have

The other thing that curation does I should say, is it allows you to get traffic that you wouldn’t ordinarily have. A way to think about this is we’re typically told to go out there and curate and in curation we’re gonna build authority because we’re gonna be sharing stuff on Twitter or Facebook or Linkedin or wherever else. Through doing that we’re gonna get authority, but we’re sending traffic to someone else. With curation specifically in the type of curation that we talk a lot about on this show where you curate stuff on a platform that you own, that you can monetize right away; that garners traffic.

Now, I’m not saying you should do this every single time, but that’s another benefit of getting started with content curation. Oftentimes, we see this a lot, a lot of people have a following in social media, but when they put curation on top of that, specifically in a platform that they own, they get the opportunity to monetize right away so their permission channels, their email lists, their social following goes up.

Getting Started With Content Curation Also Creates Awareness

Also, and this happens a lot, if you have a product or an idea or something else that really just needs awareness, people just need to be aware of it; when you curate stuff that can create awareness. I’ll give you a good example just from –I could probably give examples that I don’t have permission of from people that have bought curation traffic, but from our own stuff we curate a lot of stuff around content marketing because people that are interested in content marketing would be interested in curation because curation is a form of content marketing. So, we don’t just curate stuff on curation, we curate stuff on content marketing.

That does really well for us because what happens is that people are interested in that topic and then, that gains awareness for our curation platform. So, that’s an example of the same thing you could do in your market. It’s about traffic. The traffic that we generate not only grows our permission channels, but it actually grows our awareness and our sales cycle, and this is something you would know for your own business or your awareness cycle, is typically anywhere from 10-30 days of someone being aware of our platform that would be interested in it for purchase. So, that’s an example of using kind of the awareness traffic strategy in curation.

What Types of Content Will Your Target Market Care About?

The next thing is think about what type of things does your target market care about? What type of things are they interested in? When you’re getting started with curation it’s no good to curate stuff that no one cares about. So, really dive deep and think what challenges, what interests does my target market, does the niche that I want to garner traffic and awareness and attention from; what do they care about?

You can usually find this because there are usually people that are leaders already, thought leaders in your market. There is already specific, maybe, periodicals that discuss this stuff. So you can find this information already. This will help you really get started on the right foot because when you’re finding the stuff that people have already said, ‘Hey, that’s popular. I’m interested in this.’ Then, you at least know the type of stuff that you need to start curating about.

Is Curation a Long Term Strategy?

The next thing is realize, in some ways, curation is a long term strategy. Now, this will depend on each individual. I’ve experienced people that have put curation on top of what they’re already doing and it instantly has paid off. I remember one person recently emailed us and said, ‘Look, I just got your product and it already has created a hundred visits a day.’

So, it depends on where you’re at in your marketing, but that is something that pays off. Some people, if they have the platform already; they have an existing blog and website and following it pays off right away. But, it pays off more and more the longer you do it because the longer you do it the more trust and authority you build, the more that people will come back and keep coming back.

A lot of times what we suggest is that when you curate stuff you want to build in a way for people to subscribe to those curations. So we do something on a lot of our curated platforms where we connect our RSS feed of our curations to our email service and then every fourth or eighth curation that we do, an automatic email goes out. I was amazed one day.

I looked at the open rates and that. Some of our lists have an open rate of 50-60% on those emails and then, every now and then, we get to communicate with them via broadcast or a special offer we send out. That’s a great way and it’s grown over time. At first, that list didn’t open as much, but I noticed it grew over time and that’s because we consistently curate good stuff. We consistently are building authority.

It Also Helps in Permission Marketing

That’s another reason why when we send out, and this is the full circle of the strategy, when we notice that, we then every now and then would send out a broadcast email to that list and the open rates were the same because they were used to getting this value from our emails. I kind of deviate a little bit about it being a long-term strategy, but it’s something that I tell people all the time, with curation, that it’s a great strategy if you have an existing base, but it’s even better the more you do it.

So, if you’re just getting started this is a strategy that pays off the longer you do it. If you’ve already got a base, if you’re kind of this seasoned content marketer; yes, you can get results right away. But, the longer you do it the more it pays off as well.

The final thing is figure out… this is kind of an advanced strategy when you’re getting started with curation and sometimes you learn it more when you do it. But figure out when you’re going to curate and how much you’re going to curate.

 

Here’s some questions to ask:

  • What I mean by that is, are you gonna do all your curations first thing in the morning and is it gonna be content from the last couple days or the last day?
  • Or are you going to curate throughout the day and are you going to then, release it throughout the day? How much are you going to do?
  • If you can find five posts, are you gonna curate five?
  • Or are you only gonna curate twice a day?

Really think about that type of stuff and a lot of this happens as you do it, but you should start with some kind of plan.

How Many Times a Day Should You Curate?

For instance, I would suggest most people in most markets what you do is you start curating four times a day. Maybe not four individual times a day, but what I mean is four specific pieces of content a day, because that should take you anywhere from, if you’re using a tool or curation platform that allows this to be quick it should take you under 10 minutes, especially as you get going. Maybe at first it might take 15-20 minutes to consume all the content, to get the good points and to curate it.

How many times should you curate? As much as is needed to give clarity to your target market.

But, as it’s all said and done, after some experience; you can do this within less than 10 minutes a day with four curations. I would suggest four because that gives you kind of enough where there’s four individual pieces on a daily basis that, if someone is following you, that’s enough for someone to consume.

If you do one or two I don’t think you’re covering a large enough target or a large enough surface for your target market or your niche that you might capture them. What I mean by that is if you curate two things there’s not that good of a chance that everybody that follows you or stumbles across your curated site or your curations is gonna find something they’re interested in. But, the more that you curate the more opportunity that someone is following you or stumbles across you will find something they’re interested in.

So, four is the minimum and I’d say four to eight is really where the happy medium is. If you’ve got a market that really likes to consume content, you can do as much as 10-15 a day. You just have to be set up for that. So, that’s some other things to think about.

Here’s Another Important Thing– Keeping a Consistent Schedule

The one thing I will mention, when you’re getting started with curation a lot of it is keeping to a consistent schedule. I mean that’s really the backbone of any marketing strategy, especially an inbound marketing strategy. But, if you can keep to a schedule that’s gonna pay off for your time and time again. So when you’re thinking about employing a content curation strategy think how can I keep this schedule? How can I create a schedule that will garner attention for my target market, for my niche and how do I fit that into my day or into my week? How do I ensure that my team can employ that strategy?

Those are some tips on getting started with content curation and that’s all for this episode. I’ll see you in the next episode.