I came across an article recently titled 4 reasons why you shouldn’t use content curation. It caught my eye because the title was quite divisive, and I was interested in the reasoning that supported such a headline.
The article focuses on highlighting the benefits of writing a blog and how publishing benefits your potential ranking in search engine listings. It then talks about scale and big companies producing 10 or 50 blogs a day. I haven’t come across any company that produces content on that scale (thank goodness).
However, the writer then goes on to say that businesses will then consider content curation and gathering other peoples published content and posting/sharing via their own blog.
The writer quite correctly then discusses 4 reasons as to why you shouldn’t use content curation with some logic behind them.
4 reasons you shouldn’t use content curation
1. You won’t be an authority
2. Too many sources
3. You won’t share your own perspective
4. You will be helping others building authority
Don’t get me wrong, all these points are absolutely bang on. All you do every-time you publish someone else’s article is give them a backlink (ta very much) and that certainly isn’t helping your website unless you are getting a backlink back, and I doubt that’s happening in this example.
The other points being made are equally relevant. Sharing other peoples content often means that you are sharing for sharing’s sake without validating the quality of what you are sharing. You don’t get to add your own perspective either, and that is a major point. Every time you publish something on your companies blog you are putting your brand against that article, and you then risk not appearing to be a expert or thought leader in your field.
The right way to use Content Curation
As a relatively new business, we have had to look at how we can grow our audience & reach potential customers quickly and, in a cost, effective manner.
With this mind, our strategy was that we would only publish self-written content in our digital marketing blog. It is important that every new article we publish relates to a part of our business and that it demonstrates our expertise and knowledge and that each article related to the customer journey.
As a new business most of our articles fit into the awareness stage of the journey. What we also needed to do was to grow an audience and within our strategy we felt Content Curation was a good fit.
Why use Content Curation to grow an Audience?
There are several reasons to use content curation to grow an audience, especially in the ready-made networks that the likes of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn offer.
1. You get the value related to the content creator — when you like, comment, share or retweet other people’s content on your timeline you are saying that this article makes sense, its correct in the points its making. If that content is from an industry leader then others will also know its good and recognise you for your like, comment, share etc. and you are likely to get a new follower as a result.
2. Adding your comments gives you the opportunity to establish yourself as expert — Your comments allow you to endorse and add further weight to the post being shared & that can add credibility to your name.
3. The original poster of the content may offer a comment back, or a like — this then exposes your name to the original posters followers, potentially helping you to grow your audience.
4. Your new audience will then get to see the self-made content you are sharing via social media — giving you a further opportunity to get this new audience back to your website into seeing your business.
The value in using content curation within social media is that it enables you to use other peoples content to reach a bigger audience and help establish credibility. It also creates the opportunity for you to share your self-made content and grow visitors to your website.
How do you go about ‘Content Curation’?
I would recommend the following ways to curate and gather content that can be shared via social media.
1. Identify keywords related to your industry or profession
2. Search using these terms within google and each of the social media networks.
4. Follow suitable blogs RSS feeds and check for articles.
5. Using a ‘read later’ application like Pocket save articles as you find them.
6. Review, and if happy with the value of the content, share the original article via your chosen social media platform adding comments you feel are applicable to the post.
7. Check for likes, comments, retweets and follows and engage with your new potential audience.
This is pretty much the process we use, and it has helped us gain many new followers along the way.
I decided to write this on LinkedIn rather than on our digital marketing blog. As I was writing this article it struck me that I had sort of contradicted one of the points that I was arguing. But this original content on a different platform. I felt that this article, and the one that motivated me to write this piece warranted further discussion within a professional space, rather than the business blog.
The original article sum’s up their thoughts by stating the following.
“As you can see, while it may save you some time in the present, the truth is that content curation is simply not worth it. It’s way better to have fewer blog posts, fewer pages on your website but with powerful content that includes your own ideas and perspectives than keep posting others’ content.”
I completely agree, but the context for using content curation is just completely wrong, it means that you are just copying and pasting article links to your blog. I don’t know that I have seen that anywhere other than in an aggregator site.
My view is that content curation should be used in the context of audience building within the awareness phase of the customer journey. That way you can curate the content first, add your perspective within the comments or the shared post and get the value back from the original posters brand reputation. If you follow the process I have outlined above, then you will get significantly better return from the curated content than sharing via your blog.
Am I right? Or is the author of the original article right? Let me know your thoughts…