Content Curation is the process of research, aggregation, analysis and organisation of web content and presenting it in a meaningful, coherent and organized way. It is usually done based around a particular topic, or niche. Content curation suggests that it is carried out by a real person, a human being, rather than by a piece of software or service.


That in turn suggests that the Human Being is a Curator, usually an expert in the field being curated. Due to the vast amounts of data available, and being constantly created every day in huge volume, the task can be time consuming and difficult.

Why Is Content Curation Useful?

Content is King. That’s why it’s useful. Every business, entrepreneur and organisation needs to produce, or publish content. Creating new content is difficult and time consuming.

So acting as a Content Curator is a viable alternative. Instead of producing the content, curating it is an easier (possibly) option. What does this mean in term of your reputation? It presents you as the expert, the trusted source, the one that is ‘in the know’. Gaining this reputation is very valuable as it adds to your brand and builds your social capital.

Why Is Content Curation Hot Right Now?

There is a LOT of content on the web right now. Filtering all that content and presenting ‘the best of the web’ has become big business. It’s a VERY fashionable thing to do, a very accepted way of building a website, blog, or social media profile. You can even go so far as build your own personal brand around being a top content curator. There are a lot of BIG sites out there using this model:
For example:

  • The Huffington Post
  • Gawker
  • Tech Crunch
  • Mediaite
  • Pricey Pads

Step By Step Blueprint

Step 1 :: Research

Topics and sources

  1. Be very sure what your topic is; make it narrow, not wide.
  2. Research sites and sources of content, in a variety of media categories; written, pictorial, audio, video, even games and apps.
  3. Read a lot, a lot more than you ever share.
  4. Don’t use it unless it’s very high quality: Quality not quantity.

Step 2 :: Analyse

  1. Take note of the format of what you are sharing, and ensure a good mix of sources.
  2. Add value in the form of opinion; additional resources, annotations, comparisons etc.
  3. Always give proper attribution to the source.
  4. What is attribution? Simply, you must mention who wrote it and link to the original website it came from.

Step 3 :: Publish and Share

Blog
Publish it (with attribution) on your own-domain blog. Publish it (with attribution) on other blogging networks:

  • WordPress
  • Blogger
  • Tumblr
  • Posterous
  • LiveJournal
  • Xanga
  • Weebly

Social Media
Link to the content on Social Media Networks:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Myspace
  • Google Plus
  • Pinterest
  • Orkut
  • Ning
  • Badoo

Video
Create a Video linking to the content, and share on the video networks:

  • YouTube
  • Vimeo
  • Veoh
  • Dailymotion
  • Yahoo Video
  • Metacafe
  • Viddler
  • Flickr
  • Revver
  • Videojug
  • SmugMug
  • Photobucket
  • Hulu

Audio
Create an Audio (podcast or similar) and share on the podcast networks:

  • iTunes
  • Podomatic
  • Podcastalley
  • Odeo
  • Yahoo
  • iPodder

Expert Content Curation Tips

  1. Use Google Alerts on keywords you are curating.
  2. Use Google Reader to monitor relevant RSS feeds from blogs and news sites
  3. Use iffft to alert you of news
  4. Monitor Google Trends
  5. Monitor Twitter for trending items
  6. Follow other people in your niche on Twitter etc.
  7. Do it differently; if curators in your niche just publish on blogs, create a video or audio daily review of news items.
  8. Do it continuously; people expect it all the time, so either choose a topic you love, or work hard, or outsource it!

Content Curation Tools

1 – paper.li

Paper.li claims you can:

  • “Start an online newspaper today”
  • “for your community”
  • “to monitor a topic”
  • “to share your passion”
  • “for the classroom”
  • “about your town”
  • “as a newsletter”
  • “to cover an event”
  • “to mobilize”

2 – BagTheWeb

BagTheWeb says you can:

  • “Find, Bag, Share”
  • “Build Networked Curation”

3 – Pearltrees

Pearltrees suggests you can use it to:

  • “Cultivate your interests” and it is:
  • “A place to collect, organize and share everything you like on the web”

4 – Scoop.it

The Scoop.it site enables you to:

  • “Easily Publish Gorgeous Magazines” ;
  • “Leverage Curation to increase your visibility.” and
  • “Give persistence to your social media presence.”

Conclusion

Content Curation is a powerful method of publishing other peoples content. You therefore don’t have to create content yourself; you ‘only’ have to act as the publisher, the re-publisher, the curator. You can build your own personal brand as an expert in your niche, and as the person who is in the know. This will lead to all sorts of opportunities.

You might be interested in : CurationSoft software

CurationSoft was created specifically for online publishing professionals, bloggers, news organizations and outsourcing firms who handle content development and marketing work for their clients – CurationSoft.com