Content curation is a time-honored practice, one that adept editors have long used to help build winning publications including for their newspapers and magazines. Today’s content curator may be an intrepid blogger, an individual seeking to round out his or her site with information that is just as interesting and of value to his dedicated readers. The same care a professional editor takes to acquire content should be practiced by everyone. If you are new to content curation, the following tips can help you get started.
Content curation is best described as sharing other people’s unique content on your own website. With the rise of the Internet, this practice has taken a form of its own, with article directories providing usable and shareable content for anyone with a website.
However, the problem with such directories is that those articles might appear on multiple sites, diminishing its value across the board. With content curation, you bypass the article directories and work one on one with the writer who creates articles to your exacting specifications.
The easiest way to attract content to your blog is to put up a guest article page and solicit contributors. You may not have to be so strategic here if you already possess a high-profile blog. If you are a known quantity, expect that other bloggers will want to share their knowledge on your site regardless of whether you’re soliciting contributions or not.
If you are soliciting contributors, you can also offer up more detailed information about the types of articles you want, article length, style guides and more. Certainly, the more restrictive you are, the fewer number of contributors who will be willing to follow your guidelines. But, that can prove advantageous as the cream of the writing circle always rises to the top.
Content curation is all about building relationships. Considering that you may be acquiring content at no cost to you, there is something that you must offer the writer in return. Typically, this is a byline and at least one link back to the writer’s website.
Develop a policy of what you can provide writers. High profile blogs are attractive to some writers who are seeking to enhance their position online. They may or may not care about a link, but they do care that you are publishing their work, something that they can cite with their own customers.
Part of the relationship building means to help your acquired content succeed. This means sharing your findings through Twitter and Facebook, and doing what you can to advance your contributor’s work. Likely, your contributor will also help you out by sharing your link with people that he knows.
Acquiring superior content means carefully examining and understanding the capabilities of each potential contributor. It isn’t enough that someone knows how to cover a topic. He should also be respected in his field and have the online credentials to back it up. This means, your contingent of writers should possess a certain level of expertise and have the writing chops to cover an assignment. Working with a novice can still be possible, but expect much hand-holding here.
Working with people that already have an established reputation can benefit you as they bring their “tribe” to your website to read what they wrote. This is why you should always strive to curate the best content from the brightest minds, upholding a high standard at all times. You’ve built an excellent personal reputation — do not spoil it by lowering your standards simply to acquire free content.
The more explicit you are in your content curation, the less time you will spend on editing. Certainly, you will need to fact-check your contributions, but if the writer follows your clear guidelines, then you can expect that you will receive superior content. Earn your reader’s respect by only acquiring content that they will always appreciate and gladly share with others.
Jason Bayless is a professional blogger that gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice. He writes for BestSEOCompanies.com, a nationally recognized comparison website of the best SEO companies in the United States