7 Ways Content Curation Helps Small Marketing Departments

August 19, 2013 Mark Sherbin

In content marketing, you can ride coattails to the top—as long as you thank your gentleman for the ride.

Content curation is the practice of collecting the best content you can find on the web and sharing it with your audience. Ethical curation always links to the original post, printing only a snippet of the text as a teaser.

As a practice, content curation has been cooking for several years. The rise of easy-to-use content curation technology helped make it a pretty viable option for organizations of all shapes and sizes.

Curation takes many forms. Twitter, for example, often functions as a curation platform for brands and thought leaders. Pinterest is another great example of a social network that also functions as a curation platform.

Curation software comes in many forms. Below are three major competitors in the space.

  • Curata: This platform actually goes out and mines information relevant to you, giving you the opportunity to review content and share only the most valuable insights.
  • Scoop.it: Looking to create a beautiful, customizable collection of links? Scoop.it pulls great content from your social feeds to develop an online magazine of highly shared topics.
  • Paper.li: Your very own online newspaper at your fingertips—Paper.li is another great option for content curation that pulls in information and lets you customize it before sending it out to your audience.

Not sold on the concept of curation? Here are seven reasons a startup or other organization with a small marketing department might want to curate content.

1. It’s a great way to build an audience without spending too much.

Small marketing departments consistently spread their resources thin. How are you expected to create daily content, manage branding initiatives, and create promotional content all by yourself?

Content curation is the answer to traditional content marketing. That isn’t to say you shouldn’t create blog or social content. Rather, you can curate easily while doing as much as you can in the way of content creation. The curation is a nice little supplement to help you build your audience.

2. It helps you find topics that excite your audience.

Speaking of content marketing…where do you get your ideas? Like me, you probably hit roadblocks in your thinking process. Sometimes it feels like you’ve covered everything. Ideation becomes a challenge.

Curation is a great way to get your juices flowing. With the reading you’ll do, you’ll start coming up with new content ideas in no time.

3. It’s a good way to engage with thought leaders.

Trying to get the attention of a mouthpiece for your industry? Curate their content and share it with your audience. Let that person know you appreciate their voice enough to align your brand with it.

Through curation, you can encourage a culture of give and take. Get your brand on the radar of a thought leader and you increase the chances she’ll help you out.

4. It aligns your brand with bigger, more prominent brands.

Think of your blog or other major means of content distribution. It’s takes time to build an audience. Of course, you can speed up the process by recruiting big name guest writers. Then again, that could cost you. You’re struggling to make ends meet with your measly budget as it is.

Curation offers you some of the benefit of big name brands and writers at a fraction of the cost. It doesn’t hurt to borrow a little brand credibility now and then.

5. It gives you an opportunity to add brief commentary.

Part of the power of curation is that you get an opportunity to add your opinion to existing content. Typically, curators share a brief snippet or summary of a piece of content. They add a brief commentary on top of it to explain why it’s a valuable piece.

Adding commentary is a way to share your unique voice without spending time creating longer, more in-depth pieces of content. That way, your audience still gets a unique experience.

6. It kills two birds with one stone.

A strong marketer always keeps his eye on the trends that define his industry. Curation gives you a chance to do exactly that. You can spend your time simultaneously researching your industry and exciting your audience with great content.

For small marketing departments, this can be a huge time saver and a great way to stay ahead of the game.

7. It helps encourage link-sharing partnerships.

Brands and writers with existing audiences can be great partners for content marketing. Curation is a great way for content marketers to share their content with more people. As a result, marketers may want to share links with you in exchange for the same.

Link sharing is a great way to expose your content to more people, helping you build a bigger audience. Think of it as a referral of sorts.

Do you curate?

Has curation become a cornerstone of your content marketing? Tell us how you curate in the comments below.

About the Author

Mark Sherbin is a freelance writer specializing in technology and content marketing. He shares occasionally insightful information at Copywriting Is Dead, where he promotes authentic communication between organizations and their audiences. Say hello on Twitter: @MarkSherbin.

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