How to Use Curated Content to Boost Your Social Media Profiles13 min read
There’s no denying it folks, if content curation didn’t exist…neither would Quuu.
So what is content curation?
We’ve all heard of content creation but what is content curation? Unlike content marketing, rather than producing your content, curating involves sharing the best content from others with some added personal flair. It sounds contradictory…how can sharing content from others help to build your personal brand?
Not only that, but it could also eventually lead to you or your business being considered a ‘thought leader’ of your industry! Thanks to the power of social media, you don’t even have to trawl through Google to do so. There are many powerful marketing campaigns out there, each with different strategies but you can bet that at some stage they will have utilised curated content.
Simply, find relevant content that doesn’t drive sales and repost it.
This could be in the form of:
- Lists of expert tips
- Industry blogs/sites
- Inspirational quotes
It’s an easy process but many businesses seem to avoid it for some reason. Whether you’re an established social media mogul or are starting from scratch, it can be a powerful addition to your marketing strategy.
Now, we’re not talking about copying content here and passing it off as your own; the trick is to share content and surround it with your unique insight and knowledge. As long as it doesn’t focus on your brand or business and isn’t there to promote you in any way – you should be good to go.
Why should you incorporate curated content on social media?
So, you now know what curated content is but you still need a bit more convincing on why it will enhance your social media marketing. We’ve made life easier for you by compiling some of the most popular uses below:
- It can help to maintain a full, balanced content calendar
- It can be a great content marketing resource
- Use it to connect with influencers and track industry trends
1. A full content calendar with less time and effort
The perfect balance of sources for your content marketing strategy can vary, with so many different options out there but an easy one to start with is the ‘rule of thirds’. 33% of your content should involve promoting your brand, 33% should focus on engaging with your audience and the last 33% should come from curated content.
If your business involves only you or a small team, you may not have time to create as much original content as you would like. Small businesses can benefit from curating as a way of sharing content from a variety of sources to entertain and educate while filling in the gaps in your content marketing strategy.
This can also help to reduce the cost and time it can take to create content consistently, thus, freeing up you and your team to focus on other elements of the business.
There is such a wide range of content out there but one thing they should all have in common is that they must provide value to the reader. Bear in mind the words of Mr Miyagi: “You trust the quality of what you know, not quantity.” You must always be selective and always revert to thinking about what your target audience would gain from the piece.
Top tip: don’t forget to also maintain consistency while curating by using a scheduler such as SocialChief.
2. It’s a content marketing resource
It’s already been established that people don’t want to be sold to; most of us can smell a sales pitch a mile off and so constantly promoting yourself or business can get old, real quick.
That’s why using a diverse range of content sources, even from competitor brands, can go down really well with consumers. This is also where being selective about your content choices comes in, do it well and you can strengthen the reputation of your brand.
It can also be a great way of utilising the skills of others that you or your team may not possess. For example, we humans are visual creatures, so infographics can be one of the best ways to get text-heavy information across in an easy-to-digest manner.
In saying this, they can be extremely time-consuming and require, at least, some basic design skills. A quick Google search can often provide an array of talented content creators, whose work your target audience could love.
Here’s one we made earlier:
If you’re worried about struggling to think of things your audience may be interested in, why not take it one step further and enlist the help of a content curator (like the team at Quuu) to cover a whole range of topics? More info on that later…
3. Connect with influencers and track industry trends
Whatever social media platform you’re focusing on, there will always be industry influencers. As marketing has changed throughout the years, it has been said that ‘influencer marketing’s only constant is change’. Consumers will no longer take product-plugs and recommendations from high-profile celebrities as gospel, just because they say so.
When it comes to curating, however, we’re not talking about finding and paying an influencer to promote your content; we’re at the other end of the spectrum.
Do your research and write a list of your favourite industry bloggers and really read some of their pieces. Repost or tweet with your own twist and start building relationships.
Remember not to focus solely on someone’s follower count as engagement is where the power truly lies.
To summarise some of the dos and don’ts that we’ve mentioned above, we’ve compiled this handy table with some of the most important points (don’t say we’re not good to you!)
|Curating Dos||Curating Don’ts|
|Always make sure to add a personal touch to anything you repost||Don’t miss an opportunity to have your say and input your expert view on the content|
|3rd party reviews are great to curate but don’t overdo these||Don’t be overly promotional when curating, keep that for the rule of thirds|
|Focus on high-quality, selective content – it may sound patronizing but read all the way through and really take it in||Even though you want to post consistently, don’t sacrifice quality over quantity|
|Always credit the sources – it’s the right thing to do and you can start building relationships||Don’t accidentally repost another curator, ensure you it’s directly from the author|
|If you have a small team, ask for their input on interesting things they’ve read recently||Don’t always post from the same two or three sources – keep it varied|
|Use SEO to tweak keywords to optimise the content for your site or blog||Don’t simply copy and paste to a blog or site or you risk being blacklisted by Google!|
How do you curate content using social media?
So you’ve decided to implement a content curation strategy but you’re wondering…where do you even start to find the content? As you might expect, there are lots of tools available, however, if you have time at all we would recommend doing some manual searching too! Some of the best-curated content sources can come from:
- RSS Feeds
- ‘Underground’ Content
- User-Generated Content
1. RSS Feeds
Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds are a solid choice to start with and can sometimes be as easy as signing up to your favourite site or blogger’s email newsletters. It’s a sure-fire way of never missing the types of content in which you know you’ll find value and if not? Simply unsubscribe.
Twitter can be another brilliant source however due to its popularity, you can miss a lot unintentionally, especially if you’re looking for a specific topic.
Now we know what you’re thinking; if only there was a way of streamlining the seemingly endless content into categorised, manageable chunks. Thankfully, someone also thought that would be a great idea and created ‘Twitter Lists’. They basically do what they say on the tin and sort your content and creators into organised lists.
If you’re looking for something that requires even less effort than these suggestions, a content curation tool could be the way to go but we’ll cover those in more detail shortly!
2. Underground content
As mentioned previously, it can pay off in a big way to put in a bit of effort; you don’t want to jump on the bandwagon of great content, you want to build the thing! Ross Hudgens, of Siege Media, credits his business to curating, especially that of ‘underground content’.
By taking some time each evening to research alternative content within his industry (that no-one else was really focusing on) with some persistence he managed to see steady and healthy growth in his number of followers.
Source: Content Marketing Institute
Another method he praises is to share content that is of lower relevance to your industry. Rather than posting a popular piece, aim to stand out with something that the majority will not have seen and aim to impress the creators of said content. By doing this, you will build relationships and could eventually end up making a name for yourself as a ‘thought leader’.
You want to end up being the person or page that people come to when they want fresh, quality content – like an A&R rep for the content marketing world.
3. User-Generated Content
One of the easiest ways of filling up your content calendar is user-generated content, also known as USG. This can be a great way to utilise those tags on social networks and showcase your product with real-life reviews. This one mostly applies to Instagram, as it’s purely a visual platform and, done correctly, can even result in a huge viral marketing campaign.
Some of the biggest pulls of USG are to:
- Showcase and inspire brand loyalty
- Create brand desire (thus increasing sales)
- Create trust by promoting authenticity
As marketing behaviour has shifted over the years, consumer decisions are now based more heavily on reviews and recommendations from friends and family rather than brand ads. We all know the buzz of excitement when we see we’ve been mentioned or shared; users whose content you repost are no different!
Top tip: remember to keep this sporadic, as being too overly promotional can backfire!
Content curation tools
So you’re convinced, you want to find content to curate across your social channels but you need some help. As mentioned above, there are a ton of tools out there to aid your content curation quest, so check out the list below to get started!
BuzzSumo is one of those curation tools that does it all; from helping you to discover high-quality content to identifying influencers in your industry and tracking the latest trending topics and conversations. It’s that powerful, it can actually help you to build your content strategy from the ground up.
By learning what the current, in-demand searches are and being able to provide relevant content, you can put yourself ahead of the majority of brands by grabbing the attention of your prospective audience and building your base. It’s also a great way to learn from your competitors’ success by unearthing what they’re doing that is working and what isn’t.
Feedly is a really handy tool to roundup the best content for topics and categories that interest you and your brand. It can help you to find new content from reputable sources and even has an in-built AI research assistant called Leo, which will track and tune the suggestions you are receiving the more you use it.
You can even bring your team on board to ensure everyone is on the same page and armed with the same insights.
We couldn’t blog about curated content and not mention Quuu, now could we? If you’re just joining us and wondering what makes us different from the above – every piece of content on our site is hand-picked and reviewed by humans (that’s us!)
With over 500 interest categories, you’ll always have relevant posts to share with your audience on social media. Our site also works in tandem with a scheduler; an excellent marketing tool that ensures you are sharing high-quality content consistently, even when you’re off-duty.
Top tip: we’ve also got RSS feeds on our platform to give you an even wider array of content to share!
This may seem like a strange one to include as they’re not a stand-alone tool, per se, but hashtags are a great way of manually discovering trending topics and the previously mentioned user-created content. These little guys are best used on Twitter and Instagram but if you’re having trouble riding solo, sites such as Hashtagify can be an awesome aide.
Another way of accessing conversations about you or your brand, when users inevitably forget to hashtag or tag you, is to use a social listening tool such as Mention.
So there you have it folks – by now you should have the knowledge to become a master content curator. You’ve learned what it means to curate, why you should implement the strategy and where to find the best content.
If you know of some other great places to find curated content or you think we’ve missed anything, please let us know below!