Roger Parker shares 7 simple content curation tips for personal branding success.
7 tips for content curation done right
I’ve been studying this series since it began; here are some of the lessons and tips that set it apart from the everyday.
1. Purposeful. The essence of successful project lies in its description and purpose statement. In this case, the series is described as, “a weekly collection of cool discoveries from around the Web.” Most of the time, it’s mission is described as, “Most times the goal is to get you thinking differently about communication, collaboration, culture, and life in general.“
2. Relevance. People don’t read high-tech blogs for comic relief, however. For a blog, or a business, to survive, it has to value to customers and readers in terms of practical assistance, entertainment, or inspiration. This calls for a level of curation that goes beyond checking out the most popular blogs on the Internet. It requires an intimate understanding of your intended reader’s interests and values combined with a bloodhound’s tenacity following a clue.
3. Surprise. Given the wealth of daily compiled content curation publications on the Internet, serendipity–the ability to search out and discover previous unknown resources–becomes more and more essential. If your compilations merely echo the information that’s available elsewhere, the value of your brand quickly declines. The game is over when your recommendations fail to be pleasant discoveries. (I find these are almost always fresh discoveries on topics I do not normally follow–but am glad I’ve been introduced to.)
4. Annotation. The care you take in introducing and “selling the value” of the resources you’re recommending plays a big role in the success of your content curation efforts. You have to provide a context that relates the resource you’re recommending to your readers interests in as concise and entertaining a way as possible.
5. Engaging. Engagement, as practiced in the Mindjet blog’s Super Fun Friday Link Time takes forms. One is the over-the-top, tongue-in-cheek title, which promises a lighthearted end-of-the-week approach. A second approach is hinted at by the second part of the feature’s mission statement, that follows the “Most of the time” sentence above. The second sentence reads, just 4 words, reads; “Other times, LOLCAT ATTACK!” The sentence engages because promise to provoke.
6. Scarcity. Small, but crucial point; once a week is the perfect frequency for curated content. The Super Happy Fun Friday Link Time would quickly lose its appeal the more days of the week it appeared. As it is, the Friday-only schedule not only provides enough time to search out on-target, undiscovered relevant posts, it avoids reader burnout while providing a welcome change from the other daily blog post topics.
7. Consistency. The other side of scarcity, of course, is consistency. Having made a commitment to a fresh feature each Friday, it soon becomes a habit for readers who look forward to it each week…and will probably check back the next week if they were traveling or busy over the weekend.