4 Tools to Make You a Content Curating Master

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Content curation provides a direct path to thought leadership for brands and individuals. As you curate and share high-quality content, you’ll generate awareness and gain credibility. You’ll be respected for your knowledge since you’re finding just the right content your target audience needs.

My content curation used to be 100% manual. I’d finish reading an interesting article, then head to Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook and share it. Today, I use a set of tools that automate these steps. The tools not only save me time, they also surface content I otherwise would have missed.

In this blog, I’ll cover the tools that I use as well as best practices for content curation.

Content Curation Best Practices

Let’s cover some best practices. I keep it to three steps:

  1. Identify your target audience (i.e. for whom are you curating and sharing?)
  2. Read the entire article or post. I repeat, read the entire article or post.
  3. Be picky in what you share.

Especially when you’re starting out with curation, a niche (vs. broad) target audience works well. A target audience of marketers may be too broad, while B2B marketers in life sciences doing ABM may be too narrow. B2B marketers doing ABM may be just right.

Manual Curation via Feedly

Feedly enables me to subscribe to websites and blogs via RSS. As I find interesting sites, I’ll grab the URL and add it to Feedly. I subscribe to over 200 sites, so I organize them into categorized folders: Content Marketing, Social Media, SEO, etc.

It’s easy for me to fall behind with so much content out there, so I check Feedly a few times per week. I’ll scan the list of article headlines for a site, then decide which ones to read. I’ll skim my selections, then save some of the articles to read in their entirety later. I then mark all as read and move on to the next site.

HOW IT HELPS:

To visit these 200+ sites individually would add several hours to my day, or several days to my week. Because I scan each site individually, I better understand the topics, publishing frequency, and priorities for some of the key websites in my industry.

COST:

Free with paid plans available.

Quick-Hit Curation with Nuzzel

I follow over 10,000 people on Twitter. When I open my Twitter feed, it can feel like the whole world is talking to me at once. It can be hard to separate the wheat from the chaff.

That’s where Nuzzel comes in. Once I connect it to my Twitter account, it checks the users I’m following and finds the content most often shared by them. It then lists the article headline and description, along with the users’ tweets that included that article.

I fire up Nuzzel in the morning. Of the ten articles it lists on my personalized homepage, I’ll often read five of them. And once I read those, I’ll decide which ones to share to my social networks. While I may spend more time reading the articles, five minutes is all it takes to find them.

HOW IT HELPS:

It’s hard to find high-quality content, but the five minutes I spend each morning is golden. Also, Nuzzel helps me extract value out of Twitter, finding articles I otherwise would have missed.

COST:

Free with paid plans available.

Timely and Interesting Discoveries with Flipboard

While you can use Flipboard via its website, I spend 95% of my time in their iPhone app. I love swiping my index finger up to “flip” to the next article. I also love reading content within the app.

While Twitter is good to see breaking news unfold, Flipboard helps me find recent or timely content that I often don’t see on Twitter. I have a set of Smart Magazines, each based on a specific topic. To create the Smart Magazine, I select from a list of sub-topics to narrow my interest profile. This helps Flipboard find content that’s best aligned with my interests.

I check Flipboard a few times a day. When I see an article with an interesting headline, I’ll add the article to a private Magazine. Later, I’ll read articles and decide which I’d like to share to my social networks. When I’m done reading the article, I’ll delete it from that Magazine.

In addition to surfacing content via its algorithms, Flipboard produces “10 for Today,” a daily email and Magazine of 10 featured articles that are curated (7 days a week!) by an in-house editorial team.

HOW IT HELPS:

A nice complementary tool: I find content on Flipboard that doesn’t surface via the other tools. Also, it helps me stay current on other interests, such as my favorite sports teams.

COST:

Free.

Social Scheduling via Buffer

While Buffer connects to a wide range of social networks, I use it to schedule posts on Twitter. With my current schedule, I tweet 12 times per day on weekdays and 8 times per day on weekends.

Buffer tracks metrics for each tweet, including retweets, likes, mentions, and clicks. I scan the Analytics tab in Buffer to quickly see which tweets and by association, which topics, are getting a good response. Since it’s easy for people to miss a tweet, I “re-buffer” a lot of tweets, scheduling them for a different day or time.

Word of caution: don’t try and automate 100% of your social media. I monitor comments, likes, and retweets frequently. When someone replies to a scheduled tweet, I reply back quickly.

HOW IT HELPS:

I used to manually submit tweets at Twitter.com, which meant that I was online at the time. With Buffer (and tools like it), I spread my tweets throughout the day, helping me find and interest people who are online when I’m not.

COST:

Free with paid plans available.

These tools help me curate content and have helped bring me to where I am as a thought leader. What tools do you use personally and professionally? What tools might you implement into your strategy?

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