Although I would suggest that you don’t base your entire content marketing on curated content, it is a nice way of keeping the channels of content smoothly flowing when you are not getting some great content writing and content publishing ideas.
Curated content, in case you don’t know what it is, is the content that you gather from other sources and then republish it on your own blog or website, or share it under your social media profile like Facebook or Twitter.
This blog post nicely explains how to differentiate between original content and curated content (of course curated content is also original, but not from your angle).
The author of the blog post says that the original content is like the original artwork, but when you curate content it is like creating an art gallery where you showcase all the pieces of art that you have been able to gather.
Is content curation like using someone else’s content?
In content curation, although you are using someone else’s content, you’re not using it as it is. You either use the link, or you use the link to explain something else.
Take for example this present blog post. I’m linking to another blog post that talks about how you can use content curation for content marketing for your start-up when you don’t have a budget to create high-value original content.
There is no doubt about the fact that you need quality content for meaningful content marketing.
If you are constantly publishing lousy content it is going to cause irreparable damage to not just your SEO, but also your brand.
You rather not publish content at all.
So, for businesses that cannot right now invest in good quality content, it is better to start with content curation because when you curate high-quality content in some ways you are also creating high-quality content for your own website or blog.
In fact, sometimes curated content can fare far better than the original content, provided you use the right topic.
Suppose I want to write a blog post on “Content Marketing Trends of 2018”. I have already written some blog posts on the topic, but I have linked to other sources. For example,
- 9 Content Marketing Trends for 2018, According to Neil Patel
- 5 content marketing trends in 2018, according to Salesforce
- 2018 Content Marketing Trends According to Joe Pulizzi
What if I don’t write my own, original blog post, but create a list of 40 blog posts that talk about the 2018 content marketing trends?
Will people like to read my thoughts on the topic or from 40 experts?
I don’t mean to undermine my views on the 2018 content marketing trends, but I’m pretty sure, given a choice, people would rather read those 40 content marketing experts.
After publishing the post, I can also send a quick email to these 40 individuals notifying them of my latest blog post and even if five among them share the link either on their blog or on twitter/facebook, it would be more beneficial for my blog than me writing my own thoughts on the topic.
Many people curate such blog posts specifically for this reason and this is a good content marketing tactic. You don’t just create lots of quality content you also get to network with other people to whom you link and whose content you appreciate enough to curate.
Is curated content better for your SEO?
For SEO you need high quality original content. You must be wondering if you are curating lots of content that is published elsewhere, isn’t it going to harm your SEO?
Even when you are curating content, in some sense, at least for the search engines, you are publishing original content. Remember that whenever you link to other sources, you must include your own outlook, your own opinion.
For example, even if I am linking to blog posts and articles that talk about the 2018 content marketing trends, I’m writing about these posts in my own language, in my own style and sometimes I even add my own points.
Even when you are curating content like this (creating individual blog posts) never fail to add value. If people want to just read the original content, they will go to the original link. You must give people some reason to stay on your website and read your take on the subject than going to the original link.
Google likes it when you link to authoritative websites and blogs. This Moz blog post by Rand Fishkin shows that linking to other websites and blogs actually does good to your website in terms of increasing its authority as well as improving its SEO.
The best way to curate content is to choose a theme and then gather as many links as you can find that give very valuable information about that theme.
Don’t create a random collection of links just because they talk about a particular subject or topic. Create a context. Weave a story around those links. They should become an integral part of the narrative that you are expressing in that particular web page or blog post.
Curating content can be cheaper than writing original content
Unless you are planning on creating a portal of curated content, curating content for content marketing is obviously cheaper than writing original content, because all you are doing is, linking to other sources.
But finding and keeping track of high-value content can be a time-consuming activity especially when your niche is very narrow. Maybe for your niche it might be very difficult to curate good content. You may have to hire a researcher that may charge you a lot.
If that is not the case, content curation is always a cheaper alternative to writing original content.
Why curated content shouldn’t be your long-term content marketing strategy
You can fill up the gaps with curated content but eventually, you need original content for your long-term content marketing strategy.
Just as you are linking to high-quality content from other websites, wouldn’t you like the others to link to your high-quality content?
If all you do is link to other authority websites and blogs, you never get to share your own expertise. You are always living in their shadow. People will be finding their links on your website and then they will be doing business with them because they are the original creators of that high-quality content.
Remember that if you want to get business on the Internet based on your authority, then original content is a must.