It’s no secret content is king when it comes to PR campaigns, but what are the basic rules for curating a body of content that will have the most impact on your business or brand? Curated content can include original content — written and visual pieces created by you — contributed pieces, or, most commonly, content that’s gathered from around the web. Some would argue curated collections are how most people discover content today, so curating is a valuable skill for any PR professional.
Here are some of the basic rules for maximizing your content curation practices.
Basic SEO optimization is a must. It doesn’t take a technical genius to understand basic optimization these days, so it’s crucial to build SEO in at the foundation level of all content. Quality and relevance are more important than sheer volume, as we covered recently in this post, so taking the time to produce high quality content should always be the first priority.
Content should be relevant and valuable. The best curated content is personal for the reader or viewer, so know who your target audience is and only share what’s relevant to them. Start with asking what questions those audiences face, and develop categories that address those challenges. Value also comes from consistency; your voice as a content curator becomes more credible with consistent sharing, so establish a schedule that works, and stick with it.
Add your own perspective. Framing the content you’ve selected helps add more value for viewers by telling them why they should care. It also helps establish you as an expert source for great content they’re unlikely to discover elsewhere — something that keeps readers coming back for more.
Make good use of visuals. It’s hard to overemphasize this point. Some stats show people are 80 percent more likely to read content that’s paired with colorful visuals. Don’t neglect visual appeal by letting graphics get sloppy. Again, investing in quality here can go a long way. There’s also a trove of online resources — many of them free — for stock photos and graphics to tap into, eliminating many hurdles to using strong visuals.
Use all your distribution channels. These days it’s less likely for content to be discovered organically. With so many distribution platforms in use, it’s important to be aggressive and systematic in spreading content appropriately on all. Find out what strategies work best on each platform, as they’re not all the same, and develop a system for sharing on each.
Take advantage of tools for curating. Finding great content to share is a snap when you’re plugged into tools that do most of the heavy lifting for you. The top two on this list, Pocket and Twitter Lists, are also our top choices for basic online tools that help find and catalogue the best content that’s most relevant to our work.
Create opportunities to engage. Make it very easy for readers to engage with the content being shared. Sometimes a simple call to action or invitation to share opinions is all that’s needed to get a conversation started.