Tag Archive for online content

Content Curation – The Slide Deck

This slide deck on content curation tools for brands is the companion to my eponym post – it focuses slightly more on the shortcomings of curation
View more presentations from ttorris on Slideshare

Content Curation Tools For Brands

I haven’t published on this blog in a while because I turned to content curation instead.

My thinking was that there is more smart content online than anybody could ever read. I’d rather, I thought, point to that content than contribute to the ongoing content inflation by adding my own 2 cents. In short, I was hoping that content curation, through filtering and re-organizing existing online content around topics would contribute to the discovery of smart content.

I researched content curation using mainly two curation tools: one more business-oriented tool, Scoop.it, to monitor four topics (including Content Curation and Mobile Payments included in the Curated Content section of this blog) and one consumer-oriented social curation tool, Pinterest, to curate half a dozen varied topics of personal interest (books, art, shoes, designer handbags… yes, I love those).

Here is what I concluded from this research:

  • Content curation does help content discovery. Curation helped me discover and share content on my favorite topics. Numerous reports show that social content curation à la Pinterest brings traffic to brand sites. Curated content embeds brand content into a rich inbound context of external content.
  • Social content curation fosters customer engagement. Consumers who curate a brand’s content not only send it traffic, they also bring to the brand and its product a much needed validation. Brands like Whole Foods that participate in social curation on Pinterest increase their customers’ engagement.
  • Corporate curation tools help create a competitive advantage. In addition to public social curation platforms, brands should use scoop.it or corporate collaborative content curation tools like Curata, CurationSoft or Zemanta to listen to their market, optimize their content and collaborate on their content strategy.
  • But content curation is no panacea for failing content creation. Curated content supplements original brand content, it cannot replace it. If a brand has no story to tell, no original content, no topics to share with its audience and no Social Media strategy, content curation will only increase the overall online noise level.

Brands struggle to meet the Content Marketing imperative

Brands Looking For VisibilityMost of us do “curate” content in that we collect, filter, edit, and re-dispatch online information related to the topics that are relevant to our friends and followers. We want to become the go-to person for our target audience on the topic we curate.

So do brands… (click “more” for more, this is a long post)

Publish or Perish

Publish or perish”, once the exclusive curse of academics, has become an imperative for all online publishers. Retailers, brand owners, bloggers, marketers and even simple Facebook users have to publish more and more content to remain visible online.

This creates a rampant inflation of spam-like, ‘optimized’ content — content designed mostly or solely for the purpose of reaching a higher position on traffic gateways’ rankings. Ranking-driven content is pervasive. It blends into all forms of digital content, from eCommerce sites to blogs and to individual Facebook pages, making it increasingly difficult to draw the line between spam, optimization and original content.

This post expands on my Content Inflation slide deck by discussing in a bit more detail the examples that show how deep content inflation runs…

Facing Content Inflation

As I was researching what I call “Content Inflation” — which in a nutshell means that, forced to publish spam-like content to increase their visibility on traffic gateways, hundreds of million of publishers create a vicious spiral of meaningless content growth – I was amazed to find how pervasive it is: it impacts blogs, traditional media, eCommerce, but also individuals’ Facebook pages, Twitter, the AppStores and even the Kindle Book Store.

I was so struck that I decided to stop publishing for a while !

But now I’ve captured some of my thinking in the slide deck below and I’m ready to participate again in the online publishing madness.

See my next post “Publish or Perish” which expands on some of the examples presented in the slide deck and a few others.

Google as the arbiter of good taste

When I was working at Forrester Research, each publication had a designated content editor whom we jokingly referred to as “the ultimate arbiter of good taste“: he or she had the final word on what deserved publishing and what did not.

I was reminded of this by Google’s “More guidance on building high-quality sites” published on 6 May 2011 by Amit Singhal, head of search quality, on Google Webmaster Central Blog. Read more

Being Content

Not so long ago, I used to be Content VP (or VP Content). I really enjoyed it.

Firstly because I believe that trying to create good online content — content that informs, entertains, moves and helps people in every aspect of their life — is a motivating purpose.

But also because I love the double meaning of the word “content”. “What does it mean VP Content?” Asked my mom. “It means that I’m content with what I do” I replied.

She was content with the answer.