The concept of content marketing is not new, but it has certainly been spreading like wildfire. While the awareness and implementation of content marketing continue to rise, the need for curating content becomes even more apparent.

When you begin any content marketing initiative, you'll quickly realize how difficult it is to churn out incredible content regularly.

How do you solve that conundrum?

The solution is content curation.

What Is Content Curation?

A Day at the Museum 1 by Robert Couse-Baker (Creative Commons)

"Curation" is derived from "curate," or the person in charge of a collection at a museum (among other, earlier meanings). A museum curator's responsibilities include gathering pieces of art that are high quality and relevant to the museum's collection.

That's what thought leaders do with content curation: They gather and organize high-quality content that relates to their target audience, add their unique insights, and put it on display for their audience.

How does content curation fit into a content marketing strategy?

Curating content helps fill the gaps that form when you produce and promote your own high-quality content.

Curata finds that "enlightened" marketers use a content marketing mix that consists of 25% curated content in addition to content they themselves create (65%) and content they syndicate (10%).

Content Curation Principles

Content curation requires a keen eye, thoughtful additions (and subtractions), and time. Sifting through hundreds of content pieces from dozens of content sources is almost certainly not a quick task. And you must do that nearly every day.

To do content curation right, you need to keep a few best-practice principles top of mind, including...

  • Balance: Is the content you curate in balance with the content you create yourself?
  • Emphasis: Is the content you curate reinforcing your created content?
  • Variety: Is your curated content coming from a variety of trusted sources?

By keeping balance, emphasis, and variety in mind when curating content, you'll be on track to providing your customers with the content they desire.

Content Curation Tools

You need help to ensure that you're give each piece of curated content the attention that it deserves while keeping balance, emphasis, and variety in mind. The help comes in the form of the tools for discovering and curating content.


Trapit is a content-discovery tool. You set up "traps" based on what content you're in search of. Trapit learns your content preferences when you give a thumbs up to content you like, or a thumbs down to content you don't like. You may add commentary to the content it finds for you, and share it to an online channel of your choosing.


You've probably seen Klout scores, but Klout also offers a curation feature. The algorithm recommends content for you based on those you're connected with. As with Trapit, you can give your feedback on the relevance of the article with a thumbs up or a thumbs down, and the algorithm learns what content you like to share most. The major benefit of using Klout's curation feature is that it gives you insight into what content positively impacts your Klout score.

Right Intel

Right Intel facilitates the identification of content that's valuable to you and your audience. You then add your own opinions to that content with the Intel It! function. You publish content and your added insights internally for your team members, but you also have the ability to publish it externally through stories, emails, social media, etc., which helps you establish credibility and thought leadership with your audience. Right Intel also keeps all your curated information in your very own organized knowledge dashboard.


Now that you understand what curated content is, how it fits into the content marketing mix, some best-practices, and various curation tools, it's time to understand how curated content reaches your audience.

Your blog and your social channels are the two primary dissemination methods.

Promoting via Your Blog

You may not think of promoting curated content through your own blog, but it's a great way to incorporate the viewpoints of others. The most common form is a "round-up" post, which can be a collection of your favorite articles of the week, for example, or your favorite articles about a particular topic.

Promoting via Your Social Channels

Social channels are the most common method of distributing curated content. You simply share the link via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or any of the multitude of social platforms you have at your disposal. The key is to add your own insight to each piece of content shared. This is what truly sets curation apart from simply sending out other people's post title with a link. When you add your thoughts, allude to why the content matters to your audience.

Whether you choose to promote via your blog, social channels, or both, contribute your insight to the curated content you send to your audience.

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Curating Content: A Few Principles and Tools to Guide Your Efforts

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image of Greg Shuey

Greg Shuey is a co-founder and the chief evangelist of Stryde, a content distribution and promotion agency in Salt Lake City.

LinkedIn: Greg Shuey