By Stephanie Diamond

Although curating content as part of your content marketing strategy is a newer concept, curation is not a new concept. For example, curators have been employed by museums to look at their holdings and pick out the most representative pieces to tell a larger story. You do the same with web content. You use other people’s content as the foundation of a new story you want to tell.

You can use the following list as a checklist of the 11 actions you need to take to ensure a quality curated post:

  • Give credit to the writers of the content you choose. You must give attribution to the writers of the content you curate. There should be no mistaking which content is theirs and which is yours.

    The Curator's Code web page
    Curator’s Code.

    Check out Curator’s Code, shown in the figure, to ensure that you are correctly attributing the content.

  • Use quality content as the basis for your new content. Choosing poor-quality content as the basis for your new content doesn’t make sense. You have so many quality sources to choose from that you never have a good reason to use badly written material.

  • Develop a new headline. You are creating a new piece of content. This means that you need a new title that reflects your point of view.

  • Use a new image. Just as you should use a new title, you also need a new image that sets your content apart from the content you’re curating.

  • Reduce the articles you are curating to their essence. This item is especially important. Don’t think that you need to include a lot of content from each article you have chosen. You will have links to the full article right in the piece. What you want to include are the few sentences that represent the most important part of the content.

  • Remember to do your keyword research. Using the right keywords for your audience is just as important for curated articles as it is for original content. Remember that keywords are used to find your content, so they need to be present whenever you publish.

  • Don’t choose only the low-hanging fruit. You and everyone else in your field can find the most popular content. That’s great when you want to know what topics would make good original posts. But if you stop at the most popular content for your curated articles, you are not adding much value. Make an effort to find some good content that hasn’t already been read by your audience.

  • Include your branding to ensure brand recognition and awareness. Any content your company creates or curates should have your branding visible. Both types of content are of value and should let people know they’re from you.

  • Include a call to action (CTA). As you know, whenever you publish content, you want to tell your audience what to do next. A CTA lets your audience know what that next action should be. For example, you may want people to go to a landing page or subscribe to your blog.

  • Decide which channel you will be publishing on ahead of time. Pick the channels you plan to publish on before you write. Be sure to determine that it will satisfy that specific audience.

  • Be clear about how the content will be measured before it’s published. The only way you can judge whether your content is successful is to choose some metrics to evaluate it. Those metrics can also help you determine whether you should create more content just like it.

Even though curating content seems to take a lot of effort, remember that it’s still faster than creating an original article of similar length.