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How to Start Content Curation for Social Media

Are you looking for ways to improve your content strategy? One way you can do this is by incorporating content curation into your plan.

But what is content curation? And how can you get started with it on social media?

In this article, we’ll answer these questions and give you some tips on how to start content curation today.

Table of contents

What is content curation?

Content curation is the process of finding, selecting, and sharing content that is relevant to your audience.

It’s not just about sharing any old content; content curation is about finding and sharing the best content that will interest and engage your audience.

Examples of curated content include sharing a blog post from an expert in the field, sharing your customer’s photos of your product or quoting a client review.

This content can come from a variety of sources, including blogs, news websites, social media platforms, and more.

Why is content curation important?

Content curation can’t replace an effective content production strategy in its own right. However, when used in conjunction with other content marketing efforts, it can be a powerful tool to help you achieve your business goals.

Curated content is important because it can help you:

  • Save time: Curating content takes less time than creating original content from scratch.
  • Build relationships: When you share content from other sources, you can build relationships with the creators of that content.
  • Showcase your expertise: By sharing content that is relevant to your industry or niche, you can show others that you are an expert in your field.
  • Engage your audience: Curating content can help you engage your audience and keep them coming back for more.

curated content by Mejuri on Instagram

What works with content curation

“Content curation works best as a supplement and proof of credibility to your original content creation strategies. My company sells mens’ underwear and socks and we stock several top brands. While we do our own product photos and lots of our Instagram posts are original content, being able to collect media of men using the brands we carry, especially famous people, and displaying them really adds to our credibility.

I would highly recommend incorporating some collected content on your channels as it helps to build trust in your brand. Your viewers can see content from other sources that are using your products and that is a force multiplier.

What doesn’t work with content curation

“Skewing too much towards content curation is definitely something that will start to drag you down. I think of content curation as the salt to your meal. Early on I made some mistakes with our Instagram and used too much outside content because I wanted to make sure we were posting consistently and often.

This ended up not driving very much traffic or engagement. People still want to see original content because they can get the other content from other sources.”

Richard Clews, Founder @ Pants and Socks

How to get started with content curation on social media

We’ve established that curating content can boost your content marketing strategy and nurture your followers. Now let’s look at some tips on how to get started with content curation on social media.

Step 1. Set a realistic goal

Whether your content curation efforts are laser-focused on your own brand or divided among various clients, you should always start off with a clear goal in mind. Ideally, this should be aligned with the brand’s business goal.

Your target should be realistic, meaning that it’s achievable given your resources and timeline. Establish a goal that’s as specific as possible to make sure you can measure your progress and determine whether you are on track.

How do you plan to measure successful curated social media content?

  • engagement (likes, shares, comments)
  • new followers
  • leads
  • demos
  • authority

“A social media strategy is a goal and the social media plan is the way to get there. We gather the data from the Sales team and/or the owner because we need to gauge the company’s needs and vision for curation.

Our main source of data is the social channels the brand already employs and their site analytics to see where and when the audience is pouring in and what we can do to nurture those leads further. Then, we proceed to curate the content we know has performed well within our target audience.”

Brenton Thomas, Founder @ Twibi Digital Marketing Agency

Step 2. Know your audience

Before you start content curation, do a deep dive into your analytics and research your target market:

  • What kind of content will they be interested in?
  • Where do they hang out online?
  • What social media platforms do they use?

Answering these questions will help you narrow down where you can find the best content for curation and how to create engaging posts for your audience.

 

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A post shared by Sweaty Betty (@sweatybetty)

Content Curation tips from marketers:

“Curating content can come off as lazy or uninspired if done wrong. The key to our strategy was to position ourselves as thought leaders, and to do so, we needed to know our audience and answer the following questions:

How does this piece/blog help them? Is it relevant for their problem? Does the content align with the brand perception? The content has to satisfy the user intent. Thus, we ensure that every piece of content (ours or curated) fits with our values.”

Gosia Hytry, Head of Content @ Spacelift

Step 3. Find content sources

The million-dollar question: where do I find share-worthy content? Put yourself in your social media followers’ shoes: what are their pain points? What should they learn more about? Make sure you subscribe, follow and watch content relevant to your industry. You can curate content from:

  • niche blog posts
  • social media hashtags
  • Facebook groups
  • Slack communities
  • Twitter communities
  • experts on LinkedIn
  • sub-reddits
  • Quora threads
  • industry newsletters
  • podcasts
  • user-generated content (UGC): testimonials, reviews, customer photos, social mentions
  • content repurposing

quoting a reliable source in an Instagram post

How to curate content: tips from marketers

“People turn to social media to find out what other people are saying about a certain brand or business. You can share customer reviews as content. I for one like to take snippets and turn them into graphics that we can share across our social channels. Slap on an awesome caption, a link to your landing page, a witty hashtag, and you’re good to go!”

Sharon Van Donkelaar, CMO @ Expandi

Still unsure where to even begin with content curation?

Check who the experts in your niche are following on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and any other relevant social media profiles.

Chances are, some of the accounts they’re following will be extremely relevant to your vertical. You can then check who these newly discovered accounts follow too. Repeat the process until you have a list you’re satisfied with.

How to curate content: tips from marketers

“Be selective about the sources you choose to curate from. Make sure that the sources are reputable and have a good track record when it comes to producing quality content.”

Luke Lee, [email protected] Ever Wallpaper

Step 4. Decide how frequently to curate

How much content should you curate? The general rule of thumb for content curation is to prioritize quality over quantity. Ideally, curated content can cover about 20-30% of the total content you post online or via social media. Building all of your content strategy around content curating can be another thing that does not necessarily help your company’s reputation.

Content Curation tips from marketers:

“Without the right content curation strategy, it’s easy to lose focus on the message you want to convey. Don’t flood your audience with too much curation. Set a frequency to send the curated content so that your audience doesn’t get irritated and successfully relate with what you share.”

Ronald Williams, Founder @ BestPeopleFinder

“Come up with a golden ratio of curated and created content. This ratio varies from business to business, but in general, you don’t want to go north of 25% curated content. Right at the beginning, we did make the mistake of relying too much on one source for curated content.

Now, we like to share content from brands that complement ours. Since we sell proposal-building software that accelerates the sales process, we’re interested in content that supports and discusses sales automatization: reports, podcasts, infographics, software reviews, etc.”

Adam Hempenstall, Founder & CEO @ Better Proposals

meme content curation on Instagram

Step 5. Plan, approve and schedule the content

Planning your content in advance will ensure that you create material that is relevant to your audience and supports your business goals. Approving and scheduling your content will help you stay organized and give you the peace of mind that your content is published when you want it to be.

  • use a social media calendar for keeping track of posts on different platforms and identifying content gaps to fill
  • find the relevant hashtags you plan to use and incorporate them in your caption
  • request necessary assets or visuals well in advance of publication date
  • get the approval of all stakeholders ahead of time to be sure the piece goes live on time.

Content Curation tips from marketers:

“Make sure you have an attainable routine to stay on track. What I have found to help me is setting a content creation schedule and having 30 days of content ready by the 22nd of the prior month.

On Mondays, we set the tone for the week, we look at what is trending and save our favorites, we jot down ways to spin and add our personal branded touch then we batch create on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, then on Thursday and Friday we sit down and type the captions while we schedule them in our planner accordingly.”

Sacha Ferrandi, Founder @ Source Capital

Step 6. Share relevant content

Time to start sharing content with your audience!

Content curation can solve many difficulties, but it also comes with many challenges. The biggest challenge is finding relevant material to appeal to the target demographic and audience.

The crucial thing to remember here is relevancy. You don’t want your followers’ number to start dwindling because you’re only sharing dog TikToks (no, it doesn’t matter how cute they are!) When sharing someone else’s content:

  • customize the content for each social media platform
  • package the content in an entertaining way for social media
  • mix original and curated content
  • perform audience research every 6 months to keep up with any changes
  • add your 2 cents and share your own thoughts before publishing the piece
  • credit the original source of the content
  • adjust your strategy as you go based on your pre-established engagement metrics.

This whole process will engage your audience and establish you as an expert in your field.

Content Curation tips from marketers:

“One strategy that worked for us when curating content on social media is to focus on a specific theme for each day or week. For example, we might dedicate Mondays to sharing tips and advice related to our industry, Wednesdays to interviewing a relevant guest expert, and Fridays to highlighting a special offer or case study.

By focusing on different themes each day or week, we were able to keep our social channels interesting and engaging while also providing valuable content to our audience.”

Jonathan Baillie Strong, Founder @ Spotlight Podcasting

Step 7. Monitor your results

Curated content doesn’t mean you can “set it and forget it.” For the best results, it’s important to track your performance and draw insights from it. Pull up regular social media analytics to see how your social media curated content is performing:

  • Are people engaging with it?
  • What’s the overall sentiment?
  • Are you noticing an uptick in followers, comments, likes or shares?

Content curation is a great way to improve your social media strategy. By following these tips, you can get started with content curation and engage your audience with relevant and interesting content.

repurposing your own content on social media

Created vs curated content

What is the difference between creating new content and curating existing content?

Curated content is content that has been created by someone else (like user-generated content) but is relevant to your brand. This could be an article from a specialty blog or a video from YouTube that you share on your brand’s social media channels.

Created content is original content produced specifically for your brand. This can include blog posts, infographics, videos, IG reels, YouTube shorts, TikToks etc.

Is it better to curate or create content?

Content curation is a low-effort way to keep your audience engaged when you don’t have the necessary resources to create fresh content. Content creation is more high-effort and requires investing time and resources to create original, relevant content.

If you’re trying to reach a wide audience with timely, relevant information, curating content from other sources may be the best strategy. However, if you’re looking to build a strong relationship with your followers and establish yourself as an expert in your field, creating original content is essential.

Content curation tools

Content curation is an effective addition to any social media marketing strategy. Here are a few tools that will make social media content curation a breeze:

1. Planable

Planable is a social media management tool designed to help you collaborate with your team and get your social media posts reviewed, approved, and scheduled. It’s simple and easy to use, with a variety of features that make it an ideal choice for successful content curation.

With Planable, content marketers can curate high-quality content for 7 social platforms: Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google My Business, TikTok, Twitter and Youtube.

Planable social media content calendar

The convenient drag and drop interface makes it easy to add content from around the web to your content calendar and arrange it into beautiful visual displays. Switch to grid view anytime to get an accurate view of your upcoming posts.

content collaboration feature in Planable

Want to schedule the same curated content post multiple times in advance? Set up recurring posts like a pro! Whether it be daily, weekly, or monthly, you can do batch scheduling ahead of time with Planable and focus on other things.

Content Curation tips from marketers:

“About 8 months ago I spent a couple days making 100+ posts that now post in my group daily, and because my group is all about couples finding wedding venues, it usually doesn’t take 100+ days for them to find their venue, so the content is always relative to folks paying attention to it.

I’m also sending these group posts to Google My Business so I can also slowly get local points from Google to rank higher on Google Maps!”

Gary Pope, Owner at Love Long and Prosper Photography

Try Planable for content curation for free today!

2. Buzzsumo

Buzzsumo allows users to see the most popular content across all social media platforms. This website is particularly useful for businesses and individuals who want to get an idea of what content is resonating with people on social. You can also use BuzzSumo to find influencers in your niche and track competitor content.

3. Google Alerts

Google Alerts is a content change detection and notification service, offered by the search engine company Google. The service emails you when it finds new results (web pages, newspaper articles, blogs, or scientific research) that match your search terms. Google Alerts can be used to track a competitor’s online activity, to find sources for news stories, or to simply stay up-to-date on a given topic.

4 Scoop.it

scoop.it is a content curation tool that allows you to easily find and share content from around the web. You can use scoop.it to find content for your blog, website, or social media accounts. You can also use scoop.it to track your favorite topics and see what others are saying about them. This tool is a great way to curate content from around the web.

5 feedly.com

feedly.com is a personalized magazine rack that lets you follow and read the websites, blogs and feeds that matter to you. It also has some great features to help you curate social media content. You can easily organize your content into different categories so you can find what you’re looking for with a few clicks.

You can ‘star’ items to save them for later, or share them with your marketing content team. The tool allows you to discover new and interesting content through the ‘recommended for you’ section and keep up with all the content creators that create shareable content suitable for your social media accounts.

Ready to Curate Content?

Content curation on social media makes it easy to publish content without writing the whole thing or producing it yourself. The process of curating content focuses on identifying the relevant content that your audience finds relevant and beneficial. So roll up your sleeves and start curating today!

Andreea Stefan
Andreea Stefan

Relentless advocate and practitioner of putting users before Google algorithms since 2016. Geeks out over everything tech SEO. Dabbles in photography and is a natural-born reader.

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