How to avoid costly mistakes in content curation



Digital marketing strategy calls for publishing rich content consistently.  There is only so much original content that you can generate to influence your customers.

In fact, when you try to create more original content under time pressure – i.e. to meet the deadlines you imposed on yourself – your content quality goes down drastically.

Bloggers, internet marketers and digital marketing specialists struggle with this topic.  They all encounter writer’s block.

Interviews, stories, articles, insights, surveys, research papers, etc. all have limited reserves.

But there is one content type that has unlimited potential if done right.

And that is curated content.

In this post I will explain the best way to publish content using this method. In other words, this post is a content curation case study.

If not done right, then curated content feels artificial (best case) or you may end up copying others’ work and plagiarizing content (worst case).

To avoid such costly mistakes, read on.

I routinely come across sloppily curated posts that miss one key point or another.  Then I get asked questions all the time.

So I put together this case study on content curation, using “content curation” as the keyword.

You too can build impactful and content-rich posts by following the steps listed below:


1. Keyword identification.

Look at your keyword list and select the best keyword for the post.  Of course, you can also pick and optimize the best keyword at the end, after compiling the post.  However, you need to have a good understanding of what the post topic is about.


Your keyword list is like a roadmap for your site.  Keywords cannot, must not be random.  Ranking high for the wrong keyword is as bad as not ranking at all.


In this post, Bruce Clay provides 5 steps to effective keyword research.


Bruce Clay – How to do Keyword Research for SEO

SEO Tutorial Step 1: Learn how to do Keyword Research, use Free Tools like our Keyword Suggestion Tool, and select keywords for search engine optimization.

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You can also down this deep insight paper on Practical Keyword Research for mastering this critical topic.


A keyword research tool becomes invaluable.  While there are many that do the job, I prefer Market Samurai and it works for me.


2.    Set up your image.

For this post, I found a great picture that was declared by the author – Ramchand Bruce Phagoo – to be in the public domain.


Never ever publish a post without an image.


Images are not only good for SEO, but they also help readers spend that crucial second longer on your site.

Needless to add, pictures stick in readers’ minds longer.  After all, a picture is worth a thousand words.


An added benefit is that your image can have its own SEO.  Best case scenario for your post is to rank #1 in Google for your focus keyword, AND for your image to rank #2 for the same keyword!


But BEWARE of IP rights violation when you use images off the internet.

Your best bet is to take your own photos and use them.

Alternatively, you have to examine the copyright conditions of images.


You can down this deep insight paper to understand IP rights of images, and how can safely use them in your posts.


Also, this short post by Roni Lauren gives an overview of IP rights.


Blogger Beware you CAN get sued for photos you don’t …

By Roni Loren on January 12, 2015 …. So lesson learned: protect yourself and respect the rights of other artists. … God knows I have no background in law. …… why it is imperative that you ha…

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3.    Understanding who your customer is.

Who are you writing for, and what would they be interested in?  i.e. what is the value that your post will provide and how will the post engage the reader?


The customer is someone who is interested in online ecommerce.  They could have blogs, a site that needs to put out content on a regular basis.  Their primary pain is creating content.


From Google Analytics, I understand the following:

They are 71% males and about 45% are between the ages of 25 and 44(from my Google Analytics)

Primarily they are interested are in movies, technology, photography and social media.


9 awesome things you can do with Google Analytics 5

Google Analytics 5 took the best features of their analytics program and made it … out of your analytics information and use it to improve your website’s content, …

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4.    What are the “content sources”?


As you curate more and more, you will slowly build a pattern.  You may be going to the same sources or to the same sites or be interested in the same author or types of articles.

It is important to get an understanding of your behavior.

Then when you pair it with the types of articles you put out, your customer behavior will tell you whether content curation is working for you.


Armed with this insight, you can fine-tune your content for optimizing the results.


As an example, I usually put out a list-type post, with numbered steps – I guess I like a framework and a structure – and make it easy for scanning and understanding.


I am naturally drawn to other authors/sites that put out lists, such as KissMetrics.

Some of my best performing content, naturally, are lists.  So this works.


You can also find out how to write content that best works for your readers.


Your readers may also prefer audio podcasts.  Or videos.


5.    Generating the article.

This takes time.  You need to put the article together, collect rich posts that you are curating, and edit the article.

This is where you need a good content curation tool.  Good content curation tools must have three things built-in: (1) rich sources to curate from, (2) a rich-text editor, and (3) capability to automatically publish to your site.

CurationSoft – now available in a web version – makes curation very simple.  You can drag and drop articles into your editor and the software maintains not only the link to the original article, but also credits back to the original site.

There are other tools that do the job. This article has been built using CurationSoft.

Best Content Curation Software

CurationSoft enables content curation on a whole new level. Our content curation tools will help you establish your brand as an authoritative voice and go-to …

Visit best content curation software for more information…


There – my curated post is now ready.  I have pulled in very rich information from more than 8 sources, and this should add value to my readers.


What are the challenges that you are facing in putting out rich content on a consistent basis?



Image: Author – Ulysses D.S.  Source:

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About Author: Raj Subramanyam