Part 1 of a two part series…
There are several different types of curation. In fact, there are almost as many types of curation as there are definitions of what exactly curation is.
But there are only two, count them, TWO types of curation that can be monetized well and used for brand-building.
[box type="info" size="large" style="rounded"]Curation is basically a content marketing tactic. Rather than adding to the mountains of “original” content being uploaded every minute to the web, the curator researches, gathers, and picks the best information around a specific topic and shares only the best with their readers or followers. A curator becomes a thought leader through commentary to provide context and meaning to the information they curate into a blog post or a share with their “real-time” audience on the social web.[/box]
With that in mind, there are two major types of curation happening today:
- Real-time curation, and
- Blog Curation (or Curated Hubs)
This is the realm of curation that is personified by people like Robert Scoble, Guy Kawasaki, and Mari Smith. They are followed on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ by so many people because of their ability to surface and post content their readers appreciate, enjoy, and spread around their own networks.
Real-time curation is all about being in-the-know and reporting on the latest breaking news and new information around a specific topic range. Scoble is all about tech, startups, cool apps and social news. Smith is all about sharing content on social media, branding, thought leadership, and marketing via social.
Kawasaki is the hardest to put into a box. He shares just about anything and everything falling under the vague and subjective category of “interesting.” But he’s done the best job of anyone in making general, real-time curation work for his brand.
The real-time curator relies on the same tools as anyone does to pick up on the latest news and information. They live on RSS readers and other info gathering tools and they follow rich sources of information from the top content creators and leaders in their market.
Monetization of Real-Time Curation
Robert Scoble works for Rackspace. He’s actually paid to “be” Scoble and draw attention to Rackspace. Any company in the world would love to have Scoble as their mascot. The amount of attention he garners with his blogging, interviews with tech leaders, and his social following is nothing short of amazing. When he drops news about Rackspace, they are able to show off their ninja skills by keeping their servers from crashing under the massive influx of traffic Scoble can generate.
Mari Smith monetizes her real-time curation by building her brand, selling her books, and selling her expertise.
Guy Kawasaki monetizes his massive social following with book sales. His is the house that real-time curation built.
A study of these three social mavens (by following them and watching what, when, how, and where they curate) would go a long way in developing your own strategy for successful real-time curation.