Have you heard of content curation? Many marketers and bloggers often confuse the term with aggregation or content distribution, but content curation is its own unique tool. In fact, content creation is more about context that links. We compiled a short guide to introduce you to the basics of content curation and how it can help you.

Content Curation, Defined

Content curation, simply put, means pairing content with context. Maria Popova, founder of BrainPickings.org, is a master of content curation. Take this post, for example:


In the image to the right, Popova blends her own content and topic with the content of others, creating valuable context to her readers. Not only does she quote many sources and link to former articles, she provides a deeper meaning to her articles through content curation. In essence, you are resharing content, yet you’re trying to glean something of value from the content itself and apply it to your own. Another great way to use content curation is for lists. Say you want to create an infographic on the popularity of Fat Cat Art. You might search for tweets relating to Fat Cat Art over time and incorporate those into your design. This is an excellent way to add value to your posts.

Content Curation Toolbox

Unless you commit to reading hundreds of books and articles per day, you might be wondering how to go about finding content you can use. Luckily, many options exist to make your content creation easier and richer. Several online tools streamline the process and make finding relevant content a breeze.

Storify combs social media for relevant keywords and returns anything “story-worthy.” They even simplified the process by adding a bookmarklet you can install to capture anything interesting you find online.

Scoop.it is like Storify and even provides one-click publishing from your searches.  Scoop.it also offers what it calls “branded hubs,” websites powered by its software.

Evernote might not seem like much of a content curation tool at first glance, but if you look deeper, you’ll notice that their team built a powerful content organization platform. The Evernote Web Clipper works well for collecting relevant content and tagging it, so you can find it later. Evernote also provides a rich user interface filled with notes and notebooks to organize your content.

With these tools and a basic understanding of content curation, you can explore and experiment with your content and provide even more value for you or your customers. For more information on content curation and marketing, stay tuned to our blog or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.