Not so long ago some members of the marketing world were up in arms about content curation, and whether it was all together ethical! Generally speaking, people were worried that their original content would be illegally copied by others, and used for their own purposes rather than what it was originally created for.

The other big question at the time, apart from the ethics of the idea, was would it be frowned upon by Google. Would you end up getting yourself in serious trouble for doing this?

The truth is that content curation is often still misunderstood by a lot of people, despite the fact it has proven to be a fantastic strategy for adding interest and value to your business blog and social media sites without actually doing any more extra work to achieve.

But what does it really mean?

Obviously, when you think of the word curation you will think of collecting and collections, such as works of art gathered together for an exhibition, or where a museum will curate related pieces of work or ancient artefacts for a grand display. It is the same thing with us, only we would curate information related to our niche, and present it in a coherent way.

People tend to love curated content, and it helps to cut down the time needed to search out and discover information that they are interested in, and what to know more about. The best example of this idea that will spring to mind is Pinterest, which is a whole site dedicated to curated content.

Curating content isn’t a form of stealing. You are simply reposting interesting and relevant information that other people within your business sector have written and produced, along with full attribution to the author or original source.

When you think about it, curated content has been around in one form or another for a long while. Take for example news channels that curate the top ten headlines for the day to send out to their readership, or a book publishers who send out newsletters about their latest book titles within specific genres.

When you are running a growing businesses, it is vital that you keep your customers happy, and one sure fire way to do this is to supply them with all of the important information they could ever want within their niche, from a multitude of different sources, without them having to do all the hard work themselves. You will be providing them with the one single source they will ever need to go to where they can get everything they need.

Just think about the advantages you could gain – you can be seen as an authority figure who is an expert in your field, and there will never be the need to be continually churning out original content of your own to achieve this! The one thing that constantly holds bloggers back is the time commitment needed to constantly write new content to update their blog each day.

Content curation can be a big help to the original creator too! Because you are taking a clip or snippet of the article along with a link back to the original source for anyone wanting to read more, the original creator of the work will get more traffic coming from the link, and also be held in higher regard by the search engines for having more links.

It is worth a little time and effort to get into curation not only because of the benefits already outlined, but because search engines also appreciate good quality web curators. Not only this, but if you are willing to curate and share other peoples information, they will be more than happy to do the same for you. This means that any content that you create for your own site may also become someone else’s created content. You will benefit greatly from gaining new readers, increased links, and open up your world to a whole raft of new customers too!

Pinterest has already been mentioned here, and is a great example of a visual curation site that would really suit you if you have physical products that people love to look at – such as shoes, clothes, sculptures, paintings and art etc.

You can use curation software, and there are many choices to go with, some of which are free, and some of which you pay to join, or buy a subscription to. One of the best out there that is geared to business is Curata, but popular across both business and personal sectors are Pinterest and Storify. If you are looking for something with a good mix of visual and text based info, then ClipZine may be appealing as it creates your content into a stylish magazine page layout that is easy on the eye.

Overall, content curation is a great way to mix up your own content with other quality information from within your sector, and present it to your readership in a convenient form. This will keep your customer base loyal and coming back for more, as well as introduce new potential customers to your business, build your authority online, and be discovered by more people within your niche.