If content curation is your job, then you know that timing is everything. There’s no quicker way to alienate your followers than to consistently serve up stale content. And, as you know, viral items on the Internet go bad much faster than a loaf of bread. For instance, if you’re just now finding out about The Dress, you’re much better off admitting you missed that one than posting about it now. We all saw it. We’re all sick of it. It’s blue and black, and there is no room for debate.
But being good at curating content isn’t just about not missing out on every viral sensation. It’s also about consistently finding cool things that might otherwise fly under the radar. Here are five sources of content that will not only keep you on top of what everyone else is talking about, but they will also help you to start a conversation of your own:
It used to be that whenever you wanted to keep abreast of whatever was happening in your industry, you’d subscribe to a bunch of trade magazines. However, since we live in a world that is going increasingly paperless, it may be a better option to just create your own magazine — a digital one.
Flipboard allows you to do just that. It aggregates content of your choice — everything from big newspapers to your social media feed — and presents it in a magazine-style app. This is a good one to use if you already know where to get your content but just need an efficient way to do it.
Prismatic is taking content discovery to new heights by learning your interests and finding new ones. It’s a mobile reading app that presents you with articles and information from your own social network and items from other websites that are generating buzz.
Prismatic distinguishes itself, though, through the way it makes recommendations of topics based on your past usage. Soon you’ll see more things you hadn’t thought of but are certainly relevant to your interests. It’s kind of like the StumbleUpon of 2015.
Buzzsumo’s top content search is perfect if you’re a little late to the party, but you still want to share a relevant article. Enter a search term, and Buzzsumo will present you with a list of articles on that topic sorted by the number of shares across every major social media platform.
Buzzsumo is free, but it also has an upgraded premium service that provides more in-depth and focused searches. The pro version will help you get more in depth with advanced search queries. You certainly don’t need the pro version to get good use out of Buzzsumo, though.
Think of Medium as a kind of Twitter — it was created by the founders of Twitter — without the character restrictions. It’s basically just a popular blogging platform, but it can be extremely useful to find content once you tap into the community that shares your interests.
And if you don’t have time to add yet another social network to check every day, Medium’s digest emails will keep you informed on the topics of your choice. In fact, Medium might be worth joining just for those emails alone. Personally, the Medium digest emails are one of the few newsletters that I almost always check out!
Reddit bills itself as the “front page of the internet.” It can be a little intimidating, and it doesn’t have the most intuitive user-interface. But it’s absolutely essential to know how to use it if you want to know what’s about to go viral before anyone else does.
Many marketers are intimidated by or even afraid of Reddit. They don’t understand it. It’s true that you need to walk a fine line as a communicator on Reddit. The key to using Reddit well is to just jump into the community and start participating. Notice that I said “participating” – not spamming!
If you just want to use Reddit as a source of material rather than interacting with the community, that’s still possible; just find and subscribe to subreddits related to your industry and let the wisdom of the masses inform you about what is trending. Beyond Reddit, there are community news sites in specific industries that operate similarly. For example, in the design industry, community news is alive and well; there are tons of sources of design news to choose from! I highlighted a few in other industries in this post for Socialnomics.
Finding high quality and reliable content on the web is a challenge, especially if it’s content that you intend to use to help promote your brand. Getting ahead is tricky, but these five relatively untapped sources of rising content will prove super valuable in the long run!
What are your favorite places to find good content to share? Tell me in the comments!
Article by Adrienne Erin (Guest Blogger)
Adrienne is a freelance designer, writer, and serial social media addict. You can read more of her work on her blog, Design Roast, or follow her on Twitter for thoughts on web design, social media, and the internet.