So when we’re talking about Digital Marketing, and we’re talking about these various tools: your website, social media, email marketing, one of the things that’s subtle in there is content. You have to be sharing content; you have to be saying something. And so we’re going to talk a little bit now about what it is you need to be saying and where you’re going to get that content.

My name is Susan Czajkowski. I am the Com Coach: I do digital marketing consulting and communication coaching.

Developing a Content Approach

The best way to look at the kind of content you’re using, and this as across especially social media and email marketing, it can show up in your blog as well. But let’s think about Social Media while I’m talking about this, because that is where it fits the best. Really there are three types of content. I’m going to walk through each of them, but they are: Creation, Curation, and Creative Curation.

1. Creation: Original Content

Creation is your original content. This is what you believe, what you know, what you help people understand. It’s maybe entertaining, it’s maybe how-to. It’s nuggets or long pieces – like I said, we can be talking about a blog here or we can be talking about social media posts. But it’s information that is coming from you. It takes time, it takes effort; it’s an opportunity to let people know what you have to offer, and really put your body of work out there and inform people.

There is a concern often about whether or not you should put everything out there; because then, what do you have to sell? I really am talking to service providers when I’m saying this. You don’t put your entire world out there. you put out the things that people are asking you about, like Frequently Asked Questions. You put out things that people need to know as they’re considering whether or not to work with you. There’s a whole strategy in there. But as you can probably surmise at this point, it takes time, it takes effort, and you’re putting yourself out there.

So that’s Creation, but that’s only one type; there are two other types.

2. Curation: Using Other People’s Content and Sharing It

Curation is using other people’s content and sharing it. So you’re on Facebook or on Twitter, LinkedIn, any Social Media that’s out there. Somebody shares something, and then you share their content. We do this with news articles, we do this with Buzzfeed. We do this with all sorts of articles that we see out there, and you can share famous quotes, people share content and you just share it as well.

As a business owner, there might be a concern – I hear it all the time – “is that okay, am I allowed to do that, isn’t that stealing?” It is not stealing if you are referring to who it was that said it. So when you share the article as it exists, you are just helping that person with that article, helping them get bigger exposure. And you’re also subscribing to it yourself. You’re also saying, “I believe this; I agree; Hey, isn’t this interesting?” When you share it, you are also subscribing to it. That’s something to keep in mind: don’t share things that you don’t subscribe to. You want to make sure as a business owner that your brand and the content you share is in alignment.

One of the benefits of curation is it takes a lot less time than creation: you see something you like, you share it. It’s really quite easy. So that’s really nice, and it’s a great way to fill up your funnel of content, because especially in social media you need to share content on a regular basis. So a combination of creation and curation starts to make a nice plan and strategy for your digital marketing.

3. Creative Curation: Share Content and Comment on it

But there is one more: creative curation. That, I think, is underused and a really interesting opportunity for businesses. So what creative curation is, is when you curate content but then you make a comment about it. When you’re in a social media like Facebook or Twitter or any of them will be able to do this, where you’re sharing someone else’s content but then you make a comment of your own.

There was a post I saw that was, “The Top 5 Foods that Runners Should Eat.” And I was very excited, because #3 was chocolate – Yay! So the comment that I made was “#3 – Chocolate, yay!” in my Twitter feed, and shared it. It was one of my Twitter posts that got the most likes and shares. It got a better response because I made it interesting, I put my own voice up there. It has nothing to do with my business, but it is something that I do, and honestly when it comes to sharing content, being a little more personal and sharing some of your own interests is something you can do with your business account. So there’s nothing wrong with that. But it got me just a little but more response from my audience when I did that, and it was a great way to just celebrate chocolate. So that’s a great example of just adding my own voice to someone else’s content.

One of the concerns that I hear about curation is that when I’m sharing someone else’s content, isn’t a problem because it belongs to them? But as long as it’s clear that it still wants to them, that the person who published content that’s still in place. So often when you’re sharing the link that goes back to the article, those are the kinds of things that make curation okay. What you’re doing, in fact, is a bonus to the person whose content that is. You’re helping them get a wider audience, and it’s a complement to them. So I encourage curation: it’s a good thing.