With content marketing coming back in a big way this year, it won’t be long before brands start to consider the efficacy of republishing third-party content alongside brand-authored content.

Brand managers have historically view content curation with suspicion. Apart from the prejudice that no third-party content could ever accurately convey the brand’s ‘values’, there is also the worry that any piece of third-party content could create all manner of headaches for the legal team.

However, the benefits of content curation are numerous:

It saves time for busy consumers

Content curation is a tremendous opportunity for brands to provide a useful and ever-engaging service for time-poor consumers who are eager to learn, research and be entertained.

When it comes to content, consumers both enjoy and suffer from a plurality of choice.

With something like 2 million new articles published to the web each day, the options can be paralysing for consumers. By curating content from various sources and bringing them together in a branded hub, brands can distill the digital ‘wheat from the chaff’, so that consumers don’t have to.

A great example of this is Pepsi Pulse which curates trending pop culture and entertainment news and blends it with original content, such as deals and celebrity challenges.

Become an authoritative gateway to knowledge

Content curation also enables brands to create an environment that people continually return to as a knowledge resource on a particular topic or issue.

In doing so, brands set themselves up as an authority, but more importantly an impartial authority — by not just profiling their own content or views. This is a great way to diffuse the sense of mistrust that we all have when we suspect we are being sold to when we are not ready or not interested. By creating a hub of content that contains alternate — even contrary — voices and opinions, brands can actually make themselves more trustworthy.

Intel’s iQ magazine uses curation to make it an unbiased and editorially varied source of information technology news.

iQ — a technology-focussed magazine created by IT company Intel, features a mix of original reporting by Intel employees alongside curated content from the likes of Mashable. By adopting this content blend of differing voices of employees and non-employees, Intel can foster and maintain its image as a top technology provider, without seeming contrived or biased.

De-risk the cost of your content marketing programme

There is also something to be said for content curation as a means for brands to efficiently bypass many of the operational and financial burdens of committing to a content market programme. It’s a big step to emulate brands like Coke which have built in-house ‘brand newsrooms‘ to mimic many of the processes of a traditional media company — editorial, production and sales. However, by curating content from various syndicated sources, a brand can have all the clout of a major publication without the attendant impracticalities.

Furthermore, content marketing platforms are increasingly de-risking the process of curation by intelligently understanding which content is appropriate to publish and which isn’t. The rise of these technologies mean that content curation need not be the time-sap or liability it might initially seem.

Help you generate more ideas

The Media Briefing uses content curation to become a hub of news and to generate ideas for fresh angles on stories.

Coming up with fresh ideas for your own marketing content every day is no easy task. One of the most effective ways to find inspiration is by becoming a content curator. Since you’re exposing yourself to a plethora of topics and ways to present them, you will inevitably come up with a constant stream of new concepts, thoughts, and questions.

This is most apparent in media sites such as The Media Briefing who use curation to republish feeds of breaking news. By curating news content from multiple sources, editors are able to group stories under particular topics and then use this hub for The Media Briefing to create its own original angle on a story.

Whilst content curation may seem counter-intuitive to marketers who only want to promote their own content, it is a boon for those brands who realise the benefits of becoming an authoritative online resource that audience visit regularly for a useful, engaging and helpful experience.

Great content marketing doesn’t always require creating content from scratch – sometimes it is as much about shining a spotlight on others’ content as it is about profiling your own.

If you are interested in how content curation or onsite behaviour tracking could help you improve your current content marketing strategy, get in contact – we’d be happy to chat!