When you curate a museum or gallery, you bring in art or artifacts from many different sources and display them in one place. That’s curation.
Visitors get to visit one location and experience art or history from around the world. It saves them having to travel all over the place. Seeing one painting in it’s home is nice, but seeing it with a series of other paintings that share a theme, style, or period of history creates an experience.
Usually, items in galleries or museums are hard to find on their own. Often, they are unique pieces that can’t be found anywhere else.
In the digital world, there’s an abundance of original content. The challenge is sifting through all of the options to find the most relevant and interesting pieces.
Content curation is when you create a central location for digital content with similar theme or style. You find only the best content and deliver it to your followers. You are saving your followers from having to scrounge through the internet themselves.
Curation has been around since the dawn of art, but digital content curation has become a marketing and business focus in the past few years. There are all sorts of software solutions to help you delve through topics, posts, images, and videos.
The traditional curation business charges each visitor to experience the collection. That doesn’t work in the digital world. Not too many people will pay for an email with a bunch of links, even if the links are to amazing content. You have to be more subtle.
The most obvious ways to monetize a curation web site would be advertising and affiliate marketing. Curating awesome content will draw in high traffic volumes, making relevant advertising on your website a profitable option. As long as you’re curating content for specific interests (outdoor adventures, for example), you could link to other people’s products and get a commission for each sale (that’s affiliate marketing).
If you’re looking for good curation tools, Paper.li is a great resource. It allows you to add content, search social media, and customize your layout for free. If you want to put your own ads in your “paper” then it will cost you.
Here’s a paper I whipped up in about 10 minutes surrounding “Outdoor Adventures” as a demonstration what you can do with Paper.li.
But there are many other ways to curate content and make it look attractive. How could your business use curation? What kinds of content does your audience love?