If you curate and share content to social media, you’ll likely know there’s a ton of great content out there. But you’ll also likely have noticed the not so great content too.
Like a gold prospector, it’s your job to sift through the rocks (bad content) to find the bright, gleaming, glorious gold (great content). In content marketing terms, it’s all about finding the articles that’ll boost your following and industry influence.
Knowledge is a powerful thing. It’s the reason people buy newspapers, read books and use tools like Pocket and Feedly. People love to read, learn, share and feel.
It’s tapping into people’s desire for knowledge that makes curation such an effective tool for growing your following. It’s also why being a great curator will kickstart your brand and help you grow your following in no time.
But hold on. Before you go off hunting for the shiniest articles, there’s something you should know: It’s not the same for everyone.
Because no two audiences are the same, you’ll need to take special care to find out what works for your audience. You may need to post high-quality content infrequently. Or maybe post lower quality content far more often.
Let’s take a look at some examples about how to adjust quality and frequency of shares depending on the audience.
Natalie’s a keen food blogger in Pittsburgh. She loves sharing articles about the best cupcakes in town. She tends to spend her days walking round the city to find the best sweet treats, and Instagramming them.
On Twitter, she tends to share 3 articles per day from the web—a pretty small amount.
For Natalie, the articles need to be top quality—the best of the best. She doesn’t tweet often so the content needs to be useful, exciting, and appealing to her audience. Good enough that they’ll look forward to each and every tweet.
Tony, on the other hand, is a social media expert based in Toronto.
He sells eBooks and webinars that reach thousands of people all over the world. He’s considered one of the top influencers in his field. On Twitter, Tony tends to send out a whopping 100 tweets a day, jam-packed full of articles.
For him, the article quality doesn’t matter so much. He gets a ton of interaction regardless.
What’s important to him is getting the articles queued and sent out so he looks active.
As you can tell, the amount you share alters the quality of articles you need to share on social media.
I’d say if you’re sharing less than 10 articles a day on social media you should be really focus on quality. More than that, you can afford to be a little more relaxed.
If you’re sharing articles from a personal or company account to increase influence and spread the word, you have to make sure the content is valuable enough for your target audience.
Here are some things to ask yourself when evaluating content for quality and value:
Is the article well written? Does the article have a good structure? Does it flow and are there minimal spelling and grammar mistakes?
Can the content be read easily? Take a look at the font size and the blog template. Ignore blogs that have an annoying altered scroll and those with a tiny 10-point text size.
Is the article good enough? For people to click on your links, the article needs to be worth their time. Take a look at the introduction—does it draw in the reader, or does it go straight into boring blab?
These apply to your content too. Make sure you’re creating valuable articles for others. Otherwise your blog will look like a ghost town (watch out for that tumbleweed).
Sharing irrelevant content with your followers is a massive mistake.
Are your articles too general? People won’t understand what your feed’s all about.
Sharing niche stuff all the time? Unless you have a really targeted group of followers, you won’t get much interaction.
As the one in charge of your social media accounts, you need to be sure that the content you’re sharing is well suited to your audience.
Not sure who your target audience is? It’s time to make some user personas. These are living, breathing documents about your audience. Think of them as personalities on a page.
Let’s take a peek into some real Twitter accounts and see how they curate content to appeal to their personas.
FoundersGrid is a daily newsletter for startup founders. As you can see below, on their website they make it pretty clear who they’re targeting (hint: startup founders).
Let’s sneak into their twitter feed and see what they’re sharing to social media.
Oh my. Turns out they share content that’s high quality and is aimed at their target audience. Technology, founder, and remote work articles seem to be most attractive to their followers.
They could share tons of random content about startups. Instead, they hand-pick what they’re going to share so it appeals to their followers.
You’re on the UpContent blog, so I’m pretty sure they don’t need an introduction from me! Their audience is made up of Twitter influencers, social media experts, and small businesses.
Turns out the team at UpContent sends out social media tips and tricks. They also add in content that’ll be useful for small businesses, like analytics and business tips.
Sharing useful content that’s well tailored to their target audience has helped them build a community on Twitter.
Madalyn Sklar is a top social media influencer based in Houston, Texas. Her target audience is made up of other social media influencers, enthusiasts, and freelancers.
Here’s 3 of Madalyn’s most recent tweets:
As you can see, Madalyn’s appealing to her audience by sharing articles that help other social media pros get better at social. Notice the #TwitterSmarter hashtag?
Tweeting many times a day, Madalyn shares a ton of content. Although it’s not as targeted as the other examples we looked at, it’s still useful for her followers.
Nice feed, Madalyn!
Social media can help you grow your influence and network.
By sharing others’ content, you can help your audience discover interesting reads while also attracting attention to your own. Pretty neat, huh?
Here are some things to remember:
Make sure the content you share is high-enough quality. Even if you are sending out 100 tweets a day, you still need to make sure the content is relevant and speaks to your audience.
Use a tool to make it easier. A tool like UpContent can help you dig through the dirt and find the gold hidden within. Just make sure you’ve set up your topic correctly.
Make sure you’re engaging with your followers. It’s no use sharing out articles and having no opinion. If you’re striving to be an influencer in your space, make sure you’re adding your views to the mix.
Good luck in your quest to dig up the content gold!
Jarratt is the COO at Contentacle, a startup that makes super simple content marketing software for teams. When he’s not writing content, he’s designing user interfaces and experiences.