When you hear the word blogger, what image comes to mind? A sacred group of people anointed by the All Mighty with special powers who unleash their acerbic editorial tongue lashing from 40-story skyscrapers in major cities around the world? Or is it men and women in pajamas scattered across the country eating cereal while pontificating on vacuous subjects? Maybe it’s paparazzi celebrity stalkers with 50MM zoom lenses camping out in a rental car waiting to assault a model cheating on her husband with a sports star.
Yes, some of the above is still true, but blogging actually has become mainstream over the last few years. Everyone from the President to celebrities, to companies (large and small), to parents and hobbyists, it seems the web is full of millions of blogs on just as many topics, some so niche you’d need a specialized degree to even read some of them. In this word of blog overload, is there room for you? Is there room for me? Has all of the decent oxygen been taken up by existing bloggers? And who cares what I have to say anyway?
Well, the truth is, few blogs are good or even great, and fewer are able to successfully capture the hearts and minds of millions. The other secret is not all blogs are created equally. In fact, some of the mightiest blogs are actually not blogs at all. They are curated content sites. What? Yes, curated content sites. What is that you ask? Well, let me give you an example. Let’s say you wanted to start a blog on CPG (consumer packaged goods) advertising. There are two ways to go about it:
The standard blog: Every day, you read everything that’s going on in CPG advertising and sit down to write two or three meaningful 1,500 word blog posts. Then you need a place to publish them. So you register for WordPress, Blogger, Wix, or insert-next-big-blogging-platform-here. You opt for the basic version and because you’re not an engineer you don’t customize it at all (let’s be real, HTML is hard). After a few sleepless days you decide one post per day is enough. Then you realize how much time it takes to sit down and write a truly meaningful blog post—and you decide once a week is just fine. And eventually, you realize the time commitment is just too much and then effort needed to digest the landscape of CPG advertising is too great. And just like that another blog dies—every day perhaps.
The curated content site: Similar to the former situation, each morning, you read through a ton of content on CPG advertising from millions of sources including top newspapers, magazines, other blogs, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Then, instead of starting from scratch, you pluck only the choicest articles, choose the plummiest photos for each, add your own perspective (a few sentences describing your point of view), schedule them to publish throughout the day, and move on to the rest of your responsibilities. And while you’re pushing the “publish now” button the same articles and insights get shared on all of your social networks simultaneously (see where I’m going with this?). With a few clicks, you can also personalize the page by uploading a logo or image, change the background colors, and modify the header layout. And when inspiration strikes, you can publish your own blog post and upload an image at any time.
I know what you’re thinking–#2 is just too easy. Anyway, what successful blog has EVER behaved like a curated content site? Well, Huffington Post and Business Insider are both essentially that: a pretty picture, a few lines of perspective and a link to the original article written by someone else, sometimes a well-known publication.
Whether you are looking to share your passions, demonstrate thought-leadership, fuel your content marketing strategy to grow brand awareness and leads, or seeking a knowledge management solution, content curation is your ticket to ride the blogging wave and have the tools to succeed.
So what are you waiting for? Start curating now and know you too can become a sorcerer of the might blog. Curating really is simpler than blogging – in fact, it’s blogging for the rest of us (and no, we’re not dummies)!