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The Edge 365

New Thinking that Drives Marketing Results

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  • Jon Rivers

Creating Content vs Curating Content - What’s the Balance?

For many companies the challenge is creating enough content to feed the outlets they run. Do you turn to filling the void with curated content? If so, how much? For some companies, pressed for time as well as ideas for original content, it becomes a question of whether to just use curated content all the time.

Before you decide, consider the pros and cons.

Creating your own content


The huge advantage is that you own the content. You can brand the content however you want and use it however and wherever you want, too.  

By creating your own content, it will be unique to you.

Original content brings you online creditability.

People crave new content. So, the creators of new content are going to gain the highest rewards. This puts you in the drive seat!


One of the biggest hurdles is the time it takes to create original content. Perhaps you simply don’t have people within your organization with enough time to create the content you need.

Another factor is money. Perhaps you decide to outsource to a ghost writer. “Cha-Ching!” You just paid someone to write for you.

Then you will need to find and pay for provocative images that will be grab your audience’s attention. It all adds up.

Bottom line, your content might fail.

Curating content


With tools like feedly you can, with very little effort, set up alerts to relevant content that your audience might like.   

This saves you the time and money that someone on your team would have invested in building content.

It’s also more than likely that the article you’re curating has already proven successful. So you already know that it’s going to work


There’s no getting away from it. You don’t own the content that you’re sharing, so it’s only available for limited usage.

You have just become one of many who are also sharing the same article, so you’re not standing out from the crowd.

Just because an article might be popular, it could work against you because your audience may by wondering why aren’t you being original and creating your own content.

You have to constantly worry about crediting the content appropriately. If you don’t, you could quickly find yourself in big legal trouble.

The rule of thumb

The rule of thumb I like to recommend to my clients is that for every five (5) pieces of curated content that they promote via their social networks, they should create at least one (1) piece of original content to balance the scales.

The trick is that once you have that piece of original content, you now have to push it out via your social networks. And you have to determine how often you can reuse it. In some cases, it is quite acceptable to run a social campaign reusing a piece of content over the course of several months.

The other trick I learned from Guy Kawasaki, a marketing specialist and author, is that on Twitter, you can repeat the same message every 8 hours or so, because your audience may have not seen it the first time. Tweeting it multiple times increases the chances of it being seen.

Ultimately, it comes down to individual companies deciding how they want to balance original versus curated content. It also comes down to whether or not you want to be seen as a thought leader in your area of expertise, and whether you want to be the “go to” company when a customer is ready to buy.

What are your thoughts when it comes to creating your own content versus curated content? Do you use curated content in your marketing strategy? If so, how and where do you find that content? Drop me an email



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