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Content Strategy Trends to Watch in 2013: Curation

Content Strategy Trends to Watch in 2013: Curation Najwa Smith
While people point to the tremendous uptick in social sites, they make little mention of curation, but in fact, one of the major activities in “social” channels is sharing content – i.e. curating.

A new tablet app takes that to new heights. ShowYou won the App Store Rewind 2011 award for best Social Networking on the iPad, and, once you try it, you’ll see why. The site aggregates videos your friends have posted to Facebook and other social sites, making ShowYou the smartest aggregator in the room.

On YouTube, typically users spend 7-8 minutes per session, dropping off quickly (which is why YouTube is now embarking on a channel strategy, hoping to up viewing). Users on ShowYou spend 35-40 minutes with content on average.

What this means for Content Strategists: How can a site become more like ShowYou, where content is aggregated by the people you think are the smartest people in the room? If your buyer has to engage in a research-fueled, content feeding frenzy in their buyer’s journey, perhaps you could help them by giving them an environment (and content) as addictive as ShowYou.

The Point: Content Strategy - More Than Matrix Making

At this point, from this series of posts, it should be easy to see just how Content Strategy - foundational in olden times – is absolutely imperative today as site owners embark in the choppy waves of the emergent, multiplatform sea.

Aside from renovating broken down sites or leaping into the adaptive-design-driven modular content paradigms, there’s also content targeting, new technology and more to consider. We live in interesting times.

In-house editorial teams are often not empowered to keep up with the pace of content innovation nor are they as empowered organizationally to recommend change.

They’re often not tech savvy enough to purchase taxonomy management tools or understand metrics-boosting content plays. They often don’t do A/B testing of content or modules. They don’t know that social data can quadruple sales (see former Amazon Chief Scientist Andreas Weigend’s presentation here [slides12-13]) or how much you can gain by carefully curating the most trafficked page on a site: Site Search.

Content Strategists – with our strategies checklists - can help clients notice, analyze and act on all of these things.

Who else can marry the flood of content and data inputs and devices into cohesive, persuasive and compelling user experiences? A good Content Strategist knows these waters and can guide a client through the fog. In addition, Content Strategy brings fresh ideas and technologies into the mix, too. Because, Toto, you’re not in Kansas any more.

So now you know…when a content strategist tells you about Content Audits, he or she is really saying, show me what you’ve got that’s sexy, dazzling, persuasive and/or essential to the buyer’s journey – and that they can see on their phone, tablet or desktop. And if you don’t have The Right Stuff, let’s call that a Content Gap. That’s the mystery behind this Matrix. Let’s see what you’ve got and where you’re going – and then let’s make it all it could be.

Najwa Smith is the Director of Content Strategy for Rosetta, driving the strategic vision for content within the creative teams. She is passionate about all things creative and the process by which we make each user experience engaging, memorable,...

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