Last week, we took a look at “how not to utilize content curation.” And while we stand wholeheartedly behind that list of how people can fail in their curation efforts, the reasons we noted were mostly related to human error. In other words, the tools themselves got a free pass. So let’s take a look at some of common issues content curation technologies may present.

One trick pony

One-Trick Ponies

A large majority of the curation tools on the market today are one-trick ponies in that they solve only one piece of the curation puzzle (for example, social media). While it’s great for technology to serve specific niches, if the focus is too narrow, there quickly becomes an avalanche of tools that are not only hard to make sense of, but difficult to adopt over a long period of time.

  • Content marketing is increasingly complex and thus, we need tools that serve more of our needs — research, formulation of content, and distribution to name a few.

Third-Party Sites and Branding Concerns

A large number of curation tools require the end user (individual or business) to publish to a third-party site. This lack of flexibility can ultimately affect or derail the curator’s efforts to accomplish his or her specific goals.

  • In the B2B world, these goals usually involve driving web traffic for lead generation and developing brand leadership.

Curating and Distributing to All Networks

With so many different platforms in place (and even a large major or proprietary software utilized by companies and agencies), it’s virtually impossible for curation tools to integrate with each and every channel. Thus, workflows are at best, less than perfect, and at worst, cumbersome to point of defeating the product’s original value proposition.

Undefined Scope

“Here’s a curation tool. You tell us what to do with it.” In essence, this is what a majority of software companies seem to be saying. Regardless of whether or not a company can utilize effectively, it’s probably a fair statement to say most companies understand the purpose of purchasing marketing automation software at this point in time. Curation tools usually do not quite as good a job of illustrating their value propositions.  And if a company can’t explain how to use its tool effectively, how can users be expected to do so?

Absence of or Limited Human Involvement

It’s been virtually universally stated at this point that curation – done well – should involve additional insight or commentary as much as possible. Yet there are still products on the market that either don’t allow for this take place, or, limit the ability to do so.

[quote]Curation does not equal aggregation![/quote]

“No Follow” Issues

Unfortunately, some tools (especially in the “aggregation” spectrum) associate “no follow” links with the original article’s contribution. This is often done so that the original party’s article gets no SEO value. Such a tactic – and this technology itself – can make users wary of the process.

The Value Then

When done properly, curation can provide a tremendous supplement to content marketing campaigns. However, it’s also fair to say many of the tools on the market do little to help the cause. And certainly, those that do are by no means perfect.

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