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Desperately Seeking Sources: Finding Great Content

by | Apr 12, 2013 | Blog, How To, Niche Sites, Product Creation, Resources, Strategy

The Best ContentIt’s been written about over and over again, and I’m sure there are countless “list” type posts out there with 101 tips on how to write great content.

Nonetheless, it bears reminding ourselves periodically, and especially in the middle of the great Ultimate Blog Challenge, what to look for in content.

However, I’m taking a slightly different view today, and I’m looking at how to assess content in the context of finding great sources for our curation project.

Freshly Unique

You know it’s a bad idea to curate a source that already duplicates content that originates elsewhere, and especially where it doesn’t really add anything new. Nothing wrong with addressing the same minute subject, but without a fresh perspective on it, it really has nothing to offer in terms of a source for your online newspaper.

Tightly Focused

Leave rambling to the journaling, personal types of blogs. For your online paper, you want content that is narrowly focused on a single topic, one that is consistent with your audience and your niche at large. This means you choose differentiated, specific content over generalized, all-purpose sources.

Short & Sweet

It’s a fine line between the right amount of information and being all too brief. Striking the right balance means being entertainingly succinct. Sure it’s possible.

Relevant Now

Nothing screams yikes more than content that is obviously past its sell-by date. Seek out evergreen content OR sources that keep up with trends.  I liken this to shoes (another new found obsession).  You have the classic court shoe, which will never go out of style – never mind what my daughter says.  You then have the latest in wedges, that weird cross between stilettos and platforms, often found on the end of very tall models (who, frankly, don’t need them for height). Relevant today (better check with my little girl on that …), but will probably look oddly strident in a year or two.

Quality

Grammar. Spelling. Produced by a human. Can be read and enjoyed by another human. ‘Nuff said.

Consistent

Ten posts one week, then nothing for months? Ahem, I’ve been totally guilty of that particular roller coaster. I even have a draft post buried somewhere in Evernote recounting what I fondly refer to as the “absent months”, but that’s another story.  Check out the rhythm and consistency of your source.  It might work out just fine that this specific voice is only heard from once a month, and you could balance that out with another with a more frequent, yet more varied source.

It’s not easy to find awesome content to enjoy and curate for your community, but it can be done.  Just pay attention to the aspects above, and do take your time.  Of course, don’t take too long – remember, you can always change your mind, replace and replenish your content feeds.

Just don’t feed it junk.