This Twitter content curation workflow utilizes the iphone5 and the ipad or desktop. Tweeting is an excellent way to share information with your followers. The kinds of tweets you post will determine the level of reach and influence you achieve as a brand.
First and foremost, you want to choose quality content to pass on to your tweeps. If you do, your followers will come to trust you as a valued curator of interesting and useful information. Once that trust is built you can be sure that they will pass on your own high quality content when you share it. Getting your own content in front of people is your primary goal.
Scheduling tweets is the best way to avoid dumping a mass of information into the stream at one time, which annoys followers. Tweet scheduling also gives you time to focus on real time engagement with your target audience as opposed to jumping in and out of the stream enough times throughout the day in order to remain active and relevant. Multiple tweets at any one given time will sink all your branding efforts as more and more followers will jump ship by unfollowing you.
Over the years I have tried oodles of apps in an effort to find the most efficient way to get my social media work done with the highest Twitter ROI. To date, there is no one app that “does it all” and therefore effective content duration requires the use of multiple platforms. Switching between them and doing work-arounds is not only time consuming, it can become downright frustrating.
Building a strong foundation for your social media activities is essential. Once you find the right combination of successful activities that encompasses the full power of the medium and an efficient workday schedule, it is just a matter of plugging in the elements into your system.
The format of a far reaching and influential tweet is crucial for brand success. Include the right mix of elements into a proper syntax and you are set to achieve your marketing goals.
Now that you know what you need to do, how to do it, and the foundation to build upon, you can start curating successfully and efficiently. There are a plethora of content gathering apps to choose from. I go the old school way and use Google Reader as my main storage library.
Having a robust repository of vital and quality content is the goal. Google Reader is simple, straightforward and easy to use. Most good blogs display an opportunity to subscribe to the content. Look for the RSS logo within the blog pages or in your tool bar menu. I prefer the toolbar option as it will avoid several clicks that many subscription systems involve, such as selecting the RSS storage app of choice. This way it always opts for Google Reader.
Throughout your internet surfing day grab reputable feeds that appeal to you and your audience and categorize them well in your Google Reader library. A filing system will make content selection very easy and efficient as you go about filling your tweet schedule.
Now that you have quality content to share, in addition to your own information rich content, it’s time to start curating. Here’s how I do it.
During morning coffee on the couch in my slumber wear, I fire up my iphone and open Flipboard where I have my Google Reader as one of the feeds.
I like Flipboard on the iphone because it shows photo content that Google Reader or Feedler may not. Being a visual person, this is an easy way for me to scan. And, it being early in the morning, I am not quite ready for a lot of detailed reading. Also, too many bloggers do not write compelling enough titles for their posts to grab my attention. FInally, because visual content has proven to be the most effective, I want to share posts that contain interesting and eye-catching pictures.
As I flip through my Google Reader list, either in it’s uncategorized entirety or by specific topic, I star those posts that I think I might want to share with my Twitter and Facebook followers. (This workflow pertains specifically to Twitter curation, but many of the same principles apply to Facebook posting as well.) BTW, I also have CNN on just in case there is an interesting news item worth sharing either in the moment or later.
That process complete, I move on to the second cup of coffee and peruse my twitter streams, favoriting great content for later RT’s and mentions. Lists, lists, lists! They are perhaps the most important feature of Twitter and if you haven’t created them you must.
Part one done. Here and there in between favoriting I’ve said good morning to tweeps, thanked them for RT’s and mentions, etc. Start the day with a little engagement before TWC (toilet, wash & comb, as my mother used to say). Off to the shower.
Now when I am at my desk, at the office, cafe, or wherever, I jump into scheduling. If on ipad I use Mr. Reader. On desktop, Google Reader itself. I can also, in a pinch, use Feedler on the iPhone. [Note: When using the iPhone I will only post or schedule content that I already know is high quality to avoid having to review it in that tiny platform.]
Another absolute must – read the content you are sharing to ensure it is of the quality your followers come to expect. All it takes are a few bad leads via link and they will not click, and in the end will all together ignore any you post in future. People are looking for fresh, useful info to use and share. Make sure what you tweet is just that. And the only way you can do that is to review it first.
I also like to go to the original source rather than share from a blog or site that curates posts (i.e. “Read the entire post here)]. I then can give credit to the originator of the content by including their twitter handle rather than the uber curator’s. Further, I can add the orginator’s site to my RSS feed and in future post directly from there.
Steps: Open link. Get as close to the original author as possible. Review the material and schedule the tweet with your scheduling app. Give credit where credit is due and add a comment of your own – the reason why it is worth it for your followers to click and read. If you’ve discovered the author, make sure to follow them and add them to an appropriate list in twitter as well.
Move through your favorited articles and repeat the process. Do the same with those tweets you favorited earlier. Within an hour or so you will have more than a day’s worth of great content loaded up ready to be shared with your fans. This includes curating multiple accounts too, because you are favoriting content for each during your selection process. Be sure to unfavorite the items in both the reader and in the twitter app of choice. This way you have a clean slate for the next round of curating and only retain those selected favorites that haven’t been posted yet.
This 3 step process frees you up to be ready and able to engage with your audience in real time as the day goes along. After all, engagement is the most important part of the social media experience.
Curation is not simply pushing info downstream. It’s a process of exploration and discovery, for yourself and your audience. Along the way you add to your community of resources and potential followers (or customers if you are in business). It’s about expanding horizons and connections with other people, locally and globally. I find it a rewarding and enriching experience. Doing it efficiently affords me time to take these relationships beyond cyberspace into real life. And that is the best part of all.