Curated Content: An Important Key in Today’s Lead Generation Marketing

For most of my years in direct marketing the model for generating leads for Business-to-Business sales organizations went something like this: Run ads in publications, card packs or use outbound telemarketing, often with an gift offer to encourage response, qualify the leads on the response card or with telemarketing and distribute the leads to the sales organization.

Today’s information-age prospects are smarter and want to be convinced you are knowledgeable resource before they make contact with you. Today’s prospects must be gently nurtured, and are turned-off by a heavy sales pitch.

The marketing model today is all about content marketing. Reach the prospects and make them aware of your content through Search Engines, Pay Per Click (PPC) ads, industry chat groups, blog posts, infographics and within social media on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, even Instagram and Pinterest.

Today you must a content strategist. The strategy involves starting a “conversation” to engage the prospect with authentic content containing little or no sales speak, and gently nurturing and moving the prospect down the sales funnel. But, to have a conversation you must have valuable, meaningful content that is desired by the prospect and demonstrates your expertise.

Content needs to be posted several times per week to demonstrate you are an active participant in the industry. You can post original content, or curated content – content/articles from other third parties you have reviewed, commented upon and feel your prospect audience with find valuable.

Lead Generation Marketing

Here are 5 reasons to use curated content:

  1. Curated content is a great way to engage customers.

Let’s face it. Your original content is great, but it’s still your content. And as much as we may hate to admit it, our customers know that your great, insightful and forcibly objective report on [Topic X] is ultimately designed to influence their purchase. Curated content comes without original content’s baggage. By sharing third-party content in addition to your own original content, you’re providing your customers with objective information that they’ll be more inclined to value, comment upon and share.

  1. Cadence is critical.

How many blog posts have you posted this week? And what about that newsletter…? The fact is, marketers are trying to juggle multiple digital channels these days, and they die when you don’t feed them consistently.

Curated content helps relieve this stress by providing a steady stream of relevant content that you frame and use to feed your channels. And, a “well-fed” channel helps keep you top of mind with your customers.

  1. You aren’t actually a media company.

Despite the fact that marketers are under pressure to engage like a media company, the simple fact is that most organizations aren’t built to support the development of content at scale. It’s easy enough to create an occasional blog post, but that’s not enough to put a dent into “The Conversation.” Sure, you can grow your team and/or enlist external support (assuming you have the budget), but that leads up to the next reason:

  1. It will save you money.

It’s simple. Content curation is cost effective because you’re tapping into content that’s already available—and waiting to be shared—online. Remember, content creators are sharing their articles, videos and infographics because they want them to be seen. And you can support that mission by furthering their reach. (Just always remember to follow basic guidelines that include citing the source and linking to the original piece.) Curated content gives you the opportunity to exponentially increase your output and engagement opportunities without driving up your budget.

  1. Your competitors are curating.

If you look closely at your competitors’ newsletters, social feeds and blog, you’ll see that a lot of that seemingly original content is actually commentary on third-party content. They know that finding the right content and sharing it with additional insight is a move in right direction. So while you may be struggling to think of new angles for sales-free sales content, your target customers are learning to rely on your competitors for the bigger picture.

While some marketers are struggling to be a part of “The Conversation,” others are curating their way to ownership of “The Conversation.” That’s ultimately where you win with curation. It ensures your business becomes so inextricably linked to your space that when your customers are in the need real, related information, their first instinct is to turn to you and your digital channels. Like any marketing initiative, it doesn’t happen overnight, but it will happen.