We are living in an information age. I’ve got more professional news and information delivered to my inbox every day than I can keep up on, and I’m looking to social media for information before I even check my email. There is way too much information to pay attention to all of it. And I’m just talking about what I subscribe to. Sound familiar?
I belong to a professional organization; they create original content, but, full disclosure, I don’t read their newsletter or blogs; I don’t even open them most of the time. If I were to pick the top 10 sources I value for industry information, the association I belong to doesn’t make the list.
If you don’t want your association to fall into the category of content that’s getting tuned out, you need to start curating the best content out there for your members; become a go-to spot to keep up to date without having to weed through any noise.
Maybe your association has been creating content for as long as you can remember, but the way we share information has changed, and you need to take a good look and understand if the best content for your members–what they’re most interested in–is coming from you or somewhere else. Your members, and the rest of the world, has easy access to tons of great information sources. If they’re not going to you, to remain a useful resource for information, focus on curating the best of what’s already out there.
Better content curation
If you can filter out the noise for members and become the one place they can count on to provide up to date relevant content, you’re association will be adding value to members who are probably suffering from digital overload.
Curating content takes less time and energy than creating it yourself, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Some things you’ll want to keep in mind while curating content:
- Have a plan. Know what type of content your association members are looking for and need; create a content strategy for curating that content, otherwise, you’re just adding to the noise.
- Make it clear what content is curated and who the original source is. You aren’t stealing the content, you’re curating it!
- Give your take on the shared information. It’s not your content, but you can comment on the curated content. Let your members know why they should care or what you can add to the information given.
Curating content specific to your members’ needs will keep you up to date on industry news, help you publish more often, helps establish you as an expert in your field and an active member of the community. On top of all that, providing great content curation will make you a go-to spot for your members to keep up on industry news. It will help your association stand out.
Finding a balance between curated and original content
The mix of curated and original information will vary from association to association depending on your goals and which channels you’re using. If you are trying to establish yourself as a thought leader in the industry, curating will show that you are keeping up to date on the latest news and trends, but creating more than you curate will show you are adding value to the community and leading it. If your goal is to be a resource, curating as much as 75% of content should work for you.
Breaking through the noise and standing out in this information dense digital environment will certainly make you more valuable to your current members, but it will also help you attract future members. It’s not just the Millennials who are floundering in digital overload in this information age. Your members, association, and industry at large stands to benefit from your association breaking through the noise and standing out as a great source, even their ONE source, for curated industry information.