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Leaders, Market Yourself! | AboutLeaders.com
Article by Al Gonzalez
November 6, 2012
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personal brandAre you familiar with content curation and content marketing?

Marketing yourself using content curation and content marketing can be blended, easily and quickly, into your daily routine with amazing results.

You should also know that doing this can help you increase your influence and reach while raising the profile of your personal brand!

Personal Branding

According to expert Dan Schawbel, personal branding, by definition, is the process by which we market ourselves to others. As individuals, we can have just as much presence as most startups and mid-size companies. Social media tools have leveled the playing ground and have enabled anyone to achieve incredible visibility and impact with no more cost than your time.

This article connects the dots between curation and content marketing, providing a process that can minimize your investment of time while leveraging every effort to help you grow your online presence, influence, and reach.

Content Curation

A great resource on content curation is Beth Kanter’s Content Curation Primer.  Beth defines content curation as:

“… the process of sorting through the vast amounts of content on the web and presenting it in a meaningful and organized way around a specific theme or topic.  The work  involves  sifting, sorting, arranging, and publishing information.”

This process allows the opportunity to identify and communicate valuable information on our areas of expertise.  These are topics for which we want to be known as experts and should be the themes or content areas that interest us the most.

For example, my main areas of interest are:

  • Leadership Skills Development
  • Bodybuilding & Fitness
  • Honoring Feedback
  • Social Media & eLearning
  • Sustainability

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Sharing Valuable Content

First and foremost, the key to making content curation work for me is the fact that I am already doing research on these areas and constantly reading sources from all over the internet. Content curation allows me to share the sources I find most valuable with others who are also interested in the same topics.

Sharing helpful content adds a level of purpose to my research and helps me stay motivated in my professional development. It is also very helpful to organize meaningful content into topic areas that can be easily searched at a later time.

Bookmarks on Steroids

My favorite social web tool to for content curation is Scoop.It.  With an amazingly intuitively interface, Scoop.it allows users to quickly start collections around specific topics and easily “scoop” content from all kinds of originating sites of content like blogs, news sites, video sites, slide sharing websites, etc. In addition, Scoop.it provides the option to easily share your “scoops” to many social media channels, like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, G+, Pinterest and StumbleUpon.  I refer to my Scoop.it topics as my bookmarks on steriods.

Scoop ItIn a couple of minutes, I can gather relevant information into searchable categories and share them via my established social media channels with others who may find the content valuable as well!  I can do all this while leveraging all the social community features that the folks at Scoop.it have so expertly designed into their platform. Some of my most meaningful social web relationships are with other Scoop.it curators.

Leveraging Your Community

If you have a few minutes to explore my scoop.it topic on leadership, you will quickly see how I leverage my community of curators as many of my scoops come “via” their topics.  If you go to their topics, you will more than likely see my scoops in their topics as well.

Content Curation allows me to learn while sharing valuable information with others who are interested in the same topics. Pretty cool.

You may be asking, “What does this have to do with my personal brand?”  This is where Content Curation and Content Marketing connect.

Developing Content

If you are reading this article, chances are you have a website, blog, youtube channel, or all of the above, with content you want to share.  If not, you are more than likely interested in starting to develop content to share.  Content curation via a tool like Scoop.it can help you in either case.

If you are starting to develop content, curating can be very helpful. By curating, you can identify resources to learn from and be inspired while sharing the content that teaches and inspires you!

If you already have content, you can “scoop” it into your topic areas or suggest it to other curators. This can be particularly useful to you, especially if you build a network of followers in Scoop.it because many curators in your “community” may “rescoop” your content. Some curators in Scoop.it have hundreds of thousands of hits on their “scoops” and thousands of followers. Many of them also share their scoops on their Facebook and Twitter networks, which means even more people can see your content through extended networks.

By leveraging a well established Scoop.it network, your content can be exposed to thousands of readers!

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Marketing Our Content

According to Wikipedia, “content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation and sharing of content in order to attract, acquire and engage current and potential consumer bases with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”

Content marketing subscribes to the notion that delivering information to prospects and customers drives profitable consumer action. Content marketing has benefits in terms of retaining reader attention and improving brand loyalty.

Marketing formats include and are not limited to:

  • Websites
  • Blogs, your own or blogs hosted by other entities, like AboutLeaders.com
  • Social web sites, like Faceboook, Twittter, LinkedIn, Scoop.it, Pinterest, etc.
  • E-books
  • White papers
  • Press releases
  • Participating in LinkedIn discussions and commenting on web articles

Leveraging Your Personal Brand

content is the keyWhen it comes to your personal brand, the key is to coordinate all curation and content marketing efforts in order to minimize the time you spend in each area while maximizing the outcome of your efforts.

Here, is the model I use to leverage curation and content marketing to build and expand the influence of my personal brand:

1. Develop my own content on my personal website, youtube, and leadership blogs

2. Establish accounts on the following social web services:

  • Scoop.it
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • StumbleUpon

3. Curate content in Scoop.it to:

  • Quickly identify quality content on areas that I interested in or writing about
  • Organize my research into specific areas of interest
  • Build a following and a network by sharing valuable content written by other experts

4. Content market my content by:

  • Using the Scoop.it share bar to quickly share my content via my social media channels to my multiple networks of followers
  • Sending press releases of news about the GIVE Leadership Institute

Growing a Personal Brand

describe the imageBuilding a personal brand is one of my main objectives in effort to help leaders everywhere develop sustainable workplace cultures where staff members exceed expectations by doing what they love to do. If growing your personal brand is one of your objectives, curation and content marketing can certainly help.

Its Your Turn

Do you think the model listed above can help you organize your social web efforts? Thanks for your comments!

Want more leadership inspiration? Download our ultimate eBook with our easy to use Motivational Checklist.

Al Gonzalez

Al has worked for 16 years helping others maximize the quality of their leadership at Motorola, CBS Sports, and Cornell University. He’s used these experiences to develop proven, trust-based leadership tools for all levels of management.

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