It’s been almost two years since I started Further, my curated email newsletter about personal growth. And there’s no mistaking that the project was inspired by Dave Pell’s NextDraft.
Content curation is all about becoming a trusted editorial source that finds the best information within a certain topic from amongst the valueless clickbait and mediocre dross that overruns the web. Pell’s NextDraft takes on the daunting task of delivering “the day’s most fascinating news,” plus commentary that’s often better than the links themselves.
Even though Further is a side project for me, I’m an advocate for smart curation due to the valuable service it provides in a world of excess content. And because it’s centered around an email audience, it can become the catalyst for a thriving business based on sponsorships, affiliate marketing, or promoting your own products and services.
Now curation is becoming more important than ever. Trust in media has never been lower, and the new norm of social content distribution allows fake information and fluff to go viral — which amplifies the skepticism.
Listen in to my conversation with Pell to understand how to become a trusted editorial voice for a valuable audience. More importantly, understand how curation can restore trust in the media sources that you trust.
Listen to this Episode Now
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Let’s start with the basics. What is a curated email newsletter?
Think Dave Pell’s Next Draft. Quartz’s Daily Brief. Peter Cooper’s Cooper Press. Brian Clark’s Further. Brian Gardner’s No Sidebar. Pamela Wilson’s Weekend Digest. Ryan Hanley’s The Sunday Seven. Jason Hirschhorn’s MediaREDEF.
What do all of these email newsletters have in common? They all sift through a mountain of information on a specific topic (like news, health, HTML, entertainment, lifestyle, content marketing) and pluck out the best content.
This is what it means to curate.
They then package that curated content into an email, add a little commentary about each link, and deliver it to your email inbox.
Some do it daily. Others do it weekly.
Why go through all the trouble?
For a number of reasons. These people curate because they:
Find themselves sifting through all of this information anyway.
Enjoy learning about this topic.
Enjoy sharing their discoveries.
Enjoy bringing often-overlooked resources to people’s attention.
Enjoy doing it so you don’t have to.
In other words, they do it so you can spend your time focusing on other activities — but not miss out on anything important. Ever felt that way?
There’s a good chance you’ve heard Brian Clark and Robert Bruce talk about curated email newsletters. It’s been a hot topic over on Rainmaker.FM.
Some of the episodes include:
Position Your Content Curation for Success With These 5 Essential Elements
7 Ways to Find a Topical Market that Will Fuel Your Digital Commerce Business
How an Email Newsletter Publisher Built an Audience of 223,991 Subscribers
Unfortunately, this topic has also
Brian and I have been talking about his new curation-based email newsletter lately, and I thought it’d be interesting to have a similar conversation with someone in a completely different topical market.
It’s about one person writing and curating a topic he knows and cares about, building a massive email audience over a period of four years, then turning all that work into a sustainable business.
In this 39-minute episode Peter Cooper and I discuss:
How this programmer became a major content publisher
Why he switched from blogging to email newsletters
How he promoted his newsletters in the early days
What he learned from one of the world’s best Tetris players
Where the majority of Cooper Press’s revenue comes from
The only social network that really works (for him)
His approach to opt-in conversion optimization
His best two pieces of advice for starting a curated email newsletter
Click Here to Get Rainmaker.FMEpisode No. 29 on iTunes
About the authorRobert BruceBy day, Robert Bruce is building a new podcast network (more on that soon). In his off hours, he files unusually short stories to the Internet.
The post How an Email Newsletter Publisher Built an Audience of 223,991 Subscribers appeared first on Copyblogger.
Note: This is the third of three core lessons related to content curation based on a case study of my new email newsletter Further. You can listen to the initial two episodes here:
Position Your Content Curation for Success
3 Ways to Grow Your Curated Email Newsletter Faster
Now we tackle the eternal question: how do you get traffic to your curation site so you can build an email list? Should we start building a war chest for advertising?
Not yet. First we’re going to apply some creativity and sweat into driving traffic. Some of these methods are tried and true, but need to be executed a certain way for a curation project. Others are seemingly a little “outside the box,” and yet they complement a curated email newsletter perfectly.
In this 22-minute episode Robert Bruce and I discuss:
What makes curated content shareable and linkable
The best audience building strategy on the planet
How to borrow (and delight) a massive audience
How to get others to share your curated content
Why infographics are pure media curation
How to take advantage of visual microcontent
The true value of iTunes for audience building
The podcast interview as valuable curation content
The viral catalyst the exploded Copyblogger in the early days
Click Here to Listen to Rainmaker.FM Episode No. 26
Or, grab it in iTunes.
About the authorBrian ClarkBrian Clark is founder and CEO of Copyblogger, host of Rainmaker.FM, and evangelist for the Rainmaker Platform. Get more from Brian on Twitter.
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