Lists As Part of Your Content Strategy: A Short List of Tips and Tools | Beth’s Blog

Lists As Part of Your Content Strategy: A Short List of Tips and Tools

Content, Content Curation

Photo by Andrew Watt

I’m a list maker!  I keep to do lists, mega to do lists, grocery shopping lists, lists of restaurants and movies, and you get the picture.     There is something zen about making a list – it clears my mind and it is very satisfying to cross things off your list or it saves times because you have a place to start.   And, lists are easy to create.   But who knew that they could be useful as part of your content strategy or for content curation?    So, here’s my list about making lists.

List of Content Ideas

1.   A list of questions:    These are typically called “FAQ” or frequently asked questions and are a standard category of web site content.   There are also FUQs and FROs.   What I love about FAQs is that you can easily transform them in Social FAQs  by adding real questions asked by your audience.

2.   X Number of Tips, Resources, Tools, Things, Shortcuts Lists:     Anytime you can create content that has a headline like X number, it screams easy to skim and useful.     Take for example, John Haydon’s  ”8 Ways To Get More Reach With Your Facebook Page.”

3.    The “Best” Whatever List: This is a curation task – to find the 5, 10, 20, or 100 best of something.  Take for example,  ”The 100 Tweeters of Social Good You Have to Follow in 2013” or the Top Nonprofit Blogs.  And creating lists that link to others are a good thing to do, here’s a list of reasons why.

Short List of List Making Tools for Content Curation

1.   List.ly:   This platform is for list makers to create and share their lists.   You can easily add links, annotate, and sort.     I use list.ly as curation tool while I’m researching for a post and share the list as a resource.   I like the simplicity and it is especially useful for sharing resources as part of a training.     One important consideration is that the tool has an export feature so you don’t loose your work.     (If they don’t have an export button, many tools do use RSS and you can export your work into Excel.)

2.   Zeef: Robin Good shared this review for Zeef which looks promising if you want to create a more in-depth resource list, that is aggregate several lists and have them showcased on a page.   He points a few limitations though.  Robin has reviewed other list-making tools for curation and also recommends Startme.com and Wibki.com (on my list to play with.)

3.  Bookmarking Tools: Bookmarking tools are list making tools too.   Social bookmarking tools have been around for some time, many new comes out, old ones die off.   Here’s a good list of bookmarking tools still available.

Does your nonprofit have examples of using lists as part of its content strategy?   If you curate content, do you use list making tools?

 

12 Responses

  1. [...] I'm a list maker! I keep to do lists, mega to do lists, grocery shopping lists, lists of restaurants and movies, and you get the picture.  [...]

  2. Beth says:

    Robin Good scooped this post and added some important insights about good lists:

    Good lists in my view are characterized by these three traits:

    1) Short – long lists are tiring and not very useful

    2) Categorized – “groups” help scanning and finding what you’re looking for

    3) Commented – excerpts from about pages as list item descriptions are not very useful, as what makes a real difference in a list is your insight, opinion or evaluation into why that item is in that list.

    Without these elements in fact, just about anyone can take a search tool and assemble the “Best of” whatever software category in a ridicule amount of time, while not really providing anything useful or reliable.

    That’s the difference between a list and a curated list.

    The list “as is” makes you work more to check and verify everything that’s in the list, while the curated one saves you time in finding or reminding you rapidly what is exactly that you need.

    http://curation.masternewmedia.org/p/4008377984/the-value-of-list-making-three-traits-to-make-yours-stand-out-from-the-rest?_tmc=Tv0Nt3pq3ntDBELcNK2v8xVHQDUDVeAvEcbU62tjBV4

  3. [...] “Photo by Andrew Watt I’m a list maker! I keep to do lists, mega to do lists, grocery shopping lists, lists of restaurants and movies, and you get the picture.”  [...]

  4. Beth says:

    More advice from List.ly re: converting to RSS

    eg this list

    http://list.ly/list/70h-meme-creators?feature=mylist

    the essential part of the URL is just

    http://list.ly/list/70h

    this URL works too (ie 70h is the unique ID for the list)

    http://list.ly/70h

    And this is the RSS version

    list.ly/feed/70h

    How to import RSS feed in Excel -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YO2wFl2sUvI
    http://www.excelforum.com/excel-general/746256-adding-an-rss-feed-to-excel.html

    You can refresh the feed in Excel every time you open it.

  5. [News] | says:

    [...] Lists As Part of Your Content Strategy: A Short List of Tips and Tools I’m a list maker! I keep to do lists, mega to do lists, grocery shopping lists, lists of restaurants and movies, you get the picture. There is something zen about making a list – it clears my mind. But who knew that they could be useful as part of your content strategy or for content curation. By Beth Kanter [...]

  6. Laurie Harrison says:

    hello Beth, i was directed to your blog by a public relations teacher of mine, and i really enjoy it. glad to of found you as a wonderful resource. looking forward to reading more blogs.

  7. Beth says:

    HI Laurie: Glad to have you comment and great referral. Please feel free to look around and comment if you have questions. I’m listening.

  8. Asher Elran says:

    High quality lists usually do very well in search engines. They always get a lot of comments, likes and shares and get to the top of the first page without having to build any back links.

  9. As a fellow list lover, I appreciate this! And the comment about curation is an important one. Otherwise, I think list-making can be seen as a shortcut, a sort of avoidance of real thinking and value-adding, and that helps no one. Great tools and insights, as always.