It’s my last blog post of the year and so I wanted to share with you a topic that is meaningful to me and hopefully to you as well.
This time of year, the events that we share are very similar. We celebrate Chanukah or Christmas or Kwansa. We celebrate New Years eve and New Years Day. But what distinguishes the same celebrations that we each do, despite the same lights or tree, and what distinguishes it for us, is the trove of personal stories.
The same holds true for blogs. While information about health may be the same, it is our personal spin on it or our personal recommendations that make it different. This process is content curation.
This is the process of sifting through the vast amount of health data in journals and online, further presenting it in an organized manner around a specific topic or theme. A content curator picks the most relevant information and then shares it with his/her viewers.
Content curation is not amassing data and spewing it forth but rather presenting it in context with annotation, stories and quotes. A true content curator constantly seeks out and routinely shares the most relevant information on a specific topic.
Isn’t this what doctors or healthcare providers and health writers normally do? Each day, we are exposed to new medical breakthroughs and health information. Each day, we are exposed to patients and clients with their medical conditions, asking questions and seeking solutions to their problems. And each day we sift through information that we have learned online, at conferences, at rounds and in medical journals to translate the data into pertinent content that the patient can understand as well as find relevant.
Now ask yourself, are you providing the same service on your health blogs?
The Value of Content Curation
As health professionals, we translate “medical-ese” to language that can be understood. We make the content useful and relevant. Unfortunately, in our field, information can become redundant our out of date pretty quickly. New theories, treatments, therapies evolve as more knowledge and technology advances. Staying current and effective is crucial in our work.
Being relevant is only one part of curation. (and this is how we distinguish ourselves as in the holidays above)
The answer is Story telling.
Think about it for a moment. When you learned a collection of facts, was it easy to recall? How about when it was attached to a patient, an event or experience that you had? Wasn’t recall natural to you after that?
This is how you personalize the blogs and the massive amounts of information that you accumulate before you share with others. Add stories, share your experiences, add quotes.
Find yourself dry on the story front? This is no longer a problem. Enter a new tool to your armament- Storify by lifefyre. Their premise of memes and simple social events is:
“the easiest way to find, collect and share what people are saying all over the web. Join top companies, brands and agencies as well as millions of users on the best platform for leveraging social media”
Information from these sites helps you present stories in a manner that your viewers are accustomed to and interested in. Seeing what is talked about in forums and social media sites is also invaluable as resources.
You transition from just being a boring health professional relaying information to an authority who presents solutions to problems in a relevant and entertaining way. Both patients and prospective patients will stand up and take notice.
On this holiday, resolve to “make it personal”. It will be greatly appreciated by your viewers.
Have a happy and healthy New Year.