Original vs. curated content: What’s the right balance?

With so many variables at play, locking down a one-size-fits-all ratio is a fool’s errand.

I recently returned from spending a couple of hours with IABC‘s staff talking about content curation as a new skill and responsibility of communications professionals. I tweeted that I was headed to San Francisco for the lunchtime meeting, prompting a reply from Web consultant Ramsey Mosen asking my view of the ideal balance between curated and original content.

It’ll come as no surprise to regular readers that I replied, “It depends,” which is both accurate and a cop-out. On what does it depend? And based on those factors, what is the appropriate mix?

One of the best laughs I’ve had recently (at someone else’s expense) came from a blog post that advised Twitter users to apply an exact division of categories of tweets: x percent for links to your own content, x percent for links to other content, x percent for personal observations, x for retweets, x for participation in conversation, and so on.

I can think of few activities less worthwhile than calculating the percentage of tweets that fall into each category in an effort to make sure you’re getting it just right.

The very idea that you can apply a formulaic approach—for tweets or a curated-to-original content ratio—is ridiculous.

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