You know that you need to create amazing, high-quality content if you want to keep your visitors happy, but it’s super time-consuming. Even huge companies like HuffingtonPost.com, AllTop.com, and CNN.com use a way of creating content that “samples” parts of other content called “content curation”. Peter Lenkefi is on the show today to talk about his CurationSoft drag-and-drop software that makes content creation super easy to create and publish.
Watch the show below: Duration: 26:30
[leadplayer_vid id=”512CFF2B2A76C”]Stuff mentioned in the show
CurationSoft (affiliate)- Peter’s software that makes content curation very easy
Episode 109: Create and Publish Quality Content with a Drag-and-Drop Software – with Peter Lekefi
Mike: Hi there everyone! Welcome to Episode 109 of The Mike from Maine Show, the place where we do daily interviews with successful online entrepreneurs. This is your host, Mike Thomas. And today on the show, I have Peter Lenkefi on to talk about his software CurationSoft and Content Curation. We’re gonna talk about exactly what content curation is, for those of you that don’t know and I just wanted to kind of take a look at the software really quick before we get into it to give you a little bit of an idea of what we’re talking about. So later on, we’ll be discussing it in the interview and when he kind of mention CurationSoft, I want you to know what he’s pretty saying. So, if I go into the software and click on post builder, I can pick from one of these sources here, let’s say it’s Google Blogs and type in Internet Marketing. Let’s say I do that, it’s gonna bring up all these different sites here on the lefthand side where it’s gonna be bringing up results for internet marketing. And when he talks about just like dragging things over and how easy it is, all I do is click here and bring it over into this post. And then it has the link, it has the content and that’s where I can start creating my post over there and start writing a commentary on it and curating the content. So, I just wanted to make sure that you’ve get that right before we get into it and yeah, let’s get into the interview about content curation with Peter Lenkefi.
Mike: We are here today with Peter Lenkefi. Peter, welcome to the show.
Peter: Thank you very much. It’s great to be here.
Mike: Why don’t you start off by telling us a little bit about what — about yourself and what you do?
Peter: Well um, recently I am the sole operator of a software called CurationSoft. It’s been pretty recent because my partners, now my former partners, Jack Humphrey and Brandon Hall, they left the company and I’m on my own. We are in the middle of a pretty successful re-launch of CurationSoft 2.0. So this takes up almost 100% of my time. CurationSoft that’s ah — which is a pretty interesting software in my opinion —
Mike: Yeah, let’s get — I wanna, what I wanna talk about first here for people that are listening that don’t know really what it is, can you tell me the definition of — what is content curation?
Peter: Ah, what curation is right?
Peter: Curation is when you cite content from various contents and you actually leave the reference and in this case, the link, intact and you let the actual reader to read and digest the collection of information, what you put together on that page which is the curated page or curated content or curated post. And then, once they picked the right content piece on that page, you let the person to go and read the article in its entirety on the page where it belongs actually. So for instance, let’s say that you are an acoustic guitar enthusiast. You love acoustic guitar, so you have a site called acousticguitar.com, that’s a grayed domain, it’s not available. I’m just using that as an example. But I love acoustic guitars, personally. So, and you have a site related to that and you write about this content on a daily basis. You’re blogging about it or doing reviews related to various types of acoustic guitars. There are certain days when you just don’t have enough ideas to write about it. So, what do you do? You put together a utility post and I’m using this word because back in the day, bloggers — real bloggers call these fabric posts utility posts. So, you put together a utility post where you cite content from various sources, from other sources where they actually talk about acoustic guitars. And you go to these places anyway because you know your market, so you probably go to these places to read about acoustic guitars in a daily or a weekly basis. So you go there and you take, you read the articles and you see what you wanted to write about, you know, 1961 Gibson acoustic guitars and then you pick those articles and you take the title, you take maybe perhaps you know, a copyright-free image of that article – of that actual guitar. And then you take, you know, the first couple of paragraphs and you put it into your blog post and you go to the next one. And you put together utility post, now known as the curated post. And because you have access to Youtube and other video directories as well, then you can go to Youtube and bring content, video content as well. So you can put together a content for each blog post and then you write your commentaries around these third party content pieces. You write your own opinion about it or just put it in between, or maybe you just write a starting paragraph or a closing paragraph. There is really no rules about it. I got a sport ticket today, like a couple of – an hour ago, a gentleman asking, I read it from a certain site by SEO guys that you have to write 400 words when you are curating content. I don’t think that is true. I mean, if you have enough — if you have 400-word worth of quality content, other people from that market would enjoy and write it. But it’s all about the people. I don’t think it’s about the number of words. It’s about the people who come to your site to read the content. And if they enjoyed that curated content, then they are going to come back for more because they will know that this is the hub for acoustic guitar content and I don’ t have to search the web all the time or go to my bookmarks or you know, go to various places. I just come here and this
guy writes about acoustic guitars on a daily basis. And probably a couple of times a week, he curates some content. It’s great. I just, you know, shifted through and then I walk or run away to that page where the actual article is. So in my opinion, that is curated content.
Mike: And what else I’m gonna say is that when you first started talking about it, it sounded a lot to me like auto-blogging which is something that was popular – I guess, more popular couple of years ago. But it’s really not in the fact that you’re gonna go out and sure, you’re gonna take someone’s content and you’re gonna use up just a part of someone’s content but you’re also gonna be adding value to it, which is something that I think is super important to stress here for people that are doing curated content because it’s something you said too, the people are gonna be coming back and wanting to find more content from you. This isn’t a one-time trying to get someone coming from the search engines to your site deal, you’re gonna want to actually create something that people are gonna know that you’re the go-to person for this. Even if you’re not necessarily creating all the content, you’re gonna be the guy that knows what’s going on on the internet.
Peter: Well actually, the value is in to make your things. One is that you put together valuable content from various sources. So you cite content. That’s the value for the reader that they don’t have to run around and read here and read there and um — but you can actually do that for the narcissist reader, if you want. But you cannot — the other most valuable, a really valuable part is that you can read the actual opinion of the blogger that puts together this utility – this type of post. So, because if you like that guy anyway, like his content anyway, then it’s easier to listen to his opinion related to third-party content. In my opinion is that me as a reader, it’s very important that I listen to certain people who write about this content and side content. And that’s how I find my way to new content through other content.
Mike: Did you —
Peter: This thing has been around since the internet being around. It was just not so obvious or it was not so popular. But it’s been around since 1990.
Peter: People cite content from others.
Mike: I was gonna ask you, sorry. Do you find that this content that people are curating from other sources. I mean, you’re gonna go out and you’re gonna copy a portion of it and paste it on your own site, is that — I can just see people, I can hear it right now, people that are listening going, that’s duplicate content, duplicate content. It’s already indexed, already indexed by Google. What’s your answer to that?
Peter: First of, it’s — if you are adding your commentaries to it and then you’re changing the rounds, the order of how it’s actually put on a certain page, I don’t think it’s — it falls into the duplicate content category. And if it was duplicate content, then a lot of sites like news sites and other hubs which are actually curating content wouldn’t be in existence. So, it’s always a debate if there is duplicate content or if there is duplicate content penalty and that kind of stuff. I’m not an SEO, so I don’t know. But the stuff that I read about it, there is no penalty. It’s just not gonna get indexed.
Mike: What about people that, okay you go off and someone — you go off and you take some part of someone’s website and your bring it back and put it on your own and you comment on it. But then, there are circumstances when people get pissed off because they’re like, hey you’ve taken my stuff, what are you doing here? Is it stealing?
Peter: No, I don’t think it is. We have about 75,000 posts curated by our members now. It’s from when we started to count. You know, the software being in existence for years, but we count — we started counting it the last 12 months, I think. So never ever happened that people or anyone came back and said, “Oh, you are stealing my content”, because you are – first off you are linking to that person. Secondly, you are citing his or her content word-for-word. You’re not stealing — you’re not putting the entire article word-for-word intact on to your site and saying or claiming that it is your content. So, you are crediting the original author. You are — you can even believe at times in there when it was actually published on his site. So, all the credits and actual proof is there on your page and when someone visits that page, they see that it is not yours. And actually, in the commentaries, usually when we comment on this type of citations, we say that according to this or that guy or based on this or that, so immediately you can recognize that it’s a citation of third-party content. And that’s not stealing.
Mike: Before you give a good example of a way that someone could use your software or content curation in the fact that if you wanna make a website about guitars, acoustic guitars I think is the example that you gave, you can go out and find different content on acoustic guitars and bring it back, comment on it. How would you suggest monetizing that?
Peter: That’s a good question. There is one guy asking me that question all the time in the support desk and I always answered the same and he comes back with another way of asking the same question. My opinion is that you shouldn’t be focusing on the direct monetization of that page. What you should be focusing on is that you provide good content and people come to that site and they read your — they come back again and again and again, because you have great content. And you are a hub of information related to that actual market or topic or niche. Because the actual utility post or curated post is embedded into a page is just like any other blog post. So, monetization – I mean, you are in the side bars or at the top bars. You have banners or you have AdSenses. This guys asked if would you put affiliate links in a curated post. No, I wouldn’t. It would kill the actual value and the essence of a curated post. The essence of a curated post is that you leave the links intact and you leave the actual contents, snip it intact and then you insert your own commentaries in between and that’s about it. I don’t think old content piece or blog post should be directly monetized. You are going to indirectly get paid for your time, anyway. Either someone is going to opt-in to your newsletter or either someone is going to click on you know, another link in your side bar where you have another blog post where you’re actually having multiple affiliate links. So, it’s going to pay off in my opinion.
Mike: Yeah, it’s a way, curation —
Peter: And there are no rules. If someone wants to put an affiliate link in the commentary, then you know, then you put affiliate link in the commentary. Ah, I wouldn’t do it. I never — we’ve never done it, with Jack and with the sites that we put together or where we actually use this method.
Mike: Yeah, I mean it’s a way of creating something of value, building an audience and really being able to build a list at the same time. And it’s like you said, there are no rules. You can be as creative as you want with it. Can you give me an example of someone, maybe one of your students or something that you’ve done or anything that you can disclose without giving away someone’s niche of something that’s been successful.
Peter: For this launch, we put together a video actually where Jack is putting together from scratch a curated post on his computer and you can see his screen as he is putting it together and he’s using quite an interesting content source. We have 9 contents sources in CurationSoft and one of them, the latest is Slide Share and if you know Slide Share, it’s a hub of, you now, presentations. And he put together one curated post where he only used presentations. And it was about SEO. It took about — so 5 SEOs slideshow, 5 SEOs tip with slideshow presentation or something like that. I cannot remember exactly what the title was. It took about maybe 8 or 9 hours — in about 2 hours, it ranked. Then, in about 8 hours, it ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in Google, in global searches.
Mike: Is it pulling in traffic?
Peter: Yeah. and it was driving traffic too. I didn’t know exactly what amount but it was driving traffic to that page. So, I need some acquired obscure content source and not a lot of people use Slide Share, not for curation anyway. So mostly what they use is Google Blogs, Google News, Youtube, probably Twitter.
Peter: Those were the actual four content sources as we started out with utility post, and then we added later Black Hole, used blog to blog. Recently, we added Wikipedia, Wikipedia pictures —
Mike: Okay, let’s — I mean, we’ve kind of skirted around it. Let’s — why don’t I, that you explain now exactly what your CurationSoft software is. What it does? I mean, yeah. Go for it.
Peter: It is collecting information. It’s keyword-based, so watch you do is you start it off the same way if it was keyword research tool. So, you take a key word, let’s say it’s acoustic guitars and you put it into the search box. You hit answer and then, in the search result pane or panel, you are going to see a list of result similar to Google results.
Peter: And, now we have a post builder. So in practical, you open up your post builder. It’s kinda like an html editor, you have it on the right side and your search results on the left side. And basically, what you can do is you can shift through this content, this large amount of content what you see if for instance you are using Goggle Blogs, then you are going have thousands of results on various you know numbers and numbers if pages. So you just check which one you actually like and you can drag it over to the post builder. There are various – technically, there are various drag-and-drop settings which you can use. I’m not gonna go into that but basically, you drag it over and it comes up on that — on your, added to your page. And then you drag over another one, then you go into
different source. You go into say Flicker, you go into Youtube and you’ve dragged over a Youtube video. This is how you actually build it. And in here you can — you can do this drag-and-drop method to your blog as well, to your WordPress blog. So, before we introduce the post builder, you have to drag-and-drop from CurationSoft to your WordPress html or text editor. You — the content, and then you actually have to type off your commentaries within your WordPress editor. Now you can actually put together the entire post inside CurationSoft and then you can put your blog details, you username and password, etcetera. And then, you can auto-post it or auto-publish it if you want. but you can still do this manually. It’s really up to you how you want to do it.
Mike: So, it’s pretty much a way of doing curated content that’s gonna save you quite a bit of time and just make it a lot more, a lot easier just to — like you said, drag-and-drop.
Peter: It’s very, very easy to use. It really is just, you know, you type in the keyword, the search result comes up, you go through the searches all, you drag what you like and then you go on, you drag the next one, you go to the next content source and it’s all done. You can put together one in a matter of like, even if you write a commentaries, in about 10-15 minutes. And you’re ready to go. Either do this manually or you can do it like auto-publishing and then you can schedule post to go live immediately on your site, or the next day or whenever you wanna do it.
Mike: Well, cool Peter. Thank you. I just wanna say thank you very much for taking time out. I know you’re busy during this launch. You got a special promotion going on right now. I think it’s 50% off for CurationSoft. We’ll have a link to that in the show notes below in the mikefrommaine.com. Is there anything else that we didn’t touch on today that you like to mention before wrap it up?
Peter: I’m glad that I actually had the chance to explain it. It’s a really amazing software. I’m a little biased but the honor really goes to my partners, my former partners Jack Humphrey and Brandon Hall. Brandon put in an awful lot of time coding this. We started out this whole content curation software thing back in 2007. Back in then, it was called utility poster and it was only running on a PC. And the core is the same software what we are using now but back then, it was drag-and-drop. We had another piece of software but we call it the video utility poster and then we merged it too. And that’s when we had like Google Blogs, Youtube and Twitter. And then, later down the track, we actually hired a team and they moved the entire code base over to **** (23:13), so you can actually run the software on a Mac and a PC at the same time as well. And then, we started adding more functionality to it and a nice better, much nicer user interface and more sources. So now, the user interface is, in my opinion, is very, very easy to use. We have 9 sources now, content sources. We are going to add a couple of more but I don’t really want to talk about right now. But um — you can also add speed as well. So that makes it almost unlimited content when you can curate. And at this stage, you can auto-publish WordPress. We are going to add blogger, probably Joomla!, later than the track for auto-publishing. But manually, you can drag it to any html editor. We also have our integrated browser which is a very interesting thing. A lot of people asked about, when you see the searches on the lefthand side, you can actually go — in the old days, you couldn’t go into it quickly and then check what the entire article was about. So, what you have to do, you have to copy and paste the link, copy the link and actually paste it into your own browser, intro Firefox or whatever. But now when you double click the actual title link of that article, it opens up the – our integrated browser and it’s another pop up window on top of CurationSoft. And then you can read the entire article in there and now, there is another nice functionality that you can highlight certain parts of that article and drag it over in to your editor. So you can adjust, cite the title on the first paragraph, but you can actually cite certain pieces of that article or if you want the entire thing but it’s not — I wouldn’t recommend that.
Mike: Ir definitely sounds like a piece of software that you’re just not gonna create and sell it and then say bye-bye if there is a problem with it, you’re out of luck. It sounds like — it sounds like it’s your baby and you take continued good care of it.
Peter: Yeah. Well, it’s been around for well, 6 years now. So, it’s been tested. I mean, there are always some new things coming out. You know, we have to debug it and you know, we got a lot of great ideas from our users. Most of the features in there, it came from users.
Mike: Cool. Great, Peter. Well, thank you again. I really appreciate it.
Peter: Thank you so much.
Mike: I hope you enjoyed the interview with Peter. If you’re interested in checking out his CurationSoft software, you can go to mikefrommaine.com/curationsoft and check that out. There are videos on the sales page showing you much more in depth about what we talked today and what you saw. It’s gonna be much more, of course, than what I showed you at the beginning of the interview. Thank you for watching and I will see you all tomorrow.