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Free Social Media Tools for Content Curation

As community manager for Clarity Consultants, there are a number of tools that I use to help manage the flood of information I encounter every day. Many of these tools that I use for community management can also easily be used for content curation for L&D practitioners.

Here are my favorites:
Google Reader – Use for: Subscribing to blogs and other RSS feeds.

I like Google Reader because I can conveniently read updates from all of my favorite blogs each morning—it’s like having my own custom newspaper.

Evernote – Use for: Bookmarking urls and categorizing by topic.

I would be lost without Evernote. It’s the curation tool I use daily to save all of the online articles that I either want to read or refer to later. And with its tagging feature, I can separate out what’s pertinent to my job from articles of personal interest that I might want to read over the weekend.

Delicious – Use for: Storing and categorizing urls.

There are certain websites that I like to visit daily, and Delicious allows me to keep those urls in one convenient place. I’ve been saving my most-visited websites into “stacks,” which I understand will soon go away and will be replaced by tags, so I’ll still have my urls categorized but in a different format.

Paper.li – Use for: Publishing stories on a specific topic.

Delicious and Evernote are effective tools for gathering your urls and Paper.li is the tool to publish your information into a cohesive format. Using Paper.li is like publishing your own online magazine (without the advertisements).

Pinterest – Use for: Searching for and saving graphic-heavy information.

I use Pinterest to find and “pin” infographics and other interesting bits of information that attract me visually that I might not otherwise find. Pinterest could also be used for reading lists or to showcase your work in an online portfolio. Plus, Pinterest is fun! Using Pinterest is more like playing than working, even if you are being productive.