Author: Pawan Deshpande

Pawan Deshpande is the founder and CEO of Curata, a Boston-based company offering content marketing software used by thousands of marketers around the world. He spearheaded the first-ever panel at SxSW on Content Marketing in 2011, and was a 2014 Finalist for MarketingProfs B2B Marketer of the Year. Pawan was an engineer at Microsoft and Google where he was awarded patents in social networking and machine learning. He previously attended MIT where his graduate thesis won top departmental and international awards. You can contact Pawan via Twitter @TweetsFromPawan or on LinkedIn. Interested in the state of the content marketing industry in 2016? Download Curata's 2016 Content Marketing Staffing & Tactics Study.

By pawan-deshpande published February 10, 2017

Marketing Attribution Model: A Primer for Content Marketers


“Whoever owns your attribution model owns your budget” – Lars Hirsch, principal product manager, sponsored products, Amazon

In marketing, “attribution” refers to a set of user actions that contributes to a desired outcome, (i.e., a conversion) and assigning a value to each of these events. It helps you understand which combination of events in which particular order influences people to engage in a desired behavior. It proves your content is working. It helps marketing align with sales, determines your budget, and can improve your content quality.Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published August 21, 2016

10 Interview Questions to Find the Best Content Marketers


Organizations of all sizes and across a range of industries are busy hiring people to manage their content. After all, the expertise and skills needed to run a successful content marketing strategy differ from those of the average marketer, so it makes sense to bring content specialists into the fold.

But how do you go about finding the right person? What competencies should you look for? And how can you determine if a job applicant fits the bill? Below I outline three critical core competencies for content marketers of all levels, along with 10 interview questions you can ask to determine candidates’ proficiency in each area.Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published October 7, 2015

Metrics Made Easy: 8 Easy-to-Use Categories and A Dozen Tools


Why are you analyzing your content?

Before diving deep into metrics, ask yourself: What do we want our content marketing to achieve?

Your answers likely will lead you to one (or more) of the eight metric categories that I’m sharing to help you improve your focus in your analytics and better define content marketing success. (In CMI’s recently released B2B Content Marketing 2016 study, 55% of B2B marketers say it is unclear what an effective or successful content marketing program looks like within their organization.)Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published November 23, 2014

8 Metrics to Conquer a Content Marketer’s Fear of Measurement

15077175519_6a31362dcd_zWhile creating and publishing content may be easy, measuring content marketing is a hard and daunting task. Earlier this year, I asked 24 content marketing experts to name the one  most important metric to which they pay attention. The responses were across the board. Clearly, there’s no one way to measure content marketing.

Since there are so many metrics for content marketing, and even more tools used to measure them, I recently created a framework that covers eight types of possible metrics. Keep in mind that not all of these metrics apply to all types of content. The framework is broken down by channel, so you can get specific examples of each metric.Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published August 24, 2014

The Content Marketing Pyramid: Create More With Less

cco magazine-pyramid imageThese days, content marketing teams are expected to create content in all shapes and sizes. Following the advice of content marketing sages, we’re posting tweets every few hours, blogging every day, podcasting every week, publishing an eBook every month… and the list goes on. Trying to keep up with the seemingly insatiable demand, content teams often feel overwhelmed and stretched too thin. Even worse, all this frenetic activity often lacks an underlying strategy or focus.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. Back in 2010, I proposed the Content Marketing Pyramid — a strategy that allows you to get more out the door with the same effort. It’s done by combining infrequent, time-intensive content with low-effort, recurring content.Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published November 22, 2013

Is Your Content Curation Ethical? A 10-Step Checklist

ethics word cloud-content curationCuration itself is nothing new — museums have used art curators for centuries — but online content curation is still in its early stages. The early years of the internet were like the “Wild West,” and because it was so new, there were few ethical or legal guidelines to police behavior.

With new legislation governing online copyright and commerce, that’s all changed. Many content curators, though, are still unsure about what constitutes ethical curation, and how they can share third-party content without running afoul of copyright laws. Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published September 24, 2013

Content Curation: 6 Strategies to Add Value With Your Own Commentary

quote cloud - content curationWhen curating content as part of your content marketing strategy, it’s crucial to add your own commentary — or annotation — to differentiate your content from that of other sources, comply with fair use requirements, and boost the overall SEO value of all your content offerings.

For example, content curation is a great tactic for promoting your thought leadership — but only if the audience can clearly distinguish your insight from that of your source material. This is particularly relevant when you are excerpting curated content, rather than syndicating it outright. In fact, when excerpting a piece of content, my recommendation is that the perspective you add must be at least half as long (in terms of word count) as the original content itself, and should include brand-appropriate keywords in order to optimally position you as an expert on the subject.Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published July 17, 2013

5 Tips Every Content Curator Needs to Write Better Calls to Action

content curatorCalls to action (CTAs) are among the most neglected of content marketing components — in both curated and created content. Yet, they are also among the discipline’s most essential features in terms of providing brand value. These simple, yet targeted, phrases are directly responsible for encouraging your audience to take a next step toward becoming a loyal customer, such as downloading your white paper, following you on Twitter, registering for your webinar, or sharing your content with a friend or colleague.

Without a call to action, content marketing efforts amount to little more than writing exercises. It’s not enough to publish useful information; you want readers to engage with you and take an action that will provide value for your business. Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published February 27, 2013

4 Content Curation Tips You Can Take from Brand Success Stories

content curation examplesMany companies that are implementing content marketing are struggling with producing sufficient content, and simultaneously producing relevant and engaging content. According to CMI’s 2013 B2B Content Marketing report, 64 percent of content marketers say that creating sufficient content is their greatest challenge.

As a result, many marketers are turning toward content curation, the practice of finding, organizing, and sharing the best and most relevant content on a specific topic, rather than solely creating all their content themselves. In the past few years, there has been a lot of chatter about content curation, and its applications in content marketing. Yet, despite all the buzz, it’s hard to visualize and understand the best practices for brands that are looking to implement the technique.Continue Reading

By pawan-deshpande published December 6, 2012

14 Sources for Content Curation Inspiration

curation sources for inspiration

Hootsuite’s curation tool

Increasingly, content marketers are employing content curation, the process of finding, organizing and sharing third-party content, as a part of their content marketing efforts. Earlier this year, my company released a survey with over 400 marketers where we found that 95 percent of marketers these days report that they are curating content in some shape or form.

It makes sense that marketers are adding content curation to the content marketing mix. After all, the Content Marketing Institute’s own 2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks report found that 64 percent of B2B marketers reported that producing enough content was a challenge. Continue Reading