The Curation Economy And The Three Cs Of Information Commerce


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 27, 2023

4 min read


The Curation Economy And The Three Cs Of Information Commerce

In today's digital age, information is abundant and easily accessible. With a few clicks, we can find articles, videos, and resources on any topic imaginable. However, with this abundance of content comes the challenge of filtering through it all to find what is relevant and valuable. This is where social curators come in.

Social curators are individuals who discover, organize, and share relevant content from around the web. They play a crucial role in the pyramid of Information Commerce, bridging the gap between content creators and consumers. Platforms like Storify,,, Pearltrees, and have emerged as leaders in this space, providing tools that enable curators to repurpose and disseminate information in captivating and engaging formats.

What sets social curation apart from traditional social networking is the focus on interest graphs rather than social graphs. Instead of connecting based on personal relationships, curators connect based on shared interests and passions. By curating and sharing content, they not only enhance their own nicheworks but also contribute to the vibrancy and integrity of the larger social nicheworks they are a part of.

Curated content serves as social objects that spark conversations and reactions. It breathes new life into the original content and extends its reach beyond its original platform. It allows for meaningful interactions and connections to be formed around shared interests, fostering a sense of community and belonging.

One platform that exemplifies the power of social curation is Goodreads. Started by a quiet developer named Otis Chandler, Goodreads has grown into a book community with over 2.6 million members. Goodreads allows users to track and share what they have read, connect with friends, and discover new books based on recommendations.

Goodreads's success can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, the platform's use case was clear and compelling, leading users to share it with their networks. Mashable featured Goodreads, and many bloggers who write book reviews recommended it, further driving its growth. Additionally, English literature students, who are passionate readers, became power users of the platform.

Goodreads's approach to social networking also played a significant role in its success. Instead of focusing on cataloging books, the platform emphasizes seeing what friends are reading and getting excited about reading through their recommendations. This social aspect creates a sense of community and drives users to come back to the platform. Goodreads's home page functions as a news feed, displaying what friends have recently read and discussed in groups.

To increase user retention, Goodreads introduced groups, providing users with more ways to engage with the platform. Groups allow users to connect with others who share similar reading interests and participate in discussions. Additionally, groups serve as a way to bring in new users, as group creators are prompted to invite their friends to join.

Goodreads also recognized the importance of authors in the book community. By giving authors a platform to connect with their fans and reach a wider audience, Goodreads became a valuable marketing tool for authors. The platform also introduced a self-serve advertising product, allowing authors to target their book ads based on genre rather than keywords, ensuring that their ads reach the right audience.

The success of Goodreads can be attributed to the combination of a clear use case, a focus on social networking and community-building, and the inclusion of authors as key stakeholders. By listening to user feedback and prioritizing features that increase traffic, generate revenue, and improve user stickiness, Goodreads has grown to become a thriving book community.

So, what can we learn from the Goodreads success story? Here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Focus on a clear and compelling use case: Make sure your platform or product solves a problem or fulfills a need in a clear and compelling way. Clearly communicate the value proposition to users to encourage them to share it with their networks.
  • 2. Emphasize community and social networking: Create a sense of community and belonging by enabling users to connect with others who share their interests. Foster meaningful interactions and conversations around shared content.
  • 3. Listen to user feedback and prioritize features: Continuously gather user feedback and use it to prioritize the development of new features. Focus on features that increase user retention, drive traffic, generate revenue, and improve the overall user experience.

In conclusion, the rise of social curators and platforms like Goodreads highlights the importance of curation in the digital age. Curators play a vital role in discovering, organizing, and sharing relevant content, contributing to the evolution of new media and the expansion of social nicheworks. By understanding the power of social networking and community-building, and by listening to user feedback, businesses can create platforms and products that resonate with users and thrive in the curation economy.

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