The last time you visited CNN.com or some other authoritative website, you probably noticed a few links with thumbnails under the heading ‘From around the web’. These links direct you to websites that are not part of the CNN network.
In other words, it is pretty evident that CNN syndicates these links for a certain amount of money, helping those syndicated websites to receive the massive traffic that CNN usually enjoys. By paying a certain amount of money to content syndication companies like Outbrain or Taboola, companies and businesses can get their blogs, articles and columns featured or syndicated on authoritative websites like Huffington Post, CNN or just about any important online publication out there.
Content syndication has slowly come to be one of the most important steps in content marketing. You might be having a lot of content that has been published in all these years. However, if you are not marketing your content on all the available platforms, it is probably going unnoticed from the larger targeted web traffic. With that in mind, we strive to explain not only the importance of content syndication in content marketing, but also give you a brief overview about how best to do it.
Let us take a look at 5 important reasons why content syndication is important as part of content marketing:
• Visibility on authoritative websites
It is not always that you get to make your content available on a highly authoritative website. When you choose a content syndication service, your content, which could probably never get a mention in mainstream media, can find a place on of the most important websites. No matter how relatively unknown your own content is, letting your content appear on a more authoritative website will make you visible.
• Increase lead generation
Content syndication helps targeted people to click on your links, after they probably read a related article on the publisher’s site. Usually, content syndication takes into account the demographics, psychographics and browsing patterns before making your link appear down below. This leads to a targeted lead generation as those who click on your link tend to be more or less interested in what you offer.
• Increase revenue
When your blogs, articles, columns and even landing pages are syndicated on a third party website, chances are, more people will end up buying your product or service. If you are involved in monetizing your content, content syndication directly helps you to increase your revenue. This is one of the better ways to increase revenue with existing content.
• Accidental discovery
A number of people who arrive at web pages do so accidentally. When they click on syndicated links accidentally, they might turn out to be leads or even prospects. This helps you to make yourself be discovered accidentally. It is a great way to make sure that your content is being discovered by audiences that you earlier had no access to.
• Increase and sustain traffic
Any form of content syndication leads people to click on your links. That increases traffic to your website. When you continue to be a part of content syndication programs, you will be able to sustain your increased traffic over a period of time; and that is very important for traffic generation and sustenance.
While content syndication can be amazingly good for your traffic, certain myths still lurk around. In this section, we dispel 3 myths that are doing rounds across content marketing departments.
Myth #1: Syndication reduces traffic
This is one of the biggest myths around when it comes to content syndication. Many people believe that if their content is published elsewhere, people will begin to look for it elsewhere. That is really not the case. The fact that you are trying to syndicate your content on some other website shows that you need more traffic. Content syndication is done in order to increase traffic and thus, reduction in traffic is a rather absurd idea.
Myth #2: Syndication is not good for SEO
Many SEO professionals mistakenly believe that content syndication is not good for SEO. SEO professionals believe rightly when they say that content duplication is bad for SEO. However, content syndication is a process by which you are only letting your thumbnail, title and an excerpt be visible on a third party website for a price; and that is allowed by Google. Thus, content syndication is not bad for SEO at all.
Myth #3: Paid distribution makes you look desperate
A number of companies believe they will look spammy and even desperate when they let their blogs, articles and other content be visible on third party websites. In reality, it just makes you look more authoritative because your content is visible on a more authoritative website. Nothing could be father than this from the truth.
Planning a syndication strategy
In order to benefit the most from content syndication, you need to know what you are trying to achieve. Some of the goals could be increasing traffic to the website, making you more visible and building awareness of your products or something else that is a priority. No matter what it is, you need to first describe the motive behind content syndication.
If you are trying to build traffic, you will probably want to just leave a text link to your blog post or at the most, a thumbnail, excerpt and the title at the bottom of the page. However, if you are looking to build awareness of your product, you might want to consider other forms of syndication. No matter what, you need to know what you are trying to achieve and why you need content syndication in the first place.
Choose the right content syndication partner
There are paid and unpaid content syndication partners. Paid ones include Outbrain, Zemanta, Taboola and others. Unpaid content syndication platforms include certain websites which are open to linking your content from their websites. Choosing a paid service is infinitely better because you will be able to track and analyze the results of content syndication.
Choose the content to be syndicated
The next step is to choose the content that you want to syndicate. You need to make sure that your content has great titles, is written attractively and is of some use to the target audience of the publishers. Make sure that you make a list of posts that are best suited for sharing on third party sites. Use only those posts for content syndication.
Track, analyze and improve content
Once you select the posts to promote and share it on Zemanta or any other content syndication platforms, you will start noticing a surge in traffic. You will also be able to analyze the results. Based on which titles and posts are getting more hits and clicks, you can create content that will attract more people. You will understand the kind of audience that the third party website has. It will help you to create better content. At the end of the day, it will help you to increase traffic to your website, increase the chances of generating leads, increase revenue and become associated with authoritative publishers.
Content syndication, to say the least, will help you to reach targeted audiences that might otherwise be not available to you. With a little expenditure you can not only increase traffic to your website but also ensure that you are reaching the right target audience. However, before jumping into the content syndication bandwagon, speak to a professional or a consultant who will be able to help you better to choose the right content syndication partner, when it comes to marketing your content.
Whether you are trying to increase traffic, getting your product known or you simply want to test waters, content syndication is certainly the way to go in the coming years. Make sure you grab the opportunities that come along your way and you will not regret it. Do not believe in myths that have spoken negatively about content syndication. Instead, it only helps you to grow your business.
Certainly, content syndication is one of the most important aspects of content marketing and it is becoming increasingly commonplace, as evidenced by websites like CNN, Haaretz and other authoritative websites running Outbrain and other content syndication programs. Choose wisely and choose smartly. Content syndication can change the way you look at content marketing and the results can be surprisingly pleasant.