Content Syndication – What it is, and how use syndication networks to reach new audiences
The main idea behind any sort of marketing, no matter if it’s B2B or B2C, is to help spread brand awareness. That means that your goal, whenever you start any marketing initiative, is to reach as many people as possible and to make them interested in your company.
If you’ve already started an SEO-driven content marketing approach, then a content syndication strategy would likely help you spread your message even quicker and thus drive more traffic to your website.
Suppose you’ve never heard of content syndication before and are wondering what it’s all about. In that case, hopefully, this article will be able to give you all the vital information regarding one of the most valuable marketing tactics that you can use.
Let’s get started.
What is Content Syndication?
When a third-party website republishes content that you’ve already posted on your website or company blog, that process is referred to as content syndication. It’s mainly used by content publishers who need a new marketing tactic or by people who have done marketing for a while but want to try something new to increase their brand awareness. Typically, if your site is a part of a syndication network, all the other sites can publish your blog posts, videos, and graphics as content and at the same time give you credit and a link to your original post.
If you’re a marketer, there are a variety of ways to use web syndication. One of them is to produce a guest post for a platform that deals with B2B content syndication services. Another thing you can do is duplicate an SEO-driven blog post from your website by using a syndication platform.
A well-executed syndication strategy can have many benefits for your business while freeing time for the marketing team to work on other initiatives. Here are some of the pros your company can benefit from by using a web syndication strategy:
- Syndication networks provide you access to a broader audience, which can help your marketing content reach even more potential customers.
- More often than not, syndicated content can drive lead generation by allowing you to reach an audience you wouldn’t have had access to otherwise.
- It can give your SEO a boost since each piece of syndicated content will have a backlink to the original post on your website.
- Content syndication can save your marketing team a ton of time and effort while at the same time continuing to give results.
All in all, if done correctly, a content syndication marketing campaign can give your business a boost in traffic, lead generation, and access to a broader audience while allowing your employees to work on feature initiatives or focus on a more urgent task at hand. If you have a small start-up, the free time you get by using syndication networks will be of even more vital importance for the future of the company.
Can Content Syndication Be Harmful to Your SEO?
When we talk about syndicated content, it essentially means the same as duplicate content. It’s basically a copy of the original post you have on your blog, without almost any changes. The only things that can be different are the title and the pictures that are used. But nothing more than that.
Even though using duplicate content can look like an easy way to kill two birds with one stone, there are certain risks that you need to be on the lookout for. One way to minimize those risks is by opting to use a good syndication network that ensures that both your original content and its duplicate are able to retain their SEO value.
Suppose you’ve been in the digital marketing sector for a long time, then you likely know that problems can happen when duplicate content gets published. In general, most search engines will only have one copy that’s the most relevant to the user search and only index the one copy.
Utilizing a content syndication network allows you to get around these potential issues, as they “tell” the search engine where the original article came from. Thus, it’s the one that gets indexed and receives all of the SEO benefits. Another common way to ensure that your content retains all of its SEO benefits is to partner with a syndication service provider who implements a rel=canonical tag on all their websites. What this tag does is tell the search engine that there are multiple variants of this page, and only the original one has to be indexed. That way, the rest of the pages will be available to viewers without having an impact on your SEO benefits. The meta no-index tag does the same thing when it gets added to a page server.
Paid or Free Content Syndication Networks: Which Ones are Better?
It’s hard to say that one type of network is better than the other. On the one hand, there are plenty of free syndication platforms that can help you get access to a broader audience and drive engagement. On the other hand, paid service providers are often easier to utilize as they sort of work similarly to Google Ads. You pick a campaign budget and a bid rate, and then an automated system distributes your content to other third-party websites until the budget limit is met. While this process saves you time, it can look like spam for some users if not done correctly.
If you choose to use free syndication networks, most of the time, you have to pitch your content to the site’s editorial staff, as they tend to be non-automated. However, there are some ways to syndicate your content without having to fight for any approval. In order to do that, you have to have a fundamental understanding of the site’s audience and what they would want to read about.
Now that you are aware of the pros and cons of each type of content syndication network let’s look at a few useful syndication providers that are completely free of charge.
3 Best Free Content Syndication Providers
Quora is a one-of-a-kind social media platform that allows users to ask questions that Google cannot answer. Quora users usually create a profile that contains their hobbies and professional experience, which helps establish their credibility on specific subjects. Additionally, users have the opportunity to upvote answers they agree with, further establishing the credibility of good responses on the social media platform.
Additionally, Quora has a blogging platform that’s aimed at writers who don’t have an audience yet. By using Quora, bloggers can all but forget about SEO, as the social media network makes their content more easily discoverable. This lets writers focus on the content they’re creating instead of on how to distribute it properly. When it comes to B2B marketing, Quora can be useful as a way to share content from the company’s blog and thus engage in conversations with readers on the site.
Medium is a newly created platform that allows writers and businesses to publish articles. Medium users can read a few free articles a month or sign up for a subscription, copying other popular media outlets such as The Washington Post. Publishing on Medium is still completely free, which makes it a must-use marketing tool for any company.
If you already have a business blog, then Medium is even better. You can share your content on the platform by pasting the URL of the original blog into Medium’s blogging tool. From there, the site will automatically reformat your content, along with links, images, and meta tags, ensuring that the content that gets the SEO benefits is the original.
Reddit is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world. In it, users share content from all around the web and thus start conversations around particular subjects. Reddit is categorized into numerous subreddits, which are basically communities of people that form around a specific topic. These range from things like pets and sports teams to industry-specific communities like r/Marketing, where marketers ask each other questions and discuss new developments in the marketing sector.
Unlike the two previous sites we discussed, Reddit isn’t the right place to fully syndicate your content, as it doesn’t allow you to write long posts and publish articles. However, it will enable you to start a conversation around a particular post that you already did write. That way, you can develop a wider audience while engaging it and driving traffic to your website.
All three of these platforms are entirely free to use and thus are a great promotional tool that you can use without needing to spend money out of your marketing budget. However, in order to get your content to be popular, you will need to put in more effort and make sure that it brings value to your readers there—something that you won’t have to worry about with paid platforms.
3 Best Paid Content Syndication Networks
Outbrain is one of the most extensive content syndication networks out there, and it generates over 275 content recommendations each month. You’ve likely seen Outbrain on popular sites like CNN or Le Parisien.
It offers a large ad network and extensive content marketing distribution channels. You can pay Outbrain to distribute content in the form of blog posts, podcasts, social media posts, and even podcasts. Then your content will often appear as a paid ad at the bottom of a ton of popular websites.
Zemanta is a native ad platform that uses advanced technology so that it can put relevant advertisements in front of groups of readers. Even though it was bought by Outbrain, it still operates under its own brand.
Along with sharing content, Zemanta is able to help B2B companies create valuable content for specific target audiences. Along with that, it optimizes time-on-site and CTR metrics so that you can have a higher return of investment for each piece of content you make.
Taboola is similar to Outbrain as it also gives you access to a massive network of publishers who can distribute your content to a broad audience that’s identified by an algorithm. It allows you to control the websites that your content appears on. For example, if you don’t want your articles to appear on some inappropriate website, you can exclude them with the use of a simple dashboard. But that’s still tricky, as if you don’t know which sites are producing ill-suiting content, your brand may appear on them without your ever finding out.
One cool thing about Taboola is that it posts your content in the place where most of your readers are. However, people that often visit such sites can recognize them as ads.
Generally, it’s not really recommended to use paid content syndication services. They’re likely to work in the short run by bringing in traffic to the website. However, they won’t help you attract an audience that’s genuinely interested in what your brand does. That’s why it’s better to spend the extra time getting traction on the more popular, free websites mentioned in the above paragraph than to just waste money attracting low-quality clicks through paid content syndication networks. However, it’s still your choice – if getting traffic is the most vital thing for you and you don’t care where it comes from, then paying for content syndication services will assist with getting more people to your site.
Suppose you’re thinking about using content marketing as part of your overall marketing strategy, or you’re a business that has already produced a ton of useful content. You’re wondering how you can further use it for brand awareness. In that case, you definitely have to take a deep look at content syndication.
There are a ton of benefits your company can gain by using web syndication. It’s a terrific way to build a larger audience and build a reputation as a thought leader. Along with that, it’s a chance to re-use content that you’ve already spent money on in a way that’s useful to your business.
So, if you want to make your brand even more popular or you simply want to establish a more substantial online presence, then content syndication is the way to go.