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July 20, 2011

Article Marketing: Content is King and Syndication is his Mistress – A SPN Exclusive Article

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Article Marketing is not only a misunderstood means of promotion, it is also probably the most misunderstood means of backlinking. It seems that everyone does article marketing, but we all have a different understanding of how it works and how to approach it.

Some people do AM for traffic and some do it for backlinks. Likewise, some people try to advertise with their articles, and some simply provide content. Well, there isn’t really a wrong way to do article marketing, but there is definitely a right way. Let’s clear the air and break down article marketing into its two core components and what they mean for your site’s traffic and rankings.

Distribution and Syndication

Distribution is where you submit your articles, and syndication is where they are published after they are found in the places you distributed to. For example, you submit (distribute) an article to EzineArticles. A week later, a webmaster finds your article and publishes (syndicates) it on his/her site. These syndication backlinks are usually much more powerful than any link you will get from a directory. Also, these links can and will send targeted traffic to your site. So to review, your article is distributed to directories where you will get some traffic and weak links, and then it is syndicated on other sites that give you a lot more traffic and better links than the directories. That means these links give you more traffic NOW and more traffic LATER because they help your rankings more. Our conclusion is that you want to create content that is made specifically to be syndicated – content for webmasters.

Here’s how you do it:

First, you want to consider the length of your article. If you were a webmaster looking for content to publish on your site, how long do you think you’d want it to be? The answer is basically as long as you can find! Longer content means readers stick around and read for longer and sites with more robust content often rank better. Rather than writing two 500 word articles that get little syndication, you should write one 1,000 word article because its chances for successful, widespread syndication are much better. And to reiterate, this means there’s a better chance of getting a whole lot more traffic and much stronger links.

Next, you want to look at the way the content itself is written. Article marketing works best with content that is very informational and even instructional in nature. Do NOT write advertisements. They will not get syndicated, and they possibly won’t even be accepted on any directories in the first place. It can be tempting to write an advertisement – don’t do it. Simply write an article that you think readers would find helpful, and also, if you can manage it, entertaining as well. People go online for information and entertainment. If you can provide one, you’re good. If you can provide both, you’re golden. If you’ve got a 1,000 word, informative and entertaining article on your hands, then you’re holding a powerful piece of promotional content. It is well worth your time to write like this because the benefits can be fantastic.

One aspect that cannot be stressed enough is the priority of quality content over well-optimized content. Concern yourself with writing a great article first, then worry about optimizing it for your keyword. Believe it or not, this will actually help your SEO in the long run. Everyone always talks about getting quality links. Well, duh. Who ever said that low quality links would be better? The problem is sorting them out and
understanding exactly how these high quality links are obtained. This is how: through excellent content. If you write lousy articles, they get published exclusively on article directories which give lousy links. But, if you write great articles, they get found and syndicated on great sites. Internalize this:

Great sites only publish great content, and great sites give great backlinks.

Your answer to these high quality backlinks everyone’s been talking about is through quality content. The content itself is the most important factor for SEO, followed by anchor text in your links, followed by your keyword in the title tag and keyword density. You can’t always have it all and the choice is usually between having a slightly optimized article on a great site or a well-optimized article on a lousy site. I’ll take the former any day.

Besides the quality of the content itself, widespread syndication for your article requires one other thing, proper distribution. You want to place your article where webmasters will find it. This basically means putting it on all the top directories, such as EzineArticles. This is all you have to do. However, there are a lot of services and products such as Article Marketing Robot for mass distribution. You do not have to use any of these for successful article marketing, but they do help. To restate, the links you get in directories are weak, however, in bulk they can still garner SEO benefits and slightly better chances of syndication. Overall, a combination of targeted and mass submission is best for a complete article marketing strategy.

Article Marketing can be a complex beast to master. It is a muddled area simply because so many people use it for so many different reasons. The strategy outlined above will, in my opinion, give you the biggest gains in traffic and the greatest boost in rankings you can achieve per article.


The most important part is the content creation itself, but for article submission, you can do it yourself or you can use an article submission service to automate your submissions for you. Check out our SEO course for more free information on SEO and related topics.

5 Responses to “Article Marketing: Content is King and Syndication is his Mistress – A SPN Exclusive Article

    Absolute rubbish! We don’t want to know how article marketing SHOULD work, but we should figure out if article marketing works or not…In short, it DOES NOT work.

    1 – Your articles get stolen.

    2 – Even if they get republished, it will end up in a low quality site.

    3 – You don’t have unique content on your site.

    …several complications.

    Article marketing does NOT work after Farmer update. That’s a fact.

    Good article Ben. I agree with you on using a program such as Article Marketing Robot for widespread distribution. I have been using Submit Your Article for years now.

    I would disagree on writing a 1000 word article as opposed to 2 500 word articles. I think it is better to break them up and change the primary keywords so you have a chance to rank in the search engines 2 times instead of 1.

    As a website publisher 500 words is more than long enough for me.

    Very well written article. Thanks.

    -Jeff Schuman

    avatar Ben Jackson says:

    Ron, I’m sorry but I have to disagree. I continue to get results for myself and my clients with article submission.

    1 – Yes, you’re articles do get stolen just like everything else online. They also get published correctly with your links intact as well.

    2 – If you’re content is good or bad it will be syndicated on low quality sites. If you’re content is good, it will also be published on good sites.

    3 – Why don’t you have unique content on your site??

    I assert that article marketing still works. The key is having quality content and submitting it to the right places. Mass distribution gets many low quality article directory links, but is still helpful for many reasons such as diversifying the IPs linking to your site. Targeted submissions to the popular directories still works to get your article picked up by more reputable sites.

    Ben – I agree with your article, and especially its title 100%.

    As a point of interest, one of the very first articles I ever published on EZA on 10/27/2005 is 2,085 words long. It has been syndicated thousands of times.

    In today’s report received from EZA, it continues to be one of my best read and highest syndicated articles. And it receives hundreds of click-throughs every month.

    The best of every possible worlds I should think.

    absolute rubbish…i dont agree at all…sorry to say so but dis is not at all an acceptable article

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