Suzy: Week 11 Goals – Article Syndication

Suzy's Goals for her travel blog, Week 11 - Article Syndication
30 October 2009 Post Author:
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If you’re wondering what this Case Study is all about, please read the introductory post from Week One.

Last week we briefly summarized how Suzy is using Social Media networks such as Twitter, Facebook, Stumbleupon, and YouTube, to broaden her reach and increase the number of site visitors to her new travel blog.

This week we’re discussing how Suzy can use Article Syndication (also called Article Marketing) to accomplish two important goals:

  • Increase the number of inbound links via article syndication;
  • Establish credibility as an expert in her travel niche;

Article Syndication is simply taking an article that you’ve written that contains timeless, authoritative content, intended to be useful or valuable to a reader, and submitting it to one or more article submission sites or directories, such as EzineArticles.com or GoArticles.com. Article Submission sites serve as a resource for websites that are looking for articles specific topics.

Each step in the Flow Chart links to explanations, free tools, and resources
Websites that are looking for content on your topic can choose to reprint your article. The websites that reprint your article are required to keep your “author resources” (byline, bio, and link to your website) intact. The effect is the same as newspaper syndication – you benefit from the increased exposure by having your article reprinted across [potentially] many other websites, and you’ll get inbound links from those sites back to your travel blog.

Many of the top Article Submission sites are free to submit your articles to, but most have some fairly strict rules for acceptance, so you’ll want to read their submission guidelines first.

Suzy has never submitted any of her articles to an article submission site before, but she realizes that she has a lot of knowledge and experience within her travel niche, and that there are others who could benefit from the information that she could share.

What types of articles work best for article syndication?

Most article submission sites do not accept articles that are reviews or marketing pieces for places or products, nor about events or other time/date based topics that would be obsolete quickly.

The most popular articles are advisory – how-to’s, tips and tricks, insider secrets, and lists. While a list of top destination spas would not likely get accepted (a spa on the list could be out of business when the article gets reprinted) but a list of most popular spa treatments and their benefits would be a hit.

To be really popular, an article should educate and inform the reader from an expert point of view.

Think of the questions that people could ask you about your travel niche, and how you could structure an article that would answer that question. It isn’t necessary to write an article that answers all questions (save that for an eBook, which we’ll cover in Week 13), in fact, shorter articles tend to be more popular because many people have little time or a too-short attention span for long articles. A good length to aim for in an article you want to syndicate is roughly 400 to 600 words.

Tips for an effective article marketing strategy

  • Before you ever submit your first article, be sure your Author Biography, which will go in your Author Resources section, is as good as it can be;
  • Remember to follow the article submission site’s guidelines to ensure article acceptance;
  • If you’re submitting something that you also wrote for your own or another travel blog, modify it by at least 20% to avoid any duplicate content issues;
  • Pick several article submission sites, modifying your article for each, and gauge how each works for you;
  • Just like with your travel blog, regular article submissions will keep your content fresh and build credibility – the more articles you submit (on your travel niche topic), the more of an expert you are perceived to be;
  • Set a goal to submit an article at least once per month, weekly if you have a lot of knowledge to share – if you can’t be frequent in your schedule at least be consistent;
  • Quality counts for much more than quantity – long articles aren’t necessary, but good ones are!

Remember that just with print syndication, patience is key – it can take a while for an article to get reprinted by enough other websites for you to see any significant bump in traffic, but with regular article submissions, it will happen.

Stay tuned! Next week we’ll cover some techniques that Suzy will use to build her email subscriber list, which is a vital component of being able to monetize her travel blog.

~Trisha

What other ways do you attract visitors to your travel blog? Share your tips!

17 Responses to “Suzy: Week 11 Goals – Article Syndication”

  1. Shannon OD
    Twitter:
    says:

    What a great article – Anil just remarked on this same topic yesterday and it has me now really thinking that I have been missing this whole side of travel blogging. So glad you posted these steps on how to do it! It’ll save me time this weekend as I prep some for submissions! Love it! :-)

  2. Julie Gilley says:

    Trisha – Thank you for sharing this. Great information-it has given me a lot of ideas!

  3. Marcus Adkins
    Twitter:
    says:

    I had not considered or understood these methods.
    Now I have a new avenue to explore and you have once again put together a very informative article that has laid it out step by step and full of great tips!!
    Thanks again Trisha

  4. Dave and Deb
    Twitter:
    says:

    Thanks for the information. I was submitting a lot to article marketing sites and started to see some traffic. Thanks for the tips on what articles work well. I am going to submit one this week for sure! Great stuff as usual.

  5. @Shannon, @Julie, @Marcus, and @DaveAndDeb, Thank you all so much for your feedback and kind words – I’m really glad that people are finding this case study useful, and hopefully picking up a few tips.

    Like every other blogger/freelance writer I know, I struggle with finding time in my day to add yet another writing chore, but article syndication is one that really does pay off over time if you can carve out a few minutes a week.

    I set aside an hour on Sundays to go through some older articles (that have already appeared on my blog or elsewhere) and re-work them a bit, creating two or three different variations, then submit them to a couple of different directories.

    It takes persistence, but eventually you’ll see the increase in traffic!

  6. AdventureRob
    Twitter:
    says:

    Great case study series Trisha, ezine has been a well known link builder for a while on niche websites, there is plenty more room for travel websites on there.

    • Thanks Rob! I agree that there is plenty more room on EzineArticles (as well as a number of other article syndication sites) for more travel content, especially if a travel blogger has some valuable experience to share.

      Any time you can teach someone else something, you’ll attract readers.

  7. Mary Ann G
    Twitter:
    says:

    Trisha, your series of articles is the most useful thing I’ve found in years. Thank you!!!! Incredibly helpful! I am in awe of your depth of knowledge of the business of writing.

    • Trisha
      Twitter:
      says:

      Thank you Mary Ann, I really appreciate your kind words! It’s nice to know that this Case Study is helping so many other people – there’s a lot more good stuff ahead in the next few weeks!

  8. Trisha,
    Thank you for sharing such valuable information. Your generosity is truly appreciated!

  9. Akila
    Twitter:
    says:

    Trisha, These are some great tips. I have been following the Suzy case study since the beginning. Article marketing is something I need to start doing once I get a bit of time. I’ve got a couple of possible articles that I’ve written for my blog that I think would work. Thanks for posting all about this – it is so helpful.

    • Trisha
      Twitter:
      says:

      Thank you Akila – I appreciate the feedback!

      If you have any questions about it once you start doing some articles for syndication, feel free to post in our Forum. I’ve done quite a lot, but Rebecca has done much more (she’s quite expert at it)….we’ll both be able to help by answering specific questions and giving some advice or suggestions. Good luck with it!

  10. Jessie Kwak
    Twitter:
    says:

    Trisha, thanks for this case study! I just ran across it a few days back and I’ve spent hours since reading and thinking about all the great tips you’ve got. Really helpful!

    Cheers,
    Jessie

  11. Donna Hull
    Twitter:
    says:

    Trisha, what do you think of Blog Burst? They require that a blogger use a full feed, which means any other site where the feed is placed shows the entire blog post. So the reader really has no reason to visit the original blog (or click on ads). I’ve been using Blog Burst with limited success. Have you tried them? Curious about your thoughts on this. Thanks.

    • Hi Donna – thanks for stopping by!

      I don’t use BlogBurst for several reasons. First and foremost – it relies on your full Feed, meaning that what it submits to media sites is a 100% duplication of your content.

      While there is no longer a ‘penalty’ for duplicate content (according to Google), they still clearly rank results on who gets indexed FIRST for that content.

      Large Media sites that get content from BlogBurst are typically highly trafficked, high PageRank, frequently crawled-and-indexed sites, meaning that they will generally ALWAYS get indexed first for your content! That means they will generally always rank before you for your article, your keywords, and even quoted text from your post, and often your post will get tossed into what Google calls “Supplemental results” – which is a very bad thing – no one will ever find you in supplemental results because they are not displayed to searchers.

      AND you hit the nail on the head with the second reason I don’t use them – since someone has already read your post, it’s very unlikely that they will then go visit YOUR blog, unless they are curious and have lots of time, and want to see what else you’ve written. That probably explains the limited results you’ve experienced. You do get inbound links, but little visitors from them.

      The third reason I dislike them is their licensing agreement states that they or publishers can modify your content, pretty much in any way that suits them, and only vaguely allude to retaining your “original intent”…..I’m just not comfortable with the thought that they can change around what I write, and possibly wind up with a byline on something that may or may not retain my “original intent”.

      It’s my personal opinion that a better strategy is having similar, but less ‘fleshed out’ content on article syndication sites, with a clear call-to-action in the form of “to read more about this subject visit http://www…..”. Give them enough to intrigue them to come learn more at your own site.

  12. Donna Hull
    Twitter:
    says:

    Thanks for your detailed response, Trisha. I’m re-thinking my relationship with Blog Burst.
    .-= Donna Hull´s last blog post: Win a Mountainsmith Tour FX Camera Bag on the Travel Bloggers’ Caravan =-.

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