Having a robust content marketing strategy won’t be of much help if you aren’t using your content to its full capacity. Creating top-notch content won’t pay off unless you actively engage in content syndication. A lot of marketers and businesses are reluctant to syndicate content even if they know what is content syndication.
Because they aren’t sure of its long-term benefits. And they’re afraid of duplicate content.
However, the reality is exactly the opposite (and bright). If you are skeptical about content syndication and hesitate to have it published somewhere else, I’m sure you’ll fall in love with content syndication by the end of this article.
What is Content Syndication?
Content syndication is the republication of a single piece of content on more than one website. It includes all types of content such as articles, videos, infographics, etc. Infographic is a perfect example of content syndication where a single infographic is republished in its original form across several websites (with a backlink to the source).
It is a common practice that’s used by all types of websites and publications. Here is an example from Forbes:
And here is an example of content syndication from Fast Company that republishes a lot of content from other sites:
It isn’t just limited to the internet rather it is an old marketing practice that is practiced a lot in the media industry. Newspapers, for instance, republish content from new writers and small publications to get new yet exciting content at no cost.
The internet, however, has changed the way syndication is done. You now have to cite the source with a backlink and explicitly mention that this piece of content was originally published elsewhere.
Content Syndication Benefits
It has a lot of benefits for both parties. It is a win-win content strategy for both the content creator and syndicated partner. A whopping 65% of B2B marketers reported that content syndication is a key part of their content strategy:
But of course, it is much more than this. Here is what content syndication brings to the table:
Works Both Ways
Yes, it does.
When someone republishes your article, you get a backlink while the website gets new content for free. Nobody will republish low-quality content especially if it is an authority website.
Do you think Fast Company will republish just any piece of content? No, it will cherry-pick the best of the best content. Authority websites will only republish content that they find extremely useful and helpful for their readers. And this type of content means a lot for any website.
So, the syndication partner gets top-notch content with zero investment.
On the other hand, the original publisher will get a free backlink and exposure because the content is always republished with a backlink and a clear explicit statement indicating where it was originally published.
It doesn’t just send referral traffic but it helps you generate leads. Some 76% of B2B marketers use content syndication to generate leads and 48% use it for nurturing leads:
Sarah Peterson republished an article on Elite Daily that helped her generate 1,000+ new subscribers.
Here is the original article on her blog:
Here is its republished version on Elite Daily:
The same article was republished on HuffPost too:
This is the power of content syndication. You can drive heaps of referral traffic and generate quality leads by having your content syndicated on even a single authority website.
Brand Awareness and Exposure
One of the key benefits that you get from syndicating your content is brand awareness, exposure, credibility, and authority. When your target audience sees your articles and brand name on leading authority websites over and over again, it improves brand awareness and, eventually, your audience will start perceiving you as an authority too.
Ask yourself: Would you trust a news story published in the New York Times or a story published by an unknown small news website?
You’ll trust and believe what the New York Times publishes. The same holds when your content is republished on such an authority website – people trust and believe your content and brand.
Content Syndication vs. Content Repurposing
These aren’t the same as content repurposing.
Content repurposing refers to changing the format of a piece of content to reach a new audience. You use existing content for a new purpose. For example, you can convert a blog post to a video and publish it on YouTube to reach a new buyer persona.
Content syndication is a content distribution tactic where the format doesn’t change and your target audience remains the same. The same piece of content is published elsewhere word for word.
Guest Blogging vs. Content Syndication
Content syndication and guest blogging aren’t the same. Yes, they may sound similar because your content is published on a third-party platform but these two are different tactics.
In guest blogging, you publish an exclusive new piece of content for a website that isn’t published elsewhere. In the case of content syndication, the content is republished on another website and isn’t a new piece.
Content Syndication and SEO
One of the main reasons why marketers and businesses avoid syndication is that they fear duplication. Google doesn’t like duplicate content as stated here:
It further clarifies that:
Google is only concerned about spam and deceptive practices to manipulate search engine rankings. However, this isn’t the case with content syndication. If you are concerned about duplicate content, Google has no duplicate content penalty:
Google further clarifies it in its policy:
So syndicating content won’t lead to a penalty and Google doesn’t have any problem with it. The only issue is that Google might choose a republished version of your content to show in SERPs. But that’s OK if you are being credited by the syndicating partner.
Google is smart and it chooses the original version of the content in most cases. This is a reason why you must use a canonical link to let crawlers know that it is a republished version of your article.
It isn’t just about what is content syndication and how to best use it, the thing is: It must be a part of your content strategy. If you aren’t republishing your top-performing content on authority websites, your content is missing a lot of eyeballs and exposure it deserves.
Don’t let your content sit on your CMS, syndicate it. Let others republish it freely.
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