The prevailing, generic internet marketing advice in vogue right now is that you need to syndicate your content. In other words, submit your articles to content directories and syndication hubs in order to win new traffic and links to your website.
The problem is that most new online business owners looking for solid step-by-step advice on how this is practically accomplished are turning up little more than the advice above.
People in the know have been there and done that. In fact, although article syndication is all the rage these days, expert internet marketers have been doing this for years. The system of getting the most out of syndication is a bit more advanced than simply paying someone to syndicate your content for you, to say the least.
Something to consider is that article dispersal hubs (article directories) come in all shapes and sizes. And some are far more advanced than most.
Consider the fact, which you might not have been aware of until now, that just getting your articles posted on a bunch of directories doesn't necessarily mean you are getting your articles read in great numbers by your target market.
Surprised? You shouldn't be. Think about the old link farms. It was awhile before anyone realized that no one in their target market was actually seeing their links! Certainly no one from their target market. Yet it was all the rage in its short-lived days as a top-notch marketing tactic!
The same can be said of most of the article directories on the web today. The two main visitors of such directories are website owners looking for content for their sites and authors looking for places to get published.
If neither of these groups are your target market, you are in big trouble if your articles only get syndicated to directories and no further.
The real point of syndication is consumption of your information by your target audience. Followed by a click on your link in the byline of your articles. A side benefit is any resulting search engine boost you might get for your site, but it is far less than most experts are telling you.
You see, when you submit your articles to the average directory they simply sit there and go no further. The average directories get little or no traffic and they do not in turn promote themselves properly through RSS feeds to bring your articles any real exposure.
The directories that give you the most bang for your buck are the directories that further syndicate your content through RSS and newsletters for each topic for which they accept articles.
What you want to look for are directories that are promoting your content actively and promoting themselves professionally. Look for directories with pagerank and high traffic stats and you can easily forget about any others.
In fact, just one submission to one high traffic, RSS feed-enabled directory can net you more traffic and backlinks than most of the rest of the content directories out there, since most of the others are small sites with article scripts put up by amateur marketers.
So when choosing places to spend time hand-submitting your content for the widest distribution possible, make sure you check to make sure submission is even worth that valuable effort. Check each directory's pagerank and traffic stats before you waste time submitting your content to a black hole.
If you are going to use a service, carefully go through their stated list of submission sites before paying them a dime. Like the useless “search engine submission" companies that say they will submit your site to 7 zillion search engines (when there are really only a handful of real search engines on the web) many syndication companies pad their submission list with sites where no one will ever see your article or click your link.
Also, any syndication or PR specialist worth their fee should syndicate your article content through their own RSS feeds and have a popular site themselves. If not, don't think they are going to do any better for you if their own site lacks significant traffic and pagerank.
You only have so much time each day to spend getting the most out of your efforts. Simply submitting articles to a huge list of directories expecting large amounts of links and traffic to come your way in the coming weeks is a loser's bet.
Most people are doing this now, but you should have enough information here to avoid making that mistake yourself. Hit the big directories and don't waste your time with the small fry. You can save yourself more time to write more content and syndicate it as well by skipping the ineffective article directories that are nothing more than content ghost towns.
Copyright 2005 Jack Humphrey
Jack Humphrey is the author of Power Linking (http://www.power-linking-profits.com ) and the managing partner at http://www.contentdesk.com , a leading content directory and syndication hub.