content marketing

Affiliate marketing[1] has been big business for almost as long as the Internet has been around, but the business is constantly changing. The core idea behind affiliate marketing remains the same as it’s always been – get lots of traffic to your offers, and build a great sales page so that the traffic converts.

Sadly, getting traffic is becoming more and more difficult. The size of your audience is expanding, but the number of people that are running affiliate sites is expanding too, and the search engines are cracking down on a lot of the older, spammy link-building techniques. This means the blog commenting bot you saw advertised on that affiliate forum won’t do much for you. However, there are a lot of other ways to build links. Here are a few ideas for you.

Affiliate marketing

Content Marketing

Far too many affiliates focus on picking out a huge list of products, building sales pages, and hoping for the best. It is possible to succeed with a huge network of products and sites, but there’s a good chance you’ll burn out if you do this. Instead of trying to make money off a huge network, why not focus on a handful of products that you truly love, and genuinely believe in.

Content marketing[2] means creating awesome content that your competitors simply can’t match. Instead of just putting together a sales page, add value. Write reports that actually inform or entertain. If you sell protein powders, write an app that people can use in the gym to track their workouts. If you promote dating sites, run an agony aunt style column that provides genuinely useful dating advice. Sales pages don’t get links, great content does.

Content Marketing

Quality Links

If you are going to go out and seek people to exchange links with, don’t waste your time on link lists, top ten sites, spammy blogs, or barely related, low traffic sites. Pick high quality sites with content related to yours, and send personal emails to the owners of those sites. Make it obvious that you’ve read their site, and take the time to explain what your site is and why they should link to it. Link exchanges do work, but you’ll need to put some work in to earn quality links.

Guest Posting

Guest posting[3] is a great way to earn natural-looking links to your site from a range of other sites. Next time you’re reading an affiliate forum, see if you can spot some site owners that work within your niche and would be interested in taking posts from you. While you’re browsing the web for leisure, look out for blogs that you like reading, and take a look at their about page. If they accept guest posts, send them something.

Make sure that the post you write is interesting, well written, and useful. Yes, it takes time to write good posts, but it’s worth it if you want to develop a good name for yourself online.

Guest posting
Image by advancedwebranking.com

Product Reviews

Product reviews are essential for affiliates. If you want consumers to buy the product you’re promoting, you need to prove that they can trust it. Build up a relationship with a few good reviewers, and send them samples for your best products.

Giveaways and Crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing is a good way to build buzz around your product. You can start fairly small; use your social media profile to promote some giveaways, and ask people to comment on your profile, share your content, or post something interesting (a funny image related to your niche, a poem, a short video – anything easy to create that will attract viewers), in return for an entry into a completion for a free product. Crowd sourcing is a great way to get organic links to your product pages, and it can be good PR too!

Wayne Barker writes for the affiliate marketing forum Twist. With a bustling community at Twist you are bound to find the information that you need to succeed.

1. Affiliate marketing – Wikipedia.org
2. Content marketing – Wikipedia.org
3. The Ultimate Guide to Guest Blogging – Kissmetrics.com

There has been a lot of stir surrounding Google’s latest Panda update. It has severely affected the rankings of some websites leaving them reeling from Google’s latest punches. But even with all these changes two strategies remain to be the pillars of any effective SEO campaign.

Writing high quality content and creating relevant backlinks are two of the most crucial SEO strategies that impact a website’s ranking in major search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing. However, despite having a similar purpose, these two SEO strategies differ from each other and are worlds apart when it comes to execution.

Writing high quality content is a skill. It requires the ability to communicate effectively a particular idea or topic through the use of written words. It also necessitates adept knowledge when it comes to the rules of grammar and proper syntax.

On the other hand, creating relevant backlinks involves deep research and analysis regarding the Internet and the websites, directories and forums wherein one can create backlinks. Creating backlinks for your website requires adept marketing skills.

What is the advantage of writing high quality content?

Writing high quality content offers a lot of advantages. When you write high quality content on a particular subject, you start to establish your expertise in that field. The better your explanations, analysis and researches are, the more you’ll be perceived as an expert in the said subject.

Writing high quality content also helps in establishing your website as an authority site. Thus, search engines will most likely put you in a higher search ranking.

Compared to creating relevant backlinks, writing high quality content has a more lasting effect as it will also improve your writing, grammar and communication skills.

What is the advantage of creating relevant backlinks?

Creating relevant backlinks that point directly to your website is actually much easier compared to writing high quality content. For one, creating relevant backlinks doesn’t require that much research on a topic.

Quality backlinks usually consist of 3-4 sentences only as opposed to high quality content that has five or six paragraphs minimum. More so, some backlinks are simply summary of the article or the website being promoted.

Unlike high quality content, backlinks can be created not just in a single domain. Backlinks can be created in article directories like Ezine, Article Base, Article Alley, Article Blasts and Article Trader.

Social media sites like Facebook and the micro-blogging platform Twitter are also great places where bloggers and webmasters can create backlinks for their blogs and websites.

social media messages containing links to content
Image by marketingprofs.com

High quality content versus relevant backlinks

Writing high quality content and creating relevant backlinks are part of a good SEO strategy. Both techniques, if executed properly, can generate heavy amounts of traffic for your website.

When it comes to which one is better, the answer boils down to the old Internet adage that content is king. Creating relevant backlinks is important but high quality content is weighed heavier especially in today’s fast-changing Internet hemisphere.

Another argument for high quality content is that it can actually generate backlinks of its own. Obviously, readers and fellow bloggers will more likely to share, recommend and create backlinks to high quality content compared to junk and duplicate content.

This is a guest post by Suzzane Edwards. She is a financial advisor and currently works as a consultant for small businesses. When she’s not writing for Cash for Gold, she can be found blogging about simple tips on how people could take advantage of the internet’s numerous business opportunities

Guest blogging is often ultimately regarded as a controversial technique due to abuse by both bloggers and webmasters. Although many bloggers do take it seriously and many far-reaching relationships have been established thanks to the joy of guest blogging, it is widely known that a dark side also exists (as with pretty much anything). However, in most cases, we talk a lot about the pitfalls for bloggers without stopping to consider how these can also affect webmasters. Thankfully, this article does just that, as it outlines how the act of opening one’s blog to guest writers can often backfire.

The first thing that pops to mind is that guest blogging needs a hefty dose of moderation. Due to the number of people trying to build links en masse with absolutely no regard for the webmaster’s feelings, simply announcing that you are open to guest submissions and allowing posts to be automatically published to your blog is bound to lead to many people adding your blog to their automatic link building software. Unfortunately, automatic link building software is labeled as such for a reason, which means that any articles obtained through these will be of extremely poor quality.

Guest Post
Image by mollermarketing.com

As such, as the webmaster you will find yourself dedicating a lot of time to deleting garbage submissions that relentlessly advertise those high suspicious Viagra and pornographic websites. This may sound manageable for a little website but as the news get out among the black hat community that there is no screening process for a submission, you may suddenly find yourself inundated with guest posts that eventually turn your once cherish blog into an A-level link farm.

Of course, the act of moderating each post before publication can prevent this but as your blog becomes more important and thus more visited, you may find yourself dealing with unmanageable levels of spam submissions. Obviously, there are anti-spam functions to deal with these but spammers are also becoming cleverer, and the ease with which they can change IPs or submit spun versions of the same article 15 times within 10 sections is becoming absurd. Many blogs that used to accept guest authors and were great places to reach out to a new audience have had to shut down their guest blogging option for these simple reasons.

The problem of spam and garbage guest post submissions is still only the one (albeit the biggest) problem from the webmaster’s point of view. There are other pitfalls that most webmasters will need to learn to successfully navigate through once they start accepting guest articles. The first is that they will need to learn how to handle with people from different backgrounds. For example, you may find yourself getting submissions from people who are actually trying to make acceptable submissions but for whom English is not their first language.

Guest Blog
Image by inblurbs.com

Once this happens, you may feel like lashing out, especially after having to wade through two dozen of horrible guest posts on a single day. This would of course be quite unfair on the blogger who is only trying his best and is a far cry from the hordes of spammers you are usually dealing with, and something like this can tarnish your reputation with your existing audience. The bottom line is that once you open your blog to guest authors, you need to be able to cope with several situations that you have probably never encountered before.

Ashvin writes on behalf of the New Emerald Cove Hotel, a Seychelles private island hotel located in Praslin. To find out more, visit the Emerald Cove website at http://www.emerald.sc.

Content marketing is one of the fastest-growing forms of online marketing, with more businesses than ever looking for a content strategy in order to give their website more authority with both the users and the search engines.

One of the biggest obstacles facing businesses looking for content, however, is what to write and how often. Sourcing a constant stream of content to publish on a website is more difficult than it sounds, with many writing a great deal of contention the first days and weeks before finding the ideas begin to run dry.
For this reason, news feeds have become more popular for businesses looking at content for their websites.

Content Marketing Cycle
Image by contentmarketinginstitute.com

With it being ever-changing, news provides exactly what marketers could want – authoritative and informed topics that are refreshed extremely regularly. Depending on the business, news stories could create any number of articles; from just a few to many scores each month.

News feeds also provide ways to link in to your website, giving readers an easy way through to the part of your business that deals with the same subject as the news story covers. By linking these “keywords” in the news story, users can read up about the topic, and then click through to the relevant part of your business page.
Not only this, news are highly regarded in the eyes of the search engines, provided that the written content is unique. Simply copying/pasting from news sites is not only plagiarism but publishing duplicate content, something the search engines deem as “spammy” and therefore punish the website with lower rankings as a result. By writing it in a different way, however; it is deemed unique and given more authority.

So content itself may be a struggle to come up with, but seeking a news feed will provide you with an endless, constantly updated stream of topics. This could allow you to publish content regularly to your website; endearing it to both the public and search engines alike.

content marketing usage by tactic
Image by marketingprofs.com