Capitalising on other people’s content marketing

I’m not a fan of passing someone else’s work or research off as your own, but there is a quick – and ethical – way to score additional Google ranking using other people’s Content Marketing.

And search ranking is a vital part of being found online.

Tap into Google’s priorities
Google rates the quality of your website in several ways, and the way your target relates to you is vital.  Engagement is a key indicator of your quality, and reader comments are clear evidence of engagement.  Readers who share with their networks are also indicating their approval.

“Great”, you might be thinking, “I can see why I want other people to comment on my website or share it on LinkedIn or the other social networks. But achieving that takes time and effort.  Where’s the short-cut?”

Quality links
I’ll get to that shortly but first, another factor Google considers is your links.  Which sites are linked to your website, and how good is the quality of those links?  The more high quality links you have, the better.

The key is to create links with “authoritative” websites.  In other words, if a well-established website, with good content and high rankings, has a link to your website their success will rub off on you.

Two kinds of links
There are inbound and outbound links:
Inbound links are where other people link to you.
Outbound links are where you link to someone else’s site.

Inbound links are more valuable, because they show that your readers value your content.  Outbound, on the other hand, show that you appreciate theirs.  (Clearly, you’re not going to share content unless you think it’s worthwhile.)  And while they aren’t quite as valuable as inbound links, outbound links are still important.

Creating links through comments on blog posts you follow
Most websites offer you the chance to comment on their blog posts.  Some ask you to supply your name, email address and web address.  You may be reluctant to risk this for fear of a slew of uninvited spam, and they so if you have the chance to log on using your Facebook or Twitter ID, this might seem like a quick and easy solution.

But do not take that option.  Make sure you use your email and web address.  As soon as you do this, you create an outbound link for your website.

The key is to comment on high quality sites.  Look for sites that add value to you, answer questions you might have asked or just bring you up to date.

Of course, you should be careful that you make a worthwhile comment, whether you are critical or supportive, asking a question or adding an additional point.  Firstly, it’s an opportunity to build your reputation for experience and expertise.

Secondly, if you leave a comment that invites a response, you’re also opening the way for a conversation with the writer or other readers – and some may value your perspective enough to follow you, starting a spider web of connections to your site.

Sadly, there are some really good blogs don’t offer you the opportunity to comment, but usually companies are delighted to have your input.

Creating outbound links on your website
It used to be quite common for websites to have a page called something like “my favourite links”.  I’m not a big fan of this because it seems to me that you’re just creating a page specially to ask your visitors to leave your website and go elsewhere.

However, if you are going to leverage someone else’s content marketing, you simply have to include a link.  It can be anchored to text in your article, which doesn’t disturb the flow of the copy, or included as a footnote under Sources.  Not only does this credit the originator for their hard work, it also provides a reference to any research or quotes, and finally, it creates that outbound link.

Creating inbound links on your website
Strictly speaking, this point doesn’t belong here, since this article is about using other people’s quality content to build the authority of your site, but it’s such an obvious option, I had to include it.

Once you have someone’s attention, it makes sense to try and keep it.  Capitalise on this by providing links to related pages within your own website.  It not only gives you the opportunity to invite your visitor to spend more time with you, it also creates inbound links to your own website,

Not all links are good
In fact, some are downright destructive.  But I’ll give you more detail on that seperately.

In the meantime, if you found this useful or interesting, please share it with your social media networks.

And don’t forget to leave a comment and take a short-cut to an outbound link for your own website (and give me a link too).

Related posts:
How to Drive Traffic to your Website with Content Marketing
How does your QC compare?
Content marketing lessons from a broken hip
Taking content marketing offline
The hard facts about internet usage and social media in South Africa today


  1. Xerxes Aga on September 28, 2013 at 15:26

    Apart of all the advice you have given, I have decided on concentrating on writing blogs. Published one, working on the second. Hope to manage one every two days, to begin with. What do you think?

    • Ann Druce on October 2, 2013 at 16:57

      Hi Xerses

      I think one every two days is an admirable target. But don’t let the pressure of publishing lead to compromise on your quality – then you won’t get the results you’re looking for.

  2. Arleen on September 21, 2013 at 19:00

    Getting people to comment on your site takes a lot of time and effort. When I see someone who writes. great post, thanks for the info, or great job, they haven’t taken the time to read what you wrote and their comments to help with building your site is a waste of time. The search engines are looking for content and that also applies to the comments that are left. There is no easy quick fix but working the social media takes time but you will see rewards.

    • Ann Druce on September 26, 2013 at 09:15

      That’s so true. There often seems to be an expectation that social media is a magic bullet, and that every post should go viral – even if the subject matter is aimed at a limited audience or has no real interest value. I suppose we all need a little magic in our lives, but digital marketing isn’t magic; it requires commitment, sustained effort and a focused strategy.

  3. Ian Webster on September 19, 2013 at 20:27

    My first attempt at a comment appears to have got lost in cyberspace somewhere. So, lets try again. Thank you, Ann. It is very helpful to have you unpack this for us. And thank you for suggesting we put your ideas into practice on your own site. Now I shall sit back and wait for all the visitors…. 🙂

    • Ann Druce on September 21, 2013 at 08:55

      Well, I’d love to suggest that millions of visitors will race to your door, but that might be overstating things just a tad!

  4. Jacques van den Berg on September 19, 2013 at 08:55

    Excellent and very valuable information! We will implement it! Thank you!

    • Ann Druce on September 19, 2013 at 09:10

      I’m happy to be of use!

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