Will I be penalised if my articles are republished on other sites as duplicate content?

Mirror imageWe get asked this a lot – when people look into our Article Marketing services, one of the first questions they ask is “But won’t I be penalised for having duplicate content online?”

The simple answer is no. The web thrives on the sharing of information, and duplicate content is a part of this.

I was going to write  huge post about the different types of duplicate content, and then I noticed in my Twitter stream a message from @clairejarrett, pointing to this post from High Ranking.

As it says:

If your own bylined articles are getting published elsewhere, that’s a good thing. You don’t need to provide a different version to other sites or not allow them to be republished at all. The more sites that host your article, the more chances you have to build your credibility as well as to gain links back to your site through a short bio at the end of the article. In many cases, Google doesn’t even filter out duplicate articles in searches, but even if they eventually show only one version, it’s still okay.

It’s a well thought out article, and I agree with every word, so rather than reinventing the wheel over here, I’m urging you to go and read it over there.

Creative Commons License photo credit: where are the joneses

Which are the best WordPress plugins to start with?

wpWe all have our favourite WordPress plugins (I’m particularly fond of Tweetmeme, Photodropper and All in One SEO myself) – and we want to know about yours!

Which plugins can’t you live without? Which ones do you wish you’d found earlier? Have you found one that’s made the world of difference to how you see your blog?

On the other hand, are you looking for a plugin to do something and can’t find it? Or you’ve found the perfect plugin but can’t install it or don’t know how?

Whataver your WordPress plugin wants, needs and loves, let us know in the comments below!

Your recommendtions for plugins will help others to find new ideas, and if you have a plugin question or query, maybe someone can help you!

What's my 'brand'? The good AND the bad…

Toy sampling megaphonePeople say to me all the time: “But Nikki, YOU are your brand”, and to a certain extent that’s true. I’ve tried to work hard at being in the ‘right’ places, giving the ‘correct’ advice, and helping out. I want to be known as fair and helpful, I want people to trust me, and I want people to know that if I can’t help them, I’ll tell them.

And it seems to work. I have a steady stream of new clients, enquiries every day, my team is busy on a constant basis, and I THINK my brand is good.

But that’s the problem isn’t it? We all like to THINK our brand is good. And it’s fab when people say nice things about us; I’m the first to show off a testimonial or a nice thing someone has said.

It’s not the full story though is it? What about the people saying not so nice things? i’m not talking about competitors, or people with a vested interest, I’m talking about people who have dealt with or tried to deal with us. What are they saying that might not be so good? THAT’S as important as the things that are being said that make you feel great.

There used to be some saying that if people were happy, they told X number of people about you, but if they were unhappy they would tell Y number of people (with Y being significantly larger than X!).

If that’s true, don’t you want to know what’s being said about you?

So, in the interests of open-ness, I’m giving you carte blache here to tell me how YOU see my brand. This isn’t an invitation for anonymous nasty comments, or a chance for my competitors to stick the boot in – it’s an invitation to a conversation about MY brand.

Tell me what’s good. Tell me what nice things you’ve heard about me. Tell me the things you know I want to hear 🙂 Then bite the bullet and tell me what’s bad. Tell me what’s downright dreadful, and what makes you think twice about working with me or recommending me. Yes it will be hard to hear, but honest and constructive criticism helps us all to build our brand, grow our businesses, and make sure we’re on the right track.

And when you’ve finished telling me what’s good and bad, post a similar blog and ask people what they think / know of you.

Go on, I dare you 😉


Creative Commons License photo credit: altemark

Be sure to track offline as well as online…

Old Bakelit phoneI’m always telling clients to track their marketing, and obviously it’s easy to do that online with the help of google Analytics or a real time webstats tool such as Clicky Analytics – knowing where your traffic is coming from, what it’s doing once it gets to your site and whether or not your efforts are working is a huge step in the right direction towards NOT wasting your efforts online.

But what about offline? Do you ask someone where they heard about you when they call? Are you tracking which efforts are producing calls and sales? If your website is focused on ‘getting the call’ and you’re not asking the people who call you where they found you, how do you know whether it’s an offline promotion or an online one?

Remember that not everyone will drop you an email / buy online straight away – some people will go away and think about it, maybe make a note of your number. others will just call because for them it’s easier.

Every time someone new contacts you on the telephone, or walks through your doors, you should be asking them how they found you, where they heard of you, what made them choose you – only then will you ahve a full and rounded picture of what you are doing, what works and what doesn’t.

Are YOU asking the right questions?

Creative Commons License photo credit: aussiegall

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