Currently, I have 4 niche sites—my security guard training site from the niche site duel and 3 others that I have started since. All are on the first page of Google, however the security guard training site is definitely the most successful (see Friday’s post)—at least for now.
I want to do a lot more, but I know from my experience with these 4 niche sites that I just don’t have the time to write the content for anything new. And now, more than ever, the content really matters.
(Actually, content has always been important—we were just recently reminded of how important it is by Google’s latest Algorithm change)
So, I have a few options:
- Stop building niche sites, even though I have a list of 7 valuable keywords that all beautifully meet my keyword research criteria.
- Hire a ghostwriter / outsource content creation.
- Use PLR or “Private Label Rights” articles.
Hiring a Ghostwriter
Obviously, if I were to hire a ghostwriter I would want to make sure he or she was good. I’d probably hire someone through a site like Elance because I could go through their portfolio and read client feedback to help me make an informed decision. Someone on Craigslist, for example, could easily say they were a good writer, but who knows until you actually get that final draft.
Looking at the prices on Elance, it seems like an average article by a provider with a rating of at least 4.5 (out of 5) is $12.00 to $50 per article.
Hiring a ghostwriter seems very tedious and a bit expensive to me, and unless I’m going to use this person to write content for me time and time again, I don’t think it’s worth the effort.
Private Label Rights (PLR) Articles
Before my podcast interview with Nicole Dean (Session #009 on Scribd.com), I didn’t even know what PLR was.
After learning a little bit about it in that interview, I went back to the PLR expert and emailed her a list of questions because PLR is definitely an option I’m thinking about—especially when you consider that the price comes out to about $1.00 per article.
I told Nicole that I’d probably post her answers in a blog post, and here they are:
1) What exactly are PLR articles and how can bloggers and internet marketers like myself use them?
PLR is short for “Private Label Rights”. These articles are written and sold to bloggers and online business owners, to help them with their content creation needs. We all know that writing takes a lot of time, and that time is our most valuable resource. PLR articles are simply a tool to help you to produce your content faster (and oftentimes better).
For instance, I started a PLR site back in 2006, called Easy PLR. My customers are bloggers, authors, speakers, coaches, consultants, service providers, realtors, network marketers, affiliate marketers, and infoproduct creators. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]
They come to my site, where they can purchase a pack of articles that are already written and ready to go. The PLR articles come in .doc and .txt format and have special rights that allow my customers to use them as if they wrote them themselves. The great thing is that they cost only about $1/article and many of my customers say they’re better quality than if they wrote them themselves.
So, let’s say we have a niche blogger, named Amanda, who has a weight loss blog. She could come to my site, grab a package of 5 PLR articles about the Wii Fit and then use them on her blog, or in her newsletter – without having to link back to anyone else.
I, of course, encourage my customers to use the PLR articles as drafts and to customize them a bit before publishing them. I feel that every person on this planet has valuable information, experiences, and perspective to share, so they should add that to the PLR articles. But that is not a requirement.
2) I’m a little concerned about purchasing PLR because there are several other people purchasing the same exact articles. I know you only limit each article pack to a certain number of people, but it still worries me. There’s the issue of duplicate content (regarding SEO) and we also don’t want people to read our articles only to have them find out it’s something they’ve read elsewhere before. What are your suggestions for how a person should best modify the articles?
Nicole had already recorded a video that explains all of this, which I’ve embedded for you below (4 minutes 59 seconds):
(Watch What Are Some Ways to Edit or Customize My PLR Content on YouTube)
3) With Google’s recent algorithm changes, do you think that weakens the use of PLR material and if so, in what way?
Great question, Pat.
I do not think that the update weakens the benefits of PLR. And, I’m not surprised in the least by this latest algorithm, as I’m sure you aren’t either. Google had to do something to continue to make their search engine valuable. They want the best results to show up when we go and look for stuff there, right? I think this update will, hopefully, lessen the spammers and make searching Google more productive in general. And, overall, it will continue to reward those of us who have informative, entertaining, relevant, quality content on our sites.
I would never suggest, even before this update, that a customer of mine should take PLR unedited and load up an entire site with it. Like I said, I view PLR as a tool. A shortcut to help make writing easier, to help you generate ideas when you have writer’s block, and to provide value to your customers.
However, I know that saying “customize the content” isn’t what you had in mind here.
Some other ways you can continue to benefit from PLR without publishing it solely as search engine content are…
- Add the content to a protected area of your blog. That way only your members will see it, and you don’t have to worry about what Google thinks of it. They don’t know it’s there.
- Send a PLR article directly to your list (inside the email) rather than posting it on your blog first.
- Post a PLR article on your Facebook page rather than publishing it directly on your blog.
Or you can turn your PLR articles into a valuable report instead. Convert it into .pdf format and …
- Share the report with your list.
- Post it on document sharing sites.
- Use it as a bonus to add value to an existing product that you’re selling.
- Offer it as a bonus to those who purchase a product through your affiliate link.
Actually, I do a ton of report marketing and will be creating a product about that soon. Stay tuned. 🙂
4) I’m wondering…how do you as a PLR producer select the topics that you have your writers write PLR articles for?
There are a few ways that I come up with topics.
The first is through experience. I know that articles and reports on business, finance, health, weight loss, and self-improvement will always sell. The majority of my content is on those topics.
I also accept suggestions from my customers and from those who receive my emails. They can submit their ideas through my support team. I then go through the lists to look for the topics that I feel are marketable. Of course, I regularly research the topics suggested to see if it’s worth it on my end. I probably wouldn’t create a PLR set on “how to build a chicken coop” even though it’s a profitable niche, simply because it would be harder for me to find enough customers to recoup my expenses in creating it.
Most of my topics are pretty evergreen, so I don’t look through newspapers or search Digg or StumbleUpon for trending topics. I prefer to create content that will be in demand and relevant for my customers, hopefully, for years to come.
5) What are some of your most successful and highest converting PLR packages? What topics seem to be the most popular and which ones produce results?
Some of my most popular topics have been…
- Social Media (including Facebook)
- Weight Loss
They are consistent sellers. Longevity, anti-aging, and goal setting sell very quickly, too.
I’d like to invite everyone to ask questions below. I’ll try to answer as many as I can. In the meantime, check out Easy PLR to see if there’s anything that I have that can make your life easier. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]
What is Your Experience With PLR?
I’m really close to giving PLR a shot. A couple of the target keywords I have on my list have related PLR packages for sale on EasyPLR [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]. However, first I want to see if any of you have experience with PLR and what your experience was like, or maybe you have some tips you’d like to share. Here are some questions I have for those of you who may have used PLR before:
- Have you had success using PLR articles as far as ranking in the search engines?
- Is it hard to rewrite or add your own voice to the PLR articles you purchase?
- Have you ever had any readers complain that they’ve already read the PLR inspired content that you posted elsewhere?
Thanks for anyone who may be able to chime in, and thanks again to Nicole from NicoleOnTheNet.com and EasyPLR for her time and helpful answers. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]
I’ll keep you posted as I go along.
Quick question: would it be helpful if I setup another niche site, just like I did in the niche site duel, and revealed the niche and all of my strategies again including how I may tackle content creation (PLR or however I go about it) that I don’t have time for? I’m pretty sure I know what the answer will be, but I just wanted to make sure.
Cheers, and have a great week!