AskPat 66 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: What's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 66 of AskPat, where I answer your online business questions five days a week.
And I want to thank today's sponsor which is ziprecruiter.com. Actually, a number of people have thanked me for sharing this resource and this sponsor, ZipRecruiter. Actually, Emilio … a tweet from Emilio said, “Thank you for the resource. I am getting amazing applicants through that service.” What ZipRecruiter does is, you know, there's a ton of job boards out there, and if you're looking to hire anybody in your business, you need to advertise on all the top sites to find the perfect candidate. Well, with ZipRecruiter, you post one time and it posts to the top 50 job sites … More than fifty, actually, with one single click, and it highlights the best candidates from all of them for you all in one place. Again, ZipRecruiter.com/pat. So, ZipRecruiter.com/pat. Thank you for that.
Now, today's question comes from Ray, and it's about an old-school marketing tactic. And he's sort of wondering if it's still working today, so let's hear from Ray.
Ray: Hi, Pat. This is Ray Prince from the UK. Many congrats on the new podcast … Really love the content, listening in the car all the time. My question's very straightforward … In terms of article marketing, do you still think this is a valid strategy in light of Google's crackdown on backlinks? In particular, we submit to using articles and then we submit via SubmitYourArticle into more article directories. Thanks very much. Keep up the good work.
Pat Flynn: Ray, thank you so much for your question. And it's interesting, because I actually used to do a lot of article marketing … And I used to submit articles to directories as a primary method of—pretty much what I was doing was trying to gain Google, trying to show Google from writing these articles and then having links at the end of those articles point back to my niche sites. I was trying to show Google that my site was worth ranking high, and back in 2010, it worked. I was able to rank a website in the security guard training niche by writing articles about security guard training, submitting them to sites like EzineArticles, Articlefactory.com. There's a whole mess of them, and then linking back to my site at the end of those posts, and it worked. And in 73 days, I was able to get number one in Google for the term “security guard training,” and ever since then, it's been doing really well.
However, that was back in 2010. It is now 2014, and the scene around search engine marketing has changed quite a bit, and the strategies which allow you to … Almost create your own back links in a way … Just, they don't work … quite as well anymore. I'm not going to say they don't work at all, because they still work for some people, and that's the thing that's scary, is they do work for some people. How do you know? Well, you don't know if it's going to work if you do it yourself, because Google is not perfect. The algorithm is not perfect. But when you do this, when you do these types of things, it is risky. But I'm not going to say it doesn't work. I'm not going to lie. It is working for some people. Things like private blog networks, which Google cracked down on, way back, you know, in 2011. Those are still working for a lot of people too. They just haven't gotten caught yet.
Now, we all know that Google is trying to make things as human as possible, trying to make it so that we can't game the system, although I don't know if that will ever be the case that … You know, you can't do that … Because there's always going to be some algorithm that you can sort of improve in one way or another, but I think the best strategy that you could use is not to write … You know spend time writing articles and submitting them to a directory, you know; that's different from guest posting. I believe guest posting still does work. Even though Matt Cutts, the head of spam over there at Google, he said that guest posting for back linking purposes would still, it wouldn't do anything for you. I still think guest posting is still a viable strategy. Not necessarily for the backlinking, the direct backlink coming from that article, but because you're able to put yourself in front of an audience that you know is targeted. I mean, I think that's the biggest difference between guest posting and submitting to article directories. Even though you're writing an article and publishing it somewhere else, you're publishing it to a place where there is a target audience when you're writing a guest post. You have a relationship with that blog owner, and they are putting, and sort of saying, “Hey, guys. Check this guy out. He's worth spending time reading,” and that's on their site as opposed to writing an article and just … Sort of … Throwing it in the pond with everybody else, and it's not going to really do anything. There is no audience there. There's hardly any traffic on those sites; primarily they're there just to get those backlinks. And I know that sites like EzineArticles.com, which was a big one, they got docked big time by Google.
So, the best thing you can do is spend your time writing great articles and put them on other people's sites. If you're going to not put them on your own site, put them on sites that you trust, that you have a relationship with, or that you are going to start a relationship with, so that you can get in front of a target audience and get leads that way. You can get leads and traffic that way as opposed to just trying to game the system, and I feel like if you write great stuff and you post it where you're target audience is, your site is going to climb Google anyway. Just going to take a little bit longer, and you're not gaming the system; you're doing it the right ways. You're writing great stuff, and people are going to link to you and people are going to word-of-mouth spread you around and share you … Just naturally. So, that's the way I would approach it. I would not do article marketing at all. I would do guest posts. And write your own stuff and publish it on your own site.
So, Ray, I hope that answers your question. You know, there's a lot of tempting things to do out there. There's a lot of people sharing these programs and these methods and strategies for gaming the system, and yes, they do work for some people. And for some people, it just totally kills their business and their blogs and their websites, and their niche sites. So, you got to be really careful, and I would advise that maybe if you're going to use these strategies, and I wouldn't advise doing that. But if you are, to test them on some smaller sites, not your main site. And just really actually get to know the people who are sharing this, and actually get to know the case studies that they're sharing as well. If they're just saying, “Hey, you can do this, and this is going to happen,” but they don't have their own case studies, then I wouldn't even pay any more attention to those people. So, just be forewarned, because there's always going to be programs like that coming out. The new fad or whatever, the new way of gaming Google. Just write great stuff. Publish great content. You will be linked to naturally, and you will climb the search engines as a result.
So, thank you so much, Ray. I really appreciate your question. If you have a question, if you're listening to this, and you have a question you'd like answered on the show, head on over to AskPat.com. You can just ask write there using the widget for SpeakPipe. I also want to mention SuccessShirt.com. Successshirt.com is where you can actually go and purchase that t-shirt, or that's where those shirts come from if you actually get featured on the show, you get a free t-shirt. So, again, SuccessShirt.com. You can get the AskPat shirt there and actually see what the design looks like. You can get other shirts from people's brands, like James Schramko of SuperFastBusiness or John Lee Dumas from Entrepreneur on Fire. His shirt's on sale there too.
Of course, we have ZipRecruiter.com which was today's sponsor. Thank you, ZipRecruiter. You know, a brand new company that I have just gotten familiar with recently that is doing amazing things to help streamline the hiring process. One application, one job that you can send out. It sends it out to the top 50 job sites for you, and can help you with hiring people instead of wasting your time trying to post on every single different site individually. It just does it all for you. You know, they even highlight the best candidates, which I think is the really cool thing, and I've been getting a lot of great feedback from people who have already used that service. So again, ZipRecruiter.com/pat: that's the referral to make sure that they know that I'm helping them out too.
And lastly, as always, I'm going to end with a quote, and that quote is by Will Rogers. “Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.” Love that quote. So you might be on the right track, but you got to take action and keep going, because if you don't, you're going to get run over by the train. All right, take care. Thank you so much, and I'll see you on the next episode of AskPat.
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