Article marketing has been around a while now, and I’ve used it myself as part of an inbound link building campaign. It certainly worked and built thousands of links over six to twelve months. The quality of the links, however, could not be guaranteed so it was certainly a case of quantity over quality, but all links are good, right?
Well, as article marketing has evolved, it’s now become a massive SPAM issue with millions of SPAM blogs springing up, republishing people’s articles. Of course, on the one hand, the more times your articles are published, the more inbound links you’re going to get. It seems you can’t really lose.
However, these sites are not republishing your content word for word as they should, they’re putting these articles through programs that change words, replace letters with symbols and add links into the body of the article that link to another website – probably a website they’re trying to boost inbound links for.
The article may still contain references to you or the company you work for, meaning you’re still associated with the SPAM content. SEO aside, it’s reputations that are at stake here. But what can you do?
The nature of the Internet means that it’s difficult to do anything in these situations unless you know the owner of the blog that’s publishing the SPAM content. The article directories issue guidelines to publishers, but don’t take responsibility for how your articles are published.
As SEO evolves, I predict that article marketing will carry less weight due to this abuse. We’ve seen it in the past with meta keywords and keyword stuffing. My advice would be to look at other methods of building links and not rely on article marketing.