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Quality Content + RSS Syndication = Increased Exposure

Posted by Kim Roach on: 2006-07-04 03:20:50

Self SEO > RSS Articles

According to DoubleClick, one of the nations largest email marketing companies, the average open rate for an electronic newsletter is 27.5%, while the average click-through rate is 7.2%.

Email is not the dependable content delivery mechanism that it once was. Spam filters, blacklists and content overload have plummeted email delivery rates. Chances are that more than half of your email subscribers aren’t reading your messages. In fact, your message may not even make it to their inbox.

What is a web master to do? Well, email is still the primary content delivery standard for most Internet users. However, you can start complementing your email marketing with other content delivery channels to increase your delivery rate. RSS is one such mechanism.

When LockerGnome.com began to promote their own RSS feeds, they began seeing 5 times the number of RSS subscribers against email subscribers. Even more interesting, they also began receiving a 500% better clickthrough ratio with RSS than with traditional email.

You can add RSS to your marketing mix in order to increase your readership, increase the response to your marketing messages, and improve your search engine placement.

What is Possible

There are so many options when it comes to content delivery with RSS. Many web masters online today are limiting themselves merely to what they’ve seen others do. However, the possibilities extend much further.

One of the basic uses of RSS is to deliver content updates. Your RSS subscribers can receive updates that you have made to your website, including new articles, downloads, coupons, etc. This was not possible with email because most subscribers would go hysterical if they found 5 emails in their inbox one day talking about the different updates to your site.

RSS solves this problem, enabling people to use aggregators to access information at their convenience. You can also use RSS to deliver news updates, quick tips, quotes, new coupons, job listings, classifieds, real estate listings, and new forum posts.

RSS Marketing Techniques - From Basic to Advanced

Once you have created your RSS feed, it’s time to start marketing it. Marketing your RSS feed is completely different from marketing an email-based newsletter. However, similar to newsletter promotion, promoting your RSS feed begins on your web site and with your existing audience.

To let people know that you are offering an RSS feed, you will need to display an RSS image on a high-profile space of your web site. Your visitors will be much more likely to see your RSS image if you use one of the well-known buttons to represent your feed. You should place this button towards the top of your page for best exposure.

To see some good examples of web sites that are promoting their RSS feeds, go to www.sitepoint.com and www.lockergnome.com

Just like your ezine subscription box, your RSS feed should be noticeable and available from every page of your web site.

RSS Presentation Page

You must also have a page on your web site that explains exactly what RSS is. Many of your visitors may not know about this new technology. This is especially true if your website does not pertain to internet marketing or some other tech field.

Take your visitors step-by-step through the process of locating, subscribing and reading an RSS feed. By doing this, you are informing your website visitors and helping to promote the use of your own RSS feed.

To see a really good example of this, go to news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/help/3223484.stm

If you have different categories of RSS feeds, Provide a link to each of these feeds right next to the content category to which it belongs. For example, you could create a different RSS feed for different categorical topics. Not only does this provide more options for your visitors, but it also provides additional marketing opportunities.


If you have an RSS feed, then you should definitely enable Auto-Discovery aggregation. Some RSS aggregators have the capability of quickly finding an RSS feed on your web site by placing a simple piece of code in the head section of your html.

Here’s the code: <*link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="RSS" href="ENTER-RSS-URL">

Simply replace the RSS feed URL and place this above code into the head section of your web site on each page.

Submit Your RSS Feed to Search Engines and Directories

Having an RSS feed opens up entirely new marketing possibilities. You can now submit your rss feeds to a variety of specialized search engines and directories. For a complete list, go to www.masternewmedia.org/rss/top55/

Syndicating Rich Media Content

RSS is not just about text. You can also use it to syndicate audio and video content. For example, you can now submit media RSS feeds to Yahoo. They are using these feeds to make it easier for visitors to find rich media content at Yahoo search. (search.yahoo.com/)

To get started, go to the Media RSS feed submission page. (search.yahoo.com/mrss/submit)

Exchanging RSS Feeds

As you know, link exchanges have lost much of their ranking power. However, there is an advance form of link exchange that everyone can take advantage of.

This is the RSS feed exchange. By exchanging feeds with other quality sites in your industry, you gain additional content, about 5 incoming links, and some direct traffic as well.

Link directories are not beneficial to either partner. Each partner should put each other’s content in a high-traffic area on your site.This allows both partners to increase their web site exposure, which is much more effective than a link exchange that is often buried on unknown pages.

Customized RSS Aggregators

Another advanced RSS marketing strategy is to offer your own customized RSS aggregator to your web site visitors. This will allow you to enforce your brand and provide an additional point of contact with your subscribers.

Hotmail did the same thing with email. Unfortunately, that kind of opportunity is long gone. RSS, on the other hand, is still a fairly new technology that you can use to create an effective viral marketing campaign.

If you have a large enough audience, you could certainly encourage them to start using your RSS aggregator. If executed correctly, your name could soon be branded all over the Internet because of this new communication model.

To start creating your own branded RSS aggregator, go to www.deskshare.com/awrc.aspx or www.customreader.com.

Get Your Blog in the News If your blog reports on the latest news in your industry, then you may be the perfect candidate for news sites. If you're not reporting on the latest news in your industry, then I would strongly suggest that you start. News is one of the hottest topics on the Internet.

By delivering the latest news to your visitors, you can submit your site for inclusion in large online news sites such as NewsNow. Once you have become a publisher in their news network, your articles will be exposed to an audience of more than 750,000 monthly visitors.

If you think your site could make the cut, go to www.newsnow.co.uk/publishers/site-submission-intro.html .

One of the most exciting developments among the blogoshpere is the release of a new service for bloggers at BlogBurst.com. BlogBurst is the industry’s first blog syndication network, delivering content to several newspaper sites, including SF Gate (www.sfgate.com), the Washington Post (www.washingtonpost.com), and the Houston Chronicle (www.chron.com).

To be accepted into the BlogBurst network, you must have a full text syndication feed in RSS or Atom, make weekly posts, and have good writing style.

If you think your web site could benefit from some increased news exposure, check out blogburst.com.

To be truly successful with your marketing campaigns, start combining your contact methods. By using RSS in addition to email marketing, you will reach a much larger audience.

Kim Roach is a staff writer and editor for the SiteProNews (http://www.sitepronews.com) and SEO-News (http://www.seo-news.com) newsletters. You can contact Kim at: kim @ seo-news.com

This article may be freely distributed without modification and provided that the copyright notice and author information remain intact.

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