Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Linking Articles from One Site to Another or Between Articles

A reader posted the following comment on my How to Start Writing Content article on Associated Content: 

"So, do you try to link your AC and Examiner articles? How about your blog? Are your posts to each duplicated or in concert with each other in any way? Just starting out, so I'm curious how to get organized from the beginning. Still learning about all the RSS, Digg, Twitter, etc. options and trying to tie it all together cohesively. ~ Thanks for all of the tips, etc."

This is a lot but I'll try to explain, from my perspective, how I can link different things up.

When I still regularly wrote for Examiner, if I had an article that related to one I was writing for Associated Content, then I would link it.  If I didn't have one, then I wouldn't.  The same goes for my blogs or other sites.  If it isn't relevant to the article you are writing, then don't link it.  It's really that easy. 

I don't intentionally write things that will link up with one another.  I think about each blog and each site that I write for, create a list of topics for each and start writing.  After I'm finished writing it, I think about whether it is relevant to another site or blog.  If it is, I'll find a way to link it.  If it isn't, then I move on.  You should never try to link up something to your articles just to create a link.  It is a quick way to discredit yourself.

Sometimes, I will write an article on one blog or site, and then realize that it is relevant to another blog or site.  In most cases, if it is on a blog (not AC), then I will do a teaser and then link the article from my other site.  For an example of this, see this post.

And sometimes, I will specifically write an AC post that will link up to one of my blogs or another site.  For an example of this, see this post.  Because my Associated Content articles are scattered from topic to topic, I don't expect someone who is interested in my television articles to be interested in my local articles.  But I want to keep the interest of these readers and I do so by having a television blog and a local blog which each feature my content on the subjects as well as others.  (Notice how I linked those up because it was relevant?)

I don't often duplicate articles from one site to another but I also don't write for many different sites.  I'd rather link to and from my blogs so I get the page views from one to another.  But I realize it's different for everyone. 

Social networking (Digg, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) is a different beast than inter (or intra?) linking your content.  For social networking topics, visit this post and this post.  You will find some great information on those links.

In reality, there's no easy answer for how to correctly do these things.  You can read all the material you want but it doesn't equal the knowledge you gain from time spent actually doing it.  Over time, as you build your library of content across whichever sites you write for, linking between articles will come naturally.  You'll then understand what is relevant, how best to do it, and how to be successful overall.

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