For most (if not all) bloggers, one of the key metrics on how their blog has grown comes from how many readers it has.

These don’t necessarily have to be subscribers, either, although I’m a fan of subscribers being more a metric than readers for success, since these are folks that are investing their inboxes with you. But I digress…

But as any blogger knows, wanting more readers and getting more readers can be two wildly separate entities. It’s a big blogging world out there, and people can be sparing with their time and where to invest it.

The good news is, there is a way you can attract more readers to your blog, and that’s through content syndication. The bad news, you may have to give up some control. So what are the benefits and how do you get syndicated?

A Quick Introduction to Content Syndication

Before we look at how you can get your blog in front of the eyes of more readers, let’s just take a quick look at what content syndication means. The easiest way to compare it is to local news journalists and major newsrooms.

For most local journalists, your stories are mainly read by the local township. There’s nothing wrong with this, and it’s a solid enough career. However, now and again you might write a human interest story that gets picked up by the nationals, and your piece is quoted in the New York Times or on CNN.

That kind of exposure can lead to bigger gigs and paychecks, as you’re approached to provide stories (or images) for these bigger outlets, as well as your local publication where it all started. This is the journalism version of content syndication.

Now, take that back to your blog. That’s the local publication, and the bigger newsrooms might be Mashable, or ReadWriteWeb, or Techcrunch, or Technorati – basically, anywhere that might be in your niche but has an audience hundreds of thousands of times bigger than yours.

If you could get your content into their feeds, then the sky is the limit to where you can go as a blogger. So how do you get out there, and what are the best options for you?

The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Content Syndication

The simplest way to have your content syndicated is to do it yourself.

Yes, it’s also the most time-consuming, as you have to do all the legwork and find the sites in your niche that accept blog feeds to be shared. But until you have the good fortune to be noticed by other websites for your blog content, getting yourself out there in syndication land is the only way to go for now.

To help you make this process a little quicker, here are some of the best (and most widely-read) syndication sites and options currently out there, regardless of your blog’s niche:

  • Alltop: Although Alltop gets a lot of stick from many people, it can still act as a great library of blogs and bloggers. With a complete A-Z of topics and syndication as easy as submitting your blog details, it’s a great way to get your blog in front of a new set of readers.
  • Networked Blogs: Primarily a great way to share your blog posts on Facebook, Networked Blogs also has a library of blog topics to submit your blog to. The cool thing about Networked Blogs is if you can get enough of your Facebook friends and colleagues to follow your blog via their Facebook app, you can rise to the top of the topic list and get even more readers.
  • Scribnia: From my friend David Spinks, Scribnia has become a great resource for finding quality new blogs due to their voting system. People can show their approval (or disapproval, so make sure your quality is good!) of your blog with a vote and description and, like Networked Blogs, this helps you rise in the ranks until your content is in front of thousands. Again, submitting your blog is straightforward.

These are just three options you can begin submitting your content to for syndication. There are more (and this is where Google is your friend), but I chose these for the width of topics and audience size.

As a way of potentially growing your readership, syndication offers the best “bang for your buck” when it comes to the number of new readers you could attract. However, it does have some downsides.

I Get a Whole Bunch of New Readers – So What’s the Problem?

While syndication can get you new readers, by its very nature it can also be a limited amount of new readers. If you take a look at the three options I highlighted above, you’ll see that there are hundreds (thousands) of other bloggers syndicated there too.

So, to make sure your blog stands out, you have to know how to best use each network for promotion. A widget on your blog (Alltop, Networked Blogs and Scribnia all offer this) is a start. As is adding the syndicated feed to your email signature, or other online destinations.

Additionally, syndication often means losing control of your content. For instance, instead of people sharing your blog post on Twitter, Facebook, etc, they share the syndicated feed. So, your work is read but readers still aren’t necessarily coming to your site versus the syndicated one.

Just a couple of things to keep in mind before going down the syndication route. There’s no doubt it can work – just make sure you’re ready to do the work to make it work.

Then again, isn’t that how all blogging growth really happens?

This post originally appeared on For Bloggers By Bloggers. For more blogging tips on how to grow your blog, you can subscribe here.

image: Google Libraries

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Danny Brown
Co-author Influence Marketing: How to Create, Manage and Measure Brand Influencers in Social Media Marketing. #1 marketing blog in world as per HubSpot. Husband. Father. Optimist. Pragmatist. Never says no to a good single malt. You can find me on Twitter - Google+ - LinkedIn.
104 comments
md444444444
md444444444

What if a website, such as Before It's News, syndicates for you?  Is this a bad thing?

IdealMarcus
IdealMarcus

Interesting post. I have never heard of Scribnia before now, so its good to see new programs that can assist in syndication. The goal is to create strong relationships with manual syndication partners, so here's to hoping that these resources identify and assist in developing relationships with the right blogger.

domeface
domeface

This is cool and very resourceful...

Thomasgg
Thomasgg

I've been using Onlywire and Syndication Masters, So every blog I post automatically gets shared by hundreds of people for Free

Nick
Nick

Thanks very much for this post. I know that I must do more syndication. So far, I've only really submitted my RSS feed to a few directories and done social bookmarking. This has worked well - I'm getting some good rankings but it certainly does like nice having more websites on board!

E. Poff
E. Poff

Thank you for providing a nice, simple list of syndication sites. This is exactly what I needed. Wonderful article and to the point!

Aleksandr Volkov
Aleksandr Volkov

Thanx for this post. I will follow you I know that in the west more knowledge about the blogging. Hello from Russia :D

CatherineNikkel
CatherineNikkel

Great post - Definitely a bookmarked one. Learning the art of syndication since my free promoting of my blog is running smoothly. I did try to subscribe to your posts - but an error message kept posting? Thanks again :)

CatherineNikkel
CatherineNikkel

Great post - Definitely a bookmarked one. Learning the art of syndication since my free promoting of my blog is running smoothly. I did try to subscribe to your posts - but an error message kept posting? Thanks again :)

Axel
Axel

Hi Danny,

Do you know if there is a way to have 2 Feedburner RSS feeds, one for your general readers' inbox (partial post only, click to come read my blog) and another for syndication sites who request the full post in the feed? How would you go about setting up another feed for syndication of full posts purposes? Just re burn your blog with a different RSS name?

Jeff

Axel
Axel

Hi Danny, Do you know if there is a way to have 2 Feedburner RSS feeds, one for your general readers' inbox (partial post only, click to come read my blog) and another for syndication sites who request the full post in the feed? How would you go about setting up another feed for syndication of full posts purposes? Just re burn your blog with a different RSS name? Jeff

mabbest
mabbest

Hi Danny. I am new at blogging and am very interested inlearnilng more. I will like you posts and try to follow you in; the future.

Mayo

mabbest
mabbest

Hi Danny. I am new at blogging and am very interested inlearnilng more. I will like you posts and try to follow you in; the future. Mayo

marilyn cada
marilyn cada

hi. newbie blogger here. i just search google about blog syndication and found this site on the first page of google. thanks for a comprehensive article. looking forward for more increasing traffic related articles..

Jens P. Berget
Jens P. Berget

Hi Danny,

I haven't added my posts to any of the services you mention, and the only reason why not, is that I feel that I don't have any control of my content. But, on the other hand, does it matter that I'm not in control, and I'm actually not in control even if the content is on my blog. Anyone can copy it and use it for whatever, without my knowledge.

But, what's the difference between content syndication and articles we post to various directories. Is the difference that the content is really on our blogs, not just a byline with a link back to our blogs? Sorry about this, but I'm fairly new to syndication.

Jens P. Berget
Jens P. Berget

Hi Danny, I haven't added my posts to any of the services you mention, and the only reason why not, is that I feel that I don't have any control of my content. But, on the other hand, does it matter that I'm not in control, and I'm actually not in control even if the content is on my blog. Anyone can copy it and use it for whatever, without my knowledge. But, what's the difference between content syndication and articles we post to various directories. Is the difference that the content is really on our blogs, not just a byline with a link back to our blogs? Sorry about this, but I'm fairly new to syndication.

lucky
lucky

thanks danny, the article really helped me as a beginner in blogging. because it is now quite difficult to indexed by search engine and I think the blog syndication makes sense to me try

lucky
lucky

thanks danny, the article really helped me as a beginner in blogging. because it is now quite difficult to indexed by search engine and I think the blog syndication makes sense to me try

Mike Budd
Mike Budd

Good information Danny,

To be honest I didn't have a clear understanding of Content Syndication and no idea that you were losing control of your content.
I will check your links and make my mind.

Cheers,
Mike

Mike Budd
Mike Budd

Good information Danny, To be honest I didn't have a clear understanding of Content Syndication and no idea that you were losing control of your content. I will check your links and make my mind. Cheers, Mike

Naomi Wood
Naomi Wood

Great Blog, we're setting up a blog soon and this really gave good food for thought.

Naomi Wood
Naomi Wood

Great Blog, we're setting up a blog soon and this really gave good food for thought.

Jimenez
Jimenez

I just submitted my blog to Scribnia, Networked Blogs & Alltop. Thanks for sharing. :-)

Jimenez
Jimenez

I just submitted my blog to Scribnia, Networked Blogs & Alltop. Thanks for sharing. :-)

Lexi Rodrigo
Lexi Rodrigo

Plus don't forget, some blogs in specific industries syndicate relevant blogs, as long as they're of high quality and are updated often. These are a great way to attract the right kind of readers, because they're focused on a specific topic.

Lexi Rodrigo
Lexi Rodrigo

Plus don't forget, some blogs in specific industries syndicate relevant blogs, as long as they're of high quality and are updated often. These are a great way to attract the right kind of readers, because they're focused on a specific topic.

Anders Michael
Anders Michael

Thanks for sharing Danny! This is a helpful post and great insight into article syndication. It's amazing to see how much syndication can increase your exposure and good to hear of more syndication sites to use! Is it possible to syndicate on too many sites?

Anders Michael
Anders Michael

Thanks for sharing Danny! This is a helpful post and great insight into article syndication. It's amazing to see how much syndication can increase your exposure and good to hear of more syndication sites to use! Is it possible to syndicate on too many sites?

Leander Jackie Grogan
Leander Jackie Grogan

Thanks Danny,
Excellent information. Thanks for taking the time to share. I've doubled my traffic in the last 8 months with the launch of a new business book. But this should be a supercharge.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

CatherineNikkel Thanks, Catherine, glad you enjoyed. Could you give me more information on the subscriber error, please? Was it to subscribe to the bog via email or RSS, or was it just for the single post via Livefyre? Thanks again!

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@Axel Hi Jeff,

Not sure if Feedburner would still be a good choice to use, given the recent decisions by Google around RSS and the Feedburner service itself. However, yes, burning two feeds would probably be the easiest option.

Alternatively, you could move to something like Feedblitz (used on this blog) and you can set up normal feeds as well as a weekly digest, for people that wanted to grab your content that way. That could also be configured to be full or partial feed.

Hope that helps!

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

@Axel Hi Jeff, Not sure if Feedburner would still be a good choice to use, given the recent decisions by Google around RSS and the Feedburner service itself. However, yes, burning two feeds would probably be the easiest option. Alternatively, you could move to something like http://feedblitz.com (used on this blog) and you can set up normal feeds as well as a weekly digest, for people that wanted to grab your content that way. That could also be configured to be full or partial feed. Hope that helps!

marilyn cada
marilyn cada

oh i forgot to mention that comments in this articles are also helpful :)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@Jens P. Berget Hi Jens, To be honest, there's not a major difference. Both are the "property" of the new publishing site, with credit and link back to you. Although some sites - like SocialMediaToday.com - don't always show the originating link. The biggest difference is that with syndication, it's usually fed automatically to the syndicating site, while posting articles to other sites for back links is manual. Hope that helps!

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@Jens P. Berget Hi Jens, To be honest, there's not a major difference. Both are the "property" of the new publishing site, with credit and link back to you. Although some sites - like SocialMediaToday.com - don't always show the originating link. The biggest difference is that with syndication, it's usually fed automatically to the syndicating site, while posting articles to other sites for back links is manual. Hope that helps!

Danny
Danny

Awesome, great stuff, and here's to them getting set up for you quickly! :)

Danny
Danny

Awesome, great stuff, and here's to them getting set up for you quickly! :)

Danny
Danny

Great points, Lexi. Sites like Social Media Today and Social Media Informer are great for social media-led content, while the Mom Blogger networks can be great for lifestyle and parenting blogs, and so on.

Cheers, miss!

Danny
Danny

Great points, Lexi. Sites like Social Media Today and Social Media Informer are great for social media-led content, while the Mom Blogger networks can be great for lifestyle and parenting blogs, and so on. Cheers, miss!

Danny
Danny

Hi Anders,

I guess it depends. If you syndicate on many sites, you obviously get more (potential) eyeballs on your content. But then are the sites all quality, or are some less valid than others for your content?

Doing some research beforehand and making sure there's a fit for you can help decide how many syndicates you join.

Danny
Danny

Hi Anders, I guess it depends. If you syndicate on many sites, you obviously get more (potential) eyeballs on your content. But then are the sites all quality, or are some less valid than others for your content? Doing some research beforehand and making sure there's a fit for you can help decide how many syndicates you join.

Danny
Danny

Congrats on the book launch, that's great news, and doubly so for the traffic boost, too - great stuff!

CatherineNikkel
CatherineNikkel

@Danny Brown @CatherineNikkel Hey Danny - Thanks for your reply, it was when I tried to subscribe for the email. Seems to have gone through this time around :) Been using your tips - Glad I stumbled upon you! Any suggestions or posts on guest blogging? (Figured I'd throw it out there!) Thanks again Danny!

CatherineNikkel
CatherineNikkel

Danny Brown CatherineNikkel Hey Danny - Thanks for your reply, it was when I tried to subscribe for the email. Seems to have gone through this time around :) Been using your tips - Glad I stumbled upon you! Any suggestions or posts on guest blogging? (Figured I'd throw it out there!) Thanks again Danny!

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