The #1 Rule Of Content Marketing Is Proper Attribution


As marketers or bloggers we all strive for earned media. We publish thought leadership pieces, gather proprietary data points all with an eye to having those metrics picked up and shared across the Internet. We give interviews. We write white papers all in the spirit of driving leads and creating brand awareness. But pick up our stats and quote us but please attribute the content properly.

More and more I’ve seen a lack of proper attribution to content.

A competitor recently took the results from two of our case studies, rounded up the metrics and published the content. They also published the same results with attribution. When called on it, they removed the content rather than attribute it. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?

I also ran across a couple of instances this morning where content I’d written for Collective Bias was excerpted but only attributed through a series of links at the bottom of the article. Proper attribution means it gets identified in the body of piece with the link embedded. Not buried at the bottom of a post. Always attribute using the name of the company, the author and link back to where the data was lifted.

I discovered another website that has set up a profile on me and is aggregating all of my written articles from various platforms including my personal blog.

It definitely pays to Google yourself occasionally to protect your personal brand. You might be surprised by what you’ll discover like two “top” lists I found myself listed on. While being included on lists creates traffic and helps the company publishing the list look authoritative, it may not always be a company you want to be associated with. And it’s my personal opinion that the company should inform you about including you on the list so you have the option to opt out.


I also think re-publishing an article of mine on a site for a conference is not proper use of content syndication when the author and the company she works for isn’t attending the conference. Curating influencer marketing posts and giving the impression the content is coming from speakers or attendees is misleading to the audience.

If you are unsure about the rules around attribution, HubSpot has a great list and points out how to attribute properly by platform.






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