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What Are Sponsored Posts and How to Use Them

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Sponsored posts

Sponsored posts are a form of content marketing on a website. It involves an outside content provider who pays for the right to display their content.

That right includes several possible approaches to the content:

  • The article promotes a product or service.
  • The article promotes a company, such as an SEO agency.
  • A link appears in the article to a product, service, company or individual.

A website publisher agrees to display the article in exchange for a fee. But there are certain limitations that come with the publication, even though the article author is paying for it.

First, the publisher must decide if the article is a good fit for the website and its audience. An article about a handbag ecommerce website is a poor fit on a website about search engine optimization.

Second, the publisher should consider articles that are written in a way that protects the website brand. An article about an SEO company is somewhat relevant on a site about SEO, but not if the article does nothing but promote the company.

Third, publishers should think about whether to label the article as a sponsored post for both readers and search engines. A label for readers such as “Sponsored Post” will tell readers that the article doesn’t come from the website publisher.

Link code also clarifies the matter to search engines. Google specifically frowns on paid links if they pass “page rank”. It “can negatively impact a site’s ranking in search results,” Google says.

To avoid a problem, Google recommends adding rel=”sponsored” or rel=”nofollow” to the link code.

Pricing of Sponsored Posts

Pricing is subjective, but advertising models offer some clues. For example, a site that gets a $10 page CPM might charge $10 for every 1,000 views of the page over the lifetime of the link.

Like other forms of advertising, the post may last for years but the link may have only a one-year lifespan. In the example above, a page that has 2,000 page views over the previous year may command $20 for a sponsored post.

What if the page isn’t generating many page views? Publishers need to choose a fixed minimum in that case. The content and link have value to the author.

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