Posted on 14 October, 2018
1. Buying content is expensive
To begin with, it’s important to understand that buying content and licensing content are two different things. In paying an external party—be it a expert or a gun for hire—to create content, a brand or publisher is paying for the person’s time and skills. On the other hand, licensed content is far less expensive than creating or commissioning content.
Depending on the freelancer, a basic original piece of written content can cost anything from $300 to $1,000. However, a similarly reported article that’s already been produced and published can cost as little as $50. Furthermore, licensing allows the customer to repackage the content into a variety of channels across desktop, mobile and social.
2. Repurposing articles will diminish your authority
It is never recommended that a publisher solely uses licensed content. The best cases are always publishers and brands that have a mix of third-party content that fills gaps where your in-house content creators either cannot fill, or budgetary reasons do not allow. Another crucial strength of licensed content is to align your brand with reputable and trusted sources from top industry publications and experts in their field to legitimise your authority.
Licensing agreements allow content to live on your site, and with the canonical links inserted, doesn’t punish your content hub in terms of SEO. Driving this audience to your website also allows you to reap all the traffic and social sharing rewards, and keep your audience on your owned channels rather than send them away by linking to other content that doesn’t live on your site.
3. Content Licensing is stealing
Provided an agreement is in place, either directly with the publisher or through content marketplaces such as DISCO, the two parties have entered into a contract to provide content that will be published by the licensee. Your brand can therefore repurpose content legally. All licensed content should be attributed to the original source by author name and publisher, or some variant on that, all of which will be spelled out in your agreement.
4. It’s not guest blogging with a renowned brand name attached
Yes, you are using someone else’s work on your site, however that isn’t the same as having a guest influencer or expert blogging on your website. With an agreement, what you are basically doing is reprinting content that another source has created. It allows you the flexibility to pick and choose what you want to feature and thus only pay for the right to use those content items in accordance with the terms of your licensing agreement. Bloggers on your website are submitting content as a way to expand their reach, and although influencers and bloggers are a useful way to publish expert content on a particular topic, the goal for the creator in this scenario is to take end users back to their sites.
5. We don’t have the time to build content partnerships
With any agreement in any field that involve contracts and legalities there is a lot of red tape. On top of that there are publishers that have placed their content behind paywalls, and therefore additional terms are drawn up around how you can use their content on your channels. So with that in mind, it’s often easier and quicker to use a third party that provides sublicenses to multiple content publishers. Once the licensing agreements or individual licenses are agreed upon you will have at your disposal content ready for campaigns and verticals to start using quickly and adapt your needs based on data and insights you collect along the way.
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