The Good, The Bad & The Ugly On Using PLR
|June 23, 2012||Posted by Louise under How To Build A Website|
Struggling to keep your readers engaged with a constant stream of good quality content? Even considered using Private Label Rights (PLR) to help you crank it out?
And why not? Many successful marketing folks use PLR. Heck, some of your favorite marketing coaches and mentors suggest you use PLR.
The thing is…
Often when you utter the phrase PLR, a bunch of people high-tail it indoors fastening the locks and pulling down the shades. They don’t want to see it or hear of it and when prompted, they have nothing good to say say about it.
What’s the deal? Where did PLR get such a bad reputation? Is it the bad egg that many make it up to be? And most importantly, should that stop me from using it?
What is PLR?
First of all, PLR are rights to specific content such as articles that you purchase. The rights allow you to modify the product and make it your own. You can slap your name on it, you can sell it, you can give it away for free, you can even add affiliate links or links to your blog.
The one thing you’re not supposed to do is sell the rights to someone else.
So How Is Using PLR Good?
Ideally, PLR helps you build a website that entertains, engages and builds a relationship with your audience by providing relevant content. That is, content that helps them. You can use it in many formats, written or otherwise such as video, audio, and email autoresponder series.
The point is it saves you time and allows you to supplement your own created content, resulting in a bang-up website and online presence. You can also use PLR articles for researching topics and for identifying ranking keywords. As long as you are using quality PLR.
Here’s how you find quality PLR. Professional PLR:
- is well written,
- is current,
- has limited circulation (say under 50 copies),
- is often optimized with keywords for search engines.
- and costs you money, but hang-on to your horses, the price is usually very economical.
But quality PLR is only half of the battle. To make good with PLR, even the quality stuff, you need to modify it and make it your own as well as relevant for your readers.Tim Hicks at Home Biz Digest put it this way:
When you write for your blog or website, you want to build your “brand.” One of the best ways to do that is to develop your own “voice” (i.e. style of writing). If you post unaltered PLR articles, you are not presenting a consistent “voice” for your readers. People like consistency and they like knowing what to expect.
And I would add, your readers like to get what they want. Unlike ghost-written articles, PLR products are not customized. It’s up to you to tailor it to suit your audience.
If you don’t use quality PLR and don’t modify it, then you’re wandering into bad PLR territory where unfortunately nary a customer roams…
How Is Using PLR Bad?
Using PLR without taking the measures indicated in the previous section can lead to losing customers or worse, not getting any attention at all. You might as well send in the tumble weeds.
To be more specific, the last thing you want to do is use poorly written, outdated, massed produced and over-circulated PLR. And there’s tons of it out there.
How do you tell bad quality PLR from the good stuff? Problogger makes a few suggestions:
- Stay away from large PLR packs that sell for a dollar or that are offered as a bonus with the sale of an internet marketing product.
- Obtain PLR from a reputable PLR writer. Some names I crossed often in my research include Tiffany Dow , Peggy Baron , and Nicole Dean.
A lot of marketers take it a step further and use automated spinning software to modify an already shoddy PLR. While others don’t even bother. They simply cut and paste the PLR directly onto their website or products.
- When you are using mass produced PLR that’s been around for years, you are letting your audience down by providing them with old news and maybe even content that makes no sense.
- You could lose your reader’s loyalty and come off as a fraud should they find what they thought was your content on some other blog under a different author’s name.
- Have you ever encountered a fully automated content site? Talk about unfriendly and bland. Funny enough, some of these use spun PLR articles, resulting in boring and impersonal sites. When visitors land on these boring buggers, they bounce faster than a jackrabbit on moonshine. Off to greener and cozier pastures!
But it gets worse…
The Ugly Side Of PLR
Unfortunately, the PLR story doesn’t end at boring. Here’s what pervasive mishandling of PLR can lead to:
Extra sifting and digging for internet users: Many marketers’ top priority is to rank on the first page of a search engine. When they use PLR content to achieve this and ranking overrides relevant content for users, they lower the quality of information at everyone’s disposal. In other words, we have a lot more sifting, clicking and bouncing to do before finding the info we’re looking for.
Publishing sites struggle to provide quality products: For instance, Amazon’s Kindle, an online publisher, suffered an upsurge of spam ebooks, many of which are created using PLR. The spam books populate the results, lowering the quality of books available on the market and making it more difficult for shoppers to find the good stuff. Offering bogus products taints a business’s reputation, even big names like Amazon (see Reuters and Indie BookSpot).
Extra challenges for online authors. Authors who publish online on platforms like Kindle and Smashwords now have to deal with more competition. To make matters worse, many spam books lowered their price points to $0.99, potentially influencing the price at which legit authors can sell their books.
PLR & relations get a bad rap: The worst part of PLR misuse is that PLR and everyone and everything related to it get a bad rap. They get labeled as spam and underhanded. Truth is many legit online businesses using PLR bring value to their customers, providing quality products and services online by using PLR intelligently and ethically. In the end, isn’t that what it’s all about? Bringing value to the customer?
So, as you can see, it’s not PLR itself who’s the rotten apple. Rather, as is often the case in internet marketing, it’s a group of unethical people misusing a great resource that could help you bring great content to your readers.
Now that you know the good, the bad and the ugly, what are your thoughts on using PLR products?
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