Everybody steals content – especially Filipino entrepreneurs! We’re a bit discerning though – we only steal quality content because what would you do with a bad one? Nothing.
However, opinions regarding what makes good content usually varies from one person to another. You’d find that there are several factors that come into play when assessing good content and it’s up to you to make sure that all the elements are in place.
- Actionable – the content should go beyond simply informing the reader. The important thing is what they would do with the information once they’ve gotten it. For example, you’d wantto share internet marketing information that readers can do RIGHT NOW as soon as they get off the website.
- Detailed – readers appreciate something they understand – not too technical or filled with mumbo jumbo that only professionals can understand. Adding screenshots is also a plus since most people react better to visual representations.
- Length – nobody wants to read boring content that is over a thousand words in length. Keep it short, concise and to the point.
- Actual Examples – provide information that the reader can relate with.
Oddly enough, you don’t have to combine all these elements in a single content to make it worth sharing. As long as the element of “Actionable” is included as well as one or two components, the article is considered good content and worth stealing.
The Big Companies Stealing Content – and Why it’s Legal!
Who generates unique content really? If you go through the internet, you’d find that same-niche websites are spouting off the same information over and over again. To say that one domain is copying off another is wrong – this is not stealing but simply a reinvention of a basic idea. In fact, you’d find that “stealing” is a pretty common activity especially with the introduction of mass production. You might be surprised at some of the big companies blatantly stealing content and profiting from it without facing a lawsuit.
- Apple – that’s right! The proponent of the iPhone has always been “shameless about stealing great ideas”. That quote came from Steve Jobs himself, the recognized head behind the widely successful technological company.
- Ford Motor Company – Henry Ford himself admitted that he did nothing original. What he did was simply assembling different parts of old technology and turn it into the thriving company it is today.
The same principle works for the internet. You’ve got a bunch of people creating content and your goal is to “steal” them and create something new from the collection.
How to Steal Content Legally
No, we’re not talking about copying content and passing it off as your own. You’ve got to be more creative than that if you want to steal content legally. Here’s what you should do:
- Study the different works of others. As David Bowie put it: The only art I’ll ever study is the stuff I can steal from.
- Understand the ideas the writer is trying to convey. Do you agree with them or disagree?
- Take those tidbits of information you’ve gotten from the content and start interpreting them in your own words. This is not rewriting – this is weaving your own opinions from the ideas of another.
- Put your own spin on the idea. Technically, this is called rewriting but it’s really about cleverly deriving a new idea from an old one.
- Update it with new information. Keep in mind that we’re living in a fast-paced world and everything is changing all time – especially in the internet. Chances are your “stolen” idea can use some updating with the help of new information. Add these spices in, creating the same dish with a completely different flavor.
When it comes right down to it, every single thing in the world is a recycled, reviewed and refurbished result of an older idea. So why not content? Use what you’ve stolen as raw material and start putting it through a process uniquely yours. Also note that you can steal from yourself. If you’ve got good content in the past – what’s stopping you to reproduce it in a more visitor-friendly manner?
Why You Should Start Stealing Content Too!
When was the last time you’ve come up with an idea of your own – with no outside forces to stimulate you? The answer is – never. This is why stealing content is really a misuse of the word – instead, you are “recycling” the information. Obviously, the most common reason why you would do this is because it’s easy. The need to research is not quite as extensive as deriving your own idea from raw materials. However, that’s not the only reason why you should start stealing content for your own website.
- Updates – Imagine a Filipino netizen finding the answer to their question online. As it happens however, the question and answer were posted say – five years ago. The time lapse has put reasonable doubt on the accuracy of the content. Once you’ve “stolen” the information however, you are in the position to tweak and update it to the current situation. This therefore restores the credibility of the information. Imagine – you’re actually doing the information community a favor!
- Multiple Reproductions – If you’re going to steal content and reproduce it just once, this would be a gross waste of effort. A single article can only do so much. Why not turn it into a video? Podcast it maybe make a comic? There are literally dozens of ways you can reproduce content.
- Good Business Move – Stealing content opens you up to different advantages that ultimately lead to business growth. Check out the last paragraph for a more detailed explanation of how it works.
To wrap it up – stealing is definitely okay if you operate within the boundaries. As most both local and international internet marketers know – good content is the key to a flourishing website. With quality content geared towards a specific niche, you are defining yourself as part of a specific industry. This makes it easier for Google and other search engines to distinguish you from millions of other domains. More important, this makes it easier for clients to find YOU during organic searches in the Philippines. Lastly – we’ve got the backlinks. By presenting quality and UPDATED content, more websites will be linking to your domain. Needless to say, this leads to visitor growth.