Why do we blog exactly? In my case, it’s to share my tips and reach the maximum number of people.

Often bloggers will only promote their latest blog post to their audience via email and social media. I agree that’s part of an efficient blog post promotion and if you’re smart about it, your promotion will be automated.

Well, what if I told you that you could reach people outside your network while they are in a “reading mode”, without much effort. The magic happens when you republish your post on other places than your website. You might have heard that content duplication can badly impact your SEO and you’re right, but there are ways to prevent that. Let’s see how to apply that to Medium and LinkedIn.

Meet rel=canonical

Despite its repelling name, it will be your best friend when it comes to avoiding duplicate content. Indeed, this HTML attribute that you usually place in the <head> section of your website allows you to pick the “preferred” version of a page. For us, that means that this URL will aggregate all the backlinks to the different versions of your article and apply them to your “preferred” one.  Oh yeah, and it won’t treat it as duplicate content! Now what publishing websites allow you to use rel=canonical and gain readership at the same time?

Medium

Medium is an online publishing platform and often considered the best one for many reasons:

  • It has an huge readership
  • A slick design
  • It’s very easy to use
  • Editors maintain publications that can reshare your content (more on that later)
  • A weekly newsletter featuring recommendations according to your interests and people you follow
  • You can specify a rel=canonical (whoop whoop!)

Being able to specify a rel=canonical in Medium makes all the difference: you can publish your articles there without shooting yourself in the foot when it comes to SEO!

You know I’m a big fan of minimal input for maximal output. There are ways to automate the process thanks to a handy IFTTT integration or semi-automate it this with the “import story” from Medium.

medium

Republish on Medium the right way

#1 via IFTTT

IFTTT comes in #1 because you can create a recipe to automatically publish your post on Medium once it’s published on your website. That’s right, IFTTT will do the job for you. In fact, it will grab elements from your original blog post to re-use them for your Medium story.

Medium Rel canonical

Add this automation recipe to your toolbox by clicking the “Add” button below:

IFTTT Recipe: Blog post to Medium with rel=canonical link connects wordpress to medium

Note: this will also work with an RSS feed

#2 via Medium “import a story”

If your blog isn’t on WordPress or worse doesn’t have an RSS feed, you can still import it to Medium via its “import a story” feature.

Simply head to the “Your Stories” section under your profile, paste the link of your blog post and you will access an edit mode where you will have to add tags and publish your post manually. The big downside of this solution is its manual component and the extra work in involves.

Medium Stories

Step 1 – Go to your stories on Medium

Medium import a story

Step 2 – Use the link import feature

Promotion on Medium

Publications

Medium has a neat feature called “publications”. A publication is maintained by editors who gather the best articles on the platform around a topic. Having one of your articles featured in a publication is a huge opportunity to have your articles discovered by people out of your network.

As an example, the Personal Branding publication asked to add my “8 Reasons Why Everyone Should Have a Personal Website and Blog” article to their collection. Damn right I said yes!

Publication Medium personal branding

Here is a list of Medium publications as well as their following.

If you see a publication you’d like to get featured in you can try to contact on of its editor (Twitter is a good way to do it) and try to have them publish your article under their publications. Some editors will also just contact you out of the blue like it happened with my Personal Branding post.

Medium Newsletter

Each week, Medium sends its users a personalized newsletter based on:

  • Interests they chose for their account
  • People they follow
  • Publications they follow

This means if you put the right “post tags” and are part of publications and people follow you, your posts will be in stranger’s Medium newsletter for that week. How cool is that?

I agree that getting featured in a publication isn’t easy and for everyone. A quick way to gain followers is connecting your Medium account to Twitter and follow all the people you know on Medium. Often, these people will follow back, and your posts will land in their weekly newsletter.

LinkedIn

Unfortunately, LinkedIn doesn’t allow to specify the “preferred” version of an article you post there. Worse, it even puts a rel=canonical pointing towards your post on LinkedIn. Needless to say you & I don’t stand a chance against LinkedIn when it comes to SEO.

LinkedIn rel=canonical

At the same time, posting an article on LinkedIn has great pros: it sends a notification to your connections via Pulse, LinkedIn’s publishing platform. Your post will also be shared in your contact’s feed and will be featured on your profile, which is kind of cool.

Trying to get best of both world, here is what I find works best: posting the introduction of your post as a LinkedIn post with the same image and adding a link to your real post. Doing so, you catch the interest of your reader with your great intro and naturally redirect him/her towards your website. Simple & efficient.

Summary

It is well possible to benefit from republishing your blog posts without being penalized by Google for duplicate content. In fact, the techniques I’ve presented can even improve your SEO if executed properly.

Here is what we’ve seen:

  • The importance of rel=”canonical”
  • Republishing on Medium
    • Via IFTTT
    • Via “Import a story”
    • The importance of Publications on Medium
    • Opportunities in Medium newsletter
  • Republishing on LinkedIn even if you can’t change the rel=canonical

Any platform on which you also republish? Let me know in the comments ?

 

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Ambroise Debret

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