The question was raised recently about one of the remote blogs I was operating. The reader said it might be a robo-blog, but wondered, since the quality of the posts was very high.
And that is really what the difference between a splog, a robo-blog, and a remote blog is: quality of content.
Splogs are spam blogs and simply put the same content out over and over.
Robo-blogs are low-quality posts which are not identical to other blogs, but are only modified enough to "fool" the search engines. (Which are noone's fools and actually penalize such blogs the same.)
True remote blogs contribute to the community they are found in and are nearly indistinguishable from other main or principle blogs they link to and support.
The trick is how to pull this off. You don't want to spend your life creating original content for all these blogs. Or simply make too-numerous alterations so that each post appears "original".
There are several points to approach this with:
- Use a high-quality article spinner to turn out alternate renditions of each major blog post from your main blog.
- Create personal pages on each remote blogs and identities (aliases) which show real care.
- Keep each remote blog specific to a single line of content and not a lot of disrelated posts for various affiliate products.
- Ensure each remote blog also links out to relevant content across the blogsphere and the web to assist others with their own rankings - paying it forward in advance, providing service just as your "main" blog does.
- Get a post creation and tracking system which won't kill you off from tedious over-work.
The overall point is to create versions of posts, and treat each remote blog as you would an article directory. But unless you want to create an article directory from a blog (and this is possible with self-hosted Wordpress now) you want to keep to a single, defined category of interest so that your remote blog becomes another trusted authority to the search engines - and even competes with your main blog. (I've seen some of my remote blogs rank higher than my main blog at times - which is fine, since it also links to any affiliate product I'm supporting, and my own book sales.)
Essentially, then, you are just continuing the "conversation domination" techniques. The same as if you created Weebly sites, Squidoo lenses, or post your blog articles to Zimbio, post presentations of that same material to Slideshare, record podcasts and host on Archive.org, or make videos and post through Tube Mogul or PixelPipe.
But if you try to take the quick route - you wind up penalizing your main blog and wiping out its standings.
Your choice of poison.
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Oh - you might have seen that if you take our excellent content and have a quality article spinner to run it through, you can also post it to numerous article directories - or unique versions of it, any way. Write once, publish many times and ways... Check out your blog production flow and see if this might not make it more efficient.