- Home to The Best Press Releases in the World!

Forbes AdVoice, a new Forbes editorial strategy that does away with the traditional barriers between advertising and editorial content:

The pitch is this: We'll sell you a blog, and your content will live alongside that of Forbes' journalists and bloggers. This isn't the "sponsored post" of yore; rather, it is giving advocacy groups or corporations such as Ford or Pfizer the same voice and same distribution tools as Forbes staffers, not to mention the Forbes brand.

"In this case the marketer or advertiser is part of the Forbes environment, the news environment," Mr. DVorkin said.

If that stuff has legs & spreads across most the major media sites then Google's "authority first" relevancy algorithm strategy is dead.

Google has always considered paid links bad (as Forbes certainly knows) but as paid content spreads how will Google fight it? And if that content contains links then is it still a paid link? Will Google once more end up purging the payola?

The other question is ... when media has tons of press releases alongside the articles, what value add is there for consumers to pay attention to the media? And if the media teaches advertisers to create their own media, won't many of those advertisers do so on their own websites & cut the mainstream media out of the loop?

Published: September 27, 2010 by Aaron Wall in blogs


September 27, 2010 - 7:56pm

It's super fun watching evolution in action.

Can't really say that this is surprising. Smart marketers will watch these kinds of developments closely and figure out how to exploit them for their own (or their client's) SEO gain.

September 27, 2010 - 8:59pm

I think there's a way to do this -- and a way not to do this.

For instance, we publish press releases as a community service in one of my sites. All releases are editorially reviewed in advance for relevance, and to keep out spam. We do not activate any links -- we allow just one link and it is nofollowed (my SEO guy -yes I have one- insisted on that). They are clearly marked "press release" and kept in a separate section of the site. They are also kept out of our main blog's RSS feed with their own separate feed.

Lots of readers have thanked us for sharing news in these releases. People sometimes leave comments on the press releases. And the releases regularly get tweeted, mentioned as the source of news in others' blog posts, forwarded via email, etc.

We don't accept payment for posting releases. On the contrary, it actually costs me something to pay a virtual assistant who is the Editor of that section and reviews all submissions and publishes them.

So my point is, it is possible to publish something straight from a company and still maintain some sense of separateness and journalistic integrity. But the devil is in the details -- how you execute it matters a lot. And it's a whole different mentality to think of it as advertising inventory (which seems to be the case with Forbes) versus news content.

Freelance SEO C...
September 28, 2010 - 9:17am

I believe that content spamming has been spreading for a long time; with many companies offering 50 articles/PR per month; just because 'Content is King'. It's strange to see that newspaper sites would be offering that service.

September 30, 2010 - 3:10am

This is funny. Reminds me of maybe 3-4 years ago when they had a hosted landing page for cash advances. But the best part was it was on page one. I think Google will simply devalue any links from Forbes. Or they'll look closely at the footprint of where it is in the layout and discredit those particular links. There's usually a way to discount any link juice it might offer, sorta like how footer links are worth less.

October 19, 2010 - 7:47pm

Only if more than a few media outlets started to offer such things.

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