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People are always asking me great questions about how to submit articles. Here’s one someone asked me recently that you might be wondering yourself:

“A company that I am an affiliate of has made some articles available to me to use for marketing purposes. I was wondering if I could submit these as free reprint articles? Would I need to change them, or can I even submit them at all?”

Great question! A similar situation is one where a person has acquired some PLR (private label rights) articles, and they’re wondering if those articles are suitable for use in article marketing. For anyone who doesn’t know, PLR articles generally are very cheap and are sold to anyone willing to buy them. So, the same article is sold to multiple people, in the same way that articles that affiliate companies provide are shared with multiple people.

In those cases, there is no exclusive copyright ownership and, consequently, that type of content is not suitable to use in article marketing.

When submitting articles to publishers, the content needs to be 100 percent owned by you and no one else. Publishers do not want to receive the same or very similar content multiple times, so you really do need to make the effort to produce (or pay a professional writer to produce) articles that are unique and owned exclusively by you.

You may be wondering, how would a publisher know if the article you submit was not owned by you exclusively? Many publishers will employ a tool that detects whether content is already appearing on the Internet. There are various online services that do this sort of thing. Many times, website owners or other online publishers will use a tool like that to discover if content is plagiarized.

People who hire writers to create content for them may also use that sort of tool to tell if the content that’s been produced for them is unique.

From a publisher’s point of view, it is not necessarily a deal breaker if he discovers the article that you’ve submitted is already appearing elsewhere online. If the content is clearly marked as belonging to you, there will probably not be any problem.

However, if the publisher sees that the article you’ve submitted is appearing other places on the Net under different author names, then that is a red flag.

With many publishers, that would result in an article decline.

You may be wondering then, can you just take that non-copyrighted material and “change it up” a bit?

Unfortunately not. The only time when you might re-write content would be if you had decided to take content that you wrote for your own blog or website to resubmit as a free reprint article. In that case, since you already own the content, it would be perfectly fine to re-write it to submit as an article. For content that you don’t own, however, you should not try to re-write it and submit it as a free reprint article.

The idea is to create articles that have unique tips and ideas and that contain information that is not found all over the Internet. It does take extra effort to create unique articles, but that’s just the way that article marketing works. The effort involved in producing quality content will pay off in two ways: the number of publishers interested in publishing your article and the value your article brings to your readers.

Steve Shaw has helped thousands of business owners worldwide build traffic, leads and sales to their websites, and he wants to help you do the same. Submit your article to 100 top article directories for just $2 — go now to

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