What are the lessons of Marketing_Guy-gate?

By: Rachel Miller

Date: 19 April 2012

If you’ve been following the Donuts on Twitter this week, you’ll have witnessed a fascinating exchange between our very own Rory MccGwire (CEO of BHP, publishers of the Donuts) and a marketing consultant called Nigel Copley (aka @Marketing_Guy).

In short, since 2010, Nigel has been copying large swathes of content from Marketing Donut and passing it off as his own on his blog site. It’s a word-for-word cut and paste job, complete with our images, but minus any credits of course.

This content includes articles written by our in-house editorial team, by freelance journalists and also material provided by our band of experts — experts who have earned their reputation thanks to their skills, knowledge and integrity. I’m just saying…

By naming and shaming Nigel on Twitter, Rory galvanised lots of support and finally managed to persuade him to delete the content. Rory’s blog on Law Donut tells the whole vivid story.

But what does this very modern marketing saga teach us?

  1. The value of online content. It proves that Google loves fresh, high quality and relevant content — which makes other people’s content irresistible to some people.
  2. The importance of sharing content. Lots of websites, including the Donuts, publish valuable content provided by guest bloggers. Sharing your expertise is good for everyone. Copying content and passing it off as your own is not sharing, it’s plagiarism.
  3. Social media shines a very bright light. It’s hard to hide on social media. If you want to expand your sphere of influence via your blog and social media, you’ve got to be prepared to face criticism in this very same realm.
  4. Social media builds reputations and can destroy them. If you make any mistakes in business, there’s a good chance that word will quickly spread on social media sites. This episode highlights the power of the crowd on social media networks.

It’s good to report a happy ending to the saga. And we hope you keep reading and enjoying our content — on our websites!

Rachel Miller is the editor of Marketing Donut.

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