From My Desk To Yours – 29th Edition

By: Penny, EzineArticles Managing Editor

Does this scenario sound familiar?

You’ve just created a great new product or service that you believe in 100%. It’s fully developed and ready to be introduced to the world. However, now you face the steep up-hill climb associated with promoting an unknown brand. Oh, and don’t forget that your target audiences is already receiving an overwhelming amount of messages and attention from your bigger, more established competitors.

With just a small fraction of the resources of those established competitors, it can be a real struggle to make a name for yourself.

Unfortunately, sometimes the end result of this scenario is that an author tries to “piggyback” on the success of other, bigger brands and capitalize on that success to bring attention to their own brand. You may have heard of this act of piggybacking referred to as a false designation of origin or a bait and switch tactic.

Bait and Switch

Here’s how it usually happens: An author baits readers in by using a popular brand name in the title and body because the author knows people will be interested. The author then switches and leads readers to a lesser-known product in the Resource Box and links.

For example, authors Ned and Tom write an article on how America loves ______________ (Fill in name brand candy bar here) and proclaims them to be the most delicious candy bar available today only to end with a Resource Box that reads as follows: “If you love ______________ (Same name brand), you’ll really love Ned ‘n Tom’s Crispy Rice Chocolate Bars. The same great taste as candy bar you love without the hefty price tag. Visit us today.”

Bait and switch is not the way to earn respect from your readers. In fact, it’s a form of fraud and it will always backfire. It leaves readers with the impression that your product is shady and can’t be trusted.

Our editors are constantly on the lookout for authors trying to use bait and switch tactics. You, too, should combat this disreputable form of article writing in your own way. Here’s how you can do it, too:

  • Don’t Lean on Other Brands – Build your own brand identity with respectable, well-written content. The bigger brands don’t want to be associated with you in any way if you try to bait and switch people. This can lead to legal action on their part through things like cease and desist letters, etc.
  • Think About Your Audience – Put yourself in Ned or Tom’s shoes for a minute. Think about the value they are providing to their audience. Is an article about how America loves NestlĂ© Crunch bars going to provide real value to the reader? Not really. Now, it doesn’t need to be a mind-blowing idea, but it does need to be original and valuable. Instead, they might consider writing on the history of milk chocolate or give a special recipe for a dish that uses chocolate. That type of content is based on real insights and gives useful information.
  • Deliver Value on Your Website – When a reader clicks through on the link in a Resource Box, they develop a first impression quickly based on what they see. Stand behind the content in your articles and what you provide on your website, and make sure you deliver on the promise you make regarding link content. Authors who resort to bait and switch tactics often have little to no expertise in the area they’re writing about and it shows in the article and on their paper-thin website. They also promise content in the Resource Box that’s never delivered on their linked website.
  • Focus on YOUR Niche – What’s your goal with article writing? What’s your target audience actually looking for? You’ll have the most success finding topics valuable to your audience based on when the answers to these questions overlap. Conduct research and target people who can specifically benefit from what you have to offer and write with them in mind.

The best route to take when doing anything is the honest, admirable route, not the one that involves using a veil to cover up your real intentions. Earn the respect of your readers by incorporating these tips today and avoiding deceiving activities like bait and switch.

Any thoughts/comments?


Walter Reich writes:

You hit the nail on the head. That would make me disregard every thing the artical was talking about. I never new that is was called bait and switch.

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 9:08 AM


Zack Lim writes:

Yeah, I agree that giving real values to customers consistently is the only way to a long term business.

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 9:36 AM



That’s an amazing article and makes sense 110%. I try to fit in some time per day as I am new and wish to be very good at blogging and putting articles up. I have done all my articles on my web site personal training programs. How long does it take people on average to be able to create a great article? Thank you.

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 12:06 PM


best photos writes:

This comment is a great example of bait and switch…one way to get people to click on your message


Personal Trainer, everybody is different. Some authors, with experience and practice, can produce multiple articles/hour, while others may struggle for hours on a single article. I good rule of thumb, however, is about one article per hour. This seems to be a good pace for the average writer. Of course, the more experience you gain, the faster you’ll be able to write!


I wish I could write 1 article per hour, maybe some day, but for now I have to be patient. But thank you for the reply.

………..Warmest Regards…..Richard


Saad Arif writes:

I agree with the point that you need to give real value to your clients and customers. By fake marketing, you can get a good customer database for sometime but if you want to maintain your customer database for a long time, you will have to be fair and lenient towards your customers.

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 2:13 PM


Lisa Mason writes:

Good stuff. Love your posts Penny!

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 3:27 PM


Miguel S writes:

Well, I have never blog’d here before. Am wondering if this might be the right place to complain about (a different site) allowing their “writers” to steal my article from and repost it as original work. Yeah, that happens, I know it. But they are really blatant – they transposed my title (like “This Is My Title” to “My Title This Is”) and the rest of the article is practically a carbon copy.

I don’t think this is the right thread topic. But I don’t know how to find topics in here.

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 3:29 PM


Lisa Mason writes: has a “flag” button at the bottom of each article. Hit that button and you should get a box to type a message. Link to your original article on with your byline, proving you have ownership and request they take the plagiarized articles down.

I have gotten good results when reporting my stolen articles this way. Especially since recent Google updates make website owners even more conscientious of duplicate and stolen content.


Lisa Mason writes:

I will add that this is why I love so much. They actually check submissions for quality and plagiarism before publishing (unlike those other sites). :D


Ludwik Kowalski writes:

As am new author at I decided to use this blog for questions. Here are some of them:

a) My first ten articles were accepted. When will I be able to post more? I clicked the “new article” today but was informed that the limit was reached.

b) All my articles were accepted. Does it mean that all of them will appear in the weekly newsletter?

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 6:39 PM



a) We review your account for an upgrade within 24 hours of your last submission (Mon- Fri).

b) I’m not sure what you are referring to here but we do not publish your articles in a newsletter.


leon Noone writes:

G’Day Penny,
May I just add that if you’re running a B2B business, have a clear business focus and a clear target market. Write only for them.

And make sure you have fun



Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 9:00 PM


M Francis writes:

It is sad when people claim work as their own, or use someone else’s work for their gain. I try not to worry too much about it, I actually feel bad for them. It must be hard work, stealing and running and hiding! Being honest and true to your talents leads to prosperity! Amen?

Comment provided May 27, 2011 at 9:05 PM


Wolfgang writes:

You do write some good articles Penny, and this is another good one. I agree that being honest as well as being yourself is very important when writing articles, it is however sometimes difficult to keep coming up with new ideas. On the subject of articles being stolen and then spun, I have seen this several times, but I take the positive attitude that at least they thought the article was worth stealing, and it really does not affect me, as long as my name is not on it.

Comment provided May 28, 2011 at 7:13 AM


Elena Neill writes:

I think that people that use other peoples’ product as bait, is not really confident in what they have to offer, and makes their product seem like a lesser product. It also gives people a sense of dishonesty, and may be discouraged from having any interest in the product, let alone buying it.

Comment provided May 28, 2011 at 6:33 PM


Brice writes:

It’s interesting to think how article marketing can be used and misused. As long as you have someone who will write an article, you’ll have someone willing to steal it (if it’s any good).

Comment provided May 28, 2011 at 10:00 PM



Great article. Honesty is the best policy for a reason. I agree be honest with your audience so that you have a strong costumer base that are interested in what you have to say or the product you are selling.


Comment provided May 29, 2011 at 7:59 PM


Dee Dawber writes:

Hi Penny
I firmly believe in honesty and integrity, and this sneaky way of dealing with people can also land you on multiple mailing lists of people you have never heard of.

Comment provided May 30, 2011 at 9:22 AM


harish desai writes:

hi penny,

how will i come to know if someone is copying my articles from and posting the matter as their own?

Can you let me know how it is possible?

Is there a membership scheme in which I can get paid for the articles that I write?

Comment provided June 1, 2011 at 1:23 AM


Tim at IMM writes:

This article used at least twice as many words as necessary to explain something that should have been glaringly obvious.

Comment provided June 12, 2011 at 4:10 PM


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