Article writing tips, techniques, strategies

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

4 Easy Steps to Leveraging Your Articles

Writing valuable content-rich articles for your target market and submitting them to article directories and other publishers is one of the best ways to market your business, become known as an expert in your field, and add subscribers to your list.

For example, if you regularly write an article for your ezine, you can get a lot more mileage out of it if you submit it to article directories and other online publishing services. And making every piece you write work more than once for you is one way to work smarter and not harder. That's called leverage.

There are several reasons why you want to do this. One is to get your name and your business out there so people will learn who you are and what you do, and it helps to position you as an expert. No more keeping yourself a secret and hiding behind your computer! :) Another reason is that your articles give people a taste of your style, what it is that you offer, and it gives them an opportunity to get to know you a bit without risking anything.

At the end of each article include a resource box so if people want to find out more about you and your business, they have that information at their fingertips. Once someone reads your article, if they like your stuff, they will likely visit your website and sign up for your Pink Spoon (your free offering that gets people on your list). And writing articles is one of the fastest (and FREE) ways to get lots of exposure, especially if a publisher with a large list picks it up!

Want to get started? Here are the 4 easy steps:

1. Write the article or recycle one you've already written, giving it a fresh edit (it never hurts).

Write or revise an article targeted at your niche that is full of valuable content. A couple of tips: Articles can be anywhere from 300-700 words in length for the best chance of being picked up (if you have a longer article, consider chopping it in half and making it two shorter articles). Also, articles with lists, steps, or mini-chunks of information seem to be the most read.

2. Add your copyright.

Don't forget to protect your work by adding a copyright. At the end of each article, put a copyright notice with the date of when you first published the article. For example, copyright (or ©) 2005 Alicia M Forest.

3. Write the copy for your author's box.

After your copyright notice comes what's usually referred to as the "resource box" or "author's box." In order for others to publish your work, ask that they include this information at the end of your article, keeping what you provide in it whole and intact. As this is standard practice, you'll find most publishers will honor this request.

Write 3-5 lines that entice people to find out more about you by providing the web address to the sign-up page for your Pink Spoon. You don't need to use this valuable real estate to promote your business, but do use it to encourage people to join your list by signing up for your ezine or other free offering.

A tip: Again, don't send your article readers to your home page. Send them to a page set up specifically to add them to your list. For example, say"for more articles like this, please visit www.yourezinepage.com to sign up!"

4. Submit your article.

Although this is one of the most time-consuming marketing tasks, it can be made much simplier by either hiring a VA to do it for you, or using an article submission service. A couple of services that I use are:

SubmitYOUR Article

www.articlemarketer.com

There are literally hundreds of websites that offer free content for publishers who are in need of quality articles for their own publications or websites. Here are some of the best ones:

www.ezinearticles.com

www.ideamarketers.com

www.goarticles.com

www.article-host.com

www.articlecity.com

Bonus step:

If you want to see stronger results from submitting your articles, contact directly those publishers of ezines and websites in your niche. Google publishers of ezines in your target market and then send a query to the editor/owner about submitting an article. Present yourself as a professional and offer your article for their use, provided the resource box remains in tact.

Paste your article under your message (attachments can get blocked, and if the receiver doesn't know you it's unlikely they will open and read it anyway).

Writing and submitting articles is one of the tried-and-true, if slow-and-steady, ways to build your list, become known as an expert, and offer value to your target market.

Copyright 2005 Alicia Forest

Alicia M Forest, MBA, Multiple Streams Queen & Coach™, & Founder of http://www.ClientAbundance.com , teaches coaches, consultants, online entrepreneurs and solo professionals to attract more clients, create profit-making products and services, make more sales, and ultimately live the life they desire and deserve. For FREE tips on how to create abundance in your business, visit http://www.ClientAbundance.com

Article Writing Myths: Just a Few Articles Will Do the Trick

Myth - If I write just a few articles that will be enough to meet my needs for marketing my business and creating prospects.

Reality - Are you one of the people that believe you can write just a few articles and that will take care of everything?

So many beginning writers get caught in this trap. They labor and write a few articles, post them to an article directory, and then sit back and wait for the prospects and profits to roll in.
Of course this does not happen and then they give up on article writing and marketing, believing that articles do not work for building your practice.

Writing articles works, most people don't work it

The reality comes in two parts:

Part 1 is that article writing and article marketing does work, and works really well when done right.

Part 2 is about doing it right. Some people are just not willing to put in the time and the work to build it right.

Hitting critical mass

When I first began posting articles, a few articles brought a tiny trickle of prospects. When I hit 25 the trickle got bigger. By the time I hit 250, a good critical mass, the trickle turned into a nice stream.

Now at 705 articles, if this one is accepted, I get a flood of propects everyday, to the point where I could not stop them from coming in if I wanted to, and I surely do not.

Visit http://www.TheArticleGuy.com for more leading edge tips and tools for writing articles that bring you prospects, publicity and profits. You can also subscribe to our monthly Article Writing & Marketing Tips Newsletter. You are also invited to visit my Express-Start Article Writing Program for more information on the next article writing tele-seminar.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Article Star Rating Systems Online

Have you ever noticed that online article rating systems on MSN.com and other news sources and article online submission sites tend to drag out the worst of the human spirit? Have you ever considered that these rating systems are abused by persnickety, vindictive, insomniac, Prozac taking, depressed, angry and psychologically challenged people. If they disagree with an article or political point they under rate the story or rate it with one-star because the truth offends them?

This doesn’t just happen in the mass media online story or article rating but also on online article submission sites. One has to ask the question; Why do weak people with little minds get so caught up in their own little pathetic world that they cannot control their own emotions and sneakly berate a story or article? Indeed there are cases where a pea-headed low cranial capacity, worthless scoundrel will go thru an authors entire line up and rate all their articles with one-star; but why? Who has the time to go and do that?

Some say well what do you expect from a group of writers and folks living in the virtual world of the Internet after losing site of the real world? Indeed that is an interesting point. I guess one would expect just because these folks are hiding behind keyboards in anonymity certainly they possess some shread of common decency and maybe just a touch of integrity? Yet, they do not appear too.

The Star Rating Systems on articles or stories is therefore completely worthless. In fact the more a story draws out of the wood work the nut cases and losers of the world to comment the better. Because that means the article or story is making people think, drawing out their childish and petty behavior and thus provoking a reaction. So if your articles receive one-star, take it as a compliment, because you made them think. Indeed driving controversy also drives viewership as well and on the Internet that is a good thing. Think on this children next time you rate an article, who is controlling your mind, you or that writer that you berate.

"Lance Winslow" - Online Think Tank forum board. If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; http://www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs/