One of the most common misconceptions people have when they first start writing free reprint articles is that the article is meant to advertise the benefits of the author’s business or products. If you’ve only marketed your site with sales letters and commercials for your business, there can be a bit of a mindset adjustment when you start to do online marketing.
Much online marketing works at a more subtle level than offline marketing. In the article marketing world, for example, it is an industry wide guideline that the articles need to be educational and not sales oriented. Most quality publishers will not allow you to submit articles that are about your business or your products.
I regularly run into beginners who find this guideline to be frustrating. They say, “It’s my article–why do I have to cater to the other people’s rules? I thought I was marketing my business with these articles? If I’m not supposed to write about my business, what am I supposed to write about?”.
Yes, it is your article, but your article only develops marketing potential when it gets published on a website. If you write an article without taking into consideration the requirements of publishers, the article won’t do you much good.
You see, you want to market your website with articles, but the publishers aren’t really interested in helping you attract visitors to your website. They have a different objective: they want to attract visitors to their own sites, and they do this by publishing content that is educational.
Online readers are looking for information, for solutions to problems, for tutorials that teach them how to do something that will benefit their lives. They aren’t really interested in reading sales letters. That is why most publishers will decline articles that are sales oriented.
While the publishers don’t exist simply to fulfill your needs, by writing content that is in line with what they’re looking for, you actually create a win-win situation where the publisher pleases his audience, and your articles attract new visitors to your website.
If you can’t write about your business or products in the article, what should you write about? How can you create content that publishers want to publish?
=> All of your articles should be on the same general topic as your website. For example, if your website sells jewelry, your articles will be about jewelry as well. You can write about such topics as “How To Clean Your Jewelry”, “How To Choose A Cut Of Diamond”, “What Is An Opal?”, etc. These articles are teaching how to do something or providing the type of information that people might be searching for online.
=> Focus on writing step-by-step tutorials that teach how to do specific things. This type of content is commonly called “how to” articles. “How To” articles are very popular online, and they should be your bread and butter in the type of content you create on a regular basis.
=> Most niches are suitable for coming up with articles that teach how to do something, but depending on your niche, you may need to focus more on providing information. Let’s say that your website is about the American Civil War–that might be a hard topic to translate into tutorials, but it’s still a perfect topic to teach about in your articles.
If you’re finding it hard to think of educational article topics, imagine what you would do if you were asked to teach your topic at a local college. What sorts of things would you teach? Those are the types of things that would make great article topics.
How do your articles benefit your business if you can’t write about your business? There are a few different parts to an article submission. You have the title and article body, and then you also have what is called the “resource box”. The resource box is basically an author biography, sort of like the author bio you’ll see on book jackets or by-lines of newspapers. That is where you’ll write about yourself and your business and give a link to your website.
The purpose of the resource box is to provide more information about the author and to lure the reader to the author’s website. You can do this by offering the reader something at your site that he values, such as a free newsletter, a blog with more information on your topic, a coupon, or some other type of enticement.
The article works to attract the reader, and by providing information that the reader needs, you in turn can attract readers to your website via the resource box. It’s a bit more subtle than writing a straightforward sales letter, but it’s much more effective. Plus, by creating free reprint articles on your topic, you can help the pages on your website to get better search engine rankings. Article marketing works to help you get more traffic from search engines, while at the same time sending visitors to your website from the articles themselves, via your resource box