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Why You Need an Article-Marketing Strategy before Posting a Single Article Online I

Part 1 of a 2-part series
To read Part 2

First, Define your Bulls Eye

If you're going to write and post articles on the Internet,be unambiguous about what you expect them to accomplish.Don't start writing just yet. Think beyond the mechanics ofwriting an article or deciding where to post it.

It's one thing to spin out an article or two. It's quiteanother to incorporate them into a strategy that builds yourwebsite traffic, reputation, and business. All yourmarketing methods should work together - online and off.

Your Strategy Clarifies:

- Who you're trying to reach

- How to find them

- What you want them to do next (does your website support that aim?)

- Your primary goal and message

- How articles (with particular titles and keywords) mesh with your other marketing

Article marketing is nothing more than a way to getinformation (not advertising) broadly distributed on theInternet. It can't compensate for a muddled or dull message.And it won't build your site traffic unless it connects toreaders in an interesting way.

Write Articles that Trumpet a Unique Business Message

A frequent business error is treating each customer-attracting activity as though it stands alone. Yet eachmethod works better when echoing a common message that linksto the others.

To quote Roy Williams, the Wizard of Ads, "It's hard to tell a powerfulstory badly. But it's easy to tell a weak story well. I'venever seen a business fail because they were "reaching thewrong people." But I've seen thousands fail because theywere saying the wrong thing... It's amazing how many peoplebecome the "right people" when you're saying the rightthing. Believe it or not, it's advertising third, customerdelight second, strategy always first."

Maximize your Customer-Attracting Methods

Last year I wrote an ebook showing how to make the businesswebsite and Yellow Page ad work together to bring newcustomers. It made the point that each promotional methodhas its own strengths, and reaches different groups By them workingtogether, each approach does a more persuasive job.

As an example, the directory ad should display a websiteaddress. A recent study found that over 60% of peoplesurveyed only call Yellow Page ads that show a website (evenif they don't intend to visit it). Besides, the website letsthe business provide information that won't fit within thedimensions of an ad.

A single approach can't cover all your bases. The sameapplies to article marketing.

Article Marketing Strengths

- Ability to deliver an interesting "sample" of your expertise

- Long enough to be informative (600-800 words)

- Reaches and speaks to tightly focused interest groups

- Quickly delivers the message throughout the Internet

- Long shelf life - some websites keep articles posted for years

- Builds on the keywords that your website uses

- Incoming-links from websites that post your articles

Plan More than One Article at a Time

You can't develop much momentum with one article. That'slike shooting a gun with a single bullet, or a PPC (pay-per-click) campaign for just one term. The odds of hitting yourmark aren't too good. Several articles written to reinforceeach other generate more mileage. As you get more articlesout there, people start paying attention, and you can targetmore keywords. Repeated publications develop a personalitythat readers recognize.

Plan a number of titles in advance, with a theme buildingfrom one to the next. Keep each one tightly focused, butrelated to the others. In that way, you develop the in-depth"voice" of an expert. And your information won't lapse intoho-hum generalities. Write first-rate articles when you relyon the extensive free resources at Article MarketingAcademy.

Try writing some in a series (like, Part 1 of 3 parts) tobuild anticipation for future segments. Also, your messagewon't be confined to the 600 to 800 word article limit.Since each article in the series resides on your website,readers needn't wait to read them all (giving them anincentive to visit your site). Later, the whole series canbe offered as a special report or ebook (once relatedmaterial is added).

Write with your keywords in mind. Maintain your primarymessage, with a different twist for parallel niches. Go tothe extra effort to say something new. That's easy when youprovide stories, examples, case studies from your ownexperience. As you dish out practical assistance in yourarticles, readers will be eagerly watching for your nextones.

Lynella Grant, 2005

Part 2 includes posting articles, writing to please thesearch engines, and ways to re-use articles. Part 2 of 2,

--Dr. Lynella Grant - Article Marketing Academy - Promote yourself, business, website, or book with articles posted online. Author, Yellow Page Smarts, (719) 395-9450

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