Is article marketing still worth your time or is it “dead on arrival” as many marketers claim? This debate is brought out of the closet and dusted off from time to time to shake things up.
But you don’t need to get caught up in the controversy because, quite frankly, it’s a silly discussion. The Internet is all about information. Therefore, articles will always matter and be in demand. So the question remains, should article marketing still be used to generate traffic to your blog or website?
Then you need to ask, “Do articles still generate good traffic?”
The short answer to both is, “Yes!” Just ask the marketers who published articles years ago that continue to send traffic to their websites and blogs. They make a very good income from article marketing and so can you. The method works, and it works well.
Article Marketing the Old Way
The problem is there are still many marketers stuck in the old ways of doing business, following old and outdated methods. If you don’t adapt to the changes as they come along, you put your business at risk.
Google has become smarter over the years and so should you. No longer can you post a thin, flimsy article and think it will rank well. No longer can you stuff a 400 word article with your single keyword 200 times and still expect it will rank well. Those days are over.
Remember the article submission software that hit the scene about 7 years ago? Needless to say they have gone the way of the dinosaur. They are useless and no longer effective. Eventually, many article directories fell victim to the onslaught of mass article submissions.
Then article spinning became the flavor of the month and countless article spinners hit the market. These spinners were used to spin each article hundreds of times. It’s no wonder all that came out were garbled “articles” that made no sense.
But did that deter the marketers hell-bent on self-destruction? No, of course not. They fired up their handy-dandy software, took this garbled trash and proceeded to bombard the unfortunate article directories now residing in Google’s zoo right there beside the penguins and pandas.
Building backlinks was the intent and it worked for quite a while. If you try this tactic today, you won’t just be spinning articles you’ll be spinning your wheels and getting nowhere. Don’t waste your time.
Wake up, people! Google did and made it difficult for marketers bent on exploiting the major search engines. The landscape has changed and you must change the way you approach article marketing.
Article Marketing the Right Way
For starters, forget the search engines… you should be writing for your readers. Your articles should be interesting and, above all else, be 100% unique. Your articles should engage your readers and deliver valuable information. They should exceed 500 words, up to 1000 words or more if necessary.
If used responsibly, a good article spinner can be quite useful. Just forget about spinning hundreds of articles from one single article and expect anything good to come from it. You don’t need thousands of spun articles when you have one well-written article. That one good article, when spun appropriately and used strategically, will be far more effective in the long run.
Look for additional keywords related to the topic you’re writing about. In other words, dig a little deeper. Use these keywords throughout your article, perhaps as sub-topics. These additional related keywords will add substance to your article, which will be seen as valuable and relevant by your readers and by Google.
Use your resource box strategically!
This brings us to the whole point of writing and publishing articles in the first place, which is to drive traffic to your website or blog. If your articles are engaging or helpful or even entertaining, your readers will want to stay to the very end and read your short blurb about you, also called a bio or resource box.
While you can certainly give the reader a glimpse of who you are and what you do, don’t go into the story of your life. Try to keep it short, yet interesting.
One effective technique to use is to ask a question. If your article talks about “5 Techniques to Lose Weight Fast”, in your bio section you could ask, “Do You Want to Quickly Drop 2 Sizes the Healthy Way?”
If the question elicits curiosity or interest, it will prompt the reader to click the link to your website or your landing page already set up to collect names and email addresses. Just be sure you can deliver the goods. If your readers feel you tricked them, you’ll never see them again, and that’s not good for business.
Publish your articles on your blog or website first. Then post to your social media accounts, in addition to appropriate forums. You could even seek out websites that accept guest blog posts. These methods have stood the test of time.
The more venues you find for your articles, the better. Don’t count on article directories alone to get the job done. You can submit articles to Ezine Articles or other major article directories, but choose wisely. If they were slapped by Google into oblivion, it may come back to bite you.
Article marketing is a long-term strategy, so don’t expect a flood of traffic overnight. Building good backlinks takes time. Nor is article marketing a task to be done once in a while or whenever you feel like it. In order to the get the most benefit from this strategy, you must put in the effort.
You need to be consistent with your article writing and you need to publish regularly. If you are unable to keep up with the writing you should outsource the work to a good writer.
Article marketing should be one of the several traffic generation strategies in your marketing plan, not your only strategy. If you commit to article marketing and post one or two good articles at least weekly, you may be surprised by the traffic that comes your way.
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