Entries from March 2009 ↓

Article Marketing – Simplified and De-Mystified

Article writing can be seen as one of those boring tasks that are a throw-back from school and university days. But in articlesbusiness the writing of article is an effective marketing strategy to deliver targeted visitors, increase your rankings and boost sales.

If the thought of it still fills you with dread, the good news is that after learning a few simple steps, writing your own articles isn’t as hard as it appears.

What to write about?

This is probably the biggest hurdle most new writers face. The easiest way to begin is to write about things you are interested in and preferably passionate about.

Once you have decided on a general area, a good way to narrow the topic down is to focus on the problems that people have. Typically, people read articles because they want to be entertained or they want information.

A guiding principle is to expect the readers to be looking for “What’s in it for them?’ You may already know the common problems that people have in the particular field, but if not, a good source of information is to look at related online forums and note the most common questions asked.

Chunk it

Most people don’t like to read large documents from the Web, so articles tend to be around 400 words long. If you break the article into an introduction, a small number of sub-headings and a conclusion you may only have to write about 50 words in each section.

For your eyes only

The first draft should be for your eyes only. Don’t try to produce a final copy as you write. It tends to be much quicker to get your thoughts down and come back to edit later. The final, and most important step in the writing process, is to proofread your article.

Get it out there

Once you have written your article you may want to add it to your own website as an item that search engines love – a piece of original content.

By adding an ‘About the Author’ section with a link to your website, you can also submit it to article directories. As other websites publish your article you receive another thing that search engines look for, one-way back links.

After writing your first few articles you will find it is not as daunting as it first appears. You never know, you may even want to offer your services as a freelance writer on the Internet as a way to make some extra income.

See also: 4 Ways to Make Your Article Creative and Interesting

The 5 Benefits of Article Writing You Might Miss

Article Writing – How To Write Quality Articles Quickly

Can Article Writing Help Me Get More Newsletter Subscribers?

Copywriting Review: Is Your Marketing Message Moving With the Times?

Warning! Your website copywriting and brochure content are not designed to stand the test of time.time

Think about it for a moment. You change your style of dress to reflect the changing fashions; you may even redecorate your home now and again because your tastes and priorities change. Therefore you should also review your marketing message every 6 – 12 months.

Times Change

When you set up your business you invested a great deal of time in researching your market and ensuring your sales message resonated with your target audience.

But the economic climate has now changed; your target market may have different priorities. They are older and wiser and…guess what? Technology has changed. In fact everything has changed.

Therefore you have 2 choices: continue to do what you’ve been going and watch your sales slide, or revamp your message and see your profits rise.

However good your original sales message was, it is now becoming tired and stale. Your customers want something new. Your message may no longer resonate with them. They’ve changed so you need to change too.

Freshen Up

Take a look at your website content and brochures. Is your message still powerful? What do your ‘today’ customers want? Do the benefits you pushed still work? Basically are you still tuned into what your customers want?

Your sales message has to be flowing. Keep it static and you’ll lose customers. Regularly update it to reflect people’s needs and you’ll keep it fresh, exciting and in demand.

Put your coffee done, grab your brochure or get your website on screen. Take a look at the copy. Does it still reflect what you can do for your customers?

Review your copy every 6 – 12 months and your investment will be rewarded with new business, retained business and increased profits. Keep your business growing; don’t get stuck in a time warp.

10 Must-have Website Copywriting Words

Copywriting is the one thing that will make your website work. Forget flashy graphics and annoying animations, it theflickr-words copywriting that will convey your sales message to your readers and get them to buy.

If you don’t use the right words within your website copywriting you will never convert your traffic into sales. Everyone knows how important keyword research is and the effect it will have on your SEO, but there are also some other very important words that should be featured on your website.

By incorporating these 10 simple words in your copywriting, you will make your writing more powerful and results-driven.

You – too many websites use ‘we’ instead of ‘you’. Your readers are only concerned about how your product will benefit them. They couldn’t careless about your company. Copywriting is like holding a conversation – talk to your customers not at them.

Free – people love free. It helps build trust. It doesn’t have to be something big, a free eBook or consultation will do. Mind you, you do have to be careful. Over do the ‘frees’ and it could look like spam so be careful.

Guaranteed – all shoppers are cautious especially online shoppers. Guarantee builds trust as it gives your buyer a safety net should things go wrong. Just ensure you can honour the guarantee!

Easy – everyone loves easy; enough said.

New – people love to have the latest gadgets so ‘new’ is very powerful.

Proven – show your customers proof that your product/service will do what you say it will do. If you have them, use statistics or testimonials.

Results – don’t beat around the bush. Show them results if you have them. When confronted by irrefutable proof that it ‘does what is says on the tin’, they can’t say no.

Save – I am not just talking about money here. Saving time, energy and trouble can be just as powerful.

Maximize – this has the effect of showing your readers that ‘it couldn’t get any better’. But be specific – if it is a woolly claim they will just walk away.

Benefit – I have saved the best for last. The main aim behind any copywriting is to let your readers know how they will benefit from your product/service.

Now slip off and take a look at your website. All 10 words are there right? And you haven’t used ‘we’ anywhere (you can get away with it on your ‘About Us’ page)?

These simple tips will make your website a winning site.

Why Proofreading Can Be Difficult

Hands up all those of you out there who have proofread a piece a work within an inch of its life only to find a big fat glasses_12x16_pastel_framed1typo once it’s been published.

You are not alone. The human brain is very good at playing tricks on us, making us believe that what we are seeing is correct even when it isn’t. And this doesn’t just happen to those who proofread their own work either. Even if you get someone else to proof your work, mistakes can slip through.


In a word – Typoglycemia.

What is it? Well, have a read of the paragraph below…and trust me, you will able to read it:

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid Aoccdrnig to rscheearch taem at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Such a cdonition is arppoiately cllaed Typoglycemia.

There you go, that goes some way to explaining why many typos slip through the proofreading barrier. Of course there are some errors that can’t be explained by this phenomenon such as those identified in my earlier blog Proofreading Blunders. They a simple case of human carelessness.

Why You Should Never Assume

One of the biggest copywriting mistakes you see is that the writer has made assumptions about the reader.assume

What do assumptions make? Absent readers because they would have toddled off and found what they were looking for elsewhere.

Everyone wants something different out of life – whether it is peace and quite, a high flying career or just to be left alone. If we didn’t the world would be a pretty boring place.

It is the little things that get us up out of bed in the morning that are crucial to the way you write your website content and copy. If you don’t know what makes your reader tick you’ll never get inside their heads, inspire them and make them take the action you want them to.

Guess what? Even if you do know them so well you know what buttons to push, you can never assume you know how they’ll react.

Even the most seasoned copywriter can come unstuck if they think they know what everyone wants. You see the problem is that we all have our own way of looking at the world and tend to assume that everyone else sees the world in the same way.

Remember, what motivates you will not necessarily motivate your target audience. You have your own ambitions and goals in life, but the people who you want to buy from you may be looking for something very different – and therein lies the trick of writing website copy that converts.

If you can’t reach people and tap into what they want, you’ll never be able to sell them anything at all.

Getting to know them

Your website content must separate what you want from life from what your target audience wants. You are only after one thing – sales.

So how do you sell to someone who doesn’t think like you do? Simple – you become your target reader. Forget about your motivators, assume nothing, and discard all your personal perceptions. Put yourself in your reader’s shoes.

Your reader is trying to work out where your company figures into the equation. Why should he choose your business?

Perhaps he’s stressed and needs ways to make his life more peaceful. Perhaps he wants to cut down on his workload or boost his business.

If you know what motivates him you can sell him what you have. Take the time to find out, don’t assume anything.