If you’re an Internet marketer, then you need to work on one single skill above all others – writing. Even if you outsource your content creation to a professional freelancer, it helps to know what good writing for the ‘net equates to, or you won’t be able to discern good deliverables from bad ones.
There are different types of content that you’ll need, including:
Articles for directories
All of these require a certain kind of writing that’s casual in nature and easy to digest for the prospect, but you also want it to have your personal style and voice so that whenever anyone reads something online by you, they associate it with your brand.
There Are Three Major Roadblocks to Your Writing Success
Whether you’re a brand spanking newbie or a seasoned, advanced marketer, you’ll have some sort of writing skill that you can improve upon to increase the number of sales that you get.
There are three main problems that continue to crop up in the world of online writing, and you can spot and address these in your own situation:
The speed with which you write can hamper your efforts to make money quickly online. If it takes you three hours to write one article, then you might want to consider outsourcing while you work on your article writing skills.
Look at the speed with which you write and break it down into an hourly wage. How much do you want to make per hour?
If it’s $20 per hour, and it takes you three hours to write one page, then that one article has cost you $60.
Once you do the math, you have to ask yourself, “Would I be better off paying a $10 per page ghostwriter to handle this task while I go work on something else?”
Luckily, there are solutions to speed issues that we’ll address shortly for those who don’t have a budget for outsourcing or who simply prefer to take the do it yourself route and want to work on increasing the speed with which they complete their writing tasks.
Another snag that prevents you from having the ultimate article marketing success is that your articles aren’t very readable. This can often be because someone is trying to write in a language that isn’t their first language, but often, it’s due to someone just trying too hard.
With online writing, your audience wants to be able to read something quickly and easily – and enjoy it while they do it, too. You may be thinking back to high school or college where you were plagued by professors requiring the exact proper grammar and sentence structures.
You use big words to impress your target audience and you draw out your paragraphs until they’re each half a page long – because that’s what your English professor used to praise you about.
There’s a way to reign in your out of control writing habits and make your articles go viral because they’re such a joy to read and your target audience can’t help but to share them with others.
Converting an article into a sale is a big struggle for many marketers. You thought you wrote an informative article. You felt the writing was good – so why didn’t the reader click on your link and buy the product?
Sometimes it’s not your fault. There are many marketers who don’t do their research on a product before they go promoting it with an article. Did you evaluate the sales copy to see if it’s any good?
Sometimes your article isn’t the problem. But if conversions for a sales page work just fine, and your article isn’t sending you any sales, then you’ll need to adjust your content creation so that it pulls in the right kind of reader and then pushes them into the sales funnel by getting them to click on your resource link and ultimately convert into a sale.
For Every Problem You Have With Writing, There Are Several Solutions
You don’t have to be stuck in a rut when it comes to article marketing obstacles. As long as you have the time to write, you know where to submit your content, and you have a desire to improve your skills, you can become a better article marketer today!
Solutions for Speed Issues
Speed is by far the biggest issue writers face because both good writers and bad writers struggle with this one. Getting your thoughts down on paper (or in this case, screen) can be like pulling teeth.
Start by thinking about what kind of article you want to write. There are many types of articles, such as:
Question and Answer – this is where you use a question in your niche market as the title and your article is the answer to that question.
Tips or Steps – this type of article starts with a short introduction paragraph and then works in bullet point or bold step formation where you’re making a list. Tip 1, tip 2, Step 1, step 2, etc.
Story – A personalized story format works well as a review article or to help brand you as an expert in your niche market.
Once you know what kind of article you’d like to write, create an outline for it. This outline format helps you quickly fill in the blanks. You should create outlines for every type of writing that you do online. At the very least, have an introduction, three main point paragraphs, and a conclusion that you work with to help flesh out an article.
Dragon naturally speaking (DNS) is a tool that you can use to help speed up your writing. Even seasoned article marketers have found that the speed of their writing improves up to four times when they’re able to speak the content into a microphone rather than type it up using a keyboard.
With DNS, you simply put on a headset or speak into a microphone and the words you say appear on the screen in a document that you can then edit and save. Even the fastest typist benefits from the voice recognition software.
Practicing your article creation is another speed tip that you should employ. Grab an egg timer and set your time limit and see how much you can get done in a short amount of time.
Try to eradicate distractions from your work area. You may write better without the radio on, or when the door to your home office is closed so that you can’t hear the household commotion.
Solutions for Readability
Readability is a problem that’s often hard for you to spot yourself. Some people think their writing is just fine – but to someone else, it’s a train wreck. The best way to see how your readability is working for you is to ask someone else in the industry for their opinion.
That means going to a marketing forum and asking for someone to help rip your article apart. Be willing to get real (and sometimes painful) feedback on your article. It’s the only way you’ll learn to become better.
If you already know that your readability is lacking, then try to let go of the old English rules you learned in school. You may be trying too hard to be proper and perfect. That’s not what online writing is all about.
Be a rebel when it comes to your writing. Use incomplete sentences and fragments. It’s okay in article marketing – no one is going to reject your article because of it. And short sentences work well in article marketing.
Use contractions in your writing. It makes the reading flow much better. Instead of saying, “We will not go into that topic because it does not matter,” say, “We won’t go into that because it doesn’t matter.” It’s so much easier to read – and faster for your reader, too! They’ll appreciate that.
Do you see how I’ve written this report – with short, easy to read and skim paragraphs? Do your reader a favor and skip the half page paragraphs. It won’t impress anyone and in fact, it can be a major turn off for readers because long paragraphs appear daunting.
Use subheadings as I’ve done in this report to help break up main ideas and points you want to get across to your readers – you can do it in articles, too! Just take the main ideas form your article outline and use those as subheads.
Here’s an example: Let’s say you wanted to write an article called, “3 Ways to Stick to Your Diet.” In your outline, and in your sub-headings, you could use “Pair Up with a Friend,” “Give Yourself a Day to Cheat,” and “Pick a Diet That’s Right for You” as your subheadings.
This makes it very easy to write three “mini articles” – by just fleshing out each subheading for your reader. Bullet points can also come in handy for readability. Instead of using a paragraph to explain each item on your list, just use an introduction, followed by a bullet point list, and then a deeper explanation following the list.
Readers like bullet points – it allows them to skim past things they feel they don’t need to know and it can help guide them to your resource box at the end of the article, so that you improve your chance of getting a click through.
Solutions for Conversions
Once you get the writing part down, you have to know how to get the click. There’s an old saying that says, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.” Well the same is true with some readers of your articles.
However, you can make it a whole lot more likely that they’ll click through on the link in your resource box if you use three simple tips.
Tip #1: Write a short article.
If you give everything away in the article, then there’s no reason for them to click through to find more answers. Likewise, if you draw out the article into a long mess, they’ll get bored and click away to finally get some good information.
Short articles have been said to work better in most cases (although that’s not always the case). Look at the article directory’s requirements. If they want a minimum of 400 words for maximum exposure, then give it to them.
If they’re not picky, then stick to the size of a blog post – 250-300 words, not including your resource box where you can provide a sort of summary with a hyperlink back to a website of your choosing.