The Misunderstood Marketing Method
By Mark Daoust
How do you hide a tree? Put it in a forest.
This is what many authors have effectively done when they suggest that you
should use articles to promote your website. The technique that these authors
suggest can be summarized as follows: write something you know about, add your
resource box, submit your article to tens of thousands of frëe reprint
directories and distribution groups, and wait for publishers to pick up your
But this is entirely the wrong method.
If you were to follow the advice of these authors you may see
some traffïc, receive a few inbound links, and gain some
publicity for your website, but how does this make writing
articles different from any other basic promotion technique?
Rather than writing an article to bring in this traffïc, why not
just participate in forums, submit to niche directories, or pay
for quality traffïc? Articles can do so much more.
Why The Current Thought is Bad
Ask yourself this question: what are publishers looking for? If
you said content, you are wrong. Publishers (or at least
publications worth reading) are not looking for just content –
they are looking for original content. They do not want an
article that is going to show up on 500 other websites,
including frëe reprint directories. They want an article that
people will link to, that only they offer. It is their unique
content that will allow them to separate themselves from their
But don't publishers use frëe reprint articles? Some do, many do
not. Those that do tend to be extremely selective with frëe
reprint articles, often using them more as filler content rather
than featured material which is aimed at getting high
readership. The fact is, most worthwhile publications that use
frëe reprint articles are either moving away from these
articles, or have eliminated them altogether.
So what does that mean for that article you wrote and submitted
to 50,000 publishers (as promised by the article submission tool
that you used)? It means that it did just that – it was
submitted to 50,000 publishers. You do not know who it was
submitted to, whether they are a respected website, whether they
actually have any reasonable amount of traffïc, or even if they
will publish your article without your permission. You have no
control over what happens to your article.
An Example of What Can Happen
What is so unfortunate about what article promotion has been
reduced to is that many website owners do not realize just how
much traffïc they could receive from just one article. A single,
well-written, well-thought out article, has the ability to drive
literally hundreds of thousands of visitors within a very short
amount of time.
The Surprising Truth About Ugly Websites, an article
recently published on Site-Reference.com, single-handedly
brought in over 200,000 unique visitors – in less than 24 hours.
Initially it was featured on Slashdot, and subsequently it was
featured in hundreds of blogs and forums, and thousands of new
websites added a link to the article.
Well-written articles that are properly promoted have the
ability to bring fresh traffïc, many times in astounding
Writing Articles That Actually Succeed
The idea of submitting an article to as many publishers as
possible is obviously contrary to what a publisher is looking
for. At the same time, though, it is also contrary to what you
should be looking for. The secrët to writing successful articles
starts with a simple concept: you want to control who publishes
your article, and you want to help promote that article. If an
editor chooses to publish an article and sees that it was
well-received (and brought in a lot of new traffïc), they will
be more inclined to publish future articles from you.
So instead of signing up for the latest article distribution
program that promises to blast your article to a gazillion
publishers that you may not even want publishing your article,
choose one or two initial publications that you would like to be
featured in, then work on developing a relationship with them.
Starting that relationship can often be the most difficult part.
Often times, though, simply sending an email to the editor
informing them that you would like to write an article
exclusively for them on "___fill in the blank___" subject is
enough to get their attention. If you happen to send them an
email, they may give you some guidelines on what they look for
in an article. Or, they may tell you that they simply would not
be interested in an article on that particular topic (if that
were to happen, you could ask what they would be interested in).
Spend time writing your article – do not expect to finish it in
one day, and certainly do not expect to finish it in a few
hours. A quality article takes time to write, takes thought to
organize, and may require research on your part as well.
Remember that publishers are looking for unique, well-written,
well thought out, and insightful articles. Ultimately,
publishers are looking for the same content that their readers
are looking for – your job is to simply create that content.
Promote Your Articles
Articles that are published on well-respected websites tend to
be viral in nature. Once you get your article published (and you
may be surprised at how easy it is to get your article
published), you will find that your article will show up in
various forums, blogs, and other websites. This is good – in
fact, this is very good and is the very goal that you should be
aiming for. You want to encourage this viral behavior, help it
grow, and even give it a shot in the arm when necessary.
To find whether your article is being discussed elsewhere on the
web, you can do a search in Google for your article title in
quotes (as shown at):
If you see that your article is being discussed in forums, join
the forum and join the discussion. Having your input will
encourage more conversation, which will in turn encourage more
people to participate in the conversation. Take advantage of the
buzz and use it to create more buzz. For example, if you find
that a blog owner read your article, disagreed with it, and took
the time to create a post disagreeing with your article, send
them an email asking if you can respond through their blog.
Find websites that feature important stories. The technology
field has websites such as Slashdot and Digg – find out if your
industry has any equivalent websites that feature important or
interesting stories and submit the location of the published
article to them.
Ultimately, you should promote your articles as if they were
your actual website. Not only will this draw attention to the
article (which is a showcase of your website's credibility), but
it will also demonstrate to the editor that your articles are
worth publishing and make it easier for you to be published in
Ultimately It Is An Ad
An article is ultimately an advertisement for your business,
even though you may not mention your business anywhere in your
article (actually, as a general rule you should not). The
article demonstrates your knowledge, draws attention to your
business, and creates valuable exposure to your website.
A properly written, distributed, and promoted article can be far
more effective than any other förm of marketing, and far more
About The Author
Mark Daoust is the owner of
This article was originally published at:
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