A reader sent me an email that he also gave me permission to reprint. His comments first and then my response:
“Here are the positives I’ve picked up on so far: (1) You have an honest face, (2) In your writing, you have a sense of humor, (3) You generate articles yourself, suggesting that you really do believe there is value in it, (4) I found one fellow’s site complaining that you wouldn’t publish his erotica, telling me that you do have some standards, (5) can thousands of article submitters all be wrong? Those are all positives, but not the empirical evidence I’m looking for that article marketing is worth the time and trouble.
What gives me reservations?”
Ok, at this point, I can’t show you word for word what he wrote because he slammed some of our top authors unjustly but was wise enough to ask me to not print some of the direct thoughts as he didn’t wish to create enemies out of this discussion.
His first complaint is that our top authors by volume are poor writers.
I don’t agree with his assessment, but if he is comparing them against an academic research paper with footnotes, sure they are not the same. This isn’t the same medium or forum for 3,500 word articles that have 10 hours of editing performed. This is the site that thrives on 400-750 word articles so that ezine publishers can easily digest this content and send it to their members. We approve articles in 15-90 seconds each. That is the model that works for us. This model does not allow for perfection. We value ACTION instead of perfection. We have a strict format that doesn’t allow figures, images, tables or other research paper objects.
Wow, if he thinks our site with 5.5 pages of editorial guidelines has poor writers, can you imagine how he must feel about the copycat sites that keep pooping up like bird dung?
His second complaint is that our endorsement page is nothing but article-submitters promoting article-submitting.
Well, duh… You were expecting what?
His third issue: “In my couple hours of research, I could not find a single article by an objective authoritative source recommending article marketing. Are there any bonafide business or marketing experts who recommend it? Anybody on the faculty of a university or in the marketing department of a successful company who recommends it? This is obviously a major phenomenon, so has any solid research been done that demonstrates its effectiveness?”
He obviously missed Dr. Andy’s research on the power of article syndication.
Every single Internet marketing expert that I know of agrees with the power of article marketing/syndication as a traffic, credibility and lead generation theory & strategy.
He missed over 200+ authors on our site that are doctorate level, Ph.d, MD, etc. It’s not that the doctors who are authors legitimize EzineArticles.com alone, but they are the most educated academically out of the 14k+ unique authors listed with us.
Lastly, he slams the intelligence of our authors with this paragraph:
“Frankly, Chris, although I continue to have an open mind, the
opinion I am forming is that article-publishing sites are a kind of
online vanity press, where would-be writers can publish their
articles, call up their articles on screen and see their byline out
there on the web, and enjoy the thrill of knowing that the rest of
the world has access to their words. There is no harm in that, and
if you make a living by providing that service, then you are a smart man.”
I took a few days to respond to his comments because I was floored that he was even asking them or making these judgements… as in, where has he been for the past decade. :)
I agree that every author at some level has an ego and does value seeing their articles online… but that gets old pretty quickly and a different sense of purpose or set of reasons fuel the fire that has allowed a site like EzineArticles.com to grow and have value for the million+ unique visitors that come each month to read the works of over 14k unique authors.
Conclusion: We are not right for everyone.
I really don’t have the interest in ‘converting’ this person to the power of article syndication as a cornerstone online business building strategy. The defense rests so that the jury can get back to sending in more articles.