Recently, EzineArticles expert author Phillip Davis (also the President of Tungsten Brand Marketing: PureTungsten.com) interviewed me on article writing & marketing insights for the bright minds of his newsletter readership and today I wanted to share that interview with the bright minds of the EzineArticles newsletter & blog readership. :-)
Founded in 1999, EzineArticles.com has over 30,000 expert authors that have generated over 250,000 original articles. It is among the top 600 most visited sites on the internet with over 100,000 unique visitors daily. EzineArticles’s CEO Chris Knight recently shared these insights to benefit the bright minds of Tungsten newsletter readers.
Tungsten: What is “article marketing” and how is it different than a blog?
Chris: Article Marketing is the grass-roots strategy of writing short 250-700 word articles and syndicating or distributing them to ezine publishers and/or web publishers. Blog entries are typically syndicated also, but normally only the blog title, summary (sometimes called a “partial feed”) and a link to the full blog entry is what’s included in the RSS feed of the blog. Compared to blogs, article marketing is more like a full-feed syndication of the article title, body, summary, resource box and relevant keywords. Where this gets really confusing is that our EzineArticles RSS feeds are only partial feeds as we don’t believe in full-feeds because of the abuse that would occur. Short answer is that a blog is something that you only syndicate a partial feed of your content and article marketing is when you take a percentage of your total article inventory (such as 10-25%) and make it available for syndication in full.
Tungsten: Is article marketing “for real” or just another passing internet fad?
Chris: It’s for real and has been around for way more than a decade. It’s hardly a fad and our 7 year old website is proof of that. To anyone who would say it’s a passing fad, I’d like to know what they think it will pass into? If anything, it’s gaining momentum and speed as authors move from dabblers in article marketing to fully-engaged strategies involving teams of article writers on their staff. You either get it or you don’t. Those who get it, disproportionately get access to the spoils (avalanches of qualified visitors coming to your website day in and day out).
Tungsten: Why should clients invest time and energy into writing articles?
Chris: For two main reasons: 1) To acquire qualified leads and large amounts of qualified visitors/traffic back to your website all year long. 2) To get exposure to media opportunities including interview requests and book deal opportunities. Who knows, you might even find someone who wants to buy or invest in your business.
Tungsten: Once they are written, should the articles be placed on a business’ web site as well?
Chris: We’d hope that you submit them to EzineArticles.com first, but we never mind if you want to include them on your own website as well. The thing we do care about is that your quality original articles are exclusive to your name. This means you must have the exclusive rights to the article content and no one else should be allowed to use your content and put their name on it (otherwise known as non-exclusive rights or private label rights (PLR) content).
Tungsten: How many articles should be written and how often? Is there a threshold of some sort before it becomes effective?
Chris: I’d recommend writing your first batch of 25 articles before evaluating if it’s the right strategy for you to continue. In fact, I’d recommend that you repurpose old content from your ezine archives, old forum or blog entries or any old ebooks or print material that you could recycle. Use repurposed content first to create your first batch of articles and you’ll find that you can produce a higher quantity of articles on your first try than if you had to write one article at a time for the first time. The quantity of articles also depends on which niche you are active in. If you are in a highly competitive niche such as finance or weight loss, you might need 250-2500 articles to make any progress whereas very narrow topical articles may only need 25-250 to make a major market impact.
Tungsten: Should writers use lots of keywords in their articles to make sure they get ranked high?
Chris: If you want to look like a keyword spammer, be sure to include a high density of redundant keywords that no human would ever find pleasant to read. What I would recommend: Make sure your article title is at least 60% keyword intelligent and forget the rest of the keyword density stuff you might read about in SEO forums. Know that there are many who say that search engine penalties exist for being too optimized and I think they are right. If you want to get ranked higher, and not that I can guarantee anything, I would suggest creating large volumes of quality original article content. Solve people’s problems, entertain others, and provide a sliver of your expertise for others to read.
Tungsten: What is RSS and how does that relate to article marketing? Is there a way to send my articles out automatically to subscribers?
Chris: RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication and it’s an XML language designed to transport content automatically. When you submit your articles to EzineArticles, we have 301 + RSS feeds (one for every article category) and that means your articles are automatically released to our RSS feeds upon being approved in the site. In addition, every author has their own RSS feed that will automatically update whenever they add a new article. An author could then take their EzineArticles RSS feed and insert it into their website CMS (Content Management System) so that their newest EzineArticles will always show up on their website without having to manually update anything.
Beyond RSS, we also send out hundreds of thousands of permission-based double opt-in daily emails to our members who have asked to receive alerts when new articles are added. Each email alert is for a specific article category to keep the relevancy high so that articles on “Branding” would only go out to our “Branding” new article email list. Now if you were really advanced doing some cool XML to HTML ezine template creation, you could use PHP or ASP to auto create an email newsletter template based on your EzineArticles expert author feed — but I have yet to see anyone do that. There is a trend of many of my friends who have email newsletters auto-created based on a RSS feed and I suspect you’ll see it show up in the mainstream more so in 2007.
Tunsgsten: Thanks Chris!