A year ago we launched the EzineArticles Inbox system to facilitate better communication between us and our members and between our members to each other.
For the 31 days of January 2008:
- Member-To-Member: 201 messages were sent total
- Member-To-Member: 51 were sent by unique members
- Member-To-Member: 46 were received by unique members
- Member-To-Support: 1,977 unique members sent an email to our support team
- Support-To-Member: 1,769 unique members received our replies back to them.
- Number of Members Reported For Spamming: ZERO
What does this tell us? The systems are serving us well to manage member support especially when a members email is bouncing (happens by the thousands). I would have thought the adoption rate would be higher member-to-member, but we haven’t made the Inbox a central-theme to your membership interface experience.
Do you have any suggestions for how you’d like to see the EzineArticles Inbox System improved?
EzineArticles Expert Author Kelly Piet has an interesting/creative author photo that caught my eye.
Kelly only has one article listed with us, but it’s a very high quality piece that is visually easy to read quickly: Baby Shower Poems – Secrets Revealed!
Seriously, when you buy a new pair of underwear… many times, it has a little sticker that says, “Inspected By #13”. Who cares I ask?
In the early days of EzineArticles — every email that our members received when an article of theirs was reviewed included an identification as to who the editor was. Example: “For quality control purposes, your article was reviewed by editor #13.”
I thought: We did this to let our members know that a real human reviewed their work before sending them the acceptance or soft-rejection letter.
The real reason: We did it to help us troubleshoot who was responsible for approving your article, should they make a mistake.
It’s now 2008 and we obsessively track every member, every article, every editor, every QC person, and every support team interaction with our systems…thus, no longer needing to include which editor reviewed your articles.
Result: Effective an hour ago, we’ve removed notifying our members which human on our team reviewed your articles. We still know and will continue to track it for QC, support, follow up and archive reasons.
Definition: Duplicative Content = Content that is between 1-99.9% duplicate of another article already in our system.
Definition: Duplicate Content = Content that is 100% identical to another article in our system.
When comparing whether an article is duplicate or duplicative, we compare against live, deleted, in-review and our own secret database of known non-exclusive rights (PLR) article database.
Months ago we made the decision to invest even more heavily in our anti-duplicative content identification on incoming and articles flowing through our systems.
Reason: Duplicate content and variations on duplicate content adds no value for our users; and thus is a liability that threatens credibility for us and every good-standing member of EzineArticles.com.
We’ve been at this duplicate content identification business since early 2005. That means each revision of our software gets even more finely tuned. Lately, many older members have been editing articles from months or years past only to find their revision being rejected for duplicate content. As you can guess, this makes them angry because we had already accepted their duplicate content by accident when our systems weren’t as finely tuned as they are now.
The ambiguity of this issue: We’re not able to share the cut-off percentages or the tweaking we do on a daily basis to our anti-duplicate content checking to prevent gaming of our systems. In addition, we’ll be sweeping the entire database this quarter.
What we can do: Effective today, we will notify members who submit or edit an article if it is a duplicate or duplicative of their own article along with telling them which article specifically of their own they were duplicating. In addition, we’re re-sweeping our live article database with our updated software and will be giving further manual attention to members that have articles that are duplicative in too high of a percentage.
Skellie has an interesting blog post that’s relevant to our article writing discussion together.
An excerpt of “The Hallmarks of Value-Packed Content:
- It doesn’t alleviate problems a little Ã¢â‚¬â€ it solves them.
- It doesn’t make your readership think about doing things differently Ã¢â‚¬â€ it changes the way they act.
- It’s audacious Ã¢â‚¬â€ it tries to do many things at once.
- It expresses something your target audience didn’t already know.
- It answers a question your target audience didn’t know how to ask.
- It makes your target audience feel better about themselves.
- It helps them move towards whatever they’ve defined as their *success*.”
Instead of having a primary aim of attracting traffic back to your website, focus on helping your reader to become a better person, improve their skills, or solve a problem. You can still have a CTA (Call To Action) in your Resource Box… meaning, you can have it both ways (delivering value to the reader AND attracting traffic back to your website).
How do you ensure that you deliver value-packed content with each of your articles?
Your target reader loves checklists because they distill the essence of what someone else (you, the expert) have painstakingly identified as being important for a particular problem.
Example of checklists you could make:
- Wedding Checklist – 12 Things You Must Do Before Your Marriage Begins
- Job Search Checklist Essentials
- Traveling Success List – Your Checklist To Speed Pack Before Business Trips
- 12 Point Checklist When Working With [Insert Your Industry]
Your “Checklist” article template should include:
- An article title that includes keywords relating to the type of checklist you’re creating plus the word “checklist”.
- (1) or (2) paragraph opening that explains what and why the checklist exists.
- The actual checklist of items.
- A conclusion that encourages the reader to pay close attention to the benefits of the checklist as you’ve just described.
Mistakes in this template to avoid: Failing to make your checklist into a checklist. Don’t ramble on and on and on without using brackets [ ], bullet points and/or a numbered list. Your checklist should be fast and easy to read including delivering on the promise you made in your article title about a checklist actually being included in your article.
Do our members have faith in the EzineArticles model? We believe so and this article submission chart proves it:
Blue is 2006, Red is 2007, and Green is 2008.
As each year goes by, our new lows are last years highs… meaning, volume continues to climb despite our acceptance rate declining (meaning, the quality bar continues to raise each month).
Article Submission Tip: Think in (2), (5) and (10) packs of article submissions at a time. It takes so much effort to move from “not submitting” to the “act of submitting” — Instead, submit in sets of quality original articles.
I was reading EzineArticles expert Dan Iverson‘s blog entry: Consequence: This Directory Suspended My Account. Not the Best Internet Marketing Strategies
His plight is a common one and I liked his transparency about his experience with us. Here is an excerpt from his detailed entry:
“Here is the only soap boxing I am going to do. Don’t buy into the crap, if you want to build a business online, bring and build value with all that you do, and you will make money and be around a long time. If you keep trying the short cuts, you will find a thing or two that works for a while, but you will have a week foundation, and it won’t last.”
YES! I agree… Always best to build a business with a strong long-term focus foundation…and I think most of our blog readers will agree with that.
I’m sure it was frustrating for Dan because at every turn it must have seemed like we put up road blocks. Many of these road blocks are there on purpose to filter out articles and members that uhm… don’t represent an ideal member (Example: Anyone who submits PLR (private label rights) content or rewrites PLR content is not an ideal author). I do like Dan’s persistence with us and the fact that he uploaded an author photo and extended bio (nice!).
To answer Dan’s question about whether his account has a mark on it… We obsessively attempt to track everything possible as it helps us build a trust profile for each member. Because human nature makes us all somewhat predictable, it’s rare when we’re able to see a member come from darkness into the light. It is possible and I hope Dan, you’ll be one of the rare few who ‘get it’.
So you’re zipping along on EzineArticles.com and you wonder more about who this author is that you’re reading about?
Just take your mouse and hover over the author’s name in the by-line and instantly (thanks to AJAX technology & our innovative developer team) the authors photo and brief bio pops up for you to get another communication opportunity with your readership.
The bio that pops up is not your resource box info, but your author bio (also known as extended bio) information.
Pretty nifty, eh?
What is a Widget? A widget is short for “window gadget” and refers to a screen-based representation of interaction with a website and other systems.
What is an EzineArticles Widget? The EzineArticles Widget is a feature that allows you to show YOUR latest published EzineArticles on your website!
How can I Benefit from an EzineArticles Widget? Your widget is a marketing tool that can provide an easy way for your visitors to read your most recent articles, without you having to upload, copy/paste or re-type your articles on your website.
Where can I Create my EzineArticles Widget?
How do I Create my EzineArticles Widget?
- You can customize your widget to display the following content options on your website:
Once you’ve selected your content option, you can further customize your widget by:
- Recently published EzineArticles articles you Authored
- Recently published EzineArticles articles in any Category or Sub-category
- Recently published EzineArticles articles by Any Author
As you choose your EzineArticles content and customization selections, your widget will update immediately!
Now you can simply Copy/Paste your widget code into your website or blog!
- Dimensions-Width/Height: Range from 200×300 to 600×800
- Color Theme
- Number of Articles Displayed: Range from 5 to 15
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