Article Sets: More Quality Articles in Less Time

Writing articles is fun and you can get a higher return on your articles when you discover how to produce more in less time. Let’s look at the simple concept of writing articles in “sets” instead of one at a time.

Article Sets Defined:

A “set of articles” is produced anytime you write 2 or more articles at a time. Typical types of article sets that you could produce:

1) Article sets by topic or sub-topic.

Example: If you were writing about racquetball as your topic, you could make a plan to write 2 articles on racquetball nutrition, 4 articles that go into detail about each of the different color of racquetballs on the market and what they mean, and a 10-pak of articles on forehand or backhand drills.

2) Article sets by style of writing.

Example: One style might be all bullet points, another lists of things, another is a Q&A approach, another might be conversational or discussion of issues. Note that each type of writing is best when done in sets of the same style.

3) Accidental article sets.

Example: Your target is to produce (2) articles that are ~500 words each. While getting started, you get on a roll and accidentally produce a fantastic 800-1000 word article. Break the article in half, give the other half a new title and you have an instant article set… even if it was created by accident.

4) Article sets based on customer or prospect frequently asked questions.

Example: Customers or prospects are always asking questions. Tune into them, group them by topic, and then hammer out some article sets that answer each question. Using the racquetball topic, you might have 7 questions from your audience on how to prepare for a tournament. Each of them makes excellent article topics.

Bottom line: Writing articles in sets, whether on purpose or by accident, is a great way to produce more articles in less time. Give it a shot and make it part of your article production system today.

Do you write articles in sets or can you see the time-savings value in this strategy?

52 Comments »


1

Chris,

I’ve just started publishing articles in EzineArticles. Love it. I’ve written 3 different articles, 3 different lengths, in 3 different categories.

I’m starting to get a feel for this. Breaking up articles into bite size pieces, and submitting article sets is great advice. Plan to try it.

Thanks

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 2:12 PM

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2
Kevin writes:

I have thought about this approach, but was concerned that it would be viewed almost in the sense of duplicate content or overlap content from the same author.

I am not suggesting that it would actually be duplicate content, but within many of niche categories, there does tend to be some overlap with regard to theme.

I’m going to give it a try

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 2:27 PM

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3

Kevin,

If you have a 1000 word article and you cut it in half (2-500 word articles), it’s not duplicate nor derivative content because I assume 100% of your 1000 words were unique, right?

It’s ok to overlap themes; just be sure to include enough unique tips, strategies, info, etc with each article instead of the usual rehashed, regurgitated stuff we’ve all seen.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 2:34 PM

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4
Shalanda Wilder writes:

I recently took a couple of chapters from an ebook of mine and was able to effectively break each chapter up into two articles. This is a great idea for article writing.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 2:43 PM

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5
Susan Trivers writes:

I love to write articles in sets because then I can think freely from the beginning. Very often my best idea or most meaningful observation or recommendation comes from my brain after I have written for awhile–and I would not have gotten there if I was only writing 500 words.

You can create sets of one style or another after you have written freely for a while–think in terms of filling 5-6 pages. Then go back and organize your ideas into individual articles of the set, polish your writing style and submit!

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 2:45 PM

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6
roy hayes writes:

I enjoyed reading this article it gave me some valuable information on how to produce more than one article at once. I would have never thought about this.Thanks I will use it to my best ability.
Roy

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 2:55 PM

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7
Suzanne Foley writes:

I recently began writing a 12-part article series and it’s made it very simple to write one new article per week because I already know what the topic will be. It’s also made it easier to think of new subjects and ways to write other articles. Another idea I recently used was to write a negative article that gave all the ‘bad advice’ and then immediately follow up with the ‘real info’ in the next article. Article sets work!

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 3:11 PM

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8
Lynda writes:

This is really helpful advice – now I’m off to implement it.

Thanks, Christopher.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 3:32 PM

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9
Julia Gray writes:

Great Tip ~ Thanks for the info

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 3:39 PM

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10
webwordslinger writes:

If you write “accidental” article sets as this blogmaster suggests: (1) you didn’t plan the project well and (2) you’ve probably wasted time unless your only outlet is Ezine – and then you’ve just helped Ezine but didn’t add any cash to your bank account.

If you’re a professional writer, like Mr. Knight, you know time is money and wasting it is like tossing bucks out the window.

Yet another dis-service from the Ezine blog to noobie writers. Plan your writing activities to avoid “accidents.”

Maybe Ezine won’t thank you but your checkbook will.

Hey, Knight, keep those tips coming. They’re a laugh riot that makes my day.

webwordslinger

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 3:41 PM

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11
Will writes:

What do you recommend for titling? In other words, should these sets be linked by their titles, even Step 1, Step 2, Part I, whatever? Or do you prefer not to see that sort of thing?

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 4:02 PM

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12
Yvonne A Jones writes:

Thank you for these excellent ideas, Chris. I’ve been thinking of ways to make my article writing more effortless and these suggestions are right on point. More can be accomplished in blocks of time rather than a small piece at a time.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 4:15 PM

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13

Webwordslinger,

Thanks for the comment. You’re right, poorly planned articles can indeed be a waste of time and energy.

However, the idea of “accidental articles” we’re suggesting here has more to do with well-planned articles that end up having more “meat” than expected.

When that happens, you can either trim the article down to your planned size and potentially waste some great content, or you can break the article up into a set and thereby create *multiple* well-planned articles that make the best use of your time and energy.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 5:29 PM

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14
Earlyn Shuffler writes:

Thanks Chris for this great reminder.

Last year I decided to start a set of articles on healthy lifestyles and wrote 4 parts but I was not thinking about it the way you explained so beautifully.

Last week I wrote an article on a new topic (Barbados Luxury Villas) and you just reminded me that this could be a great series.
I will certainly follow up on your suggestions.

Earlyn

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 5:30 PM

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15
alf welch writes:

Create an audience tittify them and have them begging for more.
Simple but very effective

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 6:09 PM

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16
webwordslinger writes:

Hi, Marc,

Thanks for the clarification. However, there’s an obvious (and time-wasting) flaw in your logic.

Professional writers work on assignments. These assignments have parameters set by the client. So, if I take on an assignment to write 10 500-word articles on indoor pollution, that’s what the client wants, that’s what I deliver.

The other alternative is that the writer is developing a piece on spec, in which case there’s no need to “trim down” the article until an editor tells the author to shorten the piece.

The concept put forth in this post is mis-leading. There is no such thing as an “accidental” article set as your blogger emphasizes.

In fact, writing requires precision and planning, not happy accidents, to reach the point where you can pay the mortgage with your words.

Thus, I stand by my original post and urge new writers to avoid suggestions that “accidents” lead to success. Good planning (an outline) and attention to detail lead to long-term editorial success.

webwordslinger

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 6:58 PM

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17

Thanks! Chris,

You know, when you are passionate about a subject you know so well, it is easy to forget that you have written so much when seated at your desk, in a concentrated mood.

It is also good to know this tip (and others in the “Ezine Brains”) you have just shared with Ezine authors, lest we assume things that you may not really think to be “sins” during submission of our articles.

Thanks again for the tip. It will certainly be very helpful.

Dr. Sos

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 7:01 PM

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18
Patricia Combs writes:

Thank you! This is an excellent idea!

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 7:15 PM

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19
Eka Riyadi writes:

Thanks for your articles…
Thanks, Christopher.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 7:39 PM

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20
Peter writes:

G’day Chris,

Yes, good one.

I have e a content based website with over 100 articles that I have written, all based around the theme of low cost marketing options for small business owners.

I could spin all of these & create a substantial then submit them to EzineArticles.

Thanks for the tip.

Cheers,
Peter Kirkham

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 8:01 PM

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21
Cynrab writes:

I find writing article comes easily to me esp when I am familiar with that topic.
Tks, Chris

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 9:31 PM

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22

Thank you Chris,
I have been wondering how to write an article based on customers’ questions. With the issue of confidentiality, I was reluctant.
Any advice on how to graft my article?

Cheers,

Charles

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 9:47 PM

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23
Penny Gould writes:

Thanks for the motivation! I’ve submitted one article, and I’m ready to work on some more. I guess the best way to approach this would be to approach it! (*.*) OH!

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 10:03 PM

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24
Buggerman writes:

Just be sure and make your articles quality ones. Badly written articles equals little or no traffic and a duplicate content penalty every time. Take the time to write something of value. If you cannot do that then you will soon find that you are wasting your time with article marketing.

Comment provided February 16, 2009 at 10:57 PM

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25
ntathu allen writes:

Thank you- as usual – another set of inspirational -easy-to-do- article writing tips. I often get stuck for ideas and/or structure for writing my articles, so appreciate this info. Stay well. Ntathu

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 2:17 AM

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26
Rob Lindegger writes:

I have just started doing article sets. Published my first in a series today.
I think it is an excellent idea. You get continbuity and people visiting your page to see the follow on. Much the same as chapters in a book.

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 3:02 AM

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27
Avril Harper writes:

I also think it’s a good idea to write in sets for two main reasons, the second being most important for me:

* I think writers get ‘on a roll’ when focussing on one subject for more than an hour or so and that can make it very easy to write thousands of words at one sitting while only a few hundred words per day might be possible spread over several sittings. For me that is because it sometimes takes fifteen minutes or so at the start of another sitting to pick up my subject and study what I wrote earlier and that eats heavily into writing time.

* I always leave my articles a few days before editing them when new ideas often come to mind that can be slotted into the existing articles and very often I find a 500 word article becomes a 1,000 word article – or two x 500 word articles!

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 5:55 AM

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28
jillbeth writes:

I often find myself going off on a tanget when writing an article. So I make the “tangent” a separate article; a related topic from a different angle!

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 6:20 AM

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29

Charles,

You’re talking about the Question/Answer article template where you simply pose a commonly asked question and then provide an in-depth answer to it.

Obviously you’d leave out all personally identifying information and I’d recommend not including the name of the person who asked the question.

Buggerman,

I completely agree. This blog entry is all about when you’ve already written that 1000+ word article that already was high quality unique information… only then is it ok to cut it in half to form two 500 word articles.

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 6:59 AM

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30
Robert Y. Shine writes:

Hi there

Very helpfull, learned a lot from the step by step training.

Robert

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 7:15 AM

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31
Dave Robus writes:

I came across this method of writing article sets quite by accident. Having only recently started to publish on EzineArticles I was last week writing an article on Niche Affiliate Marketing. I got carried away and realised that I had over 1000 words. So I thought, why not cut it roughly into 2 and send them both out. Result was…A) Learn How to Make Money Easily from Little Known Niche Affiliate Markets and B) Niche Affiliate Markets: How to Create Cash Incomes as an Affiliate. Needless to say I will be following this brilliant idea even more in the future as I progress. Dave Robus of Old Books Make Money.
oldbooksmakemoney.com

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 8:04 AM

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32
Fran Love writes:

My job is to supervise article contributions for my insurance company that we can then put on multiple online directories.

My problem is that our articles are usually too short already.

Does anybody out there have ideas for how to lengthen articles, not just shorten them or multiple them because they are too long?

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 9:22 AM

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33

Fran,

If your articles are TOO short, then stitch multiple related ones together to form enough unique congruent value to reach the min. words required.

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 9:39 AM

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34
Bob Crawford writes:

I have written a few sets of articles for one of my blogs, but I was concerned that out here in the article directory format that readers would struggle to find all the parts of the set.

Any thoughts on how to make it easier for readers to not only find all the parts of an article set, but to be sure that they find part #1 first?

Peace,
Bob

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 9:40 AM

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35

Bob,

Unfortunately, we are not ‚¬“article parts friendly‚¬. We never were. Frankly, this site is not the right type of site to submit articles in ‚¬“parts‚¬ – instead submit multiple short articles that can stand alone.

We have no mechanisms in place to help associate articles that are done in parts!and this is on purpose.

80% of our traffic lands directly on a specific article.

If your article is in parts and we have no mechanism to associate the parts, the viewer of your article is stuck with the problem of having to go find your other parts.

Here’s a strategy if you’re feeling the ‚¬“article parts‚¬ bug bite:

1) Go ahead and create your multi-series/parts articles. Why fight the urge? :)

2) Step back from the series you just created and ask yourself: How could each stand alone?

3) Expand the article title to be about *both* the original topic plus a specific benefit found in the part that you’re going to make stand alone.

Make sense?

Conclusion: When writing articles for syndication, only write articles that can stand alone. It’s okay to do an article series, or “set”, but don’t make each article dependent on another article to be complete.

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 9:59 AM

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36

Excellent 3-step strategy. Thanks, Marc.

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 10:40 AM

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37
Jim McDowell writes:

As always, great article.
I also have concerns about maintaining stand alone articles within sets. I will work on it. Thanks again.

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 11:11 AM

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38
Debi writes:

I noticed someone’s comment about how professional writers write on assignment and according to the specs of the editor. As a free-lance writer, I can say that’s a true statement. But EzineArticles isn’t a place where I put articles I’m writing for paid publication. I think the commentor doesn’t really understand the difference between articles written for free distribution through a service like EzineArticles and those written for pay from regular publications. EzineArticles is a publicity vehicle for me and my books, not a paying writing market in itself. So if anyone read that comment and felt confused, it’s because the commentor was assuming that Christopher was talking about free-lance paid writing rather than the type of free writing that people do here on this site. Hope that makes sense … just typing quickly as I’m about to run out the door. :-)

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 1:20 PM

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39
Shirley Bass writes:

I enjoyed all the conversation about writing article sets. Everything I learn about writing is a plus in my pocket.

I also like the “Share This Blog Entry,” at the top of the page. I tweeted this blog and sent it to FB.

Thanks for all the great info!

Shirley Bass

Comment provided February 17, 2009 at 4:20 PM

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40
Heather Greaves writes:

Thanks for the information. I’ll use the sets by style to submit a series. It can see it will definitely be fast and efficient.

Comment provided February 18, 2009 at 10:33 AM

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41
Mr. Golden writes:

Thank you for your kind advice. A good article should have always some value for the reader to make it more interested:)

God bless you all.

Comment provided February 18, 2009 at 12:17 PM

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42
Harjit Irani writes:

You guys Rock. Your email and tips are very helpful. Please keep it up.

Comment provided February 18, 2009 at 5:07 PM

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43
Raptorak writes:

Great information on this page, but what exactly is the point of writing articles? Is it just to get more visitors to your site or something else?

Comment provided February 18, 2009 at 5:20 PM

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44

Raptorak,

The point of writing & submitting articles?

See:
http://EzineArticles.com/benefits/

Most do it for increased traffic, media exposure and to build their person brand in the marketplace as an expert.

Comment provided February 19, 2009 at 7:43 AM

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45
LaTosha Johnson writes:

This is great information! Again, thank you for all the helpful tips and providing a venue for writers to showcase their talents.

LaTosha
targetstars.com

Comment provided February 19, 2009 at 8:47 AM

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46
sam adams writes:

Vert useful post, gonna show the marketing agency

Comment provided February 20, 2009 at 1:42 PM

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47
Geoff writes:

Useful tips. I`m definitely for the idea of cutting longer articles in half so as to have around 500 words per article.

Comment provided February 21, 2009 at 10:27 AM

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48
maria stuckey writes:

Hi Chris,

That’s a great idea for a newbie like me who is scared to even write but my articles are all unpublished because it’s scary out there. You,ll see my articles soon for good practice. some are all written in my brain .
Thanks

Comment provided February 23, 2009 at 4:20 PM

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49
maria stuckey writes:

Hi Chris,

That’s a great idea for a newbie. seems to me we either write too short or too long that’s why i am apprehensive but i do have plenty to share.

Comment provided February 23, 2009 at 4:23 PM

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50
Web Designer writes:

I always write in sets because I usually have to much to say for just one article.

Comment provided February 28, 2009 at 12:50 AM

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51

Breaking up a lengthy article into two articles was an amazing idea. Thanks, Chris!

Comment provided February 28, 2009 at 12:41 PM

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52

Writing in sets seems like a really good idea and I will try to write articles in sets for the 3rd HAHd. LOL have already started preparing for it as I missed the last two HAHDs and I certainly want that cup, throw and the cap.

Looking forward to the third HAHD marathon.

Great job Chris and EzineArticles team.

Comment provided November 28, 2009 at 6:41 PM

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