Article Topics to Get You Unstuck – Part 2

Looking for even more fresh ideas for your next articles?

Today’s blog entry picks up where yesterday’s left off and comes courtesy of social media expert Chris Brogan. Although originally written with bloggers in mind, these topics can work just as well for an EzineArticles Expert Author.

Topics to Get You Unstuck — Fill in the Blank:

  1. How ___ is like _____.
  2. __ Ways to Convince the Boss to Try ____.
  3. How do I _______?
  4. Here are some new ways to ________.
  5. My personal recipe for ______.
  6. If I ran the _____.
  7. Three improvements to my company’s _______.
  8. My first steps into ______.
  9. If you find yourself stuck, try _____.
  10. Restarting now would _____.

Looking for more topics for building fresh article ideas? Check out yesterday’s post for more from Chris.

We suggested this little exercise yesterday, but it’s worth repeating: Turn each of today’s ideas into an article idea for your niche using the EzineArticles “My Next 10 Article Ideas” notepads. Between yesterday’s and today’s suggestions you’ll have created (20) new article ideas!

Article Topics to Get You Unstuck – Part 1

Looking for some fresh ideas for your next article? Read on and learn from a blog expert!

The next two blog installments come courtesy of social media expert Chris Brogan. These idea-generators were originally written with bloggers in mind, but they can work equally well for article authors like yourself. There are (20) total — we’ll take a look at half today and review the rest tomorrow.

Topics to Get You Unstuck:

  1. What challenges are my potential customers facing. Do I have any advice for them?
  2. What have I read lately? What points were interesting? Can I add more to it?
  3. What bugs me? Can I write about another way to approach it?
  4. Who do I admire? Can I write something about them that explains how to emulate those traits?
  5. What has the potential of helping (hurting) me or my community in the coming months? Are there possible ways out of it?
  6. What kinds of tools are missing from my environment that would help things along?
  7. Which companies or parts of an industry might benefit from my ideas?
  8. How do other industries compare to what my community is thinking about?
  9. What kinds of thoughts will inspire my audience to contact me (or support a cause, or buy my product, or support my interests)?
  10. What do I want to know that I can ask my community?

Bonus Tip: Pictures help stimulate the writing process.

Looking for more topics for building fresh article ideas? Then check back tomorrow — the second group of topic-sparkers will come in the form of fill-in-the-blanks.

Until then, why not turn each of today’s ideas into an article idea for your niche? Heck, this little exercise would be perfect for the EzineArticles “My Next 10 Article Ideas” notepads.

New Featured Author Banners!

Show the world your Expert Author status!
Christopher Knight, EzineArticles.com Platinum Author

We’ve just added a whole bunch of brand new Featured Author Banners like this one to our collection. These banners are specially designed to attract attention, increase your credibility and drive more traffic to your Expert Author Bio (and articles!).

Plus, there are unique versions provided exclusively for our Platinum Level Authors to let everybody know you’re at the top of the article marketing game.

As an added bonus, if you know even a little HTML you can customize the copy-and-paste code to better suit your needs. Just be aware, this will void the banner’s warranty. ;-)
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Smile and Say Cheese!

Don’t forget your author photo!

Yesterday’s blog post talked about the many benefits of filling in the blanks on your Expert Author Bio. One thing that wasn’t mentioned, however, was the importance of uploading an Expert Author photo (like the one to the right) as well. As a matter of fact, you must have both your author photo and bio uploaded in your profile in order to have a public Extended Expert Author Bio URL.

Follow these steps to upload your author photo:

  1. Log into your EzineArticles Expert Author Account
  2. From the Author’s Area, click on the “Profile Manager” drop-down menu
  3. Select “Edit Author Photo”
  4. Click on the “Browse…” button and select your picture file
  5. Click the “Upload Photo” button

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Visited Your Bio Lately?

You may be leaving money (aka: FREE links) on the table!

There’s an interesting expression, “Leaving money on the table.” If you’ve never heard it before, it simply means that you may not be taking advantage of all of the opportunities that are easily and readily available to you.

In this case we’re not really talking about money, we’re talking about the FREE links back to your website or blog. Think about it – aren’t these traffic-producing links essentially the payment you receive for your articles? Taking advantage of as many of these FREE links as possible means that you’ll get the maximum return on your investment of article-writing time and effort.

One of the best sources of FREE links is your EzineArticles Author Bio. I was shocked recently to learn how many Expert Authors fail to take advantage of this wealth of opportunity – and as a result leave a lot of money FREE links on the table. Worse yet their readership loses the opportunity to learn as much as they possibly can about the author, their company and their products or services.

If you’re one of the many authors who’ve never taken the time to “fill in the blanks” on your author bio page, now is the time to rectify that little oversight. Finding the form is easy.

Just follow these steps:

  1. Log into your EzineArticles Expert Author Account
  2. From the Author’s Area, click on the “Profile Manager” drop-down menu
  3. Select “Edit Author Bio”
  4. Fill in as many of the empty fields as possible

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Pre-Tweeting Your Articles

Launch Strategy + Twitter = More Traffic

No, “pre-tweeting” is not what Tweety Bird does to his stained clothing…

Pre-tweeting simply means using Twitter to tell your audience about the article you are currently writing in order to build anticipation and desire for the finished product. Think about it – your article is a product of sorts, isn’t it? Well, this technique mimics the common product launch strategy of creating hype for a product prior to the actual release date.

Pre-tweeting accomplishes several things:

  • Helps you define your audience and topic early
  • Forces you to actually submit the article in a timely manner
  • Demonstrates your forethought and planning, which builds credibility
  • Gives you a legitimate reason to contact your market one more time per article
  • Builds the perceived value of your articles
  • Primes your audience for what’s coming down the pipe

This is a surprisingly powerful and elegant method of increasing your readership, credibility and value to your niche without investing a lot of time or effort.

So if you’re on Twitter, why not make this part of your tweeting routine? You’ll find the benefits far outweigh the (30) seconds per article you’ll spend doing it.

Smart Start Replay

Can you hear me now?

A few weeks ago EzineArticles Expert Author Alex Mandossian interviewed me on Entrepreneurialism (one of my favorite subjects) and together we raised $2,680 for his Smart Start Giving / Kiva.org Micro-Loans for Entrepreneurs charity.

I received quite a few complaints that the audio replay was very hard to hear, so I’m releasing the MP3 and Flash versions that we created from the event. These are much clearer/easier to hear.

[Download the MP3] (46 minutes / 11MB)

Free Printable Notepads

If you missed out and didn’t get one of the free “My Next 10 EzineArticles” notepads, fear not… You can now download & print them out yourself:

To help you fill up your notepads, here are 10 tips for generating some fresh article ideas:

  1. Use any keyword research tool or website that can help you identify relevant topics that readers in your niche are currently searching for.
  2. Review the last 3 months of questions your clients have sent you via email or over the phone. Write articles (confidentially!) that answer their questions.
  3. Survey your audience or clients via email. Identify the top 20 concerns or areas of interest for them and write articles that address these.
  4. Run a free teleseminar for your clients, prospects or ideal market audience. Use it to give of your expertise while polling them for ideas and feedback.
  5. Transcribe your teleseminar and break it up into smaller, bite-size articles.
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Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Today we recognize Saint Patrick (circa AD 385-461), one of the patron saints of Ireland. Although this is the national holiday of Ireland, the festivities are not confined to the Emerald Isle. This particular holiday has taken on a life of its own and is celebrated throughout the world with parades, festivals and a lot of eating and drinking.

In the U.S. we seem to have an obsession with turning things green to celebrate St. Paddy’s Day. Sure, we do the traditional green beer, green eggs with ham and Lucky Charms with green milk, but we also go green on a much larger scale. For example:

  • Chicago, IL dyes its river green.
  • Savannah, GA dyes its downtown city fountains green.
  • Rolla, MO paints (12) city blocks green with mops for the annual parade.
  • Indianapolis, IN dyes its main canal green.
  • Jamestown, NY the Chadakoin River is dyed green.

Speaking of green, there’s still time to participate in our St. Patrick’s Day promotion to qualify for (1) of only (17) limited-edition EzineArticles Leprecaun mugs. Check out yesterday’s blog entry to learn more.

St. Patrick’s Day Promotion

With a quarter of my heritage being Irish, I feel uniquely qualified to announce tomorrow’s St. Patrick’s Day promotion.

The rules are simple: The top (17) authors based on the highest number of qualified article submissions between midnight and midnight CDT on St. Patrick’s Day (March 17th) will each receive one of these fine limited-edition EzineArticles Leprechaun mugs which we’ll ship to any confirmed postal address around the world. We’ll announce the (17) winners by Noon CDT on Wednesday, March 18th.

So it’s time to get your blarney on and submit those articles – maybe you’ll have the luck of the Irish!

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