The second 100 Articles in 100 Days Marathon Challenge (#HAHD) begins tomorrow!
Get ready, because here we go again! And this HAHD challenge is going to be BIGGER and BETTER than ever! 1,000 EzineArticles members qualified for the first HAHD. This time, we’re aiming for 10,000 qualifiers and we’re offering the prizes to make it happen!
TO QUALIFY: There’s no need to sign up! Just submit at least 100 articles between 12:00AM CDT tomorrow (Saturday, August 1st) and 11:59PM CDT Sunday, November 8th. That’s only 1 article per day for 100 days. Once those 100 articles are approved, you’re qualified!
All qualifiers will receive:
HAHD Certificate of Achievement (frame not included)
Upon request, all qualifiers will also receive:
Original Limited-edition EzineArticles #HAHD Trophy Mug
Limited-edition EzineArticles #HAHD Mouse Pad
The first 100 members to qualify and submit a prize request will receive:
There’s an old adage that says in order to be successful in business, you’ve got to love your customers. You have to know them almost intimately. You have to be willing to do just about anything for them. And most of all, you’ve got to love them for who they are.
For EzineArticles, the closest thing we have to customers are our members. Our members are the people we think about, and interact with, the most. So in our case it’s probably safe to say that in order for us to be successful, we need to love our members.
Have you visited the Comments section on any of our more highly commented-upon blog posts recently? If not, please do it now. We’ll wait…
Optional Musical Interlude
Welcome back! Did you notice anything different? If you’re observant, you probably saw that many of the comments now have a little face next to them. These are called “gravatars” and they’re the latest edition to the EzineArticles blog.
A gravatar, or globally recognized avatar, is simply an image that follows you from site to site appearing beside your name when you do things. In essence, its a portable avatar.*
Sometimes writing is easy. Not always, but once in a while the words just flow and you find that you have typed a brilliant article that runs 800, 1000 maybe even 2000 words.
It’s tempting when the words flow this easily to either keep writing or to publish your masterpiece right away. But wait! You may be missing even more potential views with your haste!
Before you send that article in – or keep adding to it – read it. Have you covered more than one area of your niche in this article? Is it possible that there are one, two or even more hidden gems within that would make great articles on their own?
It’s tough to know just how long of an article is too long. You don’t want to bore your reader, but you want to be thorough. You also don’t want your article to be so short that your reader isn’t entertained or informed enough to come back for more.
Episode #10 in Gary’s “Top 10 Reasons for Article Rejection” video series!
Believe it or not, simple formatting issues can cause an article to be rejected. To make sure this doesn’t happen to you, you should refer to the EzineArticles Editorial Guidelines… and watch this video!
With the completion of this video, our friend Gary has finally reached the end of the series. Throughout his journey, millions watched, laughed, cried and discovered a LOT of really useful information.
Make Gary proud. Watch this video to discover some common article formatting errors – and to say good-bye to this legendary stick figure.
Gary will be back again someday, but in the meantime remember these key points to properly formatting your article:
Jump start your writing and keep your readers “in the know” by identifying and writing about trends in your niche.
So, you feel like you’ve written everything there is to write on your niche? Let’s say you’re an expert on cars. You know everything there is to know about every car from the Model T to the Toyota Prius. You can tell anyone what is wrong with their car, just from listening to it.
But you want to expand your writing repertoire beyond just writing about repairs. This is where finding and writing about industry trends comes in.
In order to identify trends in your niche, you can’t just write what you know – you have to find out what other people know. What are other blogs and online magazines writing about? What’s popular in your industry? Going green? Families? Has a big automaker just come out with a new fuel cell car? If you write about travel, are there new ecologically-sound vacations families can take?
As an Expert Author, sometimes it feels like it’s all been said before. “Nothing new under the sun,” as it were. But it’s crucial to use your unique writer’s voice in order to get your specific point across. So consider these points before deciding whether or not to pepper your articles with clichés.
Using a cliché occasionally can be an effective tool to engage a reader, particularly if it’s used ironically or comically.
You can add to a cliché to make it interesting – or humorous – to your reader: “He was trying to avoid the 800lb gorilla in the room… when it sat on him.”
If using a cliché is the best way you have to express your thought, then try and rebuild it in your own way. For example, instead of saying, “Get your foot in the door,” a commonly-used business cliché, try something like, “Getting your business started can be tough, but once you start opening doors, don’t be shy about wedging that first foot in…”
“Nothing is ever as easy as it first appears.” -Murphy
Last week we introduced our new approach to broken link detection and began notifying members if we found broken links in any of your existing articles.
The response from our members was huge… and much greater than we had anticipated. Since then we have been working diligently to address this overwhelming response.
I’d like to share some of the challenges that have been created and help you better understand what will be happening in the next few days.
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly…
The email we sent to members stated that we would be unlinking your links in 48 hours if no action was taken. This is incorrect and we apologize for the error. We will recheck and then unlink your dead link in 35 days (but would like you to fix it within the next 48 hours).
In the past 48 hours we have received over 10,000 article re-submissions with your corrections. Wow! We had no idea our members were that fast!
We’ve received over 2,000 emails to our Member Support Team providing us with a heads up. This is great! It shows that a good user experience is important to all of us!
When you fix a dead link by editing your article…your article will be re-reviewed with today’s standard of article review and not the standard that was used on the original date your article was first accepted. Sorry, we don’t grandfather any article which means any article edited must pass today’s standards (that are always just a slight bit higher than previous years standards).
When you delete an article you will notice that your links will still show as being invalid in your Article Diagnostic Center. We are aware of this and are working on a resolution.
We sent out 2 emails to every member with a confirmed dead link – one went to your email address on file and the other was sent to your EzineArticles Member’s Inbox. These emails were identical. You can disregard one email if you have already addressed the broken link(s).
If your Article Diagnostic Center shows no links to be invalid, you can trust that this is correct!
In addition, we’ve had to create a series of new internal tools to help our team support you.
All of this has, unfortunately, put us into a backlog both in Member Support and article approvals. We will be working on this diligently and our editors are dedicated to investing the overtime necessary to get us back to normal approval times.
a.k.a. “How to Win Customers and Outsmart Your Competitors”
Do you know where you’re going? Can you see the future for your business? Did you know you can build your article marketing campaign to not just reflect your vision but to build to it?
Take a drug store giant like Walgreen’s, for example. Their marketing strategy through the years has been to find high-traffic corners and take control of their area. Any competitor must compensate for their own lack of superior real estate. This has been Walgreen’s way to preemptively position themselves for success in almost every target market. They have a vision for themselves and they build to it.
By making yourself the only choice in your niche – and putting your product or service on a higher level than your competitors – you automatically elevate not only yourself but your customer base.
Don’t assume that anyone else owns your corner. They may be louder than you right now, but they may not have the service or products necessary to back up the position. Get going and follow through, you may get your corner after all.
Cover all aspects of your business. This is often missed and is essential. Don’t be an expert in just one aspect of your niche. Make sure you are the go-to person for all of it. And if you don’t know it (yet) make sure you can find it – or get it quickly.
Think of your articles like a guidebook directing your reader directly to your business. Decide what to lead with and build on each article with new aspects and ideas that will keep your brand in your readers’ mind.
Use your uniqueness. Have a tagline or headline that is particularly popular? Use it for the title of a book or blog. Use it over and over (it’s yours after all) and get it known.
Say it – and then be it. When Federal Express said, “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight,” all anyone else could say was “Us too!” Own your niche – don’t be a “me too!”
Most don’t have your resolve. Succeeding in article writing & marketing, just like in business itself, takes continuous action over the long-haul. Don’t assume your competitors (even if they are #1 right now) have the same long-term resolve that you do. Keep at it till you are #1!
Remember that even though a competitor may offer a quality that you possess – if you claim it and make it your own, you will preempt them in your niche.
Now take some time to develop and/or review your article marketing plan. Does it a provide a clear path to claiming your corner? Does it capitalize on your uniqueness? Does it put you ahead of the competition in your niche? If not, it may be time to reevaluate your strategy and develop a new plan.
Search both Google and EzineArticles simultaneously!
With the installation of a simple Firefox add-on and an EzineArticles user script, you’ll be able to view search results from the EzineArticles database side-by-side with your other search results.
This easy-to-use tool offers you a great competitive advantage by providing:
EzineArticles-specific search results in a familiar format.
Immediate access to the broad knowledge base of EzineArticles’ Expert Authors
The ability to research niche-specific topics in both the EzineArticles database and on the Internet simultaneously.
An effective interface for researching, comparing and contrasting search terms between EzineArticles and the web.
Highly focused search results of easy-to-read, editor-approved content.
NOTE: Installing this tool is not for everyone. If you consider yourself technophobic in the least, you might want to skip this one or have a more tech-savvy friend handle it for you. EzineArticles cannot offer support for the Greasemonkey add-on.
On the other hand, if you’re not afraid to dabble a little, spend the next (3) minutes watching this video to discover the easy step-by-step procedure for installing this browser add-on and user script.