Writing with a Location in Mind

Avoid Writing Out of Place

Writing content based on a location (country, state, city, etc.) can be great for targeting a particular audience. In fact, this is commonly referred to as geo-targeting.

All articles must contain 3 essentials: quality, originality, and relevance. A geo-targeted article must also embody a sense of place or details that make that place special or unique.

Where geo-targeting goes horribly awry is when experts attempt to force a location and end up writing “out of place.” It’s a little like showing up to the beach dressed for the office or trying to sell wedding dresses at a men’s only fishermen convention.

Here are some out of place scenarios you can avoid in your articles to maintain your credibility and meet your reader’s expectations.

QUALITY: Stick to Writing Organically

Writing for SEO, stuffing keywords, or attempting to inorganically force keywords into a sentence or context is unoriginal, irrelevant, and overall a poor user experience. Avoid writing for SEO and write organically.

Scenario: A SEO expert in New York peppers their article with the phrase “SEO New York.”

This lacks quality. The phrase “SEO New York” is poor grammar and it’s a forced location that doesn’t add value to the content. Stick to writing organically.

ORIGINALITY: Write Beyond Existence Informing

Often used in an attempt to inform readers about a product or service available in a particular location (that coincides with the links in their Resource Box), an author will unwittingly write an “existence informing” article. This type of article merely informs the reader of the existence of the topic (commonly tells the reader to go online and search), as well as lacks all informative value in order to drive traffic to a link.

Scenario: A locksmith expert based in Minnesota writes an article generically discussing the usefulness of locksmiths. They tell the reader they can find locksmiths in Minnesota by searching online.

This lacks originality. Of course the reader can search online – they already are. Also, there isn’t any informative content or details regarding the niche of locksmithing other than its existence and what does Minnesota have to do with it?

RELEVANCE: A Strong Natural Connection

Some experts will attempt to pair up a niche to an irrelevant location. Always ensure the location you incorporate in your article has a strong, natural connection. If it is weak and the details could be applied elsewhere, skip the location and apply your article to a broader audience.

Scenario: “Las Vegas” and “skin care.”

This lacks relevance. The reader will attempt to grasp the connection and should either “Las Vegas” or “skin care” lack relevance to them, they will click away. A stronger, more natural connection would be “gambling” and “Las Vegas.”

Some niches, like travel and leisure, are more adaptable to build a strong connection. Other niches, like computers and technology or locksmithing, are a little more challenging to incorporate a location.

SENSE OF PLACE: Specific Locations Require Specific Details

The more specific the location, the more specific the details should be in your article. This includes physical and cultural characteristics of a location. If the details are relevant to multiple locations or groups, this indicates a broader region, e.g. the Northern Hemisphere, Europe, etc.

Scenario: A solar panel expert from Arizona writes “Solar Panel Care in Arizona” and then provides tips on cleaning solar panels.

This lacks a sense of place. The details of this article could be applied to the entire North American continent. To make this article MORE specific, the expert could have described the climate, the intensity of the sun on the solar panels, and other tips limited to Arizona.

Avoid writing out-of-place by making sure your geo-targeted articles have the essential elements of quality, originality, relevance, and a sense of place to ensure your credibility stays intact and you meet your reader’s expectations.

IMPORTANT: Please note each of these scenarios are determined on a case by case basis. All articles are published based on their value, quality, originality, and relevance.

11 Comments »


1
Glenn writes:

Like your picture, looks like your model is on beach in the Bahamas just not dressed for it. But got the point you’re making…

Comment provided June 12, 2012 at 11:37 AM

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2

Interesting article. So I have one question about keyword stuffing and pertaining to google. I’m just curious with the new google update, “how does google view keyword stuffing”?

Personally, I think its ok, to include a keyword here and there, and if it reads fine, without sounding weird why not. Overall great tips for article writers.

Comment provided June 12, 2012 at 1:20 PM

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Mikey –

I can’t speak on behalf of Google, but I can speak on the behalf of EzineArticles. According to our Editorial Guidelines, you must limit yourself to 2 keywords or keyword phrases for every 100 words. So in essence, we serve as a gatekeeper of sorts to manage your keyword usage before your article ever reaches the search engines.

– Marc

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3
Michael Belk writes:

These are great ideas to keep in mind for writing. I have seen so many publisher think that just because they put the city on the end of a word it is more focused.

It does not work that way. You still have to write a good article. Thanks for the reminder.

Comment provided June 12, 2012 at 4:16 PM

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4
Lance Winslow writes:

You know, when people do this the wrong way, the articles suck, and the reader wishes they never wasted their time, however when done correctly, and when the author writes as if they are there describing the “feeling” of being there, then the article is grand in every regard. So, do it correctly, Penny is right.

Comment provided June 12, 2012 at 10:31 PM

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5
Scott Brooks writes:

This is fantastic information. I haven’t given much thought to the location of my target audience. Thanks!

Comment provided June 13, 2012 at 4:55 AM

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6
Clifford Rohde writes:

I can’t recall who said it, but the notion that “SEO should be invisible” resonates. I don’t pretend to always get it right in development of my own websites, but to echo a reader above and the Supreme Court, when it comes to forced location-based SEO “you know it when you see it”.

Comment provided June 13, 2012 at 12:01 PM

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7
wayne writes:

I’m new to all this article writing but I can sense that this tips will be helpful in the future. Thank you

Comment provided June 14, 2012 at 6:15 AM

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8
Zarada writes:

This is great information. I am new to all this article writing and this is very useful for me ;)

Thanks!

Comment provided June 23, 2012 at 4:54 AM

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9
Randall Magwood writes:

“Writing for SEO, stuffing keywords, or attempting to inorganically force keywords into a sentence or context is unoriginal, irrelevant, and overall a poor user experience. Avoid writing for SEO and write organically.”

I’ve heard a few authorities on the internet to do the same thing above, since the search engines are getting smarter. But it’s nice to know that a major site like EzineArticles kinda promotes this thought also. Clears things up for me. Thanks!

Comment provided June 23, 2012 at 5:53 PM

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10
Paul Chew writes:

Specific Locations Require Specific Details.
Good Example: “Solar Panel Care in Arizona” and “Malay Tuition in Singapore” or English Tuition in JB Johore Buhru. It is good to try-out and find out yourself.

Comment provided September 20, 2012 at 6:10 AM

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