I just recorded this 4 minute unscripted video to give you some insights into my current thinking on the issues of the past few weeks:
After I finished recording the video, I watched it and made some notes about what I had said. Let me clarify a few points:
We’re not at war with Affiliate Marketers … the more we think about it, we’re really at war with people who submit highly derivative content … You know the type … You’ve seen this type of low value article as it looks like yet another rehashed works of every other similar kind of article instead of the fresh perspective that a true expert in their niche delivers.
Those who write & submit high value exclusive rights content have nothing to worry about.
Are you really an expert author if you write highly derivative content? No.
Ideal members write original content and own the exclusive rights to that content.
What’s the ideal word count? 400-800 words.
Get this: Over 142,000 articles are currently in “Problem Status.” Of those, 41% are under 399 words. Compare that to those that are over 750+ words which account for 1-2% of the total. That means you can significantly increase your chances of having your article accepted purely by increasing your word count to the 400+ range. Watch for a full blog post this week with the details on this internal stats study.
Don’t increase your word count for word count sake. More filler words that say the same thing really adds no value. Instead, find ways to add your unique perspective, your unique expertise and how that can help your ideal reader to improve their situation. Use bullet points, numbered lists, etc.
As for the big “crack down” on low value content: We’ve been raising our standards every single month since we started. The only thing changing is the pace at which we raise our quality standards.
This wasn’t just a business decision that affected us but it will also impact you because your high quality articles will have less competition for our million+ daily visitors when you don’t have to compete with low value derivative content. We have an obligation to protect the massive time investment our ideal members have had over the years.
Don’t worry about rejection. Even the best writers get rejected from time to time. Use the rejection process to learn our Editorial Guidelines. We know it takes time to learn and understand our 5-6 pages of guidelines. It’s ok to make mistakes along the way.
Keep on writing & submitting your best quality original articles as that’s the best way to get high-value traffic & exposure back to your website.
My goal for doing this quick video was to reassure 99% of our membership that they have NOTHING to worry about. If anything, they will see an improvement in the quality of content that will be side-by-side to their articles. That’s healthy for competition because no one wants to put their high value articles next to low value rehashed/regurgitated works, right?! Right on. :)
UPDATED Oct 27th 2009: You can now View this video on YouTube.