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Naturally, this blog is going to be about how to make money online. What else would I be writing about here? There's no plan or purpose though. Just a place to share some insights every now and then when I've got more to say than I can fit in a forum post.
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Driving targeted website traffic through article marketing made easy

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Posted 16th February 2009 at 09:15 PM by JamesMSpacey
Updated 27th February 2009 at 10:39 PM by JamesMSpacey (Update content)

Recently I’ve started up a new article marketing campaign. I’ve used article marketing quite effectively before for a niche I was promoting a couple of years ago but I got out of that niche and I got caught up with other things. Now I’ve started a new website and article marketing is going to be my main internet marketing weapon to drive targeted traffic to the site for this content.

The reason I think article marketing is such a great tool for driving targeted traffic is because an article itself is some content – some information. I don’t like to include content links in my articles to make sure I’m getting traffic that is targeted purely and completely at my content. I’m’ trying to build a relationship with the reader at the article stages, so that when they get down to the resource box at the bottom of the article they are looking to find out who wrote it, and find out more about who I am. I want them to be interested in finding out about my website and find out more of what I have to say. The result is that when I get this targeted traffic to my website my conversions are sky high.

Getting traffic to simply click through because they’ve seen a couple of words in an article and they clicked on the anchor text link, or a banner or text ad, before they’ve really had a chance to get to know me doesn’t work very well. If they don’t like what I’ve written, they don’t click through, and I’m not wasting my time on my site. And the people joining my list aren’t just people sitting around doing nothing and not opening my emails. Everything I do from then on is highly effective because the traffic that I have is there for me.

I find article marketing really quite easy now. At first, before I really worked out a good technique for writing articles and blog posts (and the process really creates both at the same time) I struggled to come up with the articles. I found myself doing way too much research and writing and planning and it just wasn’t worth it for an article. In fact in a previous niche I was in I started writing articles and I ended up writing an ebook instead because the amount of work I put in just trying to get the articles up was just too much. What I do now is much more effective, so, I just want to share those ideas with you and get your feedback and comments.

Once I’m in my niche and I know the keywords that I’m targeting I simply identify some affiliate products that I want to promote to my list and I’ll print of the sale page for the product and the product itself and once I’ve got all that paper I’ll generally do four things.

First, I’ll take a highlighter pen and I’ll read through the pages that I’ve printed out really quickly and I’ll highlight anything that simply jumps off the page. At this stage I hardly read any of the content and I can go through a long sales page, some training, an ebook and a few key articles in a couple of minutes. At this stage I’m just looking for key words, key phrases and headings, things like that are the very skeleton of what the content is about. Then I’ll go through it all again with a pen or a pencil and I’ll start circling more words and making some notes in the margin as ideas come to me about these key words and phrases.

At this stage of the piece I’m really just skimming through the content. I don’t want to be reproducing this content when I’m writing my articles. I don’t want to be picking out long phrases and paragraphs that are going to be the author of the content’s words. I just want to be picking the bones out so that I can then flesh out my own structure using the content that I’ve printed – the article, the sales page, the product, whatever it is – as the inspiration for my own ideas and writing my own article, my own content on exactly the same topic. So it’s totally focussed and targeted on what it is I’m trying to promote.

Next, I’ll probably read it again a third time, skimming parts, but not really taking any notes or making any more highlights, and generally getting a feel for the way that the notes I’ve made and the things that have already appealed to me fit together to me personally. I guess what I’m doing is leveraging off the work and research that’s been done by the preparer of the original content and sale page that I’m promoting. I’m also leveraging from the way that the author has chosen to structure their work – i.e. the introduction, the content that’s provided in the body and the conclusions. I’m then going to write on top of that using my own personality and my own brand.

The final step is just to start writing my articles and all I’ll be doing is using the general background feel that I’ve developed from the three stage process I’ve gone through, elaborating on the key phrases and my notes in my own words. In fact, I personally like to use an mp3 voice recorder to do that. So I’m just skimming over the pages, I’m just flipping back and forth while I’m talking. Often I’ll take my eyes right off the pages and I’ll just talk and dictate my own understanding of the topic into the recorder.

Before I know it I’ve usually recorded 10-15 minutes of voice just from one part of the content and I’ll tend to stop the recorder there and start recording a new file and that will have been one article. I’ll just keep doing that then until I’ve been through all the content, which could take a couple of hours, but divide that by 10 minute segments and that’s at least how many articles I’ve prepared. And then I do the same again to come up with blog posts, except I try to do those without referring to my notes at all – just talking ad-lib about the niche and the topics that I’m really quite familiar with by now.

Doing that enables me to record a lot of quality articles and posts and then I guess as a final thing I’ll just sit at the computer for a couple of days and type out what I’ve said and then go through the articles and I’ll pick out the one or two keywords that I’m really targeting for that article and I’ll optimise it for those keywords by analysing the text and the keyword density and making any changes necessary to get that to a level that I’m happy with.

The key to what I’m doing is making sure that although I leverage off other author’s work to get inspiration and momentum, the final product – be it an article, blog post, or just knowledge that I can impart in my social networks – is 100% mine and it’s completely unique which is fantastic for generating organic search engine traffic. Search engines love unique content, article directories love unique content and blogs and communities love unique content.
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