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The Single Biggest Mistake Most Companies Make With Their Articles
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Congratulations to those of you who are taking an educational approach to your marketing by creating articles. Article marketing is one of the best ways to attract your target population and to help with your websites SEO rankings.
There are really two ways to go here. You can offer positive tips or pain avoidance tips. Some of the articles I have seen recently posted in the LinkedIn groups or Facebook Fan pages I visit have titles such as "Top Ten Reasons....." or "5 Best Ways....." or "9 Tips...." or "10 Best Tools..." and many other similar ones.
Most of these items just don't really get attention nor get your target population to WANT to click in. When I view these article posts, there are few "likes". These types of titles just don't get attention. They are too commonplace.
Even worse, quite often I find that the poster didn't even create the content!! They are simply linking to an article which they read. I would highly recommend that you create your own content.
At it's core, education based attraction marketing is designed to position YOU as THE authority in your marketplace. Linking to other peoples content does nothing to help YOU enhance YOUR credibility and status in the marketplace.
If you see an article which you really like. Consider using an approach which my mentor Gerry Robert, international bestselling author and speaker, calls S.I.D. It stands for Search-Improve-Deploy. So, when you find an article you really like, improve it and then deploy it!! You obviously can't copy existing content verbatim as that is just wrong. However, you can make it specific for your target population, offer your own insights on the topic, give appropriate recognition to the originator, etc.
Offering to educate your clients/prospects and get them saying "Wow! I didn't know that!" is essential to building your credibility and attracting more people more quickly.
Think back to Sales 101. Generally speaking and skipping some steps, you are looking to:
Identify needs, uncover the pain, and show them how you can resolve that pain for them.
Yet most people totally forget this when creating their articles.
The reality is that your prospects are much more likely to be interested in pain avoidance. Think about it, when do most people, particularly men, go to the Doctor? Or when does a married couple go to counseling??
The answer to both questions is "when they have a problem..."
Do we realize that being proactive and preemptive is a better strategy? For sure, but the reality is that most people don't ACT that way. They wait until there is a problem before taking action. People are more likely to read an article titled "Ten Foods To Avoid To Not Get Fat" rather than "Top Ten Foods To Eat to Stay Healthy".
Article marketing is about getting your target to TAKE ACTION. You want them to click in to your article and then to opt-in to your followup system.
So try this with your next article. Instead of offering "Top Ten this" or "5 Best that", go the pain avoidance route. No-one wants to make mistakes or errors, or commit sins.
Something like: "Ten Biggest Errors....", or "5 Worst....", "Single Biggest Mistake....", "9 Sins...." and other titles along these lines. Use words like Error, Gaffe, Worst, Mistake, Oversight, Sins, etc.
I'd recommend that you use this pain avoidance approach for most of your articles, although the occasional positive article is also nice. As with all marketing strategies, try it both ways. Keep track of your results and I suspect that you'll find that overall, the pain avoidance road is the one paved with gold.
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