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Article Writing, Blog Writing, Content Writing, Freelance Writing & Prediction

 

A Publisher’s Rant – Why I Hate Your First Paragraph

I’m a publisher for numerous sites. I HATE many of your articles. Here’s why I hate your first paragraph and what you can do about it.

articles, how to write an article, publishers, meta description, first paragraph, headlines, errors

I’m a publisher for numerous sites. I HATE many of your articles. Here’s why I hate your first paragraph and what you can do about it.

A Biggie

First paragraphs are a huge issue with me. Better to have died a small child than get this one wrong. If you can get just this one thing right, your publication rates will go through the roof. Unfortunately, almost nobody does it correctly.

The entire issue comes down to meta tagging. When I create a page on a site for an article, I have to enter the meta title and meta description. Your headline is the meta title and your first paragraph should be the meta description. If your first paragraph doesn’t fit my meta description needs, I will blow by your articles like a debutante on Rodeo Drive with a new credit card. I don’t have time to re-write your masterpiece. Don’t make me.

Here is what I want:

1. No more than 38 words.

2. Preferably two sentences.

3. Your keywords in the first sentence.

Now, that seems easy enough, but none of you do it. Instead, you charge right into the body of your article and write these truly horrific 10 line first paragraphs. I HATE these. I will not publish you. I may decide to never look at your articles again.

Writing articles can be a challenge. Often, the best way is to just start writing. I have no problem with this approach. All I ask is that you write a two-sentence introduction after you have finished the article.

Scroll back up to the first paragraph of this article. What do you see? Three short sentences totaling 26 words. The keywords, “publisher” and “first paragraph” are contained within the three sentences. When I publish this article, I will copy the first paragraph and slam it into my meta description.

Wham! Bamn! I’m off to the next article.

This approach has a huge benefit for you as well. When I publish articles in this format on sites, the articles will appear high in the search rankings for Google, Yahoo and MSN. Put another way, you will be able to piggyback my high ranking sites and get your article in front of your target audience. This means traffic for both you and me, which should make us both happy.

The first paragraph is extremely important. I will look past crappy headlines and ungodly spelling errors if you write a good first paragraph. I am a lazy person. Make my job easy and you will benefit.

 

How to Get Your Promotional Articles Accepted by Publishers

If you want to get more traffic and sales from your promotional articles, and you want to get your articles listed on more sites, then you need to target your publisher market correctly.

Article Writing, Blog Writing, Content Writing, Freelance Writing & Prediction, article promotion, article publishing

As the publisher of an article directory, I see this all the time: writers and other marketers who are so desperate to get their promotional seen they really don't think about how they are marketing, where they are marketing, or who they are marketing to.

As an article writer myself, who has gone from almost no listings at all in the last year in Google, to over 46,000, I'd like to give you a little insight into to how you can get your articles read and seen so that get you the traffic and sales you are looking for.

1. Target your market
This should be obvious. If you're writing articles about real estate, find sites that accept articles on real estate. Find directories that accept articles on real estate. Then your article is more likely to get accepted.

Some article writers assume, wrongly, because a certain type of article is related to a subject, that article will be published on a certain type of site.

Not so. It's a good idea to explore the content of a site before submitting, unless it's a general article directory. This will tell you whether this article is a good fit or not.

2. Don't submit an ad or a press release
I get this one a lot. My question to people like this is, "What makes you think I'll publish your ad?"

I pay for my web hosting, domains, and all the other expenses incurred in running an online business. Why should I help you? Why do I have to waste my time deleting your junk from my site?

I'm a writer and then a marketer, but in the case of site content, I'm a marketer first. I want top notch content on my site. Good articles. Articles that will help my readers. The best way to help my readers is to publish articles that are related to my topic.

Now, if the site does publish ads and press releases, by all means, submit. However, make sure that you have properly targeted your market. Website publishers are busy people, and it only takes a second to hit that delete key.

3. Make your article interesting
One of the first things I learned in journalism school is to translate technical material into plain language so that readers can understand it.

The same applies with articles. If you use a term that is unfamiliar, explain it in the body of your article. Don't send your readers on a wild goose chase trying to figure out what you mean.

Make your article easy to understand.

Use short words, short paragraphs, and short sentences. If you've ever read a newspaper, or "Time" magazine, or even a romance novel, you'll find out that these are written on about a seventh grade level.

This is so that readers can get through the material quickly. It's easy to understand.

4. Don't use HTML to format your article unless the publisher specifically says you can.
One of my article directories does all of the HTML formatting for the writer. Therefore, when the writer uses HTML in the formatting, those characters show up. I either have to remove the HTML or delete the article. The article almost always gets deleted unless I really want the article on my site. Then the writer gets a personal email.

5. Check your work
Now I will be the first to admit that I am guilty of this one.

I write at the speed of light and type at the speed of sound. This means that I'm thinking faster than I can get the words down on paper. This can quickly make a mess of my articles.

The easiest way around this one is to read your article out loud. This forces you to slow down. You'll catch a lot of your grammar and punctuation mistakes, and smooth the flow of your writing.

Give your links one last check to make sure they work, and you're ready to go.

If you want to get more mileage from your articles, the best way to do this is to target your market, write a good article, and give your reader information that is helpful, interesting, and easy to understand.

You'll maximize your listings in the search engines and multiply your traffic and sales exponentially.

 

How To Guarantee Your Article Gets Published

There are literally thousands of article submission sites on the net today. Merely submitting your article to article directories does not guarantee that it will be accepted. Here are a few tips that will guarantee your article gets accepted at more sites.

article directory, guidelines, submission guidelines, author, articles

There are literally thousands of article submission sites on the net today. Merely submitting your article to article directories does not guarantee that it will be accepted. Many article sites have publishing guidelines that are fairly general in nature. Most of the larger, more popular sites, are strict about what gets published and what gets rejected.

If you want ensure that more of your articles are accepted by online directories you need to make sure your article meets the publisher's guidelines. As a owner and publisher of online article sites for many years, I am amazed at how many authors don't take the time to read through submission guidelines.

Many sites will accept any article submitted, especially if it is a new article directory, as a means to build up their article count. However, sites that are more established with high Alexa and Google rankings, tend to be more selective in what is posted in their directory.

The most common mistakes authors make in submitting their articles include:

1. Not following the formatting requirements.
Word wrap and HTML formatting preserve the page layout of the web site. Articles submitted with word wrapping on is one of my biggest reasons for rejecting articles. Forced breaks at 60 characters may be acceptable for sites that primarily feed ezines, but it is not very appealing on a web page. Posting HTML articles on sites that accept only text articles is also quite frustrating for an editor to remove.

2. Microsoft formatting.
Copying and pasting from a Microsoft Word document does horrible things to a page design and layout. Quite often this type of formatting can appear within the text of the article and can also reek havoc on online forms.

3. Affiliate links and ads.
Many article sites do not accept articles with affiliate links in them. This is normally allowed in the author's resource box but many authors insist on adding their affiliate links in the body of the article or the article sounds more like a sales pitch. This type of article is often rejected. Be sure to make your article informative to the reader.

4. Improper category selection.
While most editors will simply take a second or two to place an article in the proper category, editors are finding this too time consuming and will often just delete the article. Sites that receive 50 or more articles each day normally do not have the time to edit each article and select an appropriate category. Be sure to select the most relevant category for your article at the time of submission.

5. Email links in articles or resource boxes.
Although many editors are not concerned with email addresses in articles or in a resource box, authors should be aware of the problems that can arise from using them. Article directories are constantly being scanned by not only search engines but by mail harvester bots as well. Listing your email address in any online web page opens the author up to receive an enormous amount of spam and is generally not a good idea. Email addresses also change from time to time, leaving
you with possibly thousands of articles on the web with an email address that no longer works.

6. Author names not capitalized.
While many authors are rushing to submit articles to hundreds of sites as quickly as possible, many don't take the time to capitalize their first and last name in the author profile area. It seems to me that if Susan Smith enters her name as susan smith, it somehow makes her seem like she is minimizing herself as a person. Be proud of who you are and tell the world you are Susan Smith!

7. Punctuation and spelling errors.
Editors don't have the time to check each article for spelling errors or punctuation. If you want to ensure that your article is picked up from these article directories and used on web sites, you will want to make sure that you have thoroughly checked your article for errors. Ezine and newsletter editors often acquire material for their publications from these article directories. If your article is not well written or contains a lot of errors, your article is mo
st likely not going to be used for any purpose other than to provide you with a free link to your web site from the article directory.

8. Word count is low.
Not all directories put word count restrictions on articles. Personally, any article that is less than 400 word is merely written in order to get a link back to the author's web site. Articles that range between 600-800 words are usually better written and actually contain some value for the reader. Make sure your article meets the article count guidelines to help increase acceptance rates.

Each article directory has different requirements for article submissions. If you want to increase the exposure you receive for your articles, make sure that you familiarize yourself with the requirements for each site that you submit articles to. By following the author guidelines, you not only increase your chances of having your article accepted, you also establish yourself as a credible writer and increase your web site traffic as well.




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