If you are in direct sales, one excellent form of marketing is through writing and submitting original contect articles to at least a few of the popular article directories out there.
I recently had the opportunity to submit a few questions to Denise Willms, owner of http://www.wahm-articles.com/
Denise has answered those questions and I'd like to share the answers with you:
Question: I'm told folks will just skim articles, not read them word for word, so what is the "perfect" number of words an article should be?
Denise's Answers - That’s true – people read online articles differently than they do print articles. They tend to skim over them and actually read only a few of the words that stand out.
As far as the “perfect” length for your articles goes, between 300 and 500 words is usually ideal. You should try to keep them over 250 words. It’s difficult to say anything of substance in fewer words than that, and some article directories won’t even accept short articles.
If you go over 500 words, you might lose your reader. However, some of my most popular articles have been around 700 or 800 words, so it depends on your audience and what information they’re looking for.
The best way to help your readers actually read your article is to write in small chunks instead of long paragraphs.
For each chunk, put your most important idea first. Readers will usually read the first sentence of each paragraph.
Use bold for important words and ideas, to help catch your readers’ attention.
Use bullet points or numbered lists to make articles easier to read.
Question - What are the pro's and con's of submitting your articles to every directory out there?
Denise's Answer - It used to be very common for people to submit articles to every directory that would take them. The new trend is to submit your articles to only a few niche sites.
One reason why it’s good to submit your articles to every directory is that you can get exposure in areas you wouldn’t have access to otherwise. Perhaps there’s a market for your product or service that you hadn’t thought of. If you submit your articles to every directory you can find, you might find discover new opportunities for your business.
The downside of submitting your articles to every directory is that it is time consuming, with a possibly lower return on their investment. Many article marketers are now choosing to submit their articles to niche directories and a few well-known general sites, where they know their target market will look for them.
Placing your articles on a few well-chosen sites can be a better use of your time, but you could also be missing out on other opportunities.
Denise Willms is the head writer of WAHM Articles, a ghostwriting service that helps online business owners reach the “mom market.” She is also owner of http://www.WAHM-Articles.com, a directory of free reprint articles for moms.