Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Three Ways to Get Top Quality Content for Your Niche Websites

Hi everyone, I am busy adding content to MommyPortal. I found an article I thought you might enjoy.

Stefani Partin

Three Ways to Get Top Quality Content for Your Niche Websites

Good, popular, profitable niche topic websites need good content.Period. You and I both know this.

Now, there are many ways to get content online...

1. You can hire freelance writers, and have them create custom contentto be used by you exclusively. This is the best way to get content,because if you choose your writers well, you can get decent content onthe topic of your choice. And chances are pretty slim that anyone elseonline will have the exact same content you have. The cheapest rateI've seen this service at though, is $4 per article. Usually it's morelike $10 and up per article if you want good content. So a mere 20articles will cost you at least two hundred bucks!

2. Another great way to get content online though, is to joinmembership sites like Nicheology and Push Button Health. These sitesgive you a steady flow of rough draft content for one set price eachmonth. The content usually needs some work, but it's generally worthit for the price paid. The catch though, is that these sites areusually filled to their limit. So if you want to join, you'll findyourself waiting in line... sometimes for over 6 months!The other problem with membership sites is the number of people whohave access to the exact same content. Nicheology for instance, limits the number of active members to 1500. That's 1499 other people besidesyourself who have access to the exact same content. BUT... that's notincluding all of the previous members who ALSO had access to thatcontent... and it's not including all of the new members who will comearound in the future. They'll have access to that same content as well.

3. Now, one more excellent way to get website content is through freearticle distribution websites and mailing lists. You can literally getthousands upon thousands of articles completely free this way. There'sa couple of catches to this method though... First: You have to keepthe author's name on the article. You're not allowed to change or editthe article. Usually you're not even allowed to link to one of yourwebsites, pages or affiliate programs from within the article either.Then you have to include the "bio box" at the end of the article. This- by the way - tends to be an advertisement of some sort. And last butnot least: You have to link to the author's website. And in manycases, you have to link to several of the author's websites.

Oh yeah... one more thing about these free articles: Since they'refree - tens of thousands of other websites use them too!

Putting quality content on your website will help bring in relevant,targeted traffic. And that usually brings in more clicks... and moresales. Hopefully the above brief comparison helps you understand thedifferent ways to get content for your site. Study them fully, andchoose which one works best for you, your site needs, and your budget.

2005 Kathy Burns-MillyardVisit The Guru Gazette at for more ofKathy's articles, tips and advice. Also check out her brand newarticle content packages: can get 20 quality articles for niche topic websites at just $0.74each!

Sunday, April 17, 2005

10 Keys to Cop That Sells

by Alexandria K. Brown, "The E-zine Queen"

Whether you're selling a product or service, the 10 tips below are your keys to writing great copy that communicates and persuades ... to get results! These guidelines can apply to Web copy, e-mail, sales letters, brochures, direct mail, and more. As long as your goal is to elicit a reaction from your reader, you've come to the right place.

1. Be reader-centered, not writer-centered.
Many ads, brochures, and Web sites talk endlessly on and on about how great their products and companies are. Hello? Customer, anyone? Think of your reader thinking, "What's in it for me?" If you can, talk with some of your current customers and ask them 1) why they chose you, and 2) what they get out of your product or service. TIP: To instantly make your copy more reader-focused, insert the word "you" often.

2. Focus on the benefits -- not just the features.
The fact that your product or service offers a lot of neat features is great, but what do they DO for your customer? Do they save her time or money? Give her peace of mind? Raise her image to a certain status? Here's an example: If you go buy a pair of Gucci sunglasses, you're not just looking for good UV protection. You're buying the sleek, stylish Gucci look. So that's what Gucci sells. You don't see their ads talk about how well made their sunglasses are. Think about what your customers are REALLY looking for.

Now, what does an insurance broker sell? Policies?
Nope -- peace of mind. (See? You've got it.)

3. Draw them in with a killer headline.
The first thing your reader sees can mean the difference between success and failure. Today's ads are chock full of clever headlines that play on words. They're cute, but most of them aren't effective. There are many ways to get attention in a headline, but it's safest to appeal to your reader's interests and concerns. And again, remember to make it reader centered -- no one gives a hoot about your company.
Bad: "SuccessCorp Creates Amazing New Financial Program" Better: "Turn Your Finances Around in 30 Days!"

4. Use engaging subheads.
Like mini-headlines, subheads help readers quickly understand your main points by making the copy "skimmable." Because subheads catch readers" eyes, you should use them to your benefit! Read through your copy for your main promotional points, then summarize the ideas as subheads. To make your subheads engaging, it's important to include action or selling elements.
Bad: "Our Department's Successes." Better: "Meet Five Clients Who Saved $10K With Us."

5. Be conversational.
Write to your customers like you'd talk to them. Don't be afraid of using conversational phrases such as "So what's next?" or "Here's how do we do this." Avoid formality and use short, easy words. Why? Even if you think it can't possibly be misunderstood, a few people will still be confused. Plus, being conversational helps prospects feel like they can trust you more.

6. Nix the jargon.
Avoid industry jargon and buzzwords -- stick to the facts and the benefits. An easy way to weed out jargon is to think of dear old Mom reading your copy. Would she get it? If not, clarify and simplify. (This rule, of course, varies, depending on who your target audience is. For a business audience, you should upscale your words to what they're used to. In some industries, buzzwords are crucial. Just make sure your points don't get muddled in them!)

7. Keep it brief and digestible.
No one has time to weed through lengthy prose these days. The faster you convey your product or service's benefits to the reader, the more likely you'll keep her reading. Fire your "biggest gun" first by beginning with your biggest benefit -- if you put it toward the end of your copy, you risk losing the reader before she gets to it. Aim for sentence lengths of less than 20 words. When possible, break up copy with subheads (see no. 4), bullets, numbers, or em dashes (like the one following this phrase) -- these make your points easy to digest.

8. Use testimonials when possible.
Let your prospects know they won't be the first to try you. Give results-oriented testimonials from customers who have benefited immensely from your product or service. Oh, and never give people's initials only -- it reminds me of those ads in the back of magazines with headlines like "L0se 50 P0unds in 3 Days!" Give people's full names with their titles and companies (or towns and states of residence) -- and be sure to get their permission first.

9. Ask for the order!
Tell your reader what you want her to do -- don't leave her hanging. Do you want her to call you or e-mail you for more information? 0rder n0w? Call to schedule a free consultation? Complete a brief survey? Think about what you'd most like her to do, and then ask her. It's amazing how many marketing materials I come across every day that don't make it clear what the reader should do. If you wrote interesting copy, your reader may forget you're trying to sell something. Tell her what to do, and she'll be more likely to do it.

10. Have your copy proofread!
Good. Now have it proofread again. Don't risk printing any typos, misspellings, or grammatical mistakes that will represent your company as amateurs. Hire a professional editor or proofreader to clean up your work. Remember, you only get one chance to make a first impession! Oops -- impression.

© 2001-2005 Alexandria K. Brown

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this blurb with it: Online entrepreneur Alexandria K. Brown, "The E-zine Queen," is creator of the award-winning 'Boost Business With Your Own E-zine' system. To learn more about this step-by-step program, and to sign up for her FREE how-to articles and FREE audio class, visit