Article marketing is one of the best ways to optimize your website, create new sales leads, and to garner new publicity. The really good news is that it is free and easy (OK, it does take some time and a few brain cells).

If you are not familiar with article marketing, it is the process of writing short (250-500 word) feature articles for the web that are posted on internet magazines, commonly called e-zines. You may recall doing a search when you entered in some key words on a subject of interest and found these informative articles written by subject matter experts. At the end of the article was a byline with the author’s name and an URL for you to click on for more information.

There are many benefits to on-line article marketing. Articles are sticky; once an article is accepted on an e-zine website, it can stay listed for months or years. When your articles are posted on numerous e-zine websites, the search engine spiders pick this up; this sends your website ranking sky high the organic way (i.e. no S.E.O. fees!). By writing the article you are positioned as a subject matter expert, which creates sales leads coming to you instead of you chasing them.

The articles themselves tend to be “all about” or “how to” summaries about a specific topic; think niche and be specific. Article readers are looking for help with a problem or they want to learn more about a subject. Remember, the article is not an advertisement, although the author gets credit.

For example, my friend Brad Barrett owns a vertical file storage business called Easi File ( Easi File manufacturers and sells file cabinets and accessories for the storage of large documents such as engineering and architectural plans, artwork, and other documents that are typically filed flat. His unique solution is a vertical filing system that reduces the cabinet footprint by 80%. This is a very cool niche business with a very unique customer. One the ways that Brad finds his customers is through article marketing. Brad has positioned himself as a web expert on the subject of the storage of large documents; by doing article marketing, Brad has customers hitting his site for more information.

Articles can be submitted directly to e-zines that cover your topic, or you can submit to article submission websites that will route them for you. The submission websites have rules of engagement for the articles such word length, topic, and style, but they can be a very efficient way to distribute your article.

Give article marketing a try. It is a great way to get your message out to you target market.

John Bradley Jackson
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