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Scott R. Asher – How to write an article for your membership site

Scott R. Asher gives you great WordPress blogging tips. When starting your first site, you will probably be writing a lot of the articles yourself. Knowing what to write, how to write it, and how to format it will keep your members longer.

Rules for creating articles:

  • Make your article timeless – You want your content to last as long as possible on your website. Don’t write any articles at first that are tied to current events or give how-to instructions for a system that will work today but will be obsolete next week. This way you can build up a library of content that will be relevant for years to come.
  • Make your articles sell your website – I know, your member’s have already been sold, but you need to keep selling them so they don’t cancel their membership. Make each article you write benefit driven, and don’t be afraid to tell the reader what benefits they are getting out of the article.
  • Know your members – If you have a membership site geared towards stock trading and your members are already savvy traders then don’t write a lot of content with “common knowledge”; things like “How to Open a Brokerage Account”. But if your members are newbie investors, then write articles that would be considered “common knowledge” for a more seasoned investor.

 

Elements of an Article

An article needs to have just a few simple elements to be effective.

1. Headline – Put the benefits of the article into the headline. If it’s the transcript of an interview you did, don’t have a headline that says “Transcript of Interview with John Smith”. Make it say something like “How John Smith gets a 47% annual yield with commodities using a simple checklist that will work for you!”

2. Introduction – Make your article start with the description of a problem that most of your member’s are probably facing. Then begin a story about how you or someone else had the same problem. The introduction doesn’t have to be a single paragraph.

3. Body – Discuss all the solutions to the problem outlined in the Introduction. Continue the story telling them how they can fix the problem, or how someone came up with a solution to the problem.

4. Conclusion – Wrap up the article to give the story an ending. This would be a good place to put a link to an affiliate website if you have one.

5. Provide Resources – Try not to send your reader outside of your site unless it’s an affiliate link. Post links to related resources at the end of the article. If you have to, create some resources to match the article and put them into your site.

Format the Article

You can have the greatest content in the world, but if it’s hard to read, your member’s will cancel their membership. You need to format all the content that goes up onto your site whether it was written by you or submitted by someone else. Here are some basic guidelines for formatting your articles:

1. Make the headline stand out – The headline is what attracts the member into reading the article. Don’t make the font the same size as the text of the article. Make it bigger, bolder, or in a different color… or all three. However don’t go overboard and make it fit the look and feel of your site.

2. Use short paragraphs – Make sure that most paragraphs are no longer than 5 lines long; 3 is even better. Long paragraphs are hard to read, so your members will skip the article instead of reading long paragraphs. Don’t be afraid to break apart longer paragraphs, even if it means breaking some grammatical rules.

3. Use lots of sub-heads – No matter what you do, not all of your members will read the articles. Many of them will just skim. So add benefit driven sub-heads to highlight the important parts of the article so the reader knows the article is filled with valuable content even if he doesn’t read it.

4. Create bullet lists – When possible, take content from the article and turn it into numbered or bulleted lists. Studies show that people will take the time to read lists even if they don’t read the article. People seem to find lists more valuable than article content.

How to Write a Good Internet Article

How to Write a Good Internet Article

There are many reasons you might want to write a good internet article. You need good web content, you are writing for an employer or you write freelance internet articles. Since content is still King, skills in writing good internet articles are a premium.

First, let’s distinguish between an internet article and a blog post. Let’s create definitions.

A blog post is any combination of image and/or text that is uploaded to a weblog and cataloged by date, category, tag or other fashion. A blog post may be personal, random, from an RSS feed, humorous, boring, nonsensical, blasphemous, heretical or otherwise. A blog post can, but is not always an internet article.

An internet article is typically a well written (although I’ve seen many claiming to be an internet article that was not well written), keyword rich essay on a specific topic, intended to inform and entertain readers seeking information on that topic. The hallmark of a good internet article is a logical structure that leads the reader to accept the conclusion the writer proposed. It should be persuasive.

Like any style of writing, there are forms which can be practiced and with continued use, will lead to better results. During law school, I learned a form of persuasive writing which I have adapted to writing internet articles. Here’s my formula:

1. Issue
What are you writing about? Why should the reader care? This requires a clear and concise statement.

2. Research
What have you discovered about the topic? You need to state what you’ve found and imply or state your qualifications to write about the subject. Nobody cares about your brother’s opinion on whether we landed on the moon in 1969. Why does your opinion matter to the reader?

3. Analysis
Here you begin to take the logical steps that will lead the reader to your proposed conclusion. You began with the conclusion in mind when you started or you wouldn’t be writing an internet article in the first place. Show the reader why she should believe in your conclusion.

4. Conclusion – you precisely restate the idea that you wanted the reader to accept – usually the title of your article.

You can observe the application of my internet article formula in this very article.

1. The title is a clear and concise statement of the topic – how to write an internet article.
2. I define what an internet article is, why the reader should care and what I know about the topic.
3. I offered the reader a theory – a rationale – a practice that can lead, in my opinion to the conclusion I propose which is how to write a better internet article.
4. The conclusion is following.

Writing in a form such as this maximizes your keyword density without sounding unnaturally repetitive. I’m sure you’ve seen articles where the use of key words seemed ridiculous and you probably concluded it was spam. A good internet article does not leave the greasy after taste associated with spam. Rather a good internet article leaves you with a warm fuzzy feeling like perhaps the internet isn’t such a bad place after all. A good internet article reminds you why the internet was invented in the first place – to freely exchange ideas – not just to look at porn and sell hair growth products. Ironically, a good internet article will sell things but that’s not its true purpose. It should simply give the reader the answer to the question they were looking for when they searched for it and hopefully you didn’t bore them away from your website.

Writing a good internet article is easy when you have a good idea and a form to follow. I hope this internet article is of assistance to you in your internet article writing endeavors.

That was the conclusion to the article but you’ll want to see my next free internet article where we dissect the keyword density of this very article. Stay tuned!

As always, our free internet articles are open for you to put on your website. Customize, quote or just copy and paste them but don’t forget to link back. Good luck driving massive traffic to your website.

How to Increase Page Views by Trending

This article describes how to make more money on eHow and other paid writing sites by using Google Trends to create timely, SEO articles.

things you’ll need:

A computer with an internet connection

1 If you’re like me, you probably have a notebook full of ideas for “how to” articles you’re just itching to get written to start making money on paid writing sites like eHow, Associated Content and other sites. I have written several articles for these sites and paid particular attention to the page views my articles receive. Articles I have written that happened to correspond with search engine trends have exponentially received more page views than other articles. Open your web browser and check out Google.com/trends to view the top 100 search engine terms.

2 Spend some time checking out the random and often bizarre search terms that are currently popular. For instance today, would be a great day to write an article on “How to lose weight like “How to lose weight like Paige 22 to 0.” Paige Schmelzer is a lady who went from a size 22 to size 0 by diet and exercise and I had never heard of her until today. There is one article by Lynwood Enterprise, USA which comes at the top of a Google search that is getting thousands of page views because there’s really nothing else on the internet addressing the topic.

3 After you review the Google trends, you write your article very quickly and let Google do the rest of the work. eHow has a very high page ranking. Check Alexa.com for current statistics. What that means to you is that your timely article on a trend is likely to rank higher in a Google search than written on your blog or lesser sites. Compare the Alexa ranking of eHow at 468 to Associated Content at 769. In theory, the same article written for eHow should rank higher than if published on Associated Content. It really doesn’t matter though, you’re just trying to get page views by writing current, search engine friendly articles.

4 Write your timely, trending article using the key words as many times as you can get away with that the article still makes sense. In other words, don’t spam the key words. You can use headings to increase the density of your key words without offending your reader. For instance, in the article about Paige 22 to 0 you might have a header that reads, “Who is Paige Schmelzer” and later in your article, “About the Paige 22 to 0 Phenomenon.”

5 As a final example for your consideration. I was trending one morning and saw that the search terms “2009 Calendar” was high on the list. I wrote a quick article, and to the top I went!

Instructions

Things you’ll need:

A computer with an internet connection

eHow article about making a 2009 calendar with your own photos. The article took me about ten minutes to publish and it has had three to four times the page views of any other article I wrote that month.

Tips & Warnings:

To effectively use google.com/trends, start early in the morning and work fast, the quicker you get your articles up, the more page views you will receive If you pick trends that reoccur you’ll already be poised for the traffic spike you’ll receive next year

Resources

Google Trends

Alexa

The fact that you know is too many!

The one reason I wanted to start writing on the web, is to write about stuff that you would never forget! The web is for entertainment. Let me entertain! Most of you know that I am one crappy writer! But I love it, and I have the most incredible shit to say, but getting it on to paper is the hardest thing about being me. When others use 10% of their minds, I feel like I use 90% of my mind, everyday, non stop, when I dream, my dreams are the extension of my life. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed, the feeling and observation of life going on around me is very interesting to me. Every person has a story, and for a brief period, some times you get to see the other side.

Recently a buddy of mine told me he was cheating on his wife, now why would he tell me this? It was like he was proud of himself, and almost in the same breath he said “don’t tell my wife” wa-what? I said, I am already aware that’s a no no, duh! As if the chick he is boning is not enough, he has to tell me. I think he wants to get caught! Well as old as he is I don’t think it would make much a difference. I don’t see how people go from, I want to screw that bitch, to screw that bitch.  Too much information?  There’s no such thing.  A friend of mine who is living out of a motel told me that he has a whore for a neighbor and every night around 1:00 am she goes to work and apparently wakes the whole place up with the banging and moaning coming from her room.  This is the funny shit in life that cracks me up.  It wasn’t that funny to my friend, as he explained it sounded as if they were doing it in his room, but it sure sounds funny to me.

Friends and life

I think friendships are the most important thing in this life.  I have spent a great deal of time cultivating my relationships, like flowers, watering them and trying to keep them healthy.  It’s surprising how much content comes from friends.  I think of my life as content, stories that I want to tell because, frankly, some crazy shit happens to me like being falsely arrested in Las Vegas or the time I sold a truck load of avocados in Southern California.  There’s this funny story that happened with my friend Jeff while we were traveling in Mexico.  He got a case of Montezuma’s revenge from some bad shrimp tacos and had a bad case of diarrhea but nowhere to go so he went into the Pacific and dropped trou.  I didn’t really want to hear about it, but you know this is the funny stuff you hear that just makes for entertainment.  When I think of all these things, I’m inspired to write and this is where my blog comes in handy.  Maybe some day I’ll get these stories out and make a book.  I would love nothing more than to be a published author.  But in the meantime, I’ll continue to write these little stories from my life and my interesting friends for your reading pleasure.