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Using Informative Articles As A Marketing Tool

Aug 17, 2007
When someone is interested in something, they want to learn more about it. Whether it's learning to golf, play the piano, teach their children to read, or how to treat cancer, sharing what you know about your field through informative articles is an excellent way to market your services and products.

Expert articles can be written as an "advertorial," or a paid placement type of advertisements that resembles all of the other "real" articles featured in the publication, or a press release-style article that is used to announce a new product, new service or other type of newsworthy event.

Not a sales pitch, per se, these articles should be written in the same format - and with the same amount of professionalism - as every other article in the publication. The reader should not be able to tell that it is a marketing tool, written by a copywriter who specializes in marketing copy, rather than an unbiased account written by a professional journalist. The key here is to not look like a paid ad.

This can be done in several ways: by offering expert advice or by offering a unique how-to approach to the subject.

The Expert Says:
In "the expert says" style of article, the writer is using the expert's (or client's), know-how on a subject to update the reader on new trends in regard to the subject area. For instance, a fashion designer may offer their opinion on the must-have items for the new season, while a dermatologist may highlight the pros and cons of new treatment options for acne. The basic of this type of article is to introduce the reader to your services by setting yourself up as the new expert in the field.

The How-To Article:
Although the how-to piece still refers to the expert being shown (and the services or product they offer), it is written in a very consumer-friendly how-to manner. For instance, a dentist may offer "10 Tips To A Whiter Smile," or "5 Things To Avoid In The Dentist's Chair." Again, this type of article should give the reader some solid information they can use in a way that sets the business up as the place or person to turn to in order to find out more.

Marketing writing takes a special knack for presenting information in an interesting and compelling manner, while not making it seem as though the piece has not been written to coerce the reader into buying something. Rather, it is used to educate the reader about a subject.

When writing either of these types of marketing -style articles there are a few things to keep in mind:

Find The Right Angle:
Find an angle your reader can relate to and you can hook them on to just about any subject.

Don't Sound Like A Salesperson:
Don't make your article into a sales pitch. Give the reader some practical tips they can use, whether they buy your client's product or use their services, or not.

The trick to successful marketing articles is finding a qualified writer who understands what the reader is looking for, and how to present the material in a way that will benefit the client's business. Look for a professional writer with a solid public relations/marketing background who has done this type of writing before. Advertising writers may be good at writing good ad copy, but they have a hard time not "trying to make a sale" and usually isn't a good choice for article marketing writing. Prices may vary regionally, but usually range between $75 and $500, per article depending on its length and the target audience you are trying to reach.
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