Offline Article Marketing Secrets
Table of contents for Article Marketing
- Can Your Business Benefit From Article Marketing?
- 5 Steps to Marketing Your First Article
- What Makes Quality Content?
- What Kind of Articles Work Best?
- Offline Article Marketing Secrets
- How to Find Article Writers and PLR (Private Label Rights) Articles
- How to Write a Killer Resource Box
- Top 10 Article Directories
- Five Tips to Marketing Your Articles to Get Them More Exposure
- Tracking Your Article Marketing Results
Offline Article Marketing Secrets
“No task is a long one but the task on which one dare not start. It becomes a nightmare.” ~ Charles Baudelaire
While most people associate article marketing strictly with online promotion, you can get even more bang for your article buck by promoting your articles – and your business – offline. Start by thinking local. Yes, the internet has opened up a whole new world of customers to business with websites, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore your local market.
Here’s how you can turn your online articles into offline marketing engines:
Submit articles to local papers and newsletters.
Many local newspapers, neighborhood associations or local organization newsletters will accept contributed articles. By submitting your articles on a hot and timely topic, you can increase your exposure and potentially gain new subscribers or customers.
For instance, I recently rebuilt a flash-animated website that we had built for my dentist a few years ago and moved him over to the WordPress platform. Why? Because his articles on dental proceedures and gum health show up regularly in a couple of local newspapers and it made perfect sense to publish those same articles to his new WordPress website/blog and then to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. His very informative articles are now available both offline and online.
To find local sources for your articles, you can do a simple Google search. Enter “CITY newspaper” or “CITY shopper” (quotes included) with CITY being your location, or nearest major metropolitan city, in the Google search bar. For instance, “Nashville newspaper” or “Seattle shopper”.
You are highly likely to find multiple small publications in your area. Don’t overlook neighborhood associations, as well as schools, day care facilities, gyms, community centers, churches, and clubs and organizations that create newsletters for their members. If their readership matches your target market, getting featured in these is free and can help you to grow your online business.
Make a list of publication names and contact information, and then either email them a link to your articles, or print out a copy and send it to their mailing address.
Share your content with associates and potential clients.
Print one of your favorite articles and mail it to prospective clients, business associates and others who might find the content useful. Include a sticky note that says “Thought you might find this helpful,” and sign your name. Be sure your website address or contact information and a business card are included as well. Then hand-address the envelope, include your name and return address, and drop it in the mail. If you make it a practice to send out a few every week, it can pay off in added readers, website visitors and customers.
Turn an article into a press release.
Newspapers are always looking for interesting news and stories they can use for their broadcast or print media. If your article has a strong news hook related to a recent event or season, you may be able to pitch a story as a press release. First, do some research to find out who your best contact at the newspaper is. For instance, if you’re a landscaping company, identify who covers home and garden, then read several of their past articles to observe what topics they cover. Next, email or call them. Introduce yourself and ask what type of stories and news releases they want to receive and how (via email, fax, phone or mail).
Once you know what the reporters are looking for, you can direct appropriate stories their way. If your article topic fits, format your article as a press release and send it to them as they requested. Keep in mind that reporters and newspapers receive hundreds of releases, many of which were written and sent by people who haven’t taken any time to get to know the reporters or what they are looking for. By doing your homework and developing a relationship with them, you stand a much higher chance of getting your information published.
Click here for a great free online press release tool from Lisa Manyon called the “Write On Creative Press Release Producer”.
Create print booklets of your articles.
Take a few of your favorite articles and compile them into a booklet. Let’s say you bake absolutely gorgeous and delicious cakes in your home and deliver them to customers who have found you by word-of-mouth raving reviews from family and friends. Yes, the happy customer will remember the cake and will undoubtedly take pictures of it, but what if you also include in the delivery your business card, a booklet with photos of some of your most glorious works of art, a recipe or two and a couple of well written and instructional articles about how to work with marzipan or different types of icing? That booklet will more than likely become a permanent part of their cookbook collection. It would in my house! I would also be going to your website to find more pictures, recipes and “how-to” tips.
- Lay out the articles in a word processing program (OpenOffice.org is free) or your desktop publishing software.
- Add an “About Us” page and contact information. Include your email address and website URL.
- Include a free offer inside the book, if the reader joins your email list.
- Print one sample booklet to make sure the formatting is correct.
- Copy the booklets at home or at your local print shop.
Here are a couple of excellent places to create your business card online using your own images.
Then, it’s time to distribute the booklets.
- Mail them to prospective clients
- Include them with all physical purchases
- Offer them as a free gift to subscribers
- Bring them to networking events and leave at information tables or booths.
There are many ways to use offline article marketing strategies to enhance your results. Be creative and search for new places to display articles and locate readers and subscribers. By offering them your well-written articles, you can establish yourself as a local expert and go-to person when they need your services or products.
But, before you embark on this program, there may be some housekeeping tasks that you need to address before doing everything you can to drive new customers or prospects to your business.
- Give your website a good spring cleaning. Are there broken links, broken images, or outdated materials? Be sure that it looks professional, welcoming and offers the visitor all the information that they need to make a decision about whether they want to return to your site, read your blog, or visit your physical business location if you have one. That first impression is probably the only one you will get!
- Make sure your contact form and your newsletter opt-in form is working.
- If you have social networking icons on your site, be sure they are pointing to the correct URL.
And finally, believe in yourself. Because if you don’t, nobody else will either.
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