Writing articles for directories is one of the most efficient methods for individuals to establish their names in their fields. However, sometimes, even the best content in the world gets lost in the Internet vacuum and barely receives traffic. As such, it can be discouraging for writers. So, how do you get noticed? By bringing your articles to potential readers. Below is a list of the best ways to do it.
Keywords are specific words that describe an item. When articles are published on the Internet, they are indexed by search engines – Google, Bing, Yahoo – according to those specific words. Without them, search engines may overlook the content and it may end up at the bottom of the pile. Keywords should be included inside your articles, as well as in the “keywords” section under or next to them. Do not forget to use them with your pictures as well.
Titles are the main attention grabbers. When written well, they will make people want to read what follows. For example, should you wish to share tips on book promotion, a title like “X [number] Great Tips to Promote Your Book” would work. People love numbers and lists. So, write and organize your article accordingly. Be clear and concise.
Now, what are the Websites and services where you should promote your content?
Facebook, Twitter and Myspace
Facebook, Twitter and Myspace are the best social networking sites. Millions of people use them at any given time of the day. As a result, they are well indexed in search engines. Sharing your content there is a great way to attract traffic. In the process, you promote your name too.
Digg, Reddit and StumbleUpon
Digg and Reddit are social bookmarking sites that let you share any type of news and articles. Once your content is submitted, people can vote it up or not. The more votes, the more chances for your articles to reach the top of the list. With millions of visitors monthly, you cannot let slip such an opportunity.
What makes StumbleUpon one of the best social bookmarking services? The focus is on quality Websites. Its 10 million members discover and share what they consider the best of the World Wide Web. As a result, if they like your content, you may literally get thousands of visitors to your articles in a matter of hours.
Google Buzz and Care2 News
Google Buzz is a social networking and messaging tool provided free of charge by Google. It is also integrated in Gmail. Users can share links, photos, videos, etc. that appear in your Gmail inbox.
Care2 News lets you share social-conscious news with the world. Submitting articles there will get you some traffic. Do not expect too much, but it is still worth it.
LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking site that professionals use to build serious relationships and their portfolio. A profile on LinkedIn is indexed quite high in search engines. You can also join and create groups, ask and answer questions, etc. It is the perfect place to share marketing and business-related articles. There, you can establish yourself as a reliable source of information.
If you want to update all your networks at once, use Ping.fm. With the possibility to link to almost 40 services (Facebook profile and pages, Twitter, WordPress, FriendFeed, Posterous, Ning, Tumblr, etc.), this is the best tool around.
Craigslist is generally underestimated. Its focus on local classifieds and forums for jobs, housing, services, events, etc. makes it a good Website where to submit content. If you choose the right section, chances are that a lot of people will read you.
If you are a blogger, share extracts of your articles in your blog. That way, they will be indexed twice and potential readers will be able to find you more easily. Also allow visitors to subscribe to your blog with a service like Feedburner: Every time you update your blog with new content, subscribers will receive a notice. Finally, if you use WordPress, install Old Post Promoter. This plugin chooses old posts randomly and repost them as new content, pushing them to the first page of your blog.
Last but not least, never underestimate the power of mailing lists. They allow you to keep in touch with your contacts, customers – potential or not. So, create one with MailChimp, for instance, and invite people to subscribe. In your newsletters, share a list of some of your best articles. But do not overdo it. People do not like over promotion. So, send your messages either every second week or once a month.
The list above is quite long. However, sharing your articles on each one of those Websites and services will help bring much better visibility to your articles. There are literally millions of Internet users looking for help and advice every day. So, take no chances and establish yourself as a reliable source.