Category Archives: Syndicated Content

How Content Syndication Can Help Authors Sell More Books (An Excerpt)

Enjoy this excerpt from Guest Blogging and Content Syndication (T-Shaped Marketing for Authors Book 2)

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An SEO Analogy: Retail Merchandising

When you think about it, SEO is a lot like effective merchandising in a “bricks and mortar” bookstore. It’s all about positioning. The books that are strategically placed at eye level in the front aisles, or on shelving units and tables in the high-traffic areas of a store, are going to sell more than the books that are tucked away on low shelves where most people don’t bother to look.

It works much the same way online. The whole point of improving the SEO of any webpage is to ensure it appears as close to the top of an online search as possible so that more people can easily see it. The higher its visibility, the better your chance of it being clicked on which translates into the better chance of a sale down the road. And that’s what we’re all after here, isn’t it? At the end of the day, authors are blogging to promote their books with the intent of selling more copies and improving their readerships.

Here’s the good news: it’s somewhat easier—and much more cost effective—to improve your positioning online than it is within a traditional bookstore, particularly the major chain stores. If you want prime real estate in a major chain, allowing you to be seen by hundreds or even thousands of impulse buyers on any given day, you’re going to have to pay upfront for the privilege. How much will it cost you? John B. Thompson provides details about this in his 2012 Kindle ebook titled Merchants of Culture: The Publishing Business in the Twenty-First Century:

The front-of-store area that is in your field of vision is a thoroughly commodified space: most of the books you see will be there by virtue of the fact that the publisher has paid for placement, either directly by means of a placement fee (that is, co-op advertising) or indirectly by means of extra discount. Roughly speaking, it costs around a dollar a book to put a new hardback on the front-of-store table in a major chain, and around $10,000 to put a new title on front-of-store tables in all the chain’s stores for two weeks (typically the minimum period). … Visibility does not come cheap. (Thompson, 2012)

While you can choose to pay for increased exposure online by running pay-per-click advertising campaigns or buying banner ads on high-traffic websites, the difference here is that you don’t have to. Blogging is an organic—not to mention free—way of improving your online ranking. Your only cost is your time.

Don’t Get Dinged by the SEO Gods!

Now, here’s the kicker: all of your online articles and blog posts have to be original content. Why? Because also built into these search engine algorithms is the ability to detect copied/reused content—and copied/reused content is a no-no in the online world. It is treated like a form of plagiarism and penalized by search engines in the sense that it won’t be indexed by them at all; rather, it will be ignored altogether. The search engines will compare two webpages that contain the same content and choose only one—most likely the original, higher ranking page—to include in search results. The copycat webpage will fall into online oblivion, never to be seen or heard from on the search engines again.

Content Syndication to the Rescue

The obvious issue here is time. Where is the time to write all your books, and write original articles for other online publications, and post unique content to your own blog on a regular basis so you can organically grow (and maintain) a strong online presence? Even the simple idea of it is daunting enough itself, never mind actually doing it day in and day out. We all have busy lives, after all.

This is where content syndication comes into play as explained by Christopher Ratcliff in his article titled “What is content syndication and how do I get started?” on the Search Engine Watch website. According to Ratcliff, content syndication is great for new authors and publishers who want to expose their books and blogs to a much larger audience, but who just don’t have the time or manpower to write copious amounts of new content on a daily basis.

Content syndication is the process of pushing your blogpost, article, video or any piece of web-based content out to other third-parties who will then republish it on their own sites….

Content syndication is particularly useful if you’re a smaller publisher or an up-and-coming writer who wants a larger audience from a more authoritative site.

By having your blog content published on The Guardian (for instance) you will be exposed to a much wider audience that isn’t your own, who may then visit you on your own blog.

The other major reason for doing this is SEO. Some of that bigger site’s authority should be passed down to you. (Ratcliff, 2016)

“Okay. Great,” you’re thinking. “So, I won’t have to write as much unique content on a regular basis. But how does this resolve the issue of copied/reused content?” That’s a great question, and here are three simple solutions to that problem.

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Hope you enjoyed that short excerpt. You can learn the three simple solutions here: Guest Blogging and Content Syndication (T-Shaped Marketing for Authors Book 2).



A Foreign Rights Agent is to Authors What an Affiliate Marketer is to Online Entrepreneurs

This content first appeared on Digital Point Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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So many people are publishing digital books to supplement their online businesses nowadays, and they’re using affiliate marketers as an extended sales force to help them move more of their products and services. Turning your followers/subscribers into your promoters by paying them a commission on all the sales they generate for you is a fantastic way to earn incremental income—for both the affiliate marketer and the online entrepreneur that owns the rights to the items being sold.

I’m here to tell you about another similar concept that is unique to the book publishing world, and the best way to explain it is to include this blog post by an experienced foreign rights agent named Bob Erdmann: The Importance of Foreign Rights. Basically, when you own the copyright to a book (or any other kind of intellectual property), you can increase its sales potential by selling off various types of subsidiary rights. Maybe someone in France will want to buy the exclusive French language rights to reproduce and sell your e-book in their country. Maybe a movie producer in the United States will want to purchase the exclusive English language film rights for the North American trading area. And so on, and so forth. (It’s a little more involved than that, but you get the picture.)




You can divvy up the rights to your intellectual property in so many different ways, it would be impossible to list them all here. But I’ll tell you this much: it is worth a lot of extra money to you. How much? Who knows! It could be worth thousands of dollars, maybe even millions … think Harry Potter if you’re having any doubts about that. In fact, J.K. Rowling is now a billionaire due to the sale of subsidiary rights on top of the traditional book sales of her series.

If you’re new to all this, it is best to hire an agent to help you with the promotion and sale of your rights. You can find agents and all the other information you will need through PubMatch.

What Should Come First: the Paperback or the E-book? (And How it Affects Your Marketing)

This content first appeared on Warrior Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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I started another thread a little while ago titled How to Price an E-book, and this spawned a further discussion between me and another person regarding which should come first: the e-book or the paperback.

I wrote, “Whenever my company produces books for any authors (myself included), we start with either a paperback or a hardcover (their choice) and then convert those digital files to an e-book after that fact. That way, these authors have a larger net to catch more fish because they are appealing to the readers who still prefer to hold a hard copy in their hands as well as the ones who prefer to read soft copies.

To which he replied, “To be honest, I doubt that very many people on this forum are interested in creating either a hardback or paperback to begin with. They are digital marketers and create e-books first which may later be converted to paper using CreateSpace or some other service.

I can understand that point of view, but I think there is much more to consider here when it comes to both offline and digital marketing. Everyone trying to sell any type of book needs to familiarize themselves all the different players in the book supply chain, how these players can help you to sell more books (both online and offline), and what these players expect to see in your books before they’ll even pay attention to you, never mind help you.




For example, let’s take the reviewers that I talked about in this thread: You Can Buy Book Reviews to Promote Your Ebook Online!. Publicity is GOLD to any author–no matter what type of book you’ve published, no matter where/how you’re trying to sell that book. And a positive review from a reputable book reviewer can generate an amazing amount of publicity for you. But they have certain expectations of your books…

The professional reviewers want to see a properly (professionally) designed book, and they won’t pay attention to anything else much less review it for you. They expect to see all the proper cover design components and interior components (front matter, body, back matter) before they’ll ever take it seriously. For one example, they will want to see an index at the back of a non-fiction book … and we automatically create those in our paperbacks/hardcovers before converting them over to an e-book. But if you start with the e-book first, and then try to convert it to a paperback or hardcover, it will be missing many of these necessary components. The result is that the book won’t be taken seriously by the reputable industry reviewers–the ones who can generate that golden publicity for you.

Contrary to popular belief on this forum, there are still just as many people reading paperbacks/hardcovers as there are reading e-books. If your goal is to sell your books then, for best results, you should still be producing both in this day and age. Cast a larger net, catch more fish. And the hard copy–the paperback or the hardcover–needs to come first. The e-book needs to come second.

Copywriters and Ghostwriters: What They Have in Common

© hobvias sudoneighm

This content first appeared on Digital Point Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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Some people have asked me, “What is the difference between a copywriter and a ghostwriter What are their similarities?”

Well, I’ll start with the primary difference. It’s a simple difference. A copywriter is mainly concerned with producing sales and marketing copy for a client whereas a ghostwriter is someone who writes a book for someone else (whether it be non-fiction or fiction). The term “ghostwriter” simply means that, although they’ve written the book, they remain anonymous (a “ghost”) to that book’s readers because they aren’t listed as the author. The person/organization the book was written for is listed as the author … which is very similar to copywriting, isn’t it? The freelance copywriter rarely, if ever, receives public credit for the content they’ve written for someone else.




Which brings me to even more similarities between these two terms. The list of similarities–what they have in common–comprises much more. Here’s a short list:

1. Both ghostwriters and copywriters produce content for their clients. 
2. As stated above, neither ghostwriters nor copywriters receive public credit for the content they produce for their clients.
3. Both ghostwriting and copywriting are collaborative processes in that these writers need to gain a clear understanding of what their clients want ahead of time before they begin a project, and they may need to edit/correct it along with way once it has been proofread by the client.

There are three points to get that list started. How about if someone else jumps in here and picks up where I left off? What else do these two roles have in common?

Great Way to Market a Non-Fiction E-book … Find a Sponsor

This content first appeared on Warrior Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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If an athlete can land funding from a sponsor, why can’t an e-book author? The key is, there has to be a mutual benefit to doing the project together. You have to pitch it as so much more than just gaining funding to help cover your writing costs for “the next best book on whatever” that you’re sure “will sell thousands, possibly millions of copies” to readers who will see the sponsor’s logo on your copyright page. Big deal … that’s all your prospective sponsor is going to be thinking as he or she yawns.




It has to be much more appealing than that, and with data to back up the big promises. That’s where email marketers can really benefit from this concept, particularly those with 20,000+ strong subscriber lists. Offering a sponsor exposure to a whole new audience through three or four of your upcoming email blasts plus their logo listed in your book’s front matter, in exchange for them paying you upfront to write your next e-book, is a much more enticing offer. And it will work even better if the content of your new e-book matches one of their products or services really well.

Here’s a perfect example: Google “Al Pitampalli” and “Citrix Systems” for more details. In a nutshell, Al got Citrix to sponsor his book titled Read This Before Our Next Meeting which is a perfect fit considering Citrix invented GoToMeeting videoconferencing. They were able to cross market to each other’s followers and both benefited greatly from the partnership.

I can see this working well for non-fiction books. Not sure about fictional books, though. Your thoughts?

The Six Simple Principles of Viral Marketing

This content first appeared on Practical Ecommerce and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published by Web Marketing Today. Practical Ecommerce acquired Web Marketing Today in 2012. In 2016, we merged the two sites, leaving Practical Ecommerce as the successor.

Editor’s Note: Dr. Wilson first published this article in 2000. He then updated it in 2005. We updated it a third time, in 2012.

I admit it. The term “viral marketing” is offensive. Call yourself a viral marketer and people will take two steps back. I would. “Do they have a vaccine for that yet?” you wonder. A sinister thing, the simple virus is fraught with doom, not quite dead yet not fully alive, it exists in that nether genre somewhere between disaster movies and horror flicks.

But you have to admire the virus. It has a way of living in secrecy until it is so numerous that it wins by sheer weight of numbers. It piggybacks on other hosts and uses their resources to increase its tribe. And in the right environment, it grows exponentially. A virus doesn’t even have to mate. It just replicates, again and again with geometrically increasing power, doubling with each iteration.

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In a few short generations, a virus population can explode.

Viral Marketing Defined

What does a virus have to do with marketing? Viral marketing describes any strategy that encourages individuals to pass on a marketing message to others, creating the potential for exponential growth in the message’s exposure and influence. Like viruses, such strategies take advantage of rapid multiplication to explode the message to thousands, to millions.

Off the Internet, viral marketing has been referred to as “word-of-mouth,” “creating a buzz,” “leveraging the media,” “network marketing.” But on the Internet, for better or worse, it’s called “viral marketing.” While others smarter than I have attempted to rename it, to somehow domesticate and tame it, I won’t try. The term “viral marketing” has stuck.



The Classic Hotmail Example

The classic example of viral marketing is Hotmail.com, one of the first free web-based email services. The strategy is simple:

  1. Give away free email addresses and services;
  2. Attach a simple tag at the bottom of every free message sent out: “Get your private, free email at http://www.hotmail.com”;
  3. Then stand back while people email to their own network of friends and associates;
  4. Who see the message;
  5. Sign up for their own free email service; and then
  6. Propel the message still wider to their own ever-increasing circles of friends and associates.

Like tiny waves spreading ever farther from a single pebble dropped into a pond, a carefully designed viral marketing strategy ripples outward extremely rapidly.

Elements of a Viral Marketing Strategy

Accept this fact. Some viral marketing strategies work better than others. Few work as well as the simple Hotmail.com strategy. But below are the six basic elements you hope to include in your strategy. A viral marketing strategy need not contain ALL these elements, but the more elements it embraces, the more powerful the results are likely to be. An effective viral marketing strategy:

  1. Gives away products or services;
  2. Provides for effortless transfer to others;
  3. Scales easily from small to very large;
  4. Exploits common motivations and behaviors;
  5. Utilizes existing communication networks;
  6. Takes advantage of others’ resources.

Let’s examine at each of these elements briefly.

1. Gives Away Valuable Products or Services

“Free” is the most powerful word in a marketer’s vocabulary. Most viral marketing programs give away valuable products or services to attract attention. Free email services, free information, free “cool” buttons, free software programs that perform powerful functions but not as much as you get in the “pro” version. Wilson’s Second Law of Web Marketing is “The Law of Giving and Selling”. “Cheap” or “inexpensive” may generate a wave of interest, but “free” will usually do it much faster. Viral marketers practice delayed gratification. They may not profit today, or tomorrow, but if they can generate a groundswell of interest from something free, they know they will profit “soon and for the rest of their lives” (with apologies to “Casablanca”). Patience, my friends. Free attracts eyeballs. Eyeballs then see other desirable things that you are selling, and, presto! you earn money. Eyeballs bring valuable email addresses, advertising revenue, and ecommerce sales opportunities. Give away something, sell something.



2. Provides for Effortless Transfer to Others

Public health nurses offer sage advice at flu season: Stay away from people who cough, wash your hands often, and don’t touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. Viruses only spread when they’re easy to transmit. The medium that carries your marketing message must be easy to transfer and replicate: email, website, graphic, software download. Viral marketing works famously on the Internet because instant communication is easy and inexpensive. The digital format makes copying simple. From a marketing standpoint, you must simplify your marketing message so it can be transmitted easily and without degradation. Short is better. The classic is: “Get your private, free email at http://www.hotmail.com.” The message is compelling, compressed, and copied at the bottom of every free email message.

3. Scales Easily from Small to Very Large

To spread like wildfire, the transmission method must be rapidly scalable from small to very large. The weakness of the Hotmail model is that a free email service requires its own mail servers to transmit the message. If the strategy is wildly successful, mail servers must be added very quickly or the rapid growth will bog down and die. If the virus multiplies only to kill the host before spreading, nothing is accomplished. So long as you have planned ahead of time how you can add mail servers rapidly you’re okay. You must build in scalability to your viral model.

4. Exploits Common Motivations and Behaviors

Clever viral marketing plans take advantage of common human motivations. What proliferated “Netscape Now” buttons in the early days of the web? The desire to be cool. Greed drives people. So does the hunger to be popular, loved, and understood. The resulting urge to communicate produces millions of websites and billions of email messages. Design a marketing strategy that builds on common motivations and behaviors for its transmission, and you have a winner.



5. Utilizes Existing Communication Networks

Most people are social. Nerdy, basement-dwelling computer science graduate students are the exception. Social scientists tell us that each person has a network of 8 to 12 people in his or her network of friends, family, and associates. A person’s broader network may consist of scores, hundreds, or thousands of people, depending upon his or her position in society. A waitress, for example, may communicate regularly with hundreds of customers in a given week. Network marketers have long understood the power of these human networks, both the strong, close networks as well as the weaker networked relationships. People on the Internet develop networks of relationships, too. They collect email addresses and favorite website URLs. Affiliate programs exploit such networks, as do permission email lists. Learn to place your message into existing communications between people, and you rapidly multiply its dispersion.

6. Takes Advantage of Others’ Resources

The most creative viral marketing plans use others’ resources to get the word out. Affiliate programs, for example, place text or graphic links on others’ websites. Authors who give away free articles, seek to position their articles on others’ webpages. A news release can be picked up by hundreds of periodicals and form the basis of articles seen by hundreds of thousands of readers. Now someone else’s newsprint or webpage is relaying your marketing message. Someone else’s resources are depleted rather than your own.

Put Into Practice

I grant permission for every reader to reproduce on your website the article you are now reading — “The Six Simple Principles of Viral Marketing” — see http://webmarketingtoday.com/articles/viral-principles/ for an HTML version you can copy. But copy this article only, without any alteration whatsoever. Include the copyright statement, too, please. If you have a marketing or small business website, it’ll provide great content and help your visitors learn important strategies. (NOTE: I am giving permission to host on your website this article AND NO OTHERS. Reprinting or hosting my articles without express written permission is illegal, immoral, and a violation of my copyright.)




When I first offered this to my readers in February 2000, many took me up on it. Six months later a received a phone call.

“I want to speak to the King of Viral Marketing.”

“Well, I’m not the King,” I demurred. “I wrote an article about viral marketing a few months ago, but that’s all.”

“I’ve searched all over the Internet about viral marketing,” he said, “and your name keeps showing up. You must be the King!.”

It worked. Even five years later this webpage is ranked #1 for “viral marketing.”

Why You Should Publish Both a Paperback and an Ebook

This content first appeared on Digital Point Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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So many people are now learning the true value in publishing a book to promote their businesses. I always tell my authors that their books are their business cards. A book is a way to highlight your expertise within your field in much more detail than you can do with traditional forms of advertising (e.g. print, radio, television) while also giving you a more professional air in the eyes of prospective readers/customers.

But here are two common misconceptions held by many new indie authors: one, they assume most people only read ebooks nowadays; and two, they assume ebooks are the only books they can sell online using various forms of Internet marketing. Both of these statements are incorrect … as I discuss in much more detail in this highly rated book where I teach you specifically how to sell audiobooks, ebooks, paperbacks, and hardcovers online.




The truth is, there are just as many people out there who still want to hold a physical book in their hands as there are people who love the compact convenience of e-readers. So, if you only publish an ebook, you’re likely losing out on half your potential audience.

No print budget? Not to worry! With the invention of print-on-demand (POD) technology, today’s indie authors no longer have to print and store physical books in order to sell physical books … whether those books are paperbacks or hardcovers. All you have to do is supply the digital files for your book’s cover and interior to the e-commerce site of your choice because most of these online retailers utilize POD technology to sell books rather than stocking those books in warehouses. Then, whenever they receive an order for that book, they simply print, bind, and ship the exact quantity ordered (whether it is one book or ten) all at the same time. Easy peasy!

Most of the e-commerce sites take digital files in the form of print-ready .PDF files and just store them on their servers, but I don’t recommend selling those .PDF files as ebooks because they are far too easy for users to copy and share with others (unless they are .DRMs … but that’s a whole different post). Instead, it’s pretty cheap nowadays to have the .PDF files converted into either .ePUB (the format used by KoboBooks) or .MOBI (the format used by Kindle) and sell them through the proper channels.

If you want to reach all your potential customers, then you need to realize that some of them are still reading hard copies and others are readying soft copies. Publish your book in both formats to give your customers more choice, and you’ll have the best possible chance at commercial sales success.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.

Unique Writing Advice from Margaret Atwood

I came across some writing tips by Margaret Atwood on BrainPickings.org the other day titled “Margaret Atwood’s 10 Rules of Writing.” Her advice for writing while on an airplane is quite interesting … and a sign of our times, I suppose. It made me laugh.

Presumably, most of us “write” with a keyboard now, not a pencil. But she makes a good point about backing up your work with a memory stick if you’re a digital writer. Great advice! There’s nothing worse than spending several hours writing anything only to lose the data because your computer crashes.

But listen. You should definitely read Margaret’s advice. The BrainPickings blog has included some great tips from her that we haven’t covered on this blog so far. This is one of the reasons why I recommend reading other people’s work, other people’s advice, et cetera. We can all learn from each other.




On that note, this content first appeared on BrainPickings.org and is being reshared here for your enjoyment:

Margaret Atwood’s 10 Rules of Writing

  1. Take a pencil to write with on aeroplanes. Pens leak. But if the pencil breaks, you can’t sharpen it on the plane, because you can’t take knives with you. Therefore: take two pencils.
  2. If both pencils break, you can do a rough sharpening job with a nail file of the metal or glass type.
  3. Take something to write on. Paper is good. In a pinch, pieces of wood or your arm will do.
  4. If you’re using a computer, always safeguard new text with a ­memory stick.
  5. Do back exercises. Pain is distracting.
  6. Hold the reader’s attention. (This is likely to work better if you can hold your own.) But you don’t know who the reader is, so it’s like shooting fish with a slingshot in the dark. What ­fascinates A will bore the pants off B.
  7. You most likely need a thesaurus, a rudimentary grammar book, and a grip on reality. This latter means: there’s no free lunch. Writing is work. It’s also gambling. You don’t get a pension plan. Other people can help you a bit, but ­essentially you’re on your own. ­Nobody is making you do this: you chose it, so don’t whine.
  8. You can never read your own book with the innocent anticipation that comes with that first delicious page of a new book, because you wrote the thing. You’ve been backstage. You’ve seen how the rabbits were smuggled into the hat. Therefore ask a reading friend or two to look at it before you give it to anyone in the publishing business. This friend should not be someone with whom you have a ­romantic relationship, unless you want to break up.
  9. Don’t sit down in the middle of the woods. If you’re lost in the plot or blocked, retrace your steps to where you went wrong. Then take the other road. And/or change the person. Change the tense. Change the opening page.
  10. Prayer might work. Or reading ­something else. Or a constant visual­ization of the holy grail that is the finished, published version of your resplendent book.

Effective Copywriting and Top of Mind Awareness (TOMA)

This content first appeared on Warrior Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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Writing really effective, eye-catching copy to promote a product or service is important. When it comes to online marketing, that copy also needs to cleverly incorporate the item’s highest ranking keywords for the purpose of search engine optimization (SEO).

But there’s more to it than that, and this is where things like blogging, social media marketing, and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising come in handy. If you want to reach all your current and prospective customers, then you must achieve top of mind awareness (TOMA) with all of them by constantly staying in front of them.

Some people think of their target market as a fixed segment of the public that share similar characteristics (e.g. my customers are adult males and females between the ages of 25 to 45 who enjoy … blah blah blah, you fill in the blank). But your customers aren’t static like that. Think of them more as a fluid stream of people who are flowing in and out of your market all the time. If you want to stay top of mind with them then you need to stay in front of them all the time so that, when they’re in the market to buy whatever it is you’re selling, they’ll recall you ahead of your competitors. This will increase your chances of a sale.




Here’s an analogy for you. Think of a shopping mall. Think of all the types of stores in that shopping mall: shoe stores, clothing stores, furniture stores, et cetera. Most everyone has a need to buy shoes, clothing, and furniture at one time or another, right? But you may not be in the market for it right this minute today. You may not need it until next month or next year. And who are you most likely to buy from when the time comes and you’re in the market to buy? You’ll buy from the most trusted brand in your mind–a trust that was built up over time with regular and consistent copywriting that was shared over and over again through blogging, social media, PPC, and whatever other means.

Why don’t you fill in the blank and name “whatever other means” people can use to achieve top of mind awareness with their clients. What are some other great vehicles we can use to stay front and center with our target markets? Leave a comment below.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.

[The Art of Copywriting] Creating Something New Out of Something Old

Kim Staflund: founder and publisher at Polished Publishing Group (PPG) and author of the PPG Publisher’s Blog

This content first appeared on Digital Point Forum and has been republished here with permission from the author.

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Whether you’re writing copy for your own company or freelancing for a variety of clients, chances are you’re going to be writing about topics that have been written about hundreds of times before. The best copywriters will have mastered the art of creating something new out of something old. But everyone struggles with this sometimes.

I have one possibly unique idea for the rookie copywriters who have come to this forum looking for guidance on how to best tackle a writing job. But I also invite all the pros to please add your advice into the comments below. We can all help each other. We can all learn from each other.

Okay, now for my somewhat peculiar idea…

Come up with a title for your topic that includes the words “3 Tips” or “4 Ideas” or something like that so you have a goal as to how many tips or ideas you’re going to cover in your marketing piece. Now pull out your dictionary (must be a physical dictionary), close your eyes, open it up to a random page, put your finger on a random spot on that page, then open your eyes and find the random word that you will use for your first tip/idea. Do this for as many tips/ideas as you have decided to write about so you have the same amount of random words to work with.




Now write to those words. Figure out a way to make them fit into your topic matter in a new and creative way. You can do it. You may surprise yourself.

Again, the idea is to NOT flip through to try to find “relevant” words you’re familiar with but to stick with that first random word, get creative with it, and figure out a new way to make it relevant to your topic. Since there hasn’t been much activity on this thread, I thought I’d better provide an example of what I’m talking about.

Let’s say the topic I have to write about is “How to Improve Your Blog’s SEO Using Social Media Marketing” but I want to try something new rather than just re-writing the standard type of article for this topic. So, I choose a random word to get my creative juices flowing. For the purpose of this post, I used an online random word generator (https://www.slideshare.net/secret/BCkZEP1DQHPyuS) rather than a dictionary so I could prove to you my word choice was random. It wouldn’t let me choose only one word. It had to be two or more. The words are “wizard” and “horses.” Here is the article that resulted from those two words:

How to Improve Your Blog’s SEO Using Social Media Marketing, Wizards, and Horses

Anyone with a blog knows the primary reason why blogging is so important is search engine optimization (SEO), which means to improve (optimize) one’s standing in the organic search results on search engines like Google. You might have a fairly high search engine ranking for one or two of your primary keywords, such as your business and personal name. Blogging can help to improve your ranking for many more including some keywords you may not have considered before that will open you up to a whole new audience.

Who are you blogging for? What target market are you trying to reach? Adults or children? Male or female? What sorts of information are these individuals looking for online, other than your typical keywords, that you could intercept to bring them over to your blog?

For example, a blog that provides help, tips, and support regarding adoption can piggyback on a really prominent, instantly recognizable keyword anywhere in the world such as “Marilyn Monroe” to attract an even larger audience. Maybe the title of that particular blog entry could be: Why Marilyn Monroe Became One of the Most Successful Orphans in North America.

What about if you’re writing a blog for children and their parents about Internet safety? Do these children love Disney? Perhaps The Wizard of Oz? Horses and ponies? Start blogging about these things to attract additional subscribers: There’s No Place Like Home: Internet Safety Tips from The Wizard Oz and Not All Horses are Your Friend: Beware The Online Trojan Horse. Adding cartoon graphics of these images to your blog will make each post even more attractive.

Now your blog entries are written. Where do you share them? That’s easy. Find out which social media sites your target market is using the most and share those blog entries there. Facebook and Twitter are safe bets for your adult readers. But what about the children? Why not try out these: Safe Chat Rooms and Social Sites for Kids.

The more creative your blog, the more readers it will appeal to. Step outside the norm. Think outside the box. That’s how to improve your blog’s SEO using social media marketing, wizards, and horses … and maybe even movie stars! ​

How is that? Make sense? By choosing those two random words, I came up with a unique idea for this blog post that I may not have thought of before. Now you try!




 

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