Article marketing is great. I'm not going to deny that. But, have you looked at lately? It's a beast! I don't know anyone these days who goes there to find content to publish on their sites. Do you? I sure don't. It's just way too massive, and, frankly, some of the articles on there are disturbing.

Yes, posting your articles at is great for getting incoming links to tell the search engines that your site is important. And, yes, you can get traffic to your articles by posting there. But, as far as getting your articles republished by big ezines and blogs? Either you've got to be sending people there to find your articles (which I certainly wouldn't advise doing because of the high level of distractibility on their site) or you've got to have one of the top articles in a category.

The only time I go to the article directories to find articles to publish is if I'm specifically looking for reprint articles by someone. But most of us don't have the name to have people searching specifically for us — yet.

I'd like to present you with three alternatives today to help you to get your articles directly in front of potential customers.

1. Include your reprint articles on your own site and invite your readers to publish them with your bio.
Who better to spread the word about you and your products and services than your fans? You can see how Nicole Dean does this at She does it again at her help desk so that anyone wishing to contact her can find her content and spread it virally. Pretty tricky, eh?

2. Give Your Articles to your Affiliates and Others Looking for Money-Making Expert Content.
First of all, make sure you're adding at least some of your articles to your own affiliate center for your affiliates to publish on their websites.

3. Guest Blog at Hot Blogs in Your Niche.
Instead of submitting your articles at the article directories and hoping they get in front of your audience, why not place them directly in front of the people who you're trying to reach? You can accomplish this by guest blogging on relevant blogs. Simply contact those blog owners and offer them your original expert content. If you make your content and your offer good enough, they'll surely say "yes".

No matter whether you choose the options above or stick with standard article marketing, the important thing is to do some content marketing every single day if you want to continue to move ahead. Now get writing! 

In another post, I told you about how article marketing can be highly effective in driving traffic to your site, increasing sales, and giving you the status of "expert". That said, article writing does not come naturally to everybody. And even writers can run out of ideas sometimes.

A great way to overcome article writer's block is by using templates. You can take a template and use it to churn out articles on any topic or niche. Below are three of the most commonly used templates used in article writing. Try them next time you're trying to write but you keep drawing blanks:

1. Magic 7

There must be something magical about the number 7 because article writers like to use it and readers like to read articles with the number "7" in the title. There are many variations of this:

  • 7 tips to…
  • 7 ways to…
  • 7 steps to…
  • 7 biggest mistakes in …
  • 7 reasons to…

Once you have your Magic 7 article, write one article about each of your 7 points. Voila! You've got 8 articles done!

2. The Review

Here's the kind of article that everybody can write.I mean, you always have an opinion on something, don't you? Do some keyword research to find out what specific things people are Googling reviews for. The outline for this article is simple: Introduce the item. Write what you liked about it. Discuss what you didn't like about it. Finish with your bottom line – do you recommend it or not? If so, who would benefit most from it? Before you know it, you've got another article all finished. You can write reviews for:

  • Books
  • Movies
  • Music
  • Gadgets
  • Courses

3. How To

The most popular books are those with the words "how to" in the title. Same thing with articles. It seems we're always looking for the easiest, the fastest, the best way to do something. So why not write a how-to article for your target audience? Some examples:

  • How to… (a step-by-step instruction)
  • How to avoid…
  • How to find…
  • How to choose the best…
  • How to get…

These are just a few of the templates you can and should use to make article writing easy peasy. And remember, you can use these templates for your blog posts and Email marketing, too. In fact, there are tons of ways to repurpose and reuse articles.