In my last Article Marketing Fundamentals post, we discussed the article marketing skill of clairvoyance – getting into the mind of your ideal client so that you can write what she wants to read. Today's it's on to:
Article Marketing Skill #2 – Clarity
Great! Your ideal client searched online for a solution to her problem, and found a link to your article. It matched what she was looking for, so she clicks (while checking her watch – she only has a few minutes to spend on the computer).
She skims through the article, searching for key points, but only finds large blocks of text, one after the other. She dives in, but finds herself stumbling through long, run-on sentences that lose the point they started to make.
After a few minutes, she gives up, feeling disheartened to be no farther ahead with a solution. She clicks away from your article and moves on.
There are so many things competing for your ideal client's attention, including plenty of high-quality, free information. People simply do not have time to figure out what you're trying to say. If you don't say it clearly, they won't stick around long enough to read your author resource box and click through to your website.
To cultivate clarity in your writing, aim for shorter sentences and shorter paragraphs. Shorter sentences make it easier to focus on one point at a time. Shorter paragraphs create more white space on the page, which is easier on your reader's eyes.
Also, get in the habit of reading your work out loud before you publish it. That one simple step can highlight many common errors.
There are plenty of online resources to help you improve the clarity and readability of your articles, as well as reference books and style guides.
Watch for a discussion of the third article marketing skill – creativity – in a future blog post.