Article writing is a piece of writing which carries a matter of interest targeted at a certain audience. In article writing, ideas or opinions are presented in a well-researched, coherent, and grammatically correct ways, in order to pass across a certain message. Such a message could be about giving information, initiating critical thinking, soliciting debate, or seeking conversion on a product or service.
At some point, you might desire to write an article. For example, you could email your local newspaper on the rising political and social temperatures that are worrying you. Similarly, you could be a nurse who wants to inform the neighborhood on evidence based practices in health and self-care.
But perhaps, one of the most visible uses of articles is in eCommerce. There is a strong correlation between Search Engine Optimization and writing of articles. If you write excellent articles, you are going to rank high in the search engines, and you are going to attract considerable traffic. The field of eCommerce heavily relies on well written content in order to increase the bottom-line of the business.
This article will guide you on how to write good articles.
Rules for writing good articles
Topic and Title
The most important thing in choosing a topic for your articles is to be relevant and unique. Your topic has to be interesting to the reader. As far as possible, choose a topic which is eye-catching and will draw the attention of the reader. Your topic and title could either attract or alienate your reader.
The following are categories of general titles and topics that you can choose:
-Expository (Explains certain subject to the reader. Usually, it does not incorporate the opinion of the writer-the writer is an objective observer makes observations. For example if your subject was concrete art you would keep it about concrete art and be an observer without throwing in your two cents.)
In connection to this, it is important to avoid controversial topics. This is because you may not know how the readers are going to respond to such content. Remember, what matters are how you present yourself and your brand. You definitely want to come out as a professional and someone who is sensitive to the feelings of other people.
Content is King
When writing an article, you could be having a blank mind. You should start with creating a draft on the points that you think you must capture in the article. As you write the article, you can edit your work and remove what you are not comfortable with. Again, it is important that you start from general to specific.
When writing content, be sure to carry out an in-depth research of the topic under investigation. Be sure to use facts. For example, if you are discussing the challenges facing businesses in Palm Beach, you could refer to a survey carried out by the University of Miami. Similarly, if you are writing a health article, be sure to use authoritative sources, American Diabetes Association for instance.
When writing, consider if you are writing for a general audience, or you are writing for a specific niche or authority. If you are writing for fellow professionals, then you are at liberty to use jargon. However, when you are writing for a general audience, then avoid the use of technical language. That notwithstanding, a few technical terms can be used to a general audience. For example, most of the people are familiar with the term pro bono as used in law. That notwithstanding, it is good to avoid the use of jargon, at least as much as you can.
Be very careful about the sources of data and information that you use. For example, much as most Americans lean towards Wikipedia, it is not an authoritative source of information after all. You can use it for general information, yes, but do not go beyond there. There are ample research sources which are more credible. If you are inclined to the use of Wikipedia for your sources of data and information, then peruse through the specific pages (these are found at the end of the article).
The structure of the paragraphs plays a critical role in determining the aesthetics and readability of your article. As a general rule, the paragraphs should not be too short or too long. When the paragraphs are too short, the aesthetics of your paper could be poor. When your paragraphs are long, they tend to alienate your reader. An ideal paragraph is composed of three parts: a topical sentence, supporting sentences, and a transition sentence.
Your voice can help you stand out in an ocean of content. The voice you choose should resonate with the targeted audience. An objective paper should be written in third person. A subjective paper, for example, highly opinionated warrants a first person narrative as this can be used to capture ones past experiences. A brand voice is going to help you understand the culture of the company.
Whereas most of the people think that having a certain voice is an innate thing, you could, as a matter of fact, learn the voice. But whatever you do, avoid controversy. Note that the US is a multi-racial society, and you have to be careful with your communication style. Otherwise, your article might be offensive to other people, and it might take you a lot of time and effort to clear your name.
Some articles, by default, will want the use of third person. For example, if you are writing an article to submit to the National Institute of Health, then, it goes without saying that you cannot use first or second person.
Short Form or Long Form Articles
A short form article is, typically, less than 1000 words. A long form article is, typically, more than 1200 words. However, in writing, long form articles have greater benefits. With a longer article, you can capture the variables that are favorable to Google ranking. These include LSI keywords. Google has a tendency to favor a situation where the reader takes longer to read the article. It is assumed that the longer the time taken, the higher the interest of the reader in that particular article.
Plagiarism, in whatever form, has brought down successful people, and have threatened the benefits that come with writing. Careers have been brought down due to plagiarism, and people have walked away covered in shame. Do not be a victim of plagiarism as it can carry harsh consequences. Google has made significant development in detecting duplicate content. If you post duplicate content, you could be penalized by Google.
Simply, avoiding plagiarism requires more effort. For example, you need to read as widely as you can. Read about Ancient Egypt, read about Ancient Greece, read about Mesopotamia. Through reading, you will be surprised at how resourceful you are going to be as you become more informed and engage in critical thinking.
In addition to that, you can make your own effort to writing. As a matter of fact, you could do a primary research on how your small business is doing and use the same to educate others. You could ask yourself questions such as:
-What challenges do I face at the workplace?
-What challenges do I face when hiring staff
-How do manage to make profit even during off-peak times?
-How am I preparing for future business opportunities?
-How am I preparing myself for future business challenges?
-Which business model do I prefer to use?
-Which is my best decision in business?
-Which is my worst mistake in business?
Why You Should Follow Instructions
If you have been instructed to write an article, then you need to follow instructions to the latter. The best way of remembering everything is through creating a template or a draft before you write the article. This means that you are not going to forget any part of the instructions.
Check the type of English that your reader wants you to use. For example, the US and the UK could be sisters, but there are some differences on how the two use language. A UK resident would write the word behavior as behaviour. Therefore, learn to reads the instructions and follow them. The instructions are going to determine how useful your article is going to be.
The Use of Technology
There are ample technological solutions that are available for the modern article writer. You need to consider exploiting these opportunities for an optimal writing experience. For instance, grammarly is a digital platform which uses natural language processing and artificial intelligence in order to check grammar and spelling among other benefits.
However, make sure you are not tempted to use technology in the wrong way. For instance, when you use an article spinner provided by the internet, all you are doing is to write new content based on the same existing content. This is not only unethical but it is not beneficial to the reader.
Writing a Conclusion
A mistake that writers make is to write a conclusion when they are in a hurry. The best thing to do when writing a conclusion is to carefully read your work, and then makes an informed decision on how to write a conclusion. Again, your conclusion will depend on your target audience or your client.
You can write a conclusion through writing a summary of the points discussed in your article. In this case, you can present the key take always. You could present the most important point as a concluding punchline.
Another way of looking at a conclusion is making a futuristic argument of your topic. For instance, if you are exploring the use of artificial intelligence in construction companies in Florida, make an informed prediction of the phenomenon in the coming decade. Such a prediction should be based on the right statistics and the right sources of authority.
It is not enough to rely on software in order to check if your article is polished. Go through the article in order to check if there are spelling mistakes. At this stage, check if there are sentences which do not add any value to the article. At the same time, have a checklist of all the requirements of the article and see if there is something that you might have left out and make the necessary modification.
Making a peer review is not a preserve of the academic journals. Before you post an article, send it to your friends and peers and let them offer constructive criticism. Do not accommodate what you want to hear, otherwise, you will not be learning. You can also use this opportunity to ask an expert if certain claims are factual. Peers will help you learn about new information that has been released in a certain field. For example, in Search Engine Optimization, Google keeps on changing on the trends and the practices that are critical in initiating a search.
Monetizing Your Writing
The modern writer is well-positioned to monetize his or her writing. This is due to the advantages that come with the internet. The most effective way of doing this is through starting a blog. There are other ample ways of monetizing your writing. Magazines and newspapers are on the lookout for good content and they pay generously for well written articles.
If you have a unique personal story, peruse through the internet and you will see that there are agencies that are seeking content. However, if your story falls under a true story, then make sure everything you write and say is true. Watching the following two video sources can be an inspiration:
Who the (bleep) did I marry?
If you think your personal story could help you turn to a writer, remember to handle the issue of copyright and intellectual property rights.
The art of writing good articles takes time and requires practice. The more articles you write, the more exposed you are going to be, and the better your writing skills are going to be. In addition to that, writing articles will help you to learn the most effective ways of monetizing your writing skills.