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Hi All, Newbie to actually doing AF and seeing it through

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Wotack, Dec 11, 2015.

  1. Wotack

    Wotack Affiliate affiliate

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    Hi all,

    I've been interested and studying affiliate marketing for years, started many sites, got accepted with affiliate networks etc. But always let these die due to time pressures of keeping these updated. (needless to say not a penny or cent for that matter earned surprisingly ;-) )

    The web creation bit is fine as I have been building sites for years (although I do get hung up on everything needing to be perfect - which I am realizing is a no no in terms of actually moving something forward). So that's less of an issue.

    The ideas of what market to target and the type of content that I want is also fine as I feel I have a good grasp of what makes for good/bad content on a topic.

    So with that in mind, I guess my question is really about content writing and what are the best methods to employ. My concern with using sites like freelancer.com (and others for content writing) is that:-
    1) how do I know the content is actually original?
    2) should I trust that writers will supply my content and then not just re-purpose it for someone else that asks for the same type of content?
    3) What is a sensible budget? It's difficult to know if it is good value paying someone $25 for an article as opposed to paying a seasoned pro $500 for an article. I know the quality should be vastly improved, but it's a bit chicken and egg in terms of what I can outlay without knowing what my potential return could be - so need to stick on the lower side of things for starters.
    4) Writing stuff myself - this I would be happy doing, but again I get hung up on things being perfect and so it takes too long. Would really welcome a how to structure a good post type list if anyone has one. So almost like a tick list that journalists use (or doing a science experiment paper at school), i.e. Title, what article is about is summary, Content (Who, what, where, why), conclusion type scenario.

    Are there any other sources, suggestions that people may have for content creation, particularly article writing.

    Lastly, I have always been led to believe that a written article should be around 350 - 500 words. Is this still the accepted norm (for good Search Engine Ranking purposes)?

    I am very much interested in long term sites, rather than the popup "clickbank-special-offer, buy now (2 hours to go) for savings" type scenarios. I know they can work, but that type of stuff is not for me as I have to actually like the site and its content that I am working on.

    Any help, advise, comments etc would be welcome.

    Thanks for your time and hope you guys are all doing well in your own affiliate niches,

    Cheers,
     
    K, MarinaKimia and T J Tutor like this.
  2. Red

    Red Affiliate affiliate

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    I don't know what others will tell you. But I will tell you what I feel based on experience and research. Take it for what its worth.

    As far as content goes, you want to write it yourself. Only you can put your personality into it. The conversational and personable, the better. You want to build trust with your audience. An audience that trusts you will re-visit you. If they re-visit, they will buy. And most people can smell fake content a mile away anyway. I've seen people say to use content creators and then edit atleast 50% of it to avoid duplicate content. Doing it this way is both the lazy mans way out and also winds up creating more work for yourself. The content needs to make sense.

    350-500 words is basically a summary or review in summary. If you want to get in the top results (placed within the first 10 search pages), aside from proper keywords, the content itself should be a minimum of 1500 words. If you can't do that right away, publish anyway. You can always tweak it later. Some content is better than no content. I have a few posts that average 700 - 800 words I still need to tweak. They are getting me views, and by publishing anyway it's keeping a constant flow of "new" content on my sites. An active site ranks better than a dead site. But again, the content has to make sense.

    The article format really depends on what your writing. Is it a review? A info-article? Tips and how-to's? Each different article type has a different layout that would look cleaner for the content being written.

    Best thing you can do is just be you. Pick a niche on a topic you're interested in and the content should flow pretty nicely. Proof-read for grammar and spelling errors, and publish. If it's under 1500 words, you can always go back later and tweak it.
     
    T J Tutor and Wotack like this.
  3. Wotack

    Wotack Affiliate affiliate

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    Thanks Red, really appreciate your response. Very helpful thank you.

    My concern with writing articles and then altering/updating them is that it would have a negative impact with search engines. Is that not the case? Or I guess from your standpoint that a site with a slight negative impact due to article updates is better than having no impact at all due to not having an article in the first place. Or reading back over your post, I guess maybe you mean not re-work the article, just add to it.

    In answer to your question of what types of site, the primary one that I am working on is health food related - so more informational rather than reviews of specific products. So for example these types of nutrients are known to do "*this" (and various links to products that contain ("*this").

    In terms of your 1500 words, typically how long does it take for you to write something of that size. I know all articles are different based on subject matter and complexity but a general 1-2 days for example or more? It's more to get a feel for what time scales I should be looking at and striving towards. Do you set yourself a goal of x words per hour or do you just set aside x hours in a day and see what you can accomplish in that time. Also in your view what is a minimum amount of articles from your experience that you should look to launch a site with? My thoughts were around 5 at a very minimum with a schedule in place to add every week.

    In there any mindset that you have when writing? i.e. you are just talking to a friend offering friendly advise.

    I'm totally new to content writing (although the amount of emails for work and correspondence, may actually amount to me actually being more efficient at writing than I think I am) ...fingers crossed anyhow.

    Really appreciate your thoughts though, especially around when an article is done/good enough. Or does that matter? Is it more about just getting into a regular flow of article writing and getting them out of the door, rather than having that "Novel" that will never be released as it is constantly being worked on in an effort to be perfect?
     
    Red likes this.
  4. Wotack

    Wotack Affiliate affiliate

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    ok so an update to that ...I just counted the words in that post, which I found easy to write (not much information or valid stuff I concede), but anyhow it amounts to 389 in around 5 minutes. So with that in mind, maybe I am best writing just anything as the first draft and setting myself a minimum time for it, then allotting the same time again for sense checking/rewording as necessary. That being the case on a new topic I am thinking I could probably write 1500 words as a first draft in around 2 hours and then spend another hour or 2 refining. Does that sound like a realistic type of goal to you?
     
    Red likes this.
  5. AF-Roger

    AF-Roger Affiliate affiliate

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    Welcome to AffiliateFix

    You should find answers to every question you asked in the forum. Read, study, ask questions.
     
  6. Red

    Red Affiliate affiliate

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    You're welcome.

    It wouldn't exactly have a major negative impact. By posting what you have, it keeps the search engine bots on your site looking for more fresh content. By going back later and tweaking it, it actually looks good to the bots. The bots will pick up the changes and re-crawl the content for the additions. The more information included, the better that post will rank than it did previously. Which helps the site overall in the long run. You don't need to re-word it, just add in-depth information to what you already have. You're basically adding meat to the skeleton. If your site sits too long without fresh content, the bots will leave. It typically takes 30 days or longer for them to re-visit once they left.

    I'm doing one on natural/organic products. But I'm mixing it up with product reviews as well as information. Your way is fine too. It's nice to see someone else in the health niche.

    Most in the industry recommend one article a day for your first month or so. However, for some people that can be rough. I run a ministry blog, a personal blog, and two affiliate sites. My ministry and personal blog I try to do one a week. But in the beginning I was pumping out as fast as I could. Now I rank most positions on the first two pages of results, including the top three results in a row on most topics I write about.

    On my affiliate sites, I'm concentrating more on the business site and I'm pushing an article a day. The organics site is only seeing maybe four a week.

    If you can get one per day, go for it. Otherwise five per week should be fine, just try not to go under that and post the same 5 days each week.

    As far as a schedule goes, I don't really have one. I go with the flow. But typically I spend about 2-3hrs in article prep (research, notes, etc) and about an 1-2hrs writing and proof-reading before I publish. But this only came in time. When I first began writing (long before I got involved in affiliate marketing), it took me a bit longer to get the same results I do now. Practice makes perfect. The more you do it, you'll learn techniques in your research, etc that will save you time.

    When you write, you want to sound authoritative yet approachable. If you write as if you're speaking with a friend or family member, it usually does the trick. You come across strong enough like you know what you're talking about, but not so strong you scare them off. Your audience should be viewed as family (in my opinion). A family takes care of each other. You're taking care of them by offering sound advice, and they're taking care of you by clicking your ads. You want to nurture that relationship, not abuse it.

    Everyone's new in the beginning. You really have nothing to worry about. If you write in the same manner as you would speak to a friend or family member, you'll be fine.

    Never write an article with the idea of it being good enough. If you write with that mindset, you'll wind up with some pretty shitty work. Trust me, been there done that. Usually your first or second draft wins the audience. I usually publish my first draft after I fix spelling and grammar errors.

    That's pretty much what I'm doing now, as stated above. But it took me time and practice in my writing skills. You could set that as a goal, but don't get frustrated if you don't hit 1500. Publish what you have, and tweak it as necessary.
     
  7. Wotack

    Wotack Affiliate affiliate

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    Thanks Red, that's really helpful and has given me the pep talk I needed to just crack on. Appreciate your time and feedback :)

    All the best with your natural/organic site - it's a worthy topic :)
     
  8. Red

    Red Affiliate affiliate

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    You're welcome. Glad I was able to help.

    Good luck with yours as well. Stick to it and you'll find success. Just remember, all good things come in time.
     
    Wotack likes this.
  9. T J Tutor

    T J Tutor Administrator Administrator moderator affiliate

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    Hello @Wotack , welcome to AffiliateFix! It's great to have you with us.

    I have read this entire thread several times today and I have to tell you that as a content marketer, @Red has given you an abundance of very truthful and accurate information. Follow it, do it, you will get results. Develop your own, refined, writing style. Become an expert at research into the material and your audience. Track your results and refine your work according to reader response!

    I'm looking forward to your posts and threads.

    Check out the DOJO as it is full of great tools and contributions for successful marketers. Click the banner below to learn more.

    [​IMG]

    Remember This! : Nothing has to be perfect before you start. Read & study, but invest and implement at the same time. You cannot learn all of it from reading and studying. A great deal of your learning comes from implementing!

    Good Luck!

    T J
     
    Red likes this.
  10. Wotack

    Wotack Affiliate affiliate

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    Thanks TJ, appreciate your comments.
     

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