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Article Marketing Strategy: Creating a “Class Schedule” for your Article Topics
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Your readers want to learn. Start thinking of your articles as "free classes".

Isn’t it interesting that businesses will spend so much money trying to lure customers to their brick and mortar stores?

They’ll draw up marketing materials, do free give-aways, and write eye catching copy to pique the interest of people in their target market, but there is one very simple thing that a business owner can do that will attract potential customers without fail:

Give a free class.

I was reminded of this last week when I received a flyer in the mail advertising free gardening classes. Every week they are offering a free class where they teach something about landscaping, growing roses, how to select small trees, how to plant bulbs, and all sorts of interesting topics for a person who enjoys gardening.

I saved the flyer and selected some classes I wanted to attend. Only after having the mailer for several days did I take notice of where the classes were being held–at a nursery. It’s not a nursery that I’m familiar with, but I’ll happily go there to take the classes.

And I feel pretty sure that after I take the class, the nursery will have all of the supplies I need to put my new found knowledge into action. Works out nicely for everyone, doesn’t it?

This is what article marketing is like. Each article that you write is like a free class.

You may teach on the same topic more than once, if you come up with a new way of getting the information across.

You don’t have to try to trick someone into reading your article or coming to your website–just give excellent free classes (in the form of articles), and people will flock all around.

Planning your class schedule.

I admire that nursery’s organizational skills–they had all of their classes planned out for the entire year.

After seeing that I thought, “What if I were that organized? Could I possibly come up with a year’s worth of article ideas this month and then follow my “class schedule” throughout the year?”

I am going to try it–what about you?

Here’s my strategy, inspired by the class schedule that the nursery put out:

Does your topic have a seasonal aspect to it?

My topic is not related to nature in any way, so I was doubtful if there were seasonal elements to it. I tried to think if there are certain times during the year where people are interested in certain topics, and I was surprised to find that there are:

January – April

The beginning of the year is usually when people like to either renew their efforts or take on learning a new skill. It’s a great time for articles that initiate beginners to my topic (or your topic).

The beginning of the year is also an organizational time–people want to feel like they have a plan that they can follow. Articles emphasizing productivity and organization seem to fit especially well in the first months of the year.

May – August

I’m just judging by myself, but when the weather turns nice, I want to spend as much time as possible outdoors. That means I want to spend as little time as possible working (Spring Fever anyone? I think I may have it already…).

So, I’ve decided that my “class topics” for these months will:

  • Build on the beginner knowledge that was taught in the previous months
  • Focus on renewing enthusiasm of target readers
  • Productivity – tips for getting the most done in the least amount of time. For me that might mean coming up with some article templates or some tips for generating article ideas.

September – December

The year is wrapping up. Some people will have spent the year making advancements in their business, learning new skills, and feel pretty good about what they’ve accomplished. Others may think, “Is it the end of the year already? Doh! I didn’t do what I set out to do.” Then they sit around kicking themselves (I know because I’ve been there!).

So, articles for this time of year for me at least will take both of these groups into consideration.

  • Do some more advanced teachings
  • Encourage those who have fallen off the horse to get back on
  • Start gearing up for next year

Your Homework:

Now, this is all very general isn’t it? I don’t have any specific class schedule yet, but I’m using this general info to help me get this year long article topic schedule put together. The next step will be more specific.

Your homework is to come up with a very general schedule for next year, like the one I created above. You can do it seasonally like I did above, or come up with your own way.

Next time we’ll go more in depth and brainstorm actual class (article) topics.

Photo Credit:

Japanese Garden Maple Tree by ahp_ibanez


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4 Responses to “Article Marketing Strategy: Creating a “Class Schedule” for your Article Topics”

  1. Dottson says:

    Steve,

    Thank you for a very interesting article. I had never thought of an article as a “free class” but I believe you’re absolutely right.

    Also, I do believe I should come up with a general schedule for an entire year. It might just reduce writer’s block!

    Warm regards,
    Dottson

  2. Nearly 200 million people of the world are using Google.

  3. deven says:

    Thank you for a very much interesting article.
    Warm regards,
    deven

  4. Great tips! I love the reference to article marketing as giving a series of free classes. Adding seasonal themes would be a good idea too.

    Janette Stoll

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