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Article Marketing Tips for Keywords Lesson 4: Finding Long-Tail Keywords For Your Articles
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Here are some tips for doing your own keyword research...

Often using a phrase like, ‘how to,’ together with one of your main keywords can help you discover suitable long-tail phrases which can form suitable article titles too. This is ideal for article marketing purposes as the title is ready-made for you and is already optimized for the keyword in question, i.e. the title is the keyword and can’t get much better optimized than that, of course.

So let’s see an example of how this could work.

Researching The Demand…

For this example I searched for, ‘how to train dog,’ on Google’s keyword tool so this is basically a main keyword for the niche, ‘train dog,’ preceded with the phrase, ‘how to’.

Lots of results came back and I’ve highlighted one here: ‘How to house train a dog,’. There’s also another potential long-tail phrase in ‘how to potty train a dog’; both good possibilities for long-tail keyword phrases and both with very reasonable traffic levels.

Assess The Supply…

Now you need to assess the supply or in other words, how many competing websites are out there for the same keyword phrase and you can see a wide difference in results here.

‘How to house train a dog,’ with nearly 600,000 competing results and ‘how to potty train a dog,’ with around a tenth of that at 64,100; yet both have the same potential traffic levels.

So doing a direct comparison, you would have far more chance of ranking an article using the ‘how to potty train a dog,’ long-tail keyword; although it wouldn’t hurt to do both.

Rankings change…

Only a few months ago, ‘how to house train a dog,’ was showing less than fifty-thousand results so it’s always subject to continual change and it’s best not to get too hung up about it to be honest.

With article marketing just get a rough idea and then throw a lot of mud at the wall! Some will stick and some won’t. In other words, the important thing is getting a good quantity of articles out there over time, using keyword research to guide it and you’ll find some articles are winners, others not so; but you’ll average out as good results over all.

This Keyword Wouldn’t Be A Good Idea…

So let’s now look at an example of a keyword that wouldn’t be such a hot property. At the time of writing this post, the keyword ‘training a dog not to bite,’ showed only 320 monthly searches but nearly 80,000 competing pages. It could work, but the traffic levels are very low, based on the amount of competition, and there are probably better keywords available.

Using The Tilda ~ Character

In doing your research, you’ll want to research different keywords closely related in meaning, as well as discover as many new ideas as you can. A great way to do this is to use the tilda character ‘~’ before a word on Google.

It will bring back synonyms of that word highlighted within the SERPs; such as in the example shown above. You can see that Google recognises words like ‘education’ and ‘courses’ as all being related to and synonymous with ‘training’. You can not only use this information as the basis of further keyword research–for example you could start researching ‘dog education’–but you’ll also start to understand which keywords Google understands as semantically related.

The Easy Way: WordTracker

The information we’ve been through so far on keyword research illustrates the principals of keyword research, but it can take a significant amount of time to collate all the information for different keywords from the different sources and then to make sense of it, to determine which keywords have potential for you and not.

Thankfully, there is an easier way, and the tool I would recommend is Wordtracker, and this allows you to collate the information a lot more quickly. They even provide you with what they call a KEI which stands for Keyword Effectiveness Index. This helps you to identify the potential that each keyword has.

So you enter your main niche keyword into their tool; for example, ‘dog training,’ and it then goes through its entire database of keyword information and brings back literally hundreds of potential results, which you can then order by KEI, competition levels and so on.

At the time of writing this post, Wordtracker are offering a free trial, and it is certainly worth taking a peek to get the feel for it and how they can help. They also have a lot more information available on effective keyword research, finding profitable niches and so on.

Note: Links provided here for Wordtracker are affiliate links, and I’d stand to gain a small commission should you decide to purchase their paid-for services. If however you’d prefer not to go through my affiliate link, you can just go direct to, it’s entirely up to you.

Related Resources

This is where you can find all 6 parts of this keywords tutorial series.

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3 Responses to “Article Marketing Tips for Keywords Lesson 4: Finding Long-Tail Keywords For Your Articles”

  1. Ian says:

    Hi Steve,

    Keyword research is a minefield. You hear about so many different ways of carrying out keyword research. It is a very important link in the chain, and one that I am still not 100% comfortable with. Hopefully with practice I will improve in my keyword research.

    All the best,

  2. Andy Mason says:

    Good post Steve,

    I didn’t even know about the trick with the tilde character! :) Every day’s a a school day in this business.



  3. Allen Voivod says:

    The tilde trick is worth its weight in gold. Thanks, Steve!

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