By Jami Bernard - Barncat Publishing
This is a guest article by my friend and associate, Jami Bernard.
Being a multi-million-dollar success in your business is really quite simple. This is all you need:
• A multi-million-dollar bank account;
• A multi-million-name mailing list;
• A top-drawer staff to handle the overflow.
Okay, thanks for reading!
If you DON’T have those three things, there’s another option: Get the attention of quality prospects by writing a quality article. Nothing fancy — just a good, powerful, bullet-point article that speaks the language of your target, and serves as the perfect follow-up or a tease for your ezine. It does everything except the dishes.
It’s also surprisingly easy to write, even if you “hate” writing or feel you can never finish or get it into the right shape.
Robert likes to call this type of marketing currency the “10 Mistakes” article, because it often takes the form of “10 Mistakes to Avoid When …” Another term for it is the “bullet-point article,” because instead of slowly, painstakingly crafting your ideas into, say, an op-ed or an essay (MUCH harder to write!), you can group what you want to say into a set of rat-a-tat bullet points … as you just read above, in the intro to today’s ezine.
Yes, it really can be that simple!
To give you an example of how painless writing such an article can be, I’ll quickly show you how to take care of 4 Common Problems with 10 Mistakes Articles. (Notice that I am about to go into bullet-point article mode!)
• You’re not sure what to write about, or whether you have anything interesting to say. One exercise I do with the independent professionals I work with is to ask them: What do you privately wish you could say to potential clients who really need your services but don’t yet realize it? We’re talking fantasyland right now, not real life. For example: “Hey, bud, you’re doing all the wrong things!” “Watch out, you’re about to make a big mistake!” Now, back in the real world, try rephrasing those thoughts a little more politely, and you’ve got your main bullet points.
• You have trouble fleshing out each bullet point. All you need, really, are three sentences per bullet point. The first one says a little more about the topic, the second one turns it around to show readers how their lives might improve if they did things differently, and the third one can be an example taken from your own business experience or expertise. Example: “When I first met Robert Middleton, he was wearing funny shirts, and now he wears my special insignia shirts and gets so many more compliments.”
• You get stuck writing the intro and it turns into 70 pages of gobbledygook. Hey, you’re not trying to win the Pulitzer Prize here. If you just promised readers 5 Ways to Know if You’re a Genius, they want to get right to those 5 Ways! They don’t want to be stuck reading an endless introduction, especially since they already know the topic. Keep the intro short ’n’ sweet, and your readers will thank you.
• You don’t know how to end the article. No need to sum up, pontificate, philosophize or retread. Just give your Call to Action and you’re outta there! A good “10 Mistakes” article is fun to write and fun to read, and YOU can write one. In fact, you just finished reading one. That wasn’t so painful, was it?
Jami Bernard is the author of 10 books, and the founder and CEO of Barncat Publishing (www.barncatpublishing.com), where she helps writers and independent professionals who are struggling to finish, polish, and launch their books. Copyright © 2011 Barncat Publishing, Inc.