The Nuances of Article Writing

A substantiated fact, article writing and marketing are a cost free way to get the word out and therefore traffic to, your website or blog. Traffic, as all Internet marketers know, is the lifeblood of your web business. You can have the most beautiful website in the world complete with intricate Flash integration and dazzling graphics to present your product or service plus compelling user interaction but if no one sees it, it is simply useless fodder in the vast expanse of Cyberspace.

But is there more to article writing then just being a vehicle to draw potential customers to your site? There certainly is if you take the time to consider that an article is representative of who you and your company are.

However, it is truly astonishing that so many individuals do not take this key component into consideration when sitting down at their computer to write an article. They instead simply proceed to jot down as if on a scribble pad random thoughts and attempted benefit descriptions in a feeble and glaringly rushed attempt to just get something down “on paper” and published in the hopes that it will suffice to achieve the goal of convincing the reader that further pursuit of the topic, vis-a -vis clicking through to the website is worthwhile!

If one were to take the time and expense to produce a newspaper or magazine ad for their companies product or service you can bet it would be well punctuated, formatted and edited before being released to the public to view and scrutinize. After all you are marketing your company and at a substantial cost in most cases. Why would an article be any different?

It should not, and even if it is not costing you any money directly there is still a cost in the form of how unfavorably the viewers of your article may look at you if it is poorly written and presented!

Here are some critical areas in which you should analyze your articles:

Spelling and Grammar

We have become a society of instant gratification, instant results and instant dissemination. Email has become the fertile grounds for a perceived ignorance of the fundamentals of formatting, spelling, punctuation and grammar; in short, a forum for the general butchering of the English language.

Instead of becoming a replacement, but still retaining the proper fundamentals of writing as it was meant to be as in traditional hand or typewriter letter writing, email has spawned a generation of short cutting, grammar killing, spelling annihilators that make English teachers want to vomit and make the general public look like a bunch of illiterate imbeciles even if they aren’t. The purpose of email at its base is to communicate quicker than waiting on snail mail, not to destroy the entire English language, and it has morphed into botching up everything we do when it comes to written communication forms.

We won’t even go into instant text messaging as I do not want 2 take 2 hrs 2 try 2 d ci per it in 2 somthing u wld understd ok?

Anyone reading this article will know exactly what I am talking about because we have all seen or even been guilty of composing and transferring these miserable excuses for “letter writing” to our friends, family or the ultimate transgression; business associates, business contacts and the worst offense; communication with our customers and articles are no different!

If you are going to write quality articles and yes even email, you should keep intact good grammar, spelling, punctuation and formatting principles and fundamentals. There really is no excuse for anything but the proper in light of the fact that along with all the instant assimilation of information and dispersion of such, associated with the Internet, there also comes instant online tools like spell-checking, dictionaries, encyclopedias and thesaurus’s.

Punctuation

Even with modern computer technology there are problems with certain punctuation marks. In particular the apostrophe key can wreak havoc. Have you ever seen someone typing the word you ll and the apostrophe is missing or replaced by a strange character?

Here is a technical explanation for this: Every character you type looks on-screen like a letter or number or mark that you understand. In the background, however, each character is represented by a number that is part of the ASCII code. (ASCII=American Standard Code for Information Interchange). The code is a 7-bit binary number, and the combination of 1s and 0s allows up to 128 characters. These are letters (upper and lower case), numbers, and standard marks of punctuation, diacritical marks, etc. You’d think that this would allow for even more complicated punctuation (“curly” quotes instead of “straight” quotes, for instance), except that a few dozen of the codes are used for computer instructions.

Extended ASCII and Unicode are two of the codes people have produced to cover the less-common marks: copyright, registered trademark, etc.

The “curly” quotes don’t fit into standard ASCII. When a program like Microsoft Word uses the fancy quotation marks (it can be set to do this automatically), or to turn 2 hyphens into an em dash, it looks great on-screen or on-paper. But when you send this file to a program that doesn’t recognize Extended ASCII or Unicode, you get bad results.

When you see an email where an abbreviated word has turned into gobbledygook, it is the result of the current program trying to translate some other programs preferred code into its own.

So the short answer is to use straight quotes if you want to be safe or better yet try to use less shortened words and incorporate writing that uses the traditional long version. You will never know how much better this looks than You’ll never know how much better this looks, until you see it!

Formatting

Equally important in presenting your articles as professional is to format them properly. In this article I am not going into all the aspects of formatting like bullets, numbering, tabs, etc but if you do not do anything else use paragraphs properly. A paragraph should be unified, coherent, and well developed. Paragraphs are unified around a main point, and all sentences in the paragraph should clearly relate to that point in some way. The paragraph’s main idea should be supported with specific information that develops or discusses the main idea in greater detail. There is nothing worse than an entire article written in one giant paragraph and trust me I have seen plenty written like that.

In summary; your articles represent you and your company. Not only should it be a matter of course for the proper use of all we have discussed but a matter of pride in how you present yourself and your product, service and company. I know I personally view anything written to sell me or move me emotionally or financially, that is poorly presented very dimly and I would bet most people view it the same, so practice and initiate professionalism in your article writing at all times if you want to make a good impression and move your targeted viewers to visit your website or business and buy your products and services.

, Brad L Hodges ,http://ezinearticles.com/expert/Brad_L_Hodges/233447

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