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#341: Writing Articles for Magazines

Posted By Mark Haas CMC FIMC, Monday, July 05, 2010
Updated: Tuesday, July 06, 2010
Whenever I write an article for a popular print magazine in my profession, I get very good feedback from the magazine's editors but don't appear to generate any additional consulting business. How might I more effectively maximize my article's impact?

Since you asked about print magazines, we'll leave off the (probably more productive) area of ezines, blogs, discussion groups, online article distribution, etc. Here are some things to help to generate readership and maximize the potential for the generation of contacts as a result:
  1. Be sure to have the magazine include your e-mail address in your byline or description (you may need to fight for this one, and some publications may not want to allow it).
  2. Make sure that you label yourself as a consultant (or advisor or whatever is appropriate for your prospects) in the author info.
  3. Write articles that reference the fact that you perform consulting work for clients in addition to demonstrating your technical/professional expertise. For example, "In my consulting engagements, I have noticed a general discomfort on the part of my clients when discussing the subject of reorganizations." A subtle mention is all that is required; don't be brazen about it.
  4. Try to include stimulating ideas in your article that promote additional questions on the subject. It is likely that readers will come to you to get answers.
  5. If appropriate and additional material is, in fact, available, add a line such as, "For readers who would like a complete copy of this referenced study please contact Mary at"
  6. If there is an accompanying photo, see if you can provide a caption, such as "Mary Jones, OD Consultant".
  7. Write articles for other magazines read by your prospects. Leverage the fact that "Mary, a noted consultant specializing in OD, has articles featured in such noted publications as A, B, and C". This requires some research to see what the publication influence pecking order is.
  8. Acquire a supply of "reprints" (authorized copies of your articles obtained from the publisher) and leverage them in your marketing material or as handouts in presentations. You might even use them in a special mailing to prospects and clients, if appropriate. Think print on demand to minimize waste.
  9. And finally, alert your existing clients to the upcoming article via e-mail and perhaps again when the issue "hits the street".
Tip: Even for print (yes, ther are a lot of people who prefer it to online periodicals) there are many creative ways to leverage your writing to generate inquiries. Take a closer look at some established contributors to your field's periodicals and see how they approach generating further interest.

© 2010 Institute of Management Consultants USA

Tags:  communication  intellectual property  marketing  reputation  sales 

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