Inspired by the article by Amy Francisco, Confessions of an AC Content Producer, as well as similar articles by Rose Hunt and AndrewsMom, as well as numerous other articles on AC, I decided to write my own version. While Ms. Francisco’s article has some great points in it and is really an interesting read, her situation and mine are a bit different. I love reading articles like this about why people write for Associated Content and what they gain from it. As a true old-fashioned lover of the written word, I think anything that encourages people to read and write (for any reason) is a true asset to society.
However, in my time at AC, I’ve noticed that I am a bit different from many of the other users, especially the highly popular ones. How am I different? Well for one, I’m not here for clicks. At least, that was not my initial goal or priority with signing up. I enjoy the extra money that Associated Content brings but it is by no means my sole source of income. The per-article pay is significantly lower than what I typically make. But then, I’m not really here for the money. So, why am I here? Below are my top 10 “confessions” of why I write for Associated Content.
10. Promote my personal business site -I use AC to promote my website, which I use to bring in new clients and new assignments. Also, having the AC RSS feed on the homepage of my website keeps the content fresh as it regularly updates. This makes my website rank higher in the search engines.
9. Show samples of my writing -I also use Associated Content as a way to show possible clients samples of my writing. Since much of my assigned writing is ghostwritten, I don’t always get the opportunity to put it in my portfolio or have a byline to it. Often, I have to sign non-disclosure agreements and I am not even allowed to tell anyone about what I wrote (Except when my husband and I go “hey-I-wrote-that! Internet surfing” and search for all of my past ghostwritten projects to see how well they are faring). By using AC, I can write about what I want, however I want and use these articles as samples for potential clients.
8. Experiment with Digg – I use my AC articles as a way to experiment with Digg and other article promotion tools. Since many of my clients hire me to write articles for submission to Digg, I know that the higher we get “dugg”, the better. Playing with my AC articles, keywords, topics and headlines are all ways for me to see what works – and what doesn’t. My piece, Tyra Banks Show Kills World of Warcraft fared really well on Digg as do news pieces like my report on school closures due to flu outbreak.
7. Experiment with tags– Using my AC articles to play with tags and keywords gives me great insight into my other web writing. I learn new techniques for writing and marketing articles that I do for my clients and I learn more about what people want to read. The new beta Page Views feature from AC makes this even better because I can see which articles are getting the most hits and try to evaluate why. My writing, SEO (search engine optimization) and marketing techniques improve when I use AC articles to experiment with. And I’ve lost nothing by experimenting (plus, I get the flat rate offer from AC so I make something from it, even if it’s a small offer).
6. Get Ideas – Ok, I think some other content producers here at AC have admitted to this one as well. Reading other articles and headlines on AC are a great way to get ideas but I use it for ideas not only for other AC articles but for my other assignments as well. I submit to AC RSS feeds on topics that interest me or that I want to stay up to date on. I am constantly adding new ideas to my “idea box” after spending some time each day browsing Associated Content.
5. Stay up to date– As a web writer by profession, it’s very important that I stay up-to-date on what’s happening in the internet world and Associated Content is a great way to do this. The writers here are always digging deeper and looking for that next big news break or inspirational story. In the wide search for excellent content or to increase clout, writers at AC are scoping the internet and writing articles. I check the news section daily and also peek in on the lifestyles and other topics as well (such as gaming because I personally enjoy it).
4.Share my opinions- I don’t often have the luxury of sharing my own personal opinions in the writing that I do for work. When writing advertising copy, I have to promote the product or service regardless of how I feel about it. When writing articles or web content on assignment, I have to write from the point of view the client is asking me to use. Sometimes, I may have a different opinion or I may want to spin-off the ideas that I had for assignment but do something a bit different with them. AC gives me the freedom to be able to do this.
3. Meet others – While my main goal here is not really social interaction, it is nice to meet other people that share my interest in reading and writing. As someone who has a work at home business that focuses mainly on the internet, I don’t always get to interact with others on a regular basis. AC allows me to read the work of others and share thoughts, ideas and opinions. It encourages that communication and interaction that you don’t always find on other websites and it promotes and encourages intelligence and creativity. These are things that I value very highly which make AC a pleasant place to be.
2. Practice and exercise my mind- It’s so easy when you write for a living every day to get “stuck” in a certain way of thinking. I may become used to always writing a certain way or on certain topics. I may not always have the opportunity to experiment with a new writing style or new ideas. AC lets me do that and even better, it lets me see what the readers think about it. This lets me know what my strengths and weaknesses are.
1. Write what I want – The number one reason I started and continue to write for AC is because I can write about anything I want. In my business, where most of my work is on assignment, I don’t always have the opportunity to choose my topics. If I want to write an editorial or opinion piece, I have the freedom to do this as well. I can write anything that tickles my fancy and earn a bit of extra money in the process so it’s a pretty good deal for me.
Why are you here at AC? Many are here to earn money. Some hope to earn a living publishing articles on AC. Some use it to supplement other part time jobs, both on and offline. Some do it to express themselves or to share with other people. Everyone has their own reasons for being here at AC and I’d love to know why some of you are here and what your favorite AC pieces are (of your own).