Can an algorithm write original articles?

 

The age of robot writers is here.  The Associated Press uses algorithm to create news stories on market players reviews. Fox auto-creates some sports news that appear on its Ten Community site, while Yahoo! uses similar technology to produce fantasy sports reviews customized for each of its users. Few technology companies such as Narrative Science and Automated Insight offer tools to generate articles out of business data and spreadsheets.
But all these examples are not more than template-based information recycling. It looks a little bit like the content-spinning tools used by spammers, with just little more sophistication.

The age of robots
So can a robot really write coherent, meaningful articles like a human writer?
Apparently it can. We, at Articoolo Research Labs, released the first version of the content writing algorithm, based on artificial intelligence and NLP.
our algorithm is not supposed to completely replace human writers. Instead, it is aimed at helping writers by making the creation process quicker and cost efficient.
The methodology of writing an article upon request, about a topic the writer usually know nothing about, is simple – google it, find relevant resources, mix few of them together, rephrase it and voila! – a new article is born. Using Articoolo, this same process is improved and done by an algorithm so it takes few seconds and may even achieve better results.

What is actually NLP?
Artificial intelligence (AI) is the intelligence exhibited by machines or software (Wikipedia). The foundation and research of this field are based on the claim that human intelligence can be so precisely described that a machine can be made to simulate it. One of the main challenges AI research deals with is natural language processing.
Natural language processing (NLP) is basically divided to two components:
1. Natural Language Understanding (NLU) which involves mapping the given input in natural language into useful representations and analyzing different aspects of the language.
2. Natural Language Generation (NLG) meaning the process of producing meaningful phrases and sentences in the form of natural language from some internal representation.

Articoolo’s Algorithm uses AI methodologies so it can work like a human brain when writing an article. First, it will analyze and understand the context of the topic. Then it will find the best base resources, and extract sentiment and important keywords in order to find more related materials. Next, the algorithm reconstructs content from all different sources and finally it rephrases the new coherent piece. In order to conduct a proper rephrasing process Articoolo’s Algorithm uses an unsupervised learning technique for automatic detection of text entities – even with entities which are unknown to the system.

How to Write an Article?

Tips & recommendations on creating the best possible content with minimal stress

There are so many instances in which we need to write content – for our own personal use, for the public to see, for an work or for pleasure. At times you might have a good idea of what you’d like to write about, however, getting the words on the page proves to be a more difficult task than anticipated. Don’t let the block stop you!

So you can either use Articoolo to write the article for you or take a deep breath, and follow these steps:

  1. Concentrate

Writing is an intense activity which requires full concentration and a clear mind. Turn off your phone (or at least set it to silent), shut off the TV, sit in front of a desk, make yourself a cup of coffee and get into a writing mode.

  1. Start by throwing ideas out

If you already have the basic topic on which you wish to write an article, start by jotting down associative ideas on a piece of paper. After scribbling everything and anything that crosses your mind, go on and erase the ones that you find less relevant and keep the ones that may enrich your article.

Don’t hesitate to browse the net and look for ideas. Look at what other people have previously written on the topic, search for images that are relevant for your topic and try to get inspiration.

  1. Arrange your outline arrange your outline

Make a list of bullet points that will become the framework of your article. Now go on and look for materials on each bullet point. Try to make your sources as diverse as possible and avoid using just a single source.

  1. Summarize your materials

One of the biggest problems the information age holds is the overflow of sources and materials. Having too much information is almost as difficult situation as not having any information. After tracking the best sources and deciding upon the relevant materials you will have to combine and summarize everything. Then, you will also probably have to re-write it in your own words (you don’t want someone else to claim that you stole their text, do you…?)

  1. Become a storyteller

Everybody loves stories. Stories are enjoyable to read and make it fun to learn about things. Writing your article as if you are telling a story can increase the engagement your readers will experience, by placing the subject at hand in context and permitting them to see what they can take away from similar instances. Also, by writing about your very own experiences, you’re able to express your knowledge legitimately.

  1. Let it flow

You should feel happy and enthusiastic about your article. This is probably the only way to write a good piece of text and enjoy while writing it. When you feel the need to express your own opinions about a certain topic, words will just begin to flow onto the paper. Don’t let anything stop you, just keep on going as long as you have that inspirational stream.

In case you don’t get that feeling, try to think of a different topic to write about or find other aspects which deal with your original topic.

  1. Embrace quotes

Quoting someone else’s writing is not necessarily plagiarism as long as you keep it clear that this is a quote and don’t forget to credit the original writer that you have quoted them. Quotes can be a very elegant way to add depth and length to your article and reinforce your ideas with a seal of quality.

  1. Add images and videos rich media

A picture says 1,000 words, a video sometimes says 10,000. Find relevant visual media and add it to your article. When adding a photo or video make sure it is free to use and its rights are not protected.

  1. Go back to your text

Once completing your article give yourself a break. This break can last 10 minutes or 24 hours, but let your text rest for a while. When you return to it, it will suddenly make more sense to you and you will be able to correct, add or drop part of it. It is strongly advised to go back and edit only once you haven’t looked at it for a while, as you will have a fresh perspective and will be much more efficient.

Tips To Improve Your SEO Activity

A guide on all you need to know about writing SEO content

The reason for all the hype

Every business, freelance writer, website or blog owner today is greatly concerned with Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The reason for this is that by following the necessary actions to optimize their content, they greatly increase their chances of improving their rankings for search engines. In doing so, they improve the likelihood of being seen by readers. Aside from this important factor, writers follow the rules of SEO in order to create an effortless and enjoyable user experience which provides readers with the information they are looking for.

you may use ARTICOOLO to create unique content, for all of your article creation needs.

General points to remember

Improving SEO involves link building and on-page optimization, which results in the website gaining traffic for the website through organic growth. (This process differs from Search Engine Marketing [SEM] which pays to increase traffic to the website). Search engines such as Google rank web pages in order of what they regard to be the most relevant to the user’s search. It is therefore vital for writers to use keywords for their articles in order to be easily found. The more concise and accurate the keywords are, the higher the rank your page will be given by the search engine. The more relevant and engaging your text is, the longer the viewer will want to stay on your website and be inclined to share it. Here is a breakdown of what to consider when writing content for your website:

  1. Content should be natural, not overly formal.
  2. Content should be written using proper grammar and syntax.
  3. Content should be rich.
  4. Content should be structured well, like a story.
  5. Content should have a purpose.
Additional tips

When writing online content with SEO in mind, it is incredibly important to incorporate a nice balance of both visual and textual information, to keep the reader’s attention focused.

  • Use prominent social sharing buttons – make sure they are mobile-friendly.
  • Add “bucket brigades” to slash bounce rate and boost time on page – Words/phrases that keep readers on your page e.g. “Now,” “You might be wondering”, “Here’s the deal” etc.
  • If you publish list posts, try using an odd number – they get 20% more CTR.
  • Use [brackets] for your headlines – they get 20% more CTR.
Rich structure
  • Create rich structure by adding a “Tip” window, “What’s new”, or “Why this product” with a few bullet points.
  • Google loves points, numbers, charts, quotes etc. Anything to break the text down and make it effortless and interesting for readers.
CSS
  • Important keywords, conclusions or facts should be bold, underlined or written in a different color

 

The Magical Content Creator

 

Anyone who deals with content creation on a daily basis dreams of a magical tool that will write articles for them. The struggle of constantly generating ideas, collecting materials, finding related information, summarizing content from several different sources is not only frustrating, but it is also both time consuming and costly.

Failed attempts to aid writers

Several solutions aimed at easing the pain of these commonly approached problems have been introduced, though none of them actually provide a complete solution. You may have used one of those spinners out there.frustrating Spinner is the name the industry gave to the kind of tools that help you rephrase sentences. Assume that you have found a great article that you want to use as the basis of your writing; a spinner will help you rephrase sentences from this article so you avoid the likely chance of being accused of plagiarism. If you have used spinners before, you have probably noticed that there are several problems with the process. Firstly, you must have a source article to begin with. Secondly, you will have to rephrase the article sentence by sentence, which makes it quite a frustrating and tedious activity. And thirdly, most spinners do not understand the context of the sentence which greatly affects the article as a whole, often resulting in an incomprehensible piece of writing.

Another alternative for content creation exists in online content markets where you can find a person to write you material on demand. Hundreds of websites with thousands of writers just waiting to write about whatever topic you like. Sounds like a perfect solution, but the reality is far from perfection. An important fact you should acknowledge is that a large percentage of those writers are not native English speakers. That isn’t to say the produced writing will be of less quality…but there’s a good chance it might be. Additionally, you should consider the fact that the content writer you have hired and agreed to pay tens of dollars to is not an expert in the field you wish to write about (simply because no one can be an expert in every possible subject). This means that his knowledge and therefore the content of the article that is being written for you, will come from the Internet. That once again puts you at the risk of plagiarism, without even knowing it. A secondary problem which is not solved by using a paid writer is time. Even the fastest writer will need a few hours to write a decent piece of textual content.

Introducing: A real solution

The obvious and unavoidable issues of these so-called “solutions” to writing content has led to the creation of something quite spectacular. Something that actually works. A magical machine that writes you content upon request. Articles on the topics you want and at the lengths you need in less than one minute. Sounds like a real fairy tale, doesn’t it?

So now the dream has come true. Articoolo’s automated content creation tool will do exactly that. All it requires from you is to type in two to five words relating to the topic of your choice, determine the length of the requested article and voila! Our tool will create the article for you. The result will be 100% unique, proofread and of high quality, as if a human wrote it.

How does it work?

Articoolo’s content creator works like the human brain when asked to write an article. First, it will analyze and understand the context of your topic. imitates a human brainFor instance, if you wantit  to write an article about “The appliance variety of Apple”, the algorithm will understand first that “Apple” in this context is a name of a corporation, not a fruit. Once it has understood the context of your topic, it will find the best resources as a base and then extract sentiment and important keywords. It will then find related content based on the sentiment and main keywords, reconstructing everything to one coherent piece of text. At the end of this process the software will rewrite the article using an NLP engine for multi-level semantic identification and verify the readability of the text.

Once the process is complete, which won’t take more than a minute, you will have a completely unique, high-quality original article!

How to Write Content For The Web?

 

In some way or another, for whatever purpose it may be, we all express ourselves, our individuality, thoughts, passions and purposes, through the art of communication. Today, much of that expression comes in the form of writing. Both formally and informally, be it writing for academic literature, novels, journalism, social media, text messages or e-mails, we have more than enough experience writing about a wide scope of subjects. Just as the content for each of these platforms requires the writer to follow a certain structure, a certain language, writing for the Web also has its own special formula. The majority of us spend our time communicating with others, and a great portion of that happens through writing.

Everyone is a writer.

And that’s a good thing. At the same time, though, it makes it just a little bit tougher to have your words seen and appreciated. In his book on the must-dos of writing in today’s modern world, Jeff Goins lays out some necessary requirements for targeting and capturing audiences, branding yourself as a writer and building your network of fans as well as those who inspire you.

Here are some tips on how to successfully write Web content:  

  1. Accept that you are a writer – as Goins states, you might not feel like a writer but you are one, so learn how to do it exceptionally. Pick your topic, do your research (do it well) and…begin!
  2. Know your goal – whether you want to inform the public about something new, sell a product, pose a question or create a call for action, understand WHY you are writing what you are writing, and make that clear throughout your content. If  the reason you write isn’t apparent in your work, your audience will be lost. If you are unsure or don’t know, your audience certainly doesn’t.
  3. Know your audience – determine who you are directing your writing to and appeal to them and their needs. Much like a comedian has to feel out a crowd to know what type of humor to use in a joke, writers need to know their audience fairly well in order to use language, information and rhythm to appeal to and connect with their readers.
  4. Follow the rule of the inverted pyramid – put your primary and most important information at the very start of your article. Say it simply and clearly. Save the background for later. Give your readers a precise understanding of what you are writing about at the very beginning, in the first line or two, so they can decide if it is relevant to them. Write as though you are writing a news report – the headline should be clear, concise and simple. The first line of the report will describe exactly what has just happened, followed by the background information to catch you up if you aren’t already aware. The same applies for writing an article for a website.
  5. Keywords, keywords, keywords – use them to increase traffic, credibility, authority, leads and conversion rates, and ultimately, profit. Spend time on SEO keyword research in order to write the most effective article possible. Read more about enhancing content for SEO here.
  6. Use easy-to-read language – don’t try to write an article full of overly formal language, or content that will require readers to do more research. It is very safe to assume that the Internet will provide researchers with an overwhelming number of sources and a vast array of information on the same topic you are writing about. For this reason, website visitors tend to skim through the information quickly, looking for the most prominent data and avoiding any unnecessary text.
  7. Make your content skimmable – to invoke an easy, seamless and fulfilling experience for your readers, web content must include visual or aural aids. Infographics are widely used today and have proven to be successful in making textual information more engaging and effortless.
    visuals content
Post-writing must dos

So now you’ve gotten the words down on the page, and you’ve said everything you need to say. The work isn’t over yet, though! What are probably the most important steps don’t come until after you’ve completed the writing stage:

  • Any writer, no matter how experienced, must always edit their work once they are happy with the content. It’s usually a good idea to have someone else read your work in order to get a fresh perspective, new ideas and make sure that what you’ve written makes sense to others. If you are comfortable self-editing, give your piece (and yourself) some time to breathe between the writing and editing. If you edit right away you may lose the essence of what you wanted to express by being overly attentive to the text.
  • Share it! What’s the point of writing something magnificent if no one will ever see it? Get your work out there for the world to see by posting on various social media platforms. Target specific audiences that you know will be interested and get people talking.


Will Native Advertising Replace Display?

Banner – A Vehicle with 9 Lives

“Death of the banner” was probably already declared 5 minutes after the first banner went live in 1994 (even though it gained 44% CTR!). Since then, the banner has been argued about on a daily basis. In fact, the evolution of digital advertising has seen many factors and elements that supposedly contributed to the destruction of the banner.

One can count several phases in the life of this notorious format:

  1. At the beginning of the millennium, the main factor was Google. Google’s Adwords system enabled contextual advertising which made it much more efficient. However, not long afterwards banner-serving methodology adopted contextual techniques, which effectively eliminated this textual ad advantage.
  2. Following the resulting CTR drop, the “banner blindness” theory came into fashion threatening the existence of the banner format.
  3. Towards the end of the past decade, with online video going mainstream, the banner ad was about to be buried again in order to clear the way for video ads.

Today, all display and textual formats follow the same basic methodology, integrating data in order to reach the best-in-class efficiency and maximize ad monetization. Modern ad-serving software systems enable publishers and advertisers to serve various ad formats at once, optimizing and allocating budgets on the fly according to the results.

What is “Native Advertising” Anyway?

The latest banner-killer (or killer of all display formats) is thought to be Native Advertising. This dystopian generalization poses a crucial question, however: what actually is “Native” and will it really replace other known formats? Let’s take a look at the landscape .

One of the simplest yet most effective forms of native advertising are sponsored posts, pioneered by Facebook and Twitter. With their fundamental beliefs that advertising experiences on their platforms should conform to the user experience – not the other way around – they have unlocked one of the most impactful forms of advertising. This approach has perhaps had the biggest impact on mobile media and marketing, and the feed-based native ad has almost single-handedly provided the mobile advertising industry with a scalable monetization experience as opposed to traditional mobile ad experiences.

But native advertising does not only refer to sponsored posts. If you ask several people how they define “native”, you would probably get a number of different answers – sets from advertorial to branded entertainment to content advertising. In their first publication about native advertising, the Interactive Advertising Bureau, the IAB, addressed the issue by clearly defining the concept:“native is in the eye of the beholder, depending on where one sits in the ecosystem and the strategic and media objectives of the marketer.”

The IAB Task Force identified and described 6 different formats of native advertising, but even then stated that this report is subjected to updates and may serve only as a jumping-off point for deeper exploration on a variety of topics related to native advertising.

A native ad will usually be identified as such (“ad”, “sponsored”, “paid”, etc.) and it will have the look and feel of the content of the site it is placed in. What this means is that unlike regular banners, a native ad fits into the circulation of editorial content, both on mobile and desktop.

That’s what usually makes native advertising so powerful. Not only is it personalized to fit user demographics (like all other ad formats today), it’s also contextual and visually fits the background, which makes it more reliable, eye-catching, and relevant for users. The statistics support this, and according to the native ads platform Polar, click-through rates on native ads ranged from 1.5 percent to 9 percent, while the average CTR of a display ad is a mere 0.06 percent.

The Big Opportunity

One of the most talked about mantras in the industry lately is about how the  digital advertising ecosystem should and will change, for 2 major reasons – fraud traffic and ad-blocking.

A study from last year, carried out in conjunction with the Association of National Advertisers, found that 11% of display ads and almost a quarter of video ads were “viewed” by software and not by people, costing advertisers an estimated $6.3 billion in 2015.

When Tim Cook introduced content-blocking features in iOS9, thus causing a flood of ad-blocking apps in the App Store, the topic became more mainstream than ever. PageFair says that between 8% and 16% of ads are blocked in the US, vs. 10% to 35% in Europe; SecretMedia says that 26% of video ads are blocked in the US vs. 33% to 62% in Europe.

native ads

Those statistics hold a great deal of opportunity for native advertising. Brands and agencies that are  beginning to acknowledge they are paying for display and video ads that no one sees, will make the move towards native platforms, which ad-blocks don’t block (yet), promising better engagement with real human target audiences.

The Problem of Scale

What makes these types of advertising platforms so effective is the large amount of content. This is great news if you are in the travel business, because you already maintain those assets anyway. This creates another problem, though, since creating content at a high scale is both expensive and time consuming.

But the big advertising money is still in the hands of the big brands of the world. For those big spenders, creating a campaign based on hundreds of different content items is a nightmare. Instead of selling a product, they will have to become publishers or content providers and create content revolving around their assets.

To date, there are only several brands which have made this step. P&G is one of them, with its website beinggirl.com for feminine  products. To do this, though brands have to cut advertising budgets and focus almost all of their efforts on content creation.

The need of brands for unique quality content has become so dramatic that lately we have seen how even big publishers are jumping in:

  • The New-York Times recently launched “T Brand Studio” — a team of journalists, video producers, technologists, and strategists that creates and distributes native advertising for brands;
  • Forbes re-launched its BrandVoice platform in order to enable marketers to scale their branded content;
  • Buzzfeed just signed a partnership deal with Group, becoming a content marketing tech company.

Instead of playing a role as a media, publishers are now offering a full service solution that includes strategy and creative as well. They will not only publish the brand’s content, but will develop the concepts and do the actual writing, using their professional writers and reporters. This phenomenon could be dangerous for agencies, who may be replaced by professional publishing teams.

However, content partnerships of brands with publishers still does not solve the scale problem. It even makes it worse, by emphasizing the fact that producing large amounts of quality content costs quite a bit.

Native ad platforms are already suffering from the lack of content and will have to find solutions, together with brands. This presents an opportunity for agencies, which can position themselves as storytelling experts and become the preferred content creators.

Advertising Pros Intervene

Old school marketers, who tend to look at the world through the lens of their media channels, are probably asking their agencies for recommendations on content marketing activity.

Agencies’ solutions will usually be set around a new brand blog or branded content with cooperation from a publisher, and that is a certain trail towards failure. This is because a brand blog usually embraces the same approach to advertising: a focus on the brand and what it needs, not on its audience and what they need.

Advertising is about telling the brand’s story – the products, features and unique qualities – and foisting that information on the target audience when they’re trying to do something else. It’s essentially a self-centered practice.

To succeed in content marketing, you have to think deeply about the challenges, passions, and needs of your audience and then devise a strategy for how you can add value to their lives. Content marketing is about delivering the information, entertainment or utility that your brand is best suited in the world to provide. It’s about them. Not your brand.

This requires a total approach reset. We need to start thinking about how to get target audiences to engage with the brand’s content because they want to and not because we disrupted them. This is the opposite of push marketing. Pull marketing is about really adding value.

Succeeding with content marketing needs to go beyond the one-off. Understanding the mentality of your audience is a process that is built over time.

Content is not another advertising channel. You can turn almost everything you do into great content. Marketing and advertising resources shouldn’t go in the trash as soon as the campaign is over.

Take GoPro for example. This brand is not just a camera, it became “an enjoyment platform for people around the world to watch.” GoPro did this by enabling their fans take over their brand promotion and by utilizing user generated content. Not only do users post videos of their own experiences, but GoPro also buys the rights to self-shot videos with unique and inspiring content, polishes them, and then posts them to its owned channels for additional distribution. By doing so, GoPro is inspiring others to believe that they, too, can “be the hero” by using a GoPro camera to record their experiences. The brand’s content and the brand clients’ content became the best promotional tool of its marketing activity.

Native advertising isn’t the next generation of display. It requires a strong base of content strategy that begins with the creation of valuable, interesting and engaging content and then using native advertising platforms as the vehicle for distribution at scale.

The Native Advertising Playground

native advertising platforms

There are few major players in the native platform market. Those entities usually call themselves “content discovery platforms” because they help publishers expose their content to relevant audiences and help users discover relevant content.

Taboola and Outbrain are the leading global players. Taboola currently serves over 200B recommendations to over 550M unique visitors each month on websites such as USA Today, The Huffington Post, TMZ, Time, Daily Mail, NBC NEWS, The Weather Channel, and FOX Sports. Outbrain’s numbers are similar – they serve 190b recommendations to over 560M unique users every month on websites like CNN, Sky News, Le Monde, slate, Mashable, ESPN and more. Both of these companies are Israeli and their development centers and the bulk of their headquarters are still in Israel.