As a business owner or seller of a product/service, you write articles that are relevant to your industry and you provide useful information that your customers would benefit from. This can benefit businesses both online and offline. That is right, we are not just talking here about online marketing.
If you run an offline business, you can use article marketing. The internet simply offers a different form of distribution - it does not change the fundamentals behind the idea.
The point of article marketing is to build credibility and trust between you and your customers. You offer them free, useful information that is relevant to them and you look like a hero. They respect you for it.
Because an article provides useful information to your reader, they are more likely to read it than to look at a simple advertisement. You may get an opportunity to present yourself or your product/service in a way they would otherwise not experience.
If you are working an online business, you can distribute the articles through blogs or article directories or a monthly newsletter. Other sites pick these up because of the information in the article (the benefit to them) and happily allow you to display your contact information on the bottom of the article (the benefit to you).
If you are working an offline business, you can submit your articles to community newspapers or trade magazines - again displaying your information on the bottom. You can also use your articles as a monthly newsletter you mail out to your clients. Again, they are more likely to read it because it offers them value. It also keeps your product or service right in front of them each month.
The articles you use don't have to be great novels or anything like that and you don't have to be an expert writer to create an article. The fact is that you are in the business you are in because you know something about that industry or provide a service that people need. So already have a lot of information you can share. Give hints and tips on how to better use a product, share experiences or give advise as it pertains to your industry. Write it down and get it out there.
Your customers will thank you for it - likely with more sales.