Ever had this happen when you start reading an article? Catchy title, compelling first paragraph... you're in. You're totally up for reading this thing, learning something new, getting a chuckle, stretching your perspective... until you realize it's just WAY too long. And you realize the dent it's going to put in your schedule if you take the time to read it all.
So you skim, scan, and scroll your way through the rest and move on.
If you didn't make it to the end, you definitely didn't see the resource box. And if you didn't see it, you didn't click it. And if you didn't click it, no way did you get to the author's site, sign up for the newsletter, find more info, or buy anything.
And that, my friends, is the biggest problem with running long.Many of your best clients will be internet marketers. The really smart ones use articles to market their sites and products. But for article marketing to work, people have to actually read the articles! Not every word - because most readers still skim, scan, and scroll - but enough to want MORE.
If you understand what your clients are trying to do, you'll get a grip on why word count is important - and that's the first step in being able to work with it.