Associated Content and Helium, while they are both article directories, are very different entities. Each has its own merits and its own problems as well.
Let’s take a look, first, at Associated Content. Associated content works in this way:
* A writer who is interested in writing an article can either choose to write in their own topic area or in a topic area chosen by Associated Content. In either case, that topic area must be unique, and must differ substantially from other articles already on Associated Content.
* Associated Content will pay the writer an up-front fee, usually less than $5, to write on topics that Associated Content selects.
* A writer may choose to submit an article for up-front payment, even if Associated Content did not ask for that title. Associated Content then may either accept or deny the title for up-front payment. If it is rejected, the writer can still submit the article for performance-only payments.
* After the article is posted, Associated content will pay the writer for the number of page views the article receives. Usually, this is around $1.50 per 1000 page views.
Helium works quite a bit differently:
* At Helium, you can, and are encouraged, to write on topics that others have already written on. This provide opportunity for the writer to write on nearly any subject imaginable.
* Helium doesn’t offer any up-front payments for articles.
* Helium has many alternative ways to earn money on your writing, such as with the Marketplace, weekly writing contests and other promotions.
* While Helium hasn’t said exactly how performance earnings are calculated, it would seem that Helium performance payments for articles are based on how the articles perform in terms of ad revenue, rather than on page views. This means that more marketable writing will ultimately perform better than poor writing.
* Helium’s rating system allows your article to be compared to others’ articles, which can greatly help you improve your writing skills.
Whether you choose to write for Associated Content or Helium is, in many cases, a matter of preference. Many people who have tried both prefer Helium because of the alternative earnings options. In some cases, writers choose to write for both sites.