Taking advantage of article marketing isn't only for affiliate marketers. If you have a site or blog, this can be a wonderful way to gain more exposure and get a hold of those wonderful little back links that make your search engine ranking sky rocket. But there are a few things to keep in mind.
1) Writing just one article, all the same words and phrases, and uploading it to hundreds of different free article directories can be a horribly time-consuming task. Luckily, there are article submitters, which can submit that article you spent time writing to hundreds or thousands of different article directories automatically. These save countless hours when compared to having to go to each and every individual article directory site and submit your articles manually. My favorite so far (of those I've tried) is Magic Submitter.
2) If you write just that one article, with all the same words and phrases, and submit it to 500 different directories, search engines will see it as a whole lot of duplicate content. So I suggest using an article spinner (like the one that comes included with the clicky above) in order to have that same article you just wrote "spun" into multiple variations. The article will essentially be the same, but it will have more unique content. For this, you will interject synonyms or alternate sentences (and even titles) that the spinner will randomly choose when it creates hundreds of versions of your article, then submits a different version to each directory when you use the submitter.
These spinners have a thesaurus included, which is rather extensive, and so you should have no issues finding multiple ways of saying the same thing. Done correctly, this will only take you another 30 minutes or so and you'll have hundreds or thousands of different variations of the same article, reducing the amount of duplicate content you could be penalized for in the search engines.
Like I said, it's not just affiliate marketers that should take advantage of this level of site promotion. Anyone with a site or blog can benefit from having more exposure and back links. What I like most about the Magic Submitter is the fact that it also submits to a variety of social media, not just article directories. And it is very well put together, in my opinion.