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This may seem like beating a dead horse, but you must remember always that your article must serve it's primary audience: the reader. If you don't care about the reader, it will show. Don't get caught up only in getting links back to your site.
Be aware that not all article directories will accept your content automatically. Follow their guidelines and specifications, which, most likely, will include the requirement that your article be well-written and informative.
In addition, if your article provides value to readers, it will more likely be picked up by other publishers. Write the articles that publishers want in their publications and your potential audience will exponentially grow.