Guide to Guest Blogging
Looking for a way to beef up your authority and give your brand more exposure? Guest blogging is a savvy and effective way to do just that! While potentially lucrative, guest blogging takes some getting used to and there’s a fairly large learning curve. This guide will help you conquer that curve and ride the wave of opportunity and exposure through guest blogging!
It’s worth noting that small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs aren’t the only ones who benefit from guest blogging opportunities, the big fish do too including many major brands like Intel and Salesforce!
Guest Blogging Goals
Before you start churning out guest posts, you’re going to need to set some goals. The goals that you set for guest blogging will determine how much you will benefit from your efforts. There are three major benefits to guest posting that every business should be targeting.
First of all, the authority that you can gain as a result from guest blogging is incredibly valuable. By leveraging your guest blog posts to position yourself as an authority on any particular niche topic that’s related to your industry, you’ll gain the affection of Google and customers alike.
One of the most tangible benefits to guest blogging is the traffic that it can drive to your website. You’ll also be able to build backlinks to your website that will strengthen your position. You should have these potential benefits in mind when strategizing and creating your guest blogging goals.
Finding Blogs to Place Guest Posts
When configuring your guest blogging goals, you’ll have to look for blogs that play to your strengths. Don’t just look for blogs in your industry, look for the kinds of blogs that your customers would read.
Also be sure to look for blogs with a readership that is both sizable and engaged. It doesn’t do any good to place guest posts on a blog with a withering readership. The key is to seek relevance and traffic. You need the relevance to your industry niche to fit in, and you need the traffic to siphon for yourself.
One of the most important things to look for aside from an engaged readership is an engaged owner. It’s essential for the owner of the blog you’re posting on to be highly active on social media to ensure their value and capability in promoting your brand. If the website owner is not engaged on social media and has a bunch of dead posts wasting away on their blog, never to be shared elsewhere, it’s a dead-end. Any guest posts you place on that blog will die there and are highly unlikely to bring in any web traffic to your own website.
Now that you know what to look for you might be wondering how to find blogs that accept guest posts. To find blogs that accept guest posts you’ll need to turn to almighty Google and use combinations of the following keyword sets.
- keyword “submit a guest post”
- keyword “accepting guest posts”
- keyword “guest post”
These search terms will get you started, simply supplant the word keyword with the name of the niche you wish to write about and Google will do the rest. Once you have overwhelmed your web browser with open tabs start going through each website and narrowing down your selection.
Leveraging Established Guest bloggers
When looking at blogs in your niche you might notice certain recurring names that come up more frequently than others. For example, you might see a name like Neil Patel. Take one of those names and run a search on ‘guest posts by so and so’ for example and see what comes up.
The blogs that come up in your search should make for a fertile hunting ground for guest blogging opportunities for yourself. Better yet, if you happen to be acquainted with a well-established guest blogger you should ask them or furnish them with sufficient incentive to make introductions on your behalf with website owners in your niche who accept guest posts.
How to Profit From Competitor Backlinks
By running a backlink analysis on your competitors you can see which websites they’ve posted guest posts on. Once you track down websites where your competitors have left guest posts you have the opportunity to bring the fight to them and make a few guest posts yourself.
Whenever you start guest blogging on a website where your competitors have been guest blogging you’ll need to bring your A-game to one-up them. Simply posting on the same site as your competitors doesn’t do much good. The key is to obliterate them by delivering posts of unparalleled quality that have the potential to steal or at least divert most of the traffic that they earned on that site.
Mining Social Media for Prime guest Posting Opportunities
You can find a lot of great guest posting opportunities by mining social media platforms like Twitter. Just search for, ‘guest posts’ and append the name of your industry niche as a keyword to your search. You’ll find plenty of guest posts associated with your industry niche which will provide you with a wealth of leads to explore.
By taking your search result and going through each applicable website that accepts guest posts you’ll end up with a tidy pile of channels to place guest blogs on and promote your brand.
Remember, social media is one of the greatest resources available when it comes to dredging up digital marketing opportunities. The more you leverage social media and tilt it to your advantage, the more exposure you’ll get for your brand. The more traffic that you drive to your website from guest blogging, the more powerful your brand will be.
Ideally you want your website to become a guest blogging hot-spot, a valuable digital space that other people will want to submit guest posts to.
The Art of Crafting a Guest Post
Knowing what to expect from guest blogging and where to find guest blogging opportunities is one thing, knowing how to create an effective guest post is another. If you start contacting all of the websites that accept guest posts in your industry niche immediately and start blasting away, you’ll need to know how to create an effective guest post lest your efforts be wasted.
The first thing you’ll need to do before actually submitting a guest post on any given website is to study the existing content. Before your trigger-happy little finger hits the submit button you need to devour the content that’s already present on the site. This will give you a feel not only for the voice of the blog that you’ll be posting on, but also an indication of what types of blogs they actually accept.
Remember, you don’t want to waste several hours of your day typing away on a post that the website will have no interest in or will find incongruous to their own style. Take a peek at other guest posts that have been accepted and dissect them until you identify the key elements that make certain posts work.
Ask yourself why these guest posts were accepted? What did the powers that be like about them? Next you will have to mimic those qualities, but in a unique way. Obviously that can become challenging or even tedious, but if you want to drive traffic to your own website through guest blogging, you’ll have to play the game.
Also be sure to analyze the audience. While determining how to appeal to the owner of the website itself, you need to take their audience into account as well. Keep in mind, you need to match the voice of the site well enough to get your guest posts to be accepted, however, it is their audience that you are ultimately writing for. Getting featured on the website’s blog is the means, capturing the attention and the subsequent traffic of their readership, is the end, the prize, the goal.
Ingratiate Yourself to the Blogging Community and Build Your Rep
Ingratiating yourself to the blogging community is a savvy way to get introductions and make inroads that can help you acquire a steady stream of web traffic in the long term. You should also make an effort to engage and build a rep amongst the blogging community.
One of the fastest and most effective ways to build a reputation and ingratiate yourself to the blogging community simultaneously is to share guest posts on social media platforms like Twitter. When sharing guest blog posts from other sites on Twitter be sure to list the name of the blog owner in your tweets. If you give credit where credit is due, good things will come to you.
Sharing and crediting other guest blog authors will help your rep and show them that you’re not in it to compete with them.
Finding the Right Time to Pitch a Guest Blog Post
In a sense, pitching a guest blog post is a lot like proposing in that you have to find the right time to do it. Here are some of the best indications that it’s the right time to pitch a guest blog post to any particular website.
- They mention your brand or business in one of their recent blog posts.
- They are currently accepting guest blog posts.
- They mention your business on social media.
- They recently published a guest blog post by someone else.
Any of these occurrences is a sure sign that it’s the right time to make your pitch and take the bull by the horns.
How to Make a Killer Pitch
Pitching a guest blog post can be tricky at first, especially when you don’t know the owner of the website from Adam. These tips will help you make a pitch without a hitch so listen up! First and foremost, read the guidelines for guest posts. Whatever you do, don’t write up a guest blog post on spec without reading the guidelines unless you want to waste a few hours of your life and flush them down the toilet.
For one thing, you need to personalize your email when first contacting the owner of a blog that you’re targeting. Don’t just begin your email with the word Hi unless you want that email to be angrily deleted within seconds of receiving it. Just take a few minutes to find the blog owner’s name and use it!
You’ll also need to introduce yourself properly and highlight your own skill or weight in the blogging world. Even if you’re a business owner hoping to siphon web traffic from their blog, you would do well to highlight your own blog or blogging prowess in your email. This will increase the chances of your pitch being accepted significantly.
When listing links to your other blog posts don’t just go on and on about why you want to submit a guest post on their website, but rather why you should have a guest post published on their site. Also remember, you have to sell them on the idea or premise of the guest post itself which brings us to our next discussion.
Pitching a Guest Post Idea
When you approach the owner of a successful website in your industry niche you’re not just selling yourself on the merit of your blogging accomplishments, but also the idea for the post that you’re pitching.
Explain to them why the guest blog post that you’re pitching would appeal to their readership and add value to their blog. Remember, it’s not all about you, you’ll need to give the owner some incentive to offer you the chance to post on their blog.
To that effect, you mustn’t include overt promotional content in either your guest post or your initial pitch. Any information relating directly to your business should be included in the author bio. The only exception to this would be an anecdote, story, or example.
When crafting a pitch for a guest blog post you should be designing a post that is as informational as possible, one that will appeal and interest the readership of the site your posting on.
Another thing that you need to pay attention to when writing a guest blog post is the formatting on the site that you’re posting on. Formatting your guest blog posts correctly will help increase your chances of having the posts accepted by the owner of the blog.
You should also make an effort to include internal links throughout your blog post. Look for previous blog posts on the owner’s website that relate to your topic and include links to those posts. The owner will appreciate this and it will strengthen your posts.
Finally, you’ll need to close each of your guest blog posts with a call to action that compels readers to leave comments. The idea is to encourage conversation to get people engaged with your post and urge them to talk about it. This will increase the amount of shares that you get which will help drive more organic web traffic to your own site. This is the ultimate goal of course, to get the attention of people who read other blogs and convince them to engage with your brand.
Creating the an Effective Guest Bio
Your guest bio is one of the most crucial components of all. This is where you can finally mention your business by name and weave in some good old fashioned self-promotion. In most cases guest bios aren’t particularly long, so you’ll have to stretch out that valuable digital real-estate as much as possible.
When writing your guest bio be concise and cleave any unnecessary information from the bio. Keep it short and sweet and make sure it presents your business strategically.
Put Your Skills to the Test, How to Be Top-Dog in Guest Blogging
Let’s face it, you don’t want to get into guest blogging just for kicks, you want to drive as much traffic to your site as possible which means you’ll have to become top dog and be the best at it.
Although it might seem counterintuitive, one of the most effective ways to empower yourself as a guest blogger is to share your guest posts with your own readership. The owner of the site your guest blogging on will appreciate the extra traffic and you’ll get plenty of organic traffic from their end in return. It’s a win-win.
Finally, be sure to read and reply to all of the comments people leave on any of your guest blog posts. Engagement is key, remember it’s all about sharing and fueling conversation.
Guest Blog Like a Boss, with AlchemyLeads
If this whole guest blogging business still sounds like a right nightmare to you and you don’t feel comfortable diving into it on your onesie, you can count on the digital marketing masters at AlchemyLeads to lead the way. Not everyone is suited for guest blogging, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t profit from all the traffic. All you need is a partner to show you the way!
When you want the highest return on guest blogging, you’ll want to have a chat with AlchemyLeads and watch the traffic roll in like the waves!