The Positive Gains of Guest Posting
Anyone with a blog can tell you that the hardest part isn’t writing the content itself, rather, it’s attracting readers to your blog that proves to be most difficult.
You can utilize tons of keywords, post links on all your social media channels, and even take out paid ads to draw traffic, but sometimes that just doesn’t deliver the results you’re looking for. It does make sense in a certain sort of way, after all, the sheer amount of ads and links that we encounter in a single day make it challenging for any of them to truly stand out.
However, we do tend to pay more attention to links that come from trusted sources. An ad that pops up on your social feed probably won’t register with you as much as a post from someone you follow, even if they both link to the same thing. Actually, that ad is more likely to stand out to you when you see it after first hearing about it from the person you follow, since you now associate it with a trusted and respected source, which is why guest posting is such a good tactic for bloggers.
As the name implies, guest posting is when an established blogging writer or platform (the host) allows another writer (the guest) to post a blog on their site. By posting a blog on someone else’s site, and including links back to the original writers’ site and social media channels, all parties involved get to both build connections within the industry and broaden their respective audiences alike.
You see, increasing the number of outlets with your name on them, and the amount of links to your own site, will aid with SEO by making your work more searchable. Mind you, posting on someone else’s site generally helps spread your name more than having someone else post on your site, but doing both is essential for maintaining a good reputation. I’m sure reading all this has made you eager to start guest posting right away, but like all aspects of digital marketing, rushing in without a plan will only result in failure. However, if you follow these guidelines, you’ll be able to make the most of this wonderful tool.
As usual, the first step is research, lots of research. Look up how many blogs in your niche and genre accept guest posts, making sure to carefully review each one’s rules and requirements (acceptable topics, word count, image requirements, scheduling, etc.), then organize the information in a spreadsheet. It can be tedious and time consuming, but doing so will make it easier to keep track of who you’ve reached out to, what their response was, and where you’ve guest posts go.
Never send a guest post request to someone who hasn’t expressly stated that they’re interested in accepting any, and don’t send a proposal without ensuring it meets the standards they laid out regarding the matter. When proposing a guest post, look at what posts are most popular on the host site. Find out what the host’s audience enjoys most, then develop a way you can address that topic with your own personal touch. You don’t want to retread the same ground the host has already covered, but you don’t want to deliver a post that the host’s audience won’t be interested in either.
Additionally, be sure to avoid simply selling yourself in the guest post. You should by all means include a link to your own site and social media at the end, but understand that this isn’t just a shameless plug. If you can identify what it is audiences come to this particular platform for, and see to it that you deliver them the same kind of value, they’ll be inclined to follow the links to your own work on your own sites.
As a precaution, do not publicly announce that you will be making a guest post until everything has been decided, as advertising a collaborative project that ends up falling through is an embarrassment to yourself and your would-be collaborator. Once your content has been posted to the host site, then you can post about it on your own site and social media. Ask that the host post about the piece on their own social media, and that they make a follow up post with links to your own site or social media. Make sure you thank the host for working with you, and that you like and comment the social posts they make about your work.
Good luck, and happy writing!