Before I share the secrets to guest posting stardom I want to introduce the concept of guest blogging for those new to blogging.
What You Will Learn:
- What is Guest Blogging?
- Why Guest Blog?
- How to Guest Blog?
- Where to find Blogs to Write for?
- Top 8 Secrets to Guest Posting Stardom
Reading Time: 10.6 Minutes
Word Count: 1373
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What is Guest Blogging?
It is simply sharing your original content on someone else’s blog. Instead of writing a blog post for your blog you’ll be writing a post for another blog.
Why Guest Blog?
When done strategically, guest blogging can be better than any ad campaign. For example, in 2013, I did an intense round of guest blogging during my Crocheting a Business Blog Tour. It was a crazy 15-week blogging tour in which I wrote 15 guest posts for 15 different crochet blogs.
The net result of which boosted sales to my eBook, increased traffic, developed relationships, increased opt-ins to my email list, and although I no longer blog about crochet, still receive traffic and inquiries from those articles written nearly 3 years ago.
Back in the early days of blogging, Nicole used this as a way to market affiliate partners. Linking out for profit (affiliate links) is no longer accepted and is frowned upon by Google, but links that provide information and add value to the content are welcome. It was also a great way to build her reputation and mailing list subscribers.
Another example is Caylie Price’s Blogging for Growth tour. She used this as a way to grow her email list, promote her Blogging products and build relationships with other business owners.
What might you use guest blogging for?
How to Guest Blog?
Before you join the adventure that is guest blogging there are some ground rules. First, be respectful to the host. Second, don’t pitch blogs that you don’t read. Third, respect the host’s audience. Finally, remember you are a guest. Here are a few great posts for further research:
- The Ultimate Guide to Guest Blogging by Kissmetrics
- 10,000 Subscribers in 18 Months by Jeff Goins
- Guest Blogging Mistakes by Peter Sandeen
- How to Be a Successful Blogger in a World of Competition [Guest Blogging] by Janie Wald
Where to Find Blogs to Write For?
When you chose to write for someone else, you need to be really picky. The biggest benefit of sharing your content on someone else’s site is the opportunity to share your expertise and a link back to your site in your author biography. BUT, in order for it to be worth your time, it must be on an established blog with plenty of traffic and a large audience of engaged readers who actually care about what you are sharing.
When I did my blog tour, I wrote for medium to high traffic crochet blogs with audiences who were interested in crocheting, blogging, and selling crochet. They also had readers who were highly interested in the eBook I just released.
Although I didn’t sell the eBook in the post, my biography linked to my mailing list which offered access to a Blog challenge Email series for crochet bloggers. Inside the series, the next step was the eBook, which I promoted in the 4th email in the series as it is a companion to the challenge.
Are you an author like Jeff Goins?
Use guest blogging as a way to promote your book, introduce the characters, or connect with other authors. Traditional publishers will have this worked out for you, but there is no reason why you couldn’t do this yourself or hire a book marketer (virtual assistant) to guide you and book guest spots for you.
When looking for blogs to write for, look for blogs that are frequently read by the demographic you are targeting. The following “Secrets” will help you in your search:
Guest Posting Secret #1: Read The Blog First
I know you’re probably all happy inside thinking about all the great possibilities for your business blog. Before you start pitching other blogs (or worse begging) to include your super duper post on their blog – read the blog first. How will you know what to write if you don’t know the audience?
Guest Posting Secret #2: Comment on The Blog
Another important step is to comment on the blog. Show your interest not only in the audience but the blog owner too. Commenting is the quickest way to get to know another blogger.
Guest Posting Secret #3: Read the Host’s Blog Guidelines
Before you write that superstar pitch you should check to see if there are guest author guidelines. Would you want someone writing for you if they don’t even take the time to read your rules? Some are clearly written and linked to and others are a bit more hard to find. I often find information in the About section or the Contact/Media section.
Guest Posting Secret #4: Prepare a Sample Title, Paragraph, and 2 – 3 Keywords
You’re a little closer to being a guest on your desired blog. Now it’s time to pitch your idea. Unless stated in the guidelines do not send the entire post. Simply write a sample paragraph with a title along with a couple of keywords that target their readers not yours.
What NOT to Do When Pitching a Blog Post as shared by Ann Smarty of SeoSmarty.com.
Click the graphic to go to the original post to see the Full-size Graphic plus a funny video.
Guest Posting Secret #5: Write Non-Promotional UBER Awesome Content
Promotion is for your blog and for your readers NOT for the host’s blog. This post is going to be your best work. Do not include sales copy or affiliate links. Google frowns on promotional guest blogging and trickery that tries to game their system. Legitimate links are perfectly fine.
Guest Posting Secret #6: Include Your Bio with Link to Your Opt-in
Here’s a BIG tip for you -> most hosts let you include a biography, a photo, and one link – make that link to your RSS feed sign-up page or your newsletter opt-in page. I didn’t know this when I started so it was often missing in my earlier posts.
BONUS TIP: Create a unique welcoming page for the readers of this blog. It does a few things for you. First, you welcome potential readers to your own blog. Second, you can track the traffic coming from the guest post thus monitoring the return on your investment. Finally, it keeps you accountable as a guest to return often to interact with comments and promote the host’s blog.
One of the great things about being a guest or a host is the cooperative nature of this type of blogging. They (the host) get something – a free day and great content – and you get something – a new audience with the potential to increase your subscribers and authority.
Guest Posting Secret #7: Promote Your Guest Post
After you write your post you need to promote your post. Here’s a great post by Michelle Shaeffer’s on 3 Ways to Stand Out and Be an Awesome Guest Blogger).
Share it with your fans, followers, readers, subscribers, and email list. Don’t stop after one day or even one week. Keep sharing the post throughout the year. (Tip: You can auto-share these in Hoot Suite)
Guest Posting Secret #8: Return Often to Answer Comments
The final secret that will make you a rock star guest is to return often to your post to answer any comments. This shows your host that you care about her audience. Don’t just post and run as it is very similar to link dropping. Schedule a block of time each month to drop in or add a Google Alert for this post. This way you get an email each time a new comment is made.
Three Things to Do Right Now:
- Make a List of 3 Blogs You’d Like to Guest Post For
- Prepare a Pitch Based on Your Research of the Blog
- Pitch. Ideally, You Want to Be a Regular Reader so You know the Blogger before You do this.
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