If your website is full of excellent content, that’s great. You are on the right track. However, it only reaches so far. One way to get your content out on other websites that will support your online presence is a little tactic known as guest blogging.
Okay, it’s not that little. It’s actually a well-established strategy and this article will cover it from A-Z.
Learn what guest blogging is, the benefits, and 8 steps to implementation.
Lets get started with the basics.
What is Guest Blogging?
Guest blogging is exactly what it sounds like, you submit content to another blog as a guest writer. Your post is then published on their blog with your name and bio underneath.
Why would others want guests to post on their blog?
Well, it can help to bring an outside perspective to their readers, it can increase their reach due to your audience, and it can help contribute to their constant need of quality content.
Now let’s look at the benefits for you as the guest blog writer.
What are the Benefits of Guest Blogging?
- Exposure: Guest blogging gains you a lot of exposure to new people you don’t normally reach. Every blog has its own audience, so when your guest post appears, those followers will see your content. The reach you achieve will depend on the popularity of the blog that you guest post on. The effectiveness will depend on how relevant your content is to that audience.
- Credibility: The more content that you contribute to your industry, the more your targeted audience will view you as a credible authority. Why is this so? Because your name will continue to pop up as they search online, making it quite obvious that you are a key player.
- Back Links: The next benefit is the backlink. When you write a guest post, you usually link to your website in your bio. As a result, all the people you reach can learn more about you by clicking your link. Furthermore, backlinks are a key factor in SEO, so the more links to your website that are out there on reputable sites, the more relevant your site is going to appear to the search engines.
- Networking: Another benefit besides connecting to your audience is connecting to other key players in your field. By doing so, you are building lasting connections that will not only build your credibility but also provide future opportunities for more guest blogging or coordinated campaigns.
8 Key Steps to Guest Blogging
You are probably thinking this guest blogging sounds like a great idea. However, it’s not as simple as sending brilliant posts to your favorite websites. Here are the 8 key steps to successful guest posting.
Step 1: Define Who You Want to Reach
The first step to guest blogging is to figure out who your target audience is. This should be easy because it is the same audience you are already targeting on your own website. Then, you will need to make a list of all of the blogs and websites you can find that your audience is likely to read in your niche. You can do this by researching long and short tail keywords for your business and taking note of the legitimate looking sites on the first 2 pages of the search results. It’s also a good idea to find out who the influencers are in your niche so you can find out where they post content.
Step 2: Strategically Choose Blogs to Guest Post On
Once you have a big list of potential sites, it’s time to separate the wheat from the chaff. Look up each of the sites and check for the following:
- Ensure they accept guest posts (obviously this is a deal maker or breaker)
- Check for a spammy feel or too many ads (spammy is bad, cross them off)
- Check their current linkbacks (non-working links are bad, working links are good)
- Look for social activity on the current posts (social activity is good, keep them!)
- Check the domain authority (Below 25 is bad)
- Check to see if they target your specific niche with existing content (specific is good, broad and general is bad)
Once you have a refined list of sites to target, it’s time to send your pitches.
Step 3: Nail The Pitch
Stand out from the rest by following these steps in your pitch.
- Preparing: You need to do research before sending your pitch. Check out the website that you intend to write for and get an idea of the style, tone, and content they currently have. You don’t want to present an outdated idea or one that completely misses the style of the blog.
- Timing: In the online world, it is best to be concise and quick in your pitch. You don’t want to waste anybody’s time. Include your topic idea, who you are, and why you think your post is a great fit for their blog.
- Best Practices: Choose a topic that is relevant to their blog and that is also not already covered. You want to show that you’ve done your homework and are aware of their blog’s needs. Show them what’s in it for them.
If you write a great pitch and get selected, congratulations! Then it’s time to write the post.
Step 4: Write a High-Quality Guest Post
When it comes time to write the post, remember that even though you are writing it to direct traffic to your blog, do not use the opportunity to blatantly advertise. You should provide quality content that brings value to the blog that you are writing for. If you do that effectively, readers will be attracted and curious enough to click through to your website.
Use internal links to the blog that you are writing for to show that you support the hosting blog and you understand the value of its content. Format your post like previous posts so that you will not detract from the work that is already there. Remember, not only are you writing for your audience, but you are also trying to earn an ongoing relationship with this site.
Step 5: Create a Great Bio
After your post comes your bio, a small but key part of the guest post. Write a bio that is to-the-point and fulfills your intended goal. If you want the reader to go back to your website then include a link. If you want the reader to follow you on social media then include a “follow me” option. This is your opportunity to bring your audience back to you.
Step 6: Be Responsive After Submission
Once you’ve gotten your foot in the door, be sure to be immediately available thereafter. If they want a revision, be prepared to revise quickly. If they have questions or guidelines that you must follow, you need to be ready to respond so as not to lose time (or trust!). That being said don’t be annoying and send them follow-up emails at an overwhelming rate; one email a week to follow up is the most you should be writing.
Step 7: Engage After Publication
Be a good guest blogger by responding to comments if you get them. Also, be available to revise as needed and make any necessary contributions they may ask you for.
Step 8: Track Results
Once the post is up, you’ll want to see the impact it has on your marketing efforts. Check your reach and monitor the traffic on your own blog. Check to see if there were any spikes and where the traffic came from. Follow up to see how well the post did on social media, and look for any opportunities to improve next time. If the guest post didn’t perform great as far as traffic goes, that doesn’t mean that it was a total bust! It still added one more backlink to your online presence.
Now you know what guest blogging is, why it’s important, and how to do it yourself. It takes a bit of research and effort but can pay off both immediately after posting, as well as for years to come. Remember the key steps covered here:
- Define who you want to reach
- Strategically choose blogs to guest post on
- Nail the pitch
- Write the guest post with high-quality
- Create an effective bio
- Submit and follow up
- Be responsive after publication
- Track the results
If you still have questions or thoughts on this, feel free to post them in the comments below. Boostability offers services to help brands grow their online presence and increase digital marketing ROI, so they are ready and willing to help you along that path.