There are etiquettes you must follow when invited into someone’s home for tea. The same goes for guest posting.
Would you like to do more guest posting and possibly increase your traffic or gain more exposure? Guest posting is a proven method in building brand awareness as well as new readership for your blog. It’s benefits were discussed in a previous article, Why Guest Blogging is a Powerful Way to Gain Exposure for your Blog.
As I continually try to work on my blogging skills I have been spending some time lately guest posting on various sites like ZenHabits and ProBlogger and it also got me to thinking, “what makes a good guest poster?”
Some brief tips for landing the big guest post
Initially, of course, you have to actually get invited to post on another site. If you have a particular blog that you would like to submit an article to then you should ideally spend some time on that site leaving meaningful, constructive comments in order to let the author know you and your writing style better.
After you have participated and added value to the community then write a brief email to the person who is responsible for the blog just to say hello and introduce yourself. However, do not hound them or be too persistent or else you might come across as being too persistent, impolite or even a stalker, which was eloquently stated in a recent ProBlogger post “How To Pitch To Bloggers – 21 Tips”. Moreover, should you find yourself in a situation where you have emailed the blogger, left comments, and linked back to some relevant posts but you have not heard from them in a timely manner after your initial attempt to get in touch, remember they are most likely very busy people. For some additional background reading on how you can go about starting a dialogue with a top blogger you might also get some tips from a post I recently wrote entitled, “Communicating With Top Bloggers – How To Get Your Email Read.”
However, if you do get a response from the blogger then your reply email to them would certainly be an appropriate time to ask if they would be receptive to a guest post submission. Again, keep your email brief, focused, and to the point and you should also include some links of really solid posts that you have done on your blog and are well suited to the other sites niche.
For whatever reason, should you happen to get a negative response to your guest post request, do not get frustrated. Under no circumstances should you send a nasty email, or berate it to the other bloggers on your site. Not only is it counter productive but can also be inconsiderate. Some blogs might not accept guest posts as a policy or might have enough of it for the next few months.
But, let’s think positive and assume you receive a favorable response, what do you do next?
You have landed the big guest post, now what? Here are Seven Tips for Success:
Tip One – Remember! You are a guest in someone else’s home.
Remember that being asked to provide a guest post for someone else’s blog is like having them invite you into their home for the first time to meet their friends, family, and acquaintances. Ask yourself, would you invite someone into your network or home that you did not trust?
Tip Two – Don’t cramp their style!
Be flexible and try to follow the recommended format if there is one. If the blog you are guest posting at makes use of a lot of images, you should too! Remember that you are trying to cater for the readers of someone else’s blog. You don’t want to distance yourself from them, so it is best to use a tested and proven format.
Tip Three – Don’t come across as boring.
Get creative, whatever methods you use to create good content make sure you employ them and deliver a home run post. You only have one chance to impress the readers of someone else’s blog. Readers are often very picky, stuff it up, and you probably won’t get another chance to post at that blog again.
If you are short of ideas, you can read Leo’s article on 3 Rules for Finding Great Post Ideas, and 15 Places to Look for Them.
Tip Four – Understand the stakes. Don’t be put off by it, use it to succeed.
“Fear isn’t an excuse to come to a standstill. It’s the impetus to step up and strike.” Nisandeh Neta – Elements of Success
Let fear motivate you to succeed. The last thing you want is a post that is going to be read by 20,000 people to flop so keep that in that back of your mind as you write.
Tip Five – Be considerate, don’t give your host additional work.
Do not submit a post that requires many hours worth of work by the other blogger to get it edited into “postable” format. Make sure your article is free of any typos and grammatical errors.
Tip Six – Bring an unique voice.
Be unique and set the tone of your post from the opening sentence. Do not be afraid to take a strong point of view but be ready to back it up with good examples and content.
Tip Seven – Make sure it’s accurate and worth reading.
This should go without saying but write something worth reading or you may just find that your guest article never gets posted. Also make sure the content is well research, and all facts are accurate. The last thing you want is providing someone else’s readers with false information.
The above seven tips should give you an excellent head start on being a good guest poster. When putting in the hard work that will be required to succeed try to think about a guest post as a long-term investment that will lead to your blogging success. Remember, a good article on a different site provides you with a chance to increase your reading audience and just like being invited to a friend’s home, if done properly, the guest post should provide you with a whole new group of acquaintances.
Mark Hayward currently lives in the Caribbean and blogs over at MyTropicalEscape.