While some may believe guest blogging is a waste of time, it can be an excellent source of growth. In addition to increasing brand awareness, guest blogging can be a moral and sustainable way to create high-quality backlinks and enhance your search engine optimisation (SEO) ranking. You probably have many questions about this topic, which is why we have created a guide that anyone can use right away, regardless of their industry.
What is guest blogging?
Guest blogging is one of the most popular content marketing strategies today, which involves writing and publishing a piece of content for another website or blog. These pieces of content have your by-line and are frequently noted as contributors or guest authors by the editor of that website or publication. You might be paid for your guest blogging efforts depending on the publication, although this isn’t always the case. Some publications will reward your post with non-cash incentives instead, such as a link to your personal website or social media accounts.
The benefits of guest blogging
Here are some of the main advantages of guest blogging:
- Create a profile as an industry expert or thought leader.
- Boost your brand.
- Expand your audience (social followers, subscribers, etc).
- Enhance SEO results.
- Build reputable backlinks.
- Create connections and encourage new partnerships (co-marketing partnerships, job offers, etc).
- Increase brand awareness for a business.
- Get more leads, users, and even customers.
Determining your guest blogging goals
Your first task before you begin is to choose your guest blogging goal. Knowing this objective in advance will help you choose the right blogs to submit guest posts to. Three main objectives are typically set for guest blogging:
- Presenting yourself as an expert and well-known figure in the industry.
- Gaining exposure and returning visitors to your website.
- Building links to point to your website (though this should never be the main focus, as Google frowns on this).
You can accomplish all three of these goals by posting the appropriate content on popular blogs. Ideally, you should look for blogs with a large and active audience if you’re trying to achieve goals one or two. If you are trying to accomplish step three, you should focus on finding blogs with high root domain authority. Knowing your objectives in advance will enable you to choose the blogs that will accept your guest posts the best.
How to find opportunities for guest blogging
The first thing you should do is look for opportunities to write guest posts. Your primary objective when looking for websites to guest post on is to identify those that are pertinent to your niche or industry. You’re searching for blogs that meet the requirements listed below:
- The content focuses on your field or industry.
- The blog’s audience will be interested in your industry.
- The blog has an engaged audience (posts have been shared socially and commented on).
- The blogger is a social media user (so you know that they will be promoting your work).
Here are some other things you can do to find the right kind of guest blogging opportunities:
A great place to look for guest posting opportunities is Google. Any of the following keyword searches will help you locate blogs that allow guest posts. Simply substitute industry-specific keywords for the keyword.
Keyword: Submit a guest post.
Keyword: Guest post.
Keyword: Guest post by.
Keyword: Accepting guest posts.
Keyword: Guest post guidelines.
You should be able to find actual guest posts by other authors or pages with instructions on how to submit a guest post by using these searches.
One or more of your competitors likely have backlinks from guest posts they have written if you have ever looked up a competitor’s backlink analysis while working on your SEO campaign. You can check your competitors’ backlinks and identify any blog posts they have written if you have access to tools like Open Site Explorer. If none are found, you can search Google. Replace domain.com with the domain of your competitor in the following link to reveal websites that a competitor has written for.
Example: link: backlink.io – localiq.co.uk/guestpost
Many bloggers and guest writers will post links to their most recent guest posts on social media. Since Twitter is the simplest platform to search on, you should try using that platform to find the most recent tweets about guest posts in your sector. To find out which blogs are accepting guest posts, simply click the links.
The community of guest bloggers known as My Blog Guest is last but certainly not least. Search for blogs that accept guest posts after creating a free account. Better yet, post your information indicating that you are seeking out blog owners to write guest posts on a specific subject.
Getting ready to propose a guest blogging post
Don’t simply contact blogs after finding guest blogging opportunities. Before you suggest a guest post for a newly discovered website, you’ll need to follow a few steps.
Learn about the content of the blog
Knowing the subject matter of your target blog is essential. You are aware that they have articles about the keyword you looked up to find guest post opportunities. But you must have even more information about that subject, such as:
- What skill level (beginners, intermediate, or advanced) reader are they writing for?
- Who are they writing for? If your company is B2B, you should target businesses rather than the general consumers for your guest post’s blog audience.
- What kind of content do they write? Is it primarily focused on specific, in-depth tutorials or general concepts? Are they fans of lists?
View performance of other guest posts
A blog may feature guest posts, but how successful are the guest bloggers? Do the owner’s blog post and guest blog posts on the website receive the same number of comments and social shares? Some websites might allow guest posts, but if readers are only there to read about the blog owner, you won’t do well if your objective is to establish authority or drive traffic to your website.
Check out the guest bloggers
Certain types of guest posts are more likely to be accepted by some blog owners than others. Check out a few of the blog’s guest bloggers’ bios to see if they are fellow bloggers, independent freelancers, consultants, business owners, etc. When you introduce yourself to the blog owner for your pitch, this will be crucial.
Learn which posts perform the best
You should pitch the blog owner with topics that will resonate with their audience if you want your guest post to be accepted. Use the following websites to see what posts have been well-liked on social media to get some good ideas for topics that will appeal to the blog’s readership:
Oktopost: Oktopost monitors and analyses your social media activity.
Digg: You can see here which blog posts have received the most Digg votes.
Become a recognisable face
To improve your chances of being accepted as a guest blogger, you should first gain the blog owner’s attention. Taking a week or two to comment on their most recent posts is the best strategy for doing this. You’ll earn extra points if you share those articles on Twitter as well. Remember: Tweet them to the blog owners @username. In this way, you won’t be a total stranger when you pitch your guest post.
The best times to request a guest post on a blog
There are some opportunities to seize when they present themselves even though you won’t always have the perfect scenario to pitch a guest post. The following are some of them:
• Your name is mentioned on a blog or in a social media post (Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc).
• If a blog mentions you, your company, or your product in one of its articles.
• Whenever the blog specifically states that it is seeking guest posts.
• When a new guest post is published on the blog.
Best practices for a guest blogging pitch
When requesting a guest blog post from another blog owner, the following is a must.
Read the guidelines
The final step before getting in touch with the blog’s owner is to carefully read any applicable guest blogging rules. Does the blog owner prefer that you submit a full post or just a suggestion? What kind of format do they want? Do they want you to register for a WordPress account? Before you get in touch with the blog owner, be aware of all these things.
Create a custom email
Nothing annoys bloggers more than receiving daily guest post pitches than an email that begins, “Dear Sit or Madam”, “To the owner of XYZ.com” or just, “Hello.” The name and contact details of the blog owner you are aiming for with your guest post should be somewhere on the blog. It may be hidden on the about page or one of the blog’s social media accounts. Locate it, then use it to begin the email.
Tell them who you are
Remember the advice we gave earlier on checking out the guest bloggers on your target blog? Some blog owners are picky about who they let write guest posts on their blogs. You might want to introduce yourself as a blogger at (insert your personal or professional blog here) if you’ve noticed that the majority of guest bloggers are also bloggers.
Explain why you should be a guest blogger
Make sure to explain why you ought to be a guest blogger in your pitch. Include a few links to articles you’ve written and published elsewhere, such as on your blog. Pick articles with a lot of social interaction so the blog owner will recognise your potential value to their audience.
How to write an outstanding guest post
Using your best content for your blog or for guest posting is one of the frequently asked questions about guest blogging. The quality of the blog you submit your content to makes a difference. If all of the blog’s posts are 900 words or longer and include numerous screenshots, then your post should be similar. Your posts should be similar if the blog only contains posts with 500 words or less and one image. The following are additional wise suggestions for enhancing the awesomeness of your guest post.
This isn’t about you
First and foremost, keep in mind that a great guest post is not about your company, its goods, or its services. Guest posts should not be advertisements but rather useful sources of information. Any details about your company and related matters ought to be kept for the author’s bio. Although occasional mentions, anecdotes, or examples are acceptable to support a point, the post’s main subject should not be your company.
Format posts like the others
Examine the blog entries on your target site. Do they frequently use headers, bolded text, images, quotation marks, or another unique formatting? Make sure your post has components in common with other posts on the website.
Link internal and external resources
By adding a few internal links to some of the blog owner’s posts, you can demonstrate to them that you are familiar with their content. The simplest way to do this is to search for site:domain.com on Google. intitle:keyword. By doing this, you can find their most popular posts on a specific keyword, which you can then link to in your post.
Include a call to action for feedback in the comments
Make sure to include a call-to-action comment after your fantastic guest post. The more debate your post sparks, the better.
How to write an outstanding guest bio
Your guest post biography will probably be the most crucial component of guest blogging. Links to your website, blog, business, or other self-promotional materials should typically only be included here. Your goals for guest blogging will determine what you write about in this section.
The steps needed:
1. Link back to your website
Make sure your bio contains a link to your website with your target anchor text if your goal is to obtain high-quality backlinks, and you will be all set.
2. Create a custom landing page to cater to the audience
Consider where you want that traffic to go if your goal is to drive traffic back to your website. You might want to direct traffic to a unique landing page or page about a particular product or service, depending on the topic of your guest post and the blog’s readership.
3. Include social media profiles
Add a line to the end of your bio that reads, something like “follow me on (insert your top social network and link here)” if you aim to gain more followers for your social media accounts.
4. Create a brief and informative bio
Give some background and experience on yourself and why you feel you are qualified to write a guest post. Include any projects or jobs you have right now that the readers might find interesting.
Now that’s all covered, I bet you have one final question to ask.
How to become a successful guest blogger
1. Set measurable specific objectives
Setting attainable, measurable goals is the first step in launching a successful guest blogging process. These objectives may relate to your company’s performance (like gaining more leads or clients) or the effectiveness of your website (like improving your search visibility or your referral traffic). Make sure it is SMART, whatever it may be. It is much simpler to choose your writing topics, the blogs where you want to publish, how frequently you write, and other factors when you have a clear goal in mind. The most important thing is that a SMART goal will let you know if this strategy is appropriate for your company and how much you should invest in it going forward.
Here are five examples of measurable goals you can set if you’re just getting started:
- Get X referral visits from your guest posts or have your guest posts increase referral traffic by X%.
- Get X leads from referral traffic generated by your guest posts or X% more leads generated by your guest posts.
- Gain X customers from your guest posts or see X% more customers from your guest posts.
- Increase your SEO effectiveness or SERP visibility by X%.
- Get X number of excellent backlinks from your guest posts to pertinent content.
Set objectives for backlinks, SEO traffic, and referral visits. Guest posts can be somewhat easily linked to changes in these metrics. Although guest blogging has the potential to influence clients and leads, which are crucial to the success of the company, proper attribution can be difficult.
2. Choose topics that will help you achieve your business objectives
Guest bloggers frequently fall short because they concentrate too much on the publications rather than the content. That is a good way to ensure publication, but it advances the objectives of the publishers rather than yours. You should create a successful guest blogging programme by choosing topics that support your ultimate goal, whether that’s referral traffic, SEO performance, leads, or clients, whether you’re an experienced blogger or you’re just learning how to start a blog.
Make a quick list of the top web pages on your site that you want to highlight in upcoming guest blogs. Analyse your current situation for each page, such as your monthly SEO traffic, and set a goal for how much guest blogging you want to accomplish in a specific amount of time. Both a website’s overall goal and a page-specific goal are permissible. Choose a broad topic that is related to your area of expertise and will be helpful to readers for each target page. Then you can start generating ideas for future guest posts by using keyword research tools like SEMrush and Ahrefs (to name a few).
Image Source: LOCALiQ.
Let’s use the phrase “guest blogging” as a meta-example and create a guest blogging strategy around it. Under the general heading of this subject, we can produce a variety of content types, including how-to articles, thought leadership, case studies, and comprehensive guides. Using keyword research tools, we can locate relevant article ideas for each type of content.
3. Locate trustworthy websites for guest blogging
It’s time to look for pertinent publications now that you have your content ideas planned out. You can start doing this by putting together a list of target websites. Here’s how to find opportunities for guest blogging and fill your list:
- Use advanced search operators such as “intext:submit a guest post,” to find information.
- Use Google Reverse Image Search to find places where a well-known guest blogger has previously published by taking their headshot. Most likely, guest posts are accepted by those publications.
- Look for directories of the best blogs that allow guest posts.
- Look at the backlinks of your competitors
Prioritise your list after that, and only pitch blogs that have the following qualities:
- A domain rating of at least 40 (or domain authority of at least 40 if you’re using Ahrefs).
- 3% or less of the score is spam
- Comprehensive editing procedure
4. Outreach for guest blogging
Now is the time to consider how you will present your guest post ideas. The publications you want to target have a thorough editorial process. Look up the website’s guest blogging policies first, and then get your pitch idea ready. Using the previously discovered keywords and your intended publication as a starting point, approach your blogger outreach process very strategically. Verify that your target website is already listed for the search term you selected.
Once your pitch is complete, locate your contact and send an email to them. While there are numerous ways to elicit a response, a good approach to use is to ask yourself whether your pitch provides value. A simple pitch should work if you’ve done your research and, more importantly, if you’ve already compiled a portfolio of clearly excellent content.
Tip: Keep track of your contacts and responses by using Google Sheets or Excel! They can assist you in keeping track of all the important data you require (and you always have the option to go back and review old information).
When the editor accepts your pitch, you should start developing your concept and writing a fantastic first draft.
Note: A full draft must be included in the initial pitch for some publications. Always read the site’s guidelines before submitting a guest post to make sure your pitch contains everything required.
5. Write the article
If you’ve chosen a subject that you are knowledgeable about and passionate about, this should be the simpler step of the process. Just set aside some time and get typing. It’s acceptable to get an editor to look over your draft if you’re not confident in your writing. Even for highly experienced writers, I’d strongly advise it. It’s always beneficial to have a second set of eyes review your article and offer suggestions. Here are ten crucial tips for writing guest posts (or any type of post, for that matter), regardless of your level of experience as a writer:
- Produce compelling, lengthy content (at least 1,000 words).
- Make the text into manageable, brief paragraphs
- Optimise for on-page SEO
- Create unique graphs and images to increase the content’s linkability.
- Add quotes from friends and influential people
- Provide a link to your other guest posts
- Integrate your personal, pertinent content
- Link to additional publications such as research, statistics, thought leadership, etc.
- Link internally to additional publications from your publisher.
- Add your by-line and a statement outlining how you are an authority on the subject.
Remember: Include your author information when sending your final draft to the editor. This includes your full name, a brief bio, links to your social media accounts so readers can follow you, a headshot, and your website.
6. Keep track of your posts’ performance over time
The process’s final and arguably most crucial step is this one. Make sure to compare your outcomes to where you were at the start of the process at all times (in step 1). You can use different SEO tools to track various metrics depending on your goals. The outcome of your guest blogging should unquestionably be evaluated when the goal is traffic.
The best way to do this is to use Google Analytics and create an Advanced Segment. All you need is a single segment with multiple statements for each domain for which you have guest blogged, using the source dimension. You can view all of your Google Analytics information based on click-throughs from your guest post. This can assist you in evaluating the effectiveness of your overall guest blogging strategy.
LOCALiQ has compiled a list of other guest blogging resources you might require, below.
SEO guest blogging
Websites that accept guest posts typically permit authors to link back to their content or resources, as long as it makes sense for the leader, guest blogging has become a very popular SEO strategy. Typically, the link appears in the article’s body or the biography of the author. Links from guest authors frequently have a no-follow tag added by blog editors. Recent Google updates have made it known that even “no follow” backlinks are taken into account by their ranking algorithm.
Tip: Avoid trying to do too much guest blogging to obtain backlinks. You’ll probably end up hurting your SEO performance if you ignore user experience. Educate and entertain your readers with the content you write, and you’ll get good results!
Top tools for guest blogging
Get guest bloggers for your blog
Finally, keep in mind that guest blogging can be a two-way street. While making frequent guest posts on other blogs, it can be challenging to maintain your own blog’s content. Don’t forget to extend an invitation to the blog you contributed to, to write a guest post as well. This keeps the content on your blog fresh, which can help you understand your audience and, hopefully, attract new readers from the community of your guest blogger!
A fantastic way to capitalise on the success of blogs that are already well-known in your industry is to guest blog on trustworthy websites. The strategy you develop after much trial and error will always be the best one for your business. So don’t be afraid to just get going so you can learn as you go.
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