Get More Visitors to Your Website With the Power of Guest Blogging
There is a reason many successful online business owners recommend guest blogging as a means of getting the news out about your blog or website. These savvy business owners have already experienced the power of guest blogging. Not only have they proven it once, many go on to use the technique again and again when launching new projects.
Guest blogging is just that – your blog post on someone else’s website. The benefit here is two-fold. You get exposure for your own site (do include a link!) and the website owner has one less content slot to fill. If you have been in business long enough to create a following, your post will bring new eyes to the website.
Many people approach guest blogging with a minimum of effort. They cold call via email, hoping someone will both see the email and actually respond. While that method may eventually get results, it is not the most effective method, especially if you are still wearing all of the hats in your business. You need an approach that is most likely to get you a positive outcome while making the most effective use of your time.
“…There’s no faster or cheaper way to reach massive audiences than guest blogging. By leveraging existing audiences in a way that delivers value, you create opportunities for exponential growth…”
Alex Turnbull at Groovehq.com
Steps to Quality Guest Blogging
Instead, here’s a quick and easy checklist you can use to increase your chances of being accepted as a guest blogger on another site and using that siphoned exposure to help your own blog in return. Increase your website’s visibility as well as your online authority.
1) Be Choosy. Don’t send out requests to guest post on just any old blog. Identify a blog with audience crossover to your own. The audience that will be reading your post must be able to relate to the post and should fit your targeted audience criteria. You don’t necessarily need to find someone writing about the exact same topic as you, but you do want to be able to identify some crossover between your audiences. The best fit comes from lining up with closely related businesses. For example, if someone runs a fitness blog that focuses on exercise and your blog focuses on diet, their readers might be interested in what you have to say. Likewise, if you sell dog treats, it doesn’t make much sense to guest post on a cat site.
2) Pay Attention. Visit potential blogs. Check them out. Read some of the posts. (More than one or two.) Read the comments. Get a feel for the blog. Note the tone of voice and ‘angle’ they seem to have. Is it compatible with your own? If you are an avid reader and researcher, you can probably come up with a potential guest blog list quite easily. If you aren’t an avid surfer and reader in your niche, you may have to do a little research. Pay attention. The potential website owners you are visiting now could be part of your business network in the future.
3) Visit Properly. Leave evidence of your visit. Comment on a post. (Real comments. Not generic, spammy ones.) Spammy comments (“Nice post,” “Great writing,” etc.) will get you ignored. Genuine, thought out, articulate, helpful comments that encourage interaction will not only be noticed, they’ll be welcomed.
4) Follow the Blog. Subscribe to the blog feed. Find a social platform they’re on, (Twitter, etc.) and follow them. Share out a couple of their posts on your own feed over the next few days. Tag them in one of your tweets to make sure they know you’re giving them credit and to alert them that you’re sharing their content. Present yourself as an authority and a professional.
5) Ask Nicely. Before you send an entire guest post pitch via email, send a short one requesting permission. Send them a message on twitter letting them know that you have an idea you’d like to run by them, and if they have an email you can shoot it over to.
6) Ask Effectively. Craft an effective email pitch. Get quickly to the point. Focus on the value you are bringing to them, NOT what they can do for you. You may desperately need the exposure but that should not be part of your email. The email should be all about the benefit to them. You’ll find a great email example in Groovehq’s post about guest blogging. (Linked in the above quote.)
7) Write Quality Content. Do write a quality post. Not only will good quality content reflect well on you (and the owner of the blog) it will be more likely to be shared, therefore more likely to get a good result. Keep the reader in mind. Are they ecommerce business owners? Gamers? Collectors? Geeks? Stay at home moms? What kind of problems do they face and what kind of solutions can you offer?
8) Length Matters. Once upon a time, any blog post over 500 words was considered long. Now a long blog post can be as short as 2,000 words or as long as 7,000. Neil Patel, from Quicksprout, noted that “ in most cases long form copy doesn’t just boost your conversions, but it also increases your rankings too.” While it appears that longer posts are shared more often than short ones, you should use as many (or as few) words as you need to say what you need to say. Don’t write thin with lots of padding just to create a 3,000 word post if you can effectively convey the same thing in a 1,000 word post.
8) End it With Action. Don’t conclude your post with “the end.” Use a CTA (call to action) that encourages reader participation. Why do you think sales letters tell people to buy? Because it works. What do you want to get from your guest post? Do you want more visitors to your site? Do you want more product sales? Ask visitors to comment. Offer a link to a related report or other free offer in return for their email address. Make it easy for them to Tweet or share the post.
Guest blogging can bring a very good ROI. Not only can it bring in new traffic, it can bring in new sales. Increased revenue is an excellent reason to spend time writing posts for other blog and website owners. If you haven’t yet taken advantage of guest blogging, maybe its time you did.
Take the time to do your homework and be patient in carrying it out. By doing so, you will separate yourself from the flood of ordinary, thoughtless requests filling the inbox of the blog owner. You want to stand out in a good way. Once you get the green light, provide a well-written blog post that reflects well on you while addressing the needs of the readers.
Have you tried guest blogging? How did it work for you?