For businesses looking to gain exposure, guest posts can support the perfect boost to their content marketing plan.
A “guest post” is a blog post written by you (your brand) but published on another Viddyoze , instead of your own. Most of professional bloggers will write & host guest posts for each other because it is a mutually beneficial trade, and this trade works only as effectively for your brand’s content. After all, the blogger who accepts your post already has credibility & an established readership.
The blog receives content, while you receive traffic referrals & reach a larger audience than you can through your own blog – a win-win situation.
Landing a guest blog spot takes some work – it is not as easy as sending a quick email asking a blogger to publish. SmartBlogger advises that guest blogging is a best way to drive more traffic to your site, but “just if you do it right.”
Top blogs receive many queries from writers & content creators just like you. Tons of emails and online messages are quickly scanned over & deleted; some aren’t even read past the first few lines.
We reached out to several Viddyoze & editors to find out what they pay attention to when selecting which guest posts to publish. Their answers provide valuable insight into how best to guide your own plan for guest blogging.
Value – Viddyoze
“What is in it for the blog owner?”
That is what Marcus Miller, head of Viddyoze and Digital Marketing at Bowler Hat, suggests you ask when you begin writing a guest post.
Think about why the blog would want to publish your content.
Every blog & publication will define value differently. Take time to explore & identify the goals, mission, and style of the blog you want to publish.
Charles Ave Marketing founder & Chief Creative Officer Kim Kohatsu says she looks for expertise:
“Our blog prides itself in featuring authoritative voices, and that knowledge could be displayed in the pitch itself. I want to know not just what you want to write, but why you’re the person to write it. The biggest turn-off in a pitch isn’t explaining who you are and why you are qualified to write the piece.”
Some blogs look for particular kinds of content. For Miller, this means content that aligns with the plan of the blog. “Maybe an extension of a topic covered where the blog owner doesn’t have specific expertise or someone more qualified could expand on a topic.”
Suzi Scheler of Rosevibe looks for evergreen content to publish.
“A post idea is more likely to get picked if it is relevant in the long term, as opposed to something time-sensitive. This is because some guest posts could take a while to appear on the blog.”
Brainstorm topics that remain relevant to your customers year after year, or throughout all seasons. This tip is not just for guest blogging; it is a smart idea to have some evergreen content packed into the content plan for your brand’s official blog as well.
For GeekBusiness editor Steve Thompson, a post on some particular topic is best when “written by an authority in the field, and complete with images & graphs to illustrate the points being made.” Thompson says, “These are the kind of articles that have the potential to outrank even Wikipedia in the Google.”
Posts that can rank well organically in search engines are attractive to bloggers, as this will let their blog gain authority with Google.
What could you do to prove that your guest post will add value to another blogger’s targeted audience & curated content? Study the types of posts they publish, select a topic you’re well-qualified to speak about, and craft a good pitch that explains how your post will contribute to their aims.
It is essential that you research the content of the blog you want to Viddyoze .
Reading previous posts will give you an idea of the blog’s writing style & its target audience.
Take note of which guest bloggers they have published so far – are they fellow bloggers, business owners, or other types of influencers?
Reviewing the comments & social media following of guest bloggers can be helpful – guest posts with few comments / a low number of likes and shares probably do not attract a lot of attention on that blog. If most of the guest posts do not generate much engagement, consider skipping that blog & and look for one where guest posts get more traction overall.
Aside from researching the history of guest posts on a blog & the type of content the blog features, it’s critical to research the blog’s guidelines for submitting guests pitches.
According to Zak Mustapha, founder & CEO of Foolishness File, this is vital.
“If the blog does not state specifically what to include in your pitch, then get to the point and send a list of 3 to 5 topics you’d like to write about,” he says. “And most necessarily, make sure those topics are relevant to the blog you’re pitching.”
The bottom line? If you have not researched your content first, it’ll be painfully clear in your pitch – and you can expect the editor to move on to the next candidate.
Great pitches are important to catching the blogger’s attention.
It should go without saying, but your pitch needs to be well-written – editors will not give it a second look otherwise. That goes beyond spelling errors; poor formatting, improper punctuation & excessive exclamation can all be turn-offs.
“Egregious errors are overuse of exclamation points, hyperbolic / meaningless descriptions,” explains Kohatsu, adding that “‘amazing’ is offensive.” Stay away from exaggeration – it could make your pitch sound gimmicky and insincere. Your topic is probably good, but is it truly the “best thing you’ll ever read this year”?
Poorly written pitches can come across as spammy. Blogs constantly receive pitches solely for SEO & link-building – this is, low-quality content for which the guest blogger wants nothing more than a link back to their website with no attempt to add real value to their blog. These pitches are often poorly written & ask outright for links.
“When the blogger makes it clear that they ‘want to write free content in exchange for a link to site,’ it makes them sound like spammy link-builders, even if they are not,” says Mustapha. “I think it’s pretty obvious you’re after a link or the traffic; you do not need to mention it.”
If you want to ascertain what kind of SEO value or links you may achieve, Mustapha advises looking through the blog’s previous guest posts to see how they credit authors.
“[Pitches] that go straight in the bin are the emails that scream ‘cheap SEO.’ If they are looking for a link in return for some low-quality (even ‘spun’) content, it is often obvious from the email – it will be littered with mistakes.”
Craft your pitch as carefully as you would craft your content and proofread vigilantly.
A well-written & error-free pitch shows respect and consideration for the blogger’s time & effort, as well as sincerity in your aim to make a mutually beneficial guest post.
While well-researched pitches can help you land guest posts, do not forget about the importance of building relationships with the publications you want to work with.
Doing this before you send a pitch email gives you credibility because it is not a clear call for promotion – you are showing bloggers that you value what they have to say before you pitch to them.
For Miller & his team at Bowler Hat, this is routine.
“We prefer to identify some candidates & build relationships with the bloggers – find out what content they would like to see expanded; demonstrate how we could add value through comments. Get a feel for their needs & requirements, whilst building the relationship over social media. This can then move to email & a conversation about how we can make some content that will help us both.”
Remember that the point of a guest post is to have a connection that’s mutually beneficial. Focus on what you can give another blogger, and most will be happy to offer you exposure and links in return.
Everyone Starts Somewhere
HubSpot’s Pamela Vaughan pays attention to bloggers who are introduced through a mutual connection.
No one starts out with a network of widely-read blogs & Viddyoze . Established bloggers want to help guest bloggers grow their audiences, but they have standards and instructions for a reason – they have put a lot of time and effort into building their names, their audiences and their credibility. They want posts that will continue to build upon that reputation & grow their audience.
Reach out with respect and high-quality work, and you could form strong business relationships that are lucrative for both your brand & your partner blogs.