Contributed by Justin Driskill
Guest Posting is where you write articles for other people’s websites for free. Yes, you read that right – for free. For other people. Bear with me – it is a good idea, I promise.
If you are already hesitant – I fully understand that. If you run a website you will probably have two things:
- A to-do list so long that it makes you go a bit weird when you think about it.
- A blog that you barely find the time to write for as it is.
Guest Posting takes both of those problems and makes them worst. So why-oh-why would you use your limited time to write for other people? Keep reading as I try to explain that madness with this quick guide on why you should Guest Post.
Talk To A New Audience
There are a ton of reasons why Guest Posting is a great idea. For me, the absolute number one reason is that your writing is put in front of someone else’s audience. You are put in front of someone else’s audience.
Your site might have an awesome user base and I’m sure you love them to absolute bits. BUT talking to someone else’s user base is mana from heaven.
Think of it this way – instead of growing your readership bit by bit each month, you get an entirely new one. You’re not hitting 5-10% new people with your new post, you’re hitting 100%! And if you choose the right blogs to Guest Post on you can easily reach a readership that dwarfs your own.
These new people aren’t tired of your shtick either. Or more specifically they’ve never even seen your shtick. So you can tell them mind-blowing stuff in your unique way, and they’ll listen because it’s coming from a site they already trust.
Before these new readers know it you will have told them a ton of things and earned their respect, and there’s nothing they can do about it. Even better – they will think it was their idea to listen to you in the first place!
And it’s not unlikely that they will think: “Hey if that bozo wrote a great article here, maybe they wrote other great things too!”
ZouCrew.com probably should have guest posted if they wanted to get noticed instead
Google Will Think You Are Popular
Another great thing about guest posting is that your name will start appearing all over the internet. And unlike on public bathroom doors, Google WILL think that calling you leads to a good time.
If you write a good post on a good site and people like it, you will earn some of the reflected glory from that site having a loyal user base. Hurray!
And it doesn’t even have to be reflected glory, you can straight-up link to your site and put your face on your article (probably). So EVERYONE will know it was you who wrote this great thing. Especially Google.
Link building is one of the absolute core parts of SEO, so getting your links on other sites is a win. It should be noted however that most sites will only allow a link to your site within your author bio, and may no-follow all the links in your post. This means that you will likely get very little (if any) link equity directly from your guest post.
However, if you write great guest posts you are more likely to be noticed by the wider community you are writing for. This will make you an authoritative figure (a “Thought-Leader” even), meaning that posts on your own site are more likely to get noticed.
I’ll put it this way – imagine you read a great post about planting potatoes and see it was written by Mr Potatohead. You are then writing your own post about potatoes and what to do some research, so you search for Mr Potatohead and find his blog. He says some interesting stuff, so you link to his blog from your blog. Now Mr Potatohead has gained some link equity indirectly from the guest post he wrote.
Having a good reputation in your field pays off.
Make Friends With Other Website Owners
Imagine you are selling fruit, but you barely have the time to find enough fruit to fill your store. If you had more fruit, more people would come to your shop, and you’d make more money. You’re just too busy running your business to restock the shelves and it is stressing you the heck out.
Then one glorious day, this magical son of a gun called Alfonse (from a store way across town) shows up and says “Hey, here are some delicious oranges for free to sell in your store, you can keep the profits”. What a freakin’ miracle. The oranges are delicious, and the only catch is they have little stickers with his face on them. But who cares – free fruit = more customers = PROFIT!
The next time you see Alfonse you kiss him on both cheeks and ask him how his mother is.
What I’m trying to say is that the people you write guest posts for will possibly develop a certain fondness for you if you do a good job. And more friends = better living.
I mean, being popular within your industry has to be a good thing right?
Guest Posting Helps You Get Jobs
Looking for a new job? Well just imagine…
Mrs Penelope Jobadvertiser sees your CV. Your name rings a bell, and so she opens a new tab to check if you’re the same Jenny So-And-So she remembers from her favourite YouTube video of a kid slipping on a banana peel five times in a row.
She Googles your name and thinks… wowza does this girl know a lot about this industry. Every mother-loving website I respect has published something by this amazing candidate.
Result: Penelope calls you immediately and offers you the job.
Guest Posting will help you get jobs – whether you are an agency, freelancer, consultant or whatever. It’s like using Google’s search results as your CV.
So Where Can You Find Guest Post Opportunities?
Lots of places. Just Google “Where can I guest post” and you’ll get lists of places made by helpful people. Or you can use this list of advanced tactics from BackLinko to find a guest post opportunity.
The basic idea is this simple – find a blog which accepts Guest Posts which is in your area of expertise. Ideally, you’ll start off contacting blogs which are small and then move on to larger ones later. This is because the big ones likely won’t accept your stuff until you’ve been published in a few places.
Once you’ve found good websites to submit to, do your research. Read their blog a bit, think of something that would be great for their audience and pitch it. Ideally, pitch a few things at once. And make sure in your pitch you make it clear why it would be great if you wrote that thing (saying “I’ve been working in digital marketing for a decade and have some terrible secrets to share” might work).
If they accept your pitch, write a post that fits their guidelines, and that you are proud of. Don’t be a jerk and overly link to your own site, and if you can then you should link to their site a bit in your post too. You want the owner of the blog to like you, and you want their audience to feel right at home with you so try to be like part of the furniture.
If it works out, maybe you could write for them again sometime too – it’s easier to maintain a relationship than start a new one.
Guest Posting will:
- Introduce you to a new audience (or more specifically, introduce them to you)
- Indirectly improve your SEO (and sometimes directly too)
- Help you connect with your peers
- Help you find work
- Impress the heck out of everyone
- Bonus Reason: help you practise writing for different audiences
It can be difficult to get started guest posting but persevere and it can be a great tool in your digital marketing arsenal.
Next: How To Talk About Individual Online Ads (without sounding stupid)