Guest Blogging in 2020 [New Step-By-Step Guide]

A Social Marketing Writing survey found that “62.96% of people perceive blogs with multiple authors to be more credible.”

This is why there are hundreds of thousands of blogs willing to accept guest articles.

Guest blogging can give you authority, relevant backlinks, traffic, and leads. There are thousands of well-known bloggers who built their blog & business by guest blogging.

Don’t believe me? Check out, Jon Cooper. He got nearly 400 visitors by submitting a post on the Moz blog. Even after 15 days, it generated 10-20 visitors from that single post.

Another good example is Bryan Harris. He published a guest post on Okdork titled “How to get your first 100 email subscribers”. This post generated 1,782 visitors to his blog in the first two days.

Traffic is not the only thing guest blogging generates. Gregory Ciotti added 36,733 subscribers to his email list by guest blogging.

There are tons of other studies that show the benefits of guest blogging. Using guest blogging, GrooveHq reached more than a million people. A guest post on Search Engine Journal created hundreds of scraped backlinks for Built Visible.

But not all guest posts yield results. This is why you have to approach it carefully & smartly.

Before you start guest blogging, you have to keep in mind one thing. Guest blogging is not a shortcut strategy.

It won’t provide instant results. Like most marketing strategies, it will happen slowly and over time.

But the fantastic thing is, if you create great content, it will provide a steady stream of traffic & revenue for many years after publishing.

Smart Guest Blogging Strategy

Step 1. Research Your Market

Not all blogs will bring equal results. Some blogs will send fewer than 20 visitors, while some blogs will send thousands.

When you spend hours creating a perfect post, you won’t be content with 20 visitors. So you need to research. You need to find out what your customers want and where they hang out.

market research
market research

For example, if your blog is about CrossFit, you don’t want to write a guest post for a psychology blog. The reader’s overlap will be very small. So not many people will visit your blog.

You also need to make sure readers of the blog you’re writing for is at the same stage as your blog readers.

If your blog is for novice Cross Fit enthusiast, you don’t want to write for a blog where only expert Cross Fitters hang out. They won’t be interested in reading your blog.

Searching for blogs to write for isn’t very complicated. You can search for them in Google using any of these search queries:

  • your keyword + “write for us”
  • your keyword + “submit a guest post”
  • contribute guest article + “your keywords” + blog

When you’ve found a few blogs, make sure they are the right one for you. Use Alexa to analyze the blog authority.

See the average number of visitors they generate. You don’t want to write for a blog that doesn’t get much traffic.

Use Moz’s Open Site Explorer to gauge the blog’s domain authority [DA]. The higher a site’s domain authority, the more likely they are to have high search rank and traffic. As a result, your guest post will perform better on them.

You also need to research the published content of the blog. Check the popular post. See what has been covered. Make yourself familiar with the tone of the blog.

Step 2. Write A High-Quality Post

Now comes the hard part. The most blogger wants fresh & original content. They want content that will provide value to their readers. They don’t want regurgitated content.

high quality content
high quality content

To get an idea for a post, go to Buzzsumo. Enter your topic into the search box and press Enter. Here you’ll find the internet’s most shared articles on that topic.

Model your post on one of these. These are proven article. If you can build on them, the payoff will be great. It may take days instead of hours to write, but don’t get discouraged.

You probably have a certain style in which you write. If the blog you’re writing to follow a different style, you need to bend your style.

Some blog has a style guide. Follow it if that’s the case. Try to mimic their writing style as much as you can.

Step 3. Approach Blogs

Well-known bloggers receive an insane amount of requests for guests. Most of them don’t have time to review each request closely.

So if you can build a relationship before approaching a blogger, your chance of success will increase.

approach to success
approach to success

There are a few things you can do to build a relationship. Share their content on social media and tag them.

Post valuable comments on their articles. If they’re active on any forums or groups, engage in the discussion there. If you engage them after getting noticed, your email will stick out on their inbox.

If you plan to write guest posts regularly, it’s quite impossible to follow this strategy for every blog. Do this only for huge blogs.

When you’re pitching on email, make it short, concise, and straightforward. Write a strong subject line. Make it clear & professional. Don’t be dishonest about what you want.

Personalize the email. Address the recipient by name. Then introduce yourself. State your achievements in the industry.

It could be as simple as stating where else you’ve written. To keep the email short, don’t use more than three lines in the introduction.

email marketing design

Try not to use flattery. Popular bloggers get enough of that. Instead of stroking their ego, tell them what value you provide.

Last, proofread it a couple of times. If you make a simple spelling or grammar mistake, it will send a negative message.

Here are two posts that will help you write better emails:

Step 4. Get Visitors & Subscribers

You want a link in exchange for your post. Most try to get traffic by adding their website address in the author byline. But the truth is, most people skip over the bylines.

To avoid this, Gregory recommends adding your website link in the closing section of the post. An example from his guest post on Copyblogger:

traffic website
traffic website

It has 3 elements:

1. The first is the closing subheading. It shows people that the post is done. You can use “Conclusion” as the subheading. But using something like “Here’s what to do next,” “Over to you” is a better idea, because it addresses the reader directly.

2. The second element is a simple question related to the post.

3. In the third element, offer your readers something they can get from your website. Make sure it has a simple and attractive CTA.

If you follow Gregory’s example, your link will look like a part of the content. Readers will be more likely to click on it.

Make sure your link takes the readers straight to a relevant landing page—a landing page where people can get something related to the post by subscribing to your newsletter.

If your link takes them to your home page or an irrelevant blog post, they most likely will never return. All your work will go to waste.

But if you can capture them in your newsletter, you can build a stronger relationship with them. You can, over time, make them a regular reader of your blog.

A great opt-in freebie gives users a reason to subscribe. It can be an ebook, a course, or a series of videos. The format isn’t really important.

You can’t make all your visitors subscribe. But to maximize it, make a custom landing page and offer a different for every guest post you write.

freebies
freebies

Different traffic coming from different posts means a different audience. A single freebie won’t be a good fit for all of them. It needs to be relevant.

But that doesn’t mean your freebies have to match the topic of your guest post. It just needs to be relevant to the audience coming from that post.

Conclusion

When you’re writing a guest post, your first priority is delivering value to the host and your reader. You need to put your needs last.

If you make serving your own interest in the first priority, it will be obvious, and your post won’t get accepted.

Even if you do everything right, you may still face rejection. Don’t despair. Pick yourself back up and try again.

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