From an SEO perspective, one of the best ways to increase your presence and raise your search engine rankings is by guest posting. Most people make the mistake of thinking this is a walk in the park when it isn’t. You might be a great writer and create excellent, well worded guest posts, but they do you no good unless you can find a blog or site to post them on.
The first step to guest posting is to prospect for potential blogs and sites that allow guest authors to write for them. There are millions of blogs on the internet and as you search, you will find plenty that are no longer updated or don’t accept guest posts. Doing a Google search for the top 10 blogs on your topic will get you started on building your list. When looking at the blog from the top 10 list, look to see the blogs they follow. This will open up another world of potential, since you can then look at the blogs these sites follow and you are well on your way to generating a list of hundreds of prospects.
The next step involves formulating an email to send to bloggers. This is the hardest part, since bloggers receive hundreds of similar emails a week. Here are a few tips to follow when formulating an email that are bound to improve the likelihood of getting a response:
1. Personalize every email
Do not send out a form email. Bloggers and site owners can pick them out in a second and they will be trashed. Take the time to read an article or two on their site and offer a comment or insight. This will show bloggers that you actually care about their site and took the time to appreciate their writing. They will then be more likely to continue reading the email and your request to guest post.
2. Have a great subject line
A subject line is like making your first impression; you want to do a great job. Your subject line shouldn’t be something generic such as “guest post”, since there are probably a dozen emails in their inbox that have the same one. These are usually moved to a separate folder or trashed without ever being opened. Try and relate the subject line to a topic that is covered in their guest post. For example, if they recently wrote an article about fishing, you can write something along the lines of “comment on fishing article.”
3. Keep it short
Be short and to the point.You only need 2 or 3 sentences to complement them on their site and give your perspective on what they wrote. Your pitch to guest post should also be kept to just a sentence or two explaining why you are qualified and what you would write about. A general rule of thumb is that if it takes them more than 30 seconds to understand what you’re asking, they are likely to delete it.
4. Show the blogger how you will add value
Make sure to emphasize the value you are adding to their site. How will they benefit? How will their readers benefit? Make sure your email answers these questions! If you don’t illustrate the benefits to them, your email will be deleted.
5. Be careful of your signature
If your title includes SEO, Search Marketing, Online Marketing Specialist, or anything along these lines, bloggers will be wary of allowing you to guest post. Either don’t include a title or put something generic like “writer.”
Lastly, make sure that the article is relevant to the blog and readers. Before you send your guest post, ask yourself what value this adds. If you can’t see how the guest post will be beneficial to the blog, it’s very unlikely that it will actually get posted. Also, if the topic has been discussed several times, try and write about something different or provide a different perspective than what has been given. Always write original content, since duplicate content doesn’t benefit you or the blogger and most will check to see if it was posted elsewhere.
Guest posting can be time consuming and requires a lot of hard work. In the long run, you will benefit from establishing a relationship with a blogger or site owner. Make sure to write quality emails and great articles when you receive the offer to guest post. Doing so will unlock a lot of SEO value and you are sure to see a jump in your Google ranking!
Authored by Adam Bruk
Adam Bruk is a SEO specialist for www.socks4life.com. When he isn’t busy analyzing retail trends in thermal socks , he is reading the latest news on SEO and social media marketing.