It’s Only Spam if You’re a Spammer
A few years ago Matt Cutts announced the death of guest blogging. Yet here we are two years later and it’s still alive and kicking. While the point he makes in his article is sound:it is a tactic mostly used by spammers. Being a guest blogger or soliciting others to write for you could taint your reputation. Even so, it doesn’t mean it has to be dead for you. Read on to see how to resurrect guest blogging in a non-spammy way for your company.
A Means to Share Quality Content
The crux of his argument, in my opinion, wasn’t that guest blogging was bad in itself. It was that people were doing it for the wrong reasons. Guest blogging just to build inbound links is bad. If you approach guest blogging with that mindset you will be sending spammy emails to a long list of websites you’ve not vetted and creating poor quality content for those that say ‘yes’, then it’s dead. But creating good, targeted content, for related websites isn’t.
If you’re responsible for content marketing, specifically editing or writing on a regular blog… you know the pressure to create content hasn’t changed. If you’re approached personally, with a highly targeted, personalized email giving you a selection of topics that match what you write about, you’re not going to necessarily dismiss it as spam offhand.
6 Guest Blogging Guidelines
For those seeking to guest blog on other websites, sending out an automated email to 10 or 20 people is painfully obvious to your recipient. Sure, you might have customized the email text a little, but the people you’re sending it to can probably tell. To avoid being treated like a spammer, don’t behave like one. So here are some of our guest blogging guidelines:
- Create a list of blogs you want to work with. Build it around your target buyers and theirs. Ideally they should intersect and your audiences have shared interests. If you run a gym then consider guest blogging at the local organic market.
- Try and build a relationship with these blogs. If you like their content, then share it. Maybe comment on their blogs if you have questions or different opinions. Interact with them before you approach them. If you’re commenting and sharing, most likely you’ll be noticed (in a good way).
- Once you’re in their sphere reach out. But reach out properly. Human to human not business to business. Create an email that explains why you think it’s a good idea, and what you like about what they do already.
- Suggest some topics, or maybe even draft the post, or part of it, in advance. This way they know you’ve put thought and effort into contacting them.
- Don’t give up after the first attempt. If you’ve put effort into the preparation, don’t give up if they don’t respond to your first message. I’m not suggesting you turn up outside their house at 3am with a content editorial calendar. A respectful follow-up can include a second email attempt, checking to see if definitely not interested. You may be surprised; they may have missed your first request.
- Don’t mention links. You shouldn’t need to. Most articles will have a link to the profile of the author. If the website you want to publish on doesn’t list the author, then maybe it’s a sign you shouldn’t publish there. The point of this is not to build links, but to build awareness. One of the benefits of being a guest blogger is the ability to share your content in front of more readers and expand your reach.
Have you successfully carried out a guest blogging campaign? Do you think that it’s a useful tactic?
How can we help?
What do your links and content say about your site’s SEO? What does your data say in Search Console?
We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.