If you haven’t thought about guest blogging, you should! Guest blogging is a great way for you to attract more visitors to your site and to get free content at the same time.
If you’re new to the wonderful world of blogging and have been looking for ways to attract more Internet visitors, you’ve undoubtedly heard about the benefits of guest blogging. First, just what is a guest blogger?
Simply put, if you invite someone to write a special post on your blog at no charge, that person is guest blogging on your blog. If you’re invited to post on someone else’s blog, also at no charge, then you’re the guest blogger. For blog owners, this is a great way to get free content and more traffic from visitors who are interested in that content. For guest bloggers, this is a great way to build links and increase your name exposure and reputation (building your personal brand) and tap into a different pool of Internet users. So how can newbie bloggers make this happen?
First, it might appear that, since by definition newbies may not have an established reputation, it makes sense to start by looking for guest bloggers for your blog as opposed to seeking opportunities to post on other blogs as a guest. However, quality bloggers are most interested in guest blogging on sites that already attract a lot of traffic. Although this might lead some newcomers to blogging to wait till they build traffic before searching for guest bloggers, there are other options, including combining searching for guest bloggers for your site with searching for opportunities to post as a guest on other sites.
Regardless of how you begin, there’s a key consideration to keep in mind. Remember why you started the blog in the first place: because you had something to say about something. Your blog is about an area of particular interest and attraction to you; a field in which you have some expertise and ideas to share with the Internet world. You would be amazed at how many bloggers looking to benefit from guest blogging forget what should be an essential principle: relevancy.
Some will suggest guest post ideas to well-known bloggers, whether the bloggers field of expertise is directly relevant to their site or not. There are experts out there who feel the explosion in Social Media is directly related to the increasing trend of traditional Internet Search Engines yielding content that is either totally irrelevant to, or only tangentially related to, the search query. The moral is simple: stay within your niche.
A great way to start looking for guest bloggers is to think outside the box, and look outside the net for people you know who might have something to say about your niche. If your niche is dogs and you’ve recently enrolled in a dog training class with a trainer who turns out to be truly outstanding, see if the trainer might be interested in writing a little piece for your blog. Keep it simple and don’t ask for too much. Ensure the trainer you won’t change the content without his or her permission and offer support if the trainer lacks writing skills.
Another point to remember when thinking outside the box is that guest bloggers don’t have to be experts. Again, we can learn from Social Media, where a conversation among equals is valued above a print lecture from an expert. Blog visitors love reading posts from ordinary people, just like them. So if you have a neighbor who’s successfully resolved some problem with dog behavior, ask him or her to share the story with a post on your blog.
Another terrific source of guest bloggers is the comments section of your own blog. Look for repeat participants whose posts indicate a level of knowledge and understanding that might make them potential guest bloggers. Get in touch and ask them if they’d be interested in guest blogging. Again, remember to keep it simple and to follow the key rule of guest blogging: you don’t edit the guest’s content without their permission.
If you haven’t done so already, search out blogs in your own or similar niches. You might find other new blogs where the owners would have a mutual interest in trading guest blogs with you. For established blogs, the worst that can happen if you ask is that the popular blog owner will say no. To increase the odds of getting a yes, share your blog statistics if they are good or show a gradual increase in traffic.
Finally, there’s another whole new source out there: websites about guest blogging. One of the wonderful things about the Internet is the entrepreneurial spirit that ensures that once a potential new niche appears, someone rushes in to fill the need. So it is that as guest blogging is more and more seen as highly beneficial to blog owners, there are now communities out there devoted strictly to the guest blogging.