Being a “guest” is always somewhat exciting until you actually get there; then suddenly it’s nerve-racking and you feel like you’re walking on eggshells. People usually associate this feeling with meeting the parents or going on an interview (hopefully only one situation requires a background check, but those of you who have seen Meet the Parents know otherwise).
Fortunately, there is advice out there about how to approach these situations with ease—stay calm, don’t talk too much, smile a lot, always compliment the owners of the house or the business office, and never (ever) disagree with the host. In most situations this works, and at the very least this advice will help calm someone down. This led me to wonder about instances in which someone is a guest when marketing their business, and I immediately thought about guest blogging. Do people get this same feeling when they are hoping to guest blog on a website?
Since the Internet has become so portable, many individuals are starting to realize that guest posting is a great way to show off your writings skills while working from home. Many websites accept guest posts in exchange for a payment, because they want their site to have continuous quality content. This makes guest posting very appealing to many; therefore the competition to write the best guest post is fierce.
Companies have also begun to jump on the guest posting bandwagon for several reasons:
- It is a way to link back to their own website, which will generate clicks and website traffic
- Guest posting helps capture the eyes of another website’s audience, which will increase brand awareness
- Links on reputable websites improve a company website’s page rank; thus helping it climb to the top of search engine results
- Guest articles give your company a chance to prove that you are an expert in your field (assuming the content is high-quality), which helps boost your company’s reputation
The benefits of guest posting are many. For individuals, guest posting is a way to help pay the bills. For companies, guest posting is an easy way to extend the reach and increase the popularity of a brand. Fortunately, there is now advice to help you learn how to get your posts accepted (hopefully without walking on eggshells).
5 Tips That Will Help Get Your Guest Article Accepted
1. Make sure you’re going to link back to a quality site.
It is never a good idea to spend your time guest posting if you are going to link back to an unprofessional or incomplete site. This works for both businesses as well as individuals. If your company website or personal blog is not up-to-par, then writing guest posts that link back to that site will actually hurt the company or blog as well as your personal reputation as an online writer.
2. Do not try to guest post on a random website. Try to participate on a website first.
Good guest bloggers will take the time to become known on specific websites. If there are websites you like to read, start commenting on articles and tweeting out pieces that you find interesting. Chances are the editor will notice that you enjoy his/her website, so when it comes time to guest post your article will likely be accepted.
3. Research a website before you begin writing an article.
If you want your guest post accepted, you had better make sure it is relevant to a website. If you write an article completely unrelated to the goal of a certain website, chances are you will not only be rejected once, but you could be banned forever. This may seem obvious, but believe it or not it does happen. A great way to check out a website is to read their “about us” section. This will usually tell you exactly the type of information they’re going for on their website. Also look through the types of articles they have posted in the past. Make sure you don’t write about a topic that has already been posted on a specific site, and then you should be good to go!
4. Make a thorough pitch of your article; not something boring and general.
Pitching your article to an editor is where the walking on eggshells seems to begin. You want the editor to like you and your article, so you need to craft a thorough email that addresses a few common questions:
- Who are you and why do you want to guest post on his/her particular site
- What is the article about (include the title), and why would it be useful to his/her site
- Offer to change anything about the article if necessary
- Ask them to please get back to you about whether or not they are going to use the article
As long as you are nice and polite, there is no reason an editor shouldn’t at least read your article and answer your email!
5. Promote using social media.
Every time one of your guest articles has been posted, be sure to tweet it out to your followers and your LinkedIn connections. Even if you only have a few followers, tweeting out good content will help get people interested. This will also help the site you’re writing for, so they are much more likely to work with you again if they know you’re helping them publicize their site.
Once you get the hang of guest posting, I think you will find that it can be very rewarding. In many industries, you do your work, turn it in, and then it’s over. With guest posting, you will find that your articles are there to stay, usually forever, so you’ll never be short of ammo when it comes time to impress.