Considering Guest Posts for Blogging

Guest Blogging

Talk about guest posting for blogging has been rife in recent times. I’ve seen a lot of articles on the subject. It seems to be a topic that occupies a lot of blogger’s thoughts.

The most common topics I’ve been seeing are whether guest posts are really worth it in terms of driving traffic to your site and whether those offering guest spots for bloggers are treating them well enough.

I’m in the unique position where I haven’t given it a try yet. I feel that my writing is coming up to a level where I should give it a go and see where it takes me. There are many beginners who are of a similar frame of mind; do I, don’t I? In this article I hope to cover some areas of interest in making the important decision.

 

Considering Guest Posts for Blogging

The established purpose for this activity is to share your work and gain some traffic from the site.

  • Guest posting is a blogging activity with agenda.
  • It is a showcase for your work.

It is subject to the owner’s moderation. You may be required to follow direction and rules that you are not bound to on your own blog. You can guarantee that your finished article will be scrutinised further than your own standards. It may actually improve your future writing capability as a result of this editorial work.

  • It provides a back link with a higher potential traffic circulation than your own site dependent on the authority of the blog you are guest posting on.

Large blogs that need content on a regular basis really depend on guest posters where they cannot fill the gaps. It’s akin to a hospital that doesn’t have enough nurses.

 

Negatives with Guest Posts

If you struggle with time management you may find the task of putting a guest post together actually damages your writing schedule. The counter argument that I have seen for this is that it doesn’t truly matter where you produce your posts because you can always link to them. Tom Ewer, a seasoned paid blogger, uses this strategy extensively and for him it has been very successful.

In some cases the owner’s site could be taking advantage of you. They may either not provide you with attribution and may damage your work by aggressive editing. The counter argument to this is to do your research and demand more. Go to the places that treat guest bloggers well. Go to the places that are right for your writing.

As an owner to a site you might have to employ more time into editing content and making sure that what has been provided isn’t a straight copy of another writer’s hard work. The counter argument to this is lay out your stall. Tell your guest blogger what you will and won’t accept. Keep them updated of your edits, nurture them and reward them for good service. If they don’t make the improvements, can them!

 

Guest work for free versus guest work for cash

One thing should be obvious if you are guest blogging for free, you are not going to be under the same pressure as you might be for getting paid.

Why?

If there is no pay for incentive the blog owner is not as motivated to push you for the articles. This is a more casual relationship (or it should be) and as a result you have slightly more freedom. This is important if you have a day job and can’t commit to a heavy schedule. As a negative output to this, don’t expect as many visits. The other drawback is that something you may have poured some love into has not been paid for so in that time that you spent, you failed to capture a monetary potential for that work. Writing has always been a difficult area to make serious money on. Even for great writers, they had some struggles to get there but that doesn’t mean you should accept less!

Don’t accept less!

On the other side of the coin, getting paid for your work infers some form of schedule for you to keep. You are getting paid per post to fill a schedule. Your client is investing in your slot more than just your posts. That displays a  form of loyalty and trust which both sides should maintain.

You can guarantee that you will have to write to a narrower field of agenda, you’ll be targeting a niche to generate traffic so that your client can generate leads. You’ll have to go about this in a professional fashion. Your client will expect more from you.

  • Writing quality
  • Attention to detail
  • More engaging reading

You will have to be mindful of the titles and content you use, these may even be chosen for you, and you’ll have to do it by the book. You can expect more people making their way back to you but you can also expect the client to clamp down further on links away from their site.

You will be performing under a dictatorship. Your client is royalty, what they say goes. You will take the negatives that go with that form of relationship.

Expect for your material to receive plenty of red marks if you are new. Prepare to answer to criticism (constructive and not so). Most importantly ask for feedback if you haven’t received any. This is a learning experience after all.

The Important Question

How highly do you value your writing?

Answer that simple question my friends. Very few people would say it was of low value. Your writing is important because it is your form of expression in this digital world. Your footprint in the digital sand. It is unique and valuable. Of course, you start out raw and green when you first start, you don’t understand the best ways of reaching out to people. With time and experience those lessons are learnt and with that you will start to rise in value even further. You will be able to demand more because you carry more respect.

 

Where does SEO feature in the grand scheme?

Even though many say that Social Media is now the forerunner to getting people to your site, if your Social Media is weak or you don’t perform well in it, Guest Blogging is still a good avenue. Yes, you may have restrictions imposed, but you should make your good works do the talking for you.

I can prove that commenting on a person’s blog can drive that occasional person back to your site. You have to comment in a thoughtful way and write something that a moderator will approve. It’s not hard if you are thoughtful, insightful and complimentary.

Be thoughtful, insightful and complimentary when commenting!

Guest blogging is the same, but actually, better. You take one audience that is not your own and a great deal higher in volume. You show them something of interest and you have a new audience. Yes, you are borrowing this audience from the owner, but they still have the capability of following you back to your source and connect with what you are about. It’s a win win.

  • The blog owner gets views and with enough of them conversions with regular and new visitors off the back of your content.
  • The blog owner gets your views when you research what other posts exist on the blog to get a bearing of how you should be writing.
  • You get some traffic exposure (numbers beyond what you might normally get)
  • You get potential for social signals (people commenting on your jazz, plussing you, liking you, sharing you)
  • You get new followers (quite possibly even some of your own conversions)
  • You get some assistance with SEO and a step up on the Domain Authority ladder which in turn pimps you out even further to Google with a bump in your authorship.
  • You get feedback and development tips from an editor which you don’t get by yourself. You can always ask for feedback on how you did and how you could improve.

 

It’s all based on digital sand

There is an element of uncertainty seeing how your numbers turn out. You don’t know how effective that guest post will be until it gets published.

Should that prevent you?

No. We all have fear about something but the proof is in the pudding. You might miss out on something you later come to love but the worst that happens is that you waste one writing gig on something that didn’t pan out. At least you learnt something. Life is a journey after all.

My Journey

I haven’t dipped my toe into guest posting. I’m not sure on it myself. I hold on to a valiant notion that my blog can hold all the important work I do and survive on that. I will have to follow some harder paths to do better in future. My traffic reports show that my efforts don’t go unrewarded but I could do a lot better. I simply need to be seen by more people and help more people with my words.

You may be in the midst of your own journey with Guest Blogging. Care to share?

 

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4 Comments Considering Guest Posts for Blogging

  1. Ryan Biddulph

    Jackson,

    Super points. I have found guest posting to be the quickest, easiest way to leverage my presence. I get up to 14,000 page visits daily to my blog. I am sure problogger.net gets triple that number or more, so when I guest posted on PB my opt ins went up 6 fold.

    Kinda like how some artists collaborate with famous artists, to delve into new audiences.

    But on the flip side, I have pulled back from guesting to brand me on my blog.

    Reply
    1. Jackson Davies

      Hey Ryan!

      14,000 posts is impressive, you must be tapping into a good set of high profile blogs with that total. Oh the envy grows in me :). Problogger.net is an interesting site. I’ve ended up there many times, had a nose on their job boards, sampled some of the posts. Sometimes it is hard to tell from the outside how well a site is doing beyond a certain point. Obviously you can look at the social networking figures for some posts and see them in the hundreds but that isn’t always the best indication.

      As I mentioned in my response to you on Google+ it is interesting to see an evolving strategy. You are not alone in moving away from Guest Posting when your numbers move up. Generally by this point your posts rank better in search engines and this is a key thing that beginners don’t have in their favour. That’s why it is important to stick with it. Also, I can attest that juggling so many priorities is hard at times. You have to develop a strategy that works.

      Reply
  2. yourfriend

    Guest blogging is not an easy job to do especially for new Bloggers like you and me.

    Older and Experienced bloggers feel hesitation in giving a Backlink to your newly created Blog with no PR.

    Reply
    1. Jackson Davies

      Hi Yourfriend, I totally agree with you on this. Because I have such low stats on the important numbers then I’m not likely to attract guest posters so it is actually just better to make Guest posts instead and start the traffic flowing the other way. That hesitation is a fair deal from those established bloggers as there are a lot of new starters that don’t survive in the long term. The big guns want sure bets. Thanks for your contribution!

      Reply

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