How to Craft the Perfect Guest Blog Post: A Step-by-Step Guide
If you were able to create the perfect guest blog post, imagine the endless opportunities that would follow from doing it.
A great guest blog post will likely earn you free backlinks. It can develop your authority and reputation in your niche. It will give you new readers, and many will likely become loyal to you. Your competition will want to work with you instead of against you. There are so many positive things that will happen if you create a perfect guest blog post on other blogs like yours.
However, many bloggers face the challenge of not understanding what goes into creating such a great guest post. If only you had a formula or a guide that would show you exactly what you needed to do to accomplish this task.
Lucky for you, I love writing articles about this topic, and I really love giving this information away for free. So, on that note, I hope you enjoy this step-by-step guide showing you how to craft the perfect guest blog post so that you can start getting the rewards of it today.
What’s the Purpose of Creating the Perfect Guest Blog Post?
Before you can understand how to create the perfect guest blog post, you need to understand what a guest blog post actually is. It’s a regular blog post and should share the characteristics of any great blog post. But instead of you posting it on your blog, you write it to be posted on another blog that you don’t run. Guest blogging is when you write on another blog as a guest writer.
Guest blogging is an important part of your general blogging strategy. Each guest blog post you write adds credibility to your reputation in the niche. It’s important to be seen within your niche, away from your blog, too. Your blog isn’t enough for you to use solely to build your authority and expertise. If you want to be better known in your niche, you need to write on other blogs in your niche.
Many benefits for you and the host blog are adding your content. Your blog post will give you authority and reputation in your niche. It can even get you readers and help you build backlinks. But it also helps the host blog, too. It gives them new content, and more authors on a blog make blogs look better. You should also accept guest bloggers on your blog, too. I’ll write a post later about that topic.
How to Find Guest Blogging Opportunities
There are opportunities everywhere to post your perfect guest blog post. Try to get your posts on blogs that closely match your blog’s authority and position on search engines. However, if you can post to high-authority blogs in your niche, you should also try to get posted on them, too. You want your best blog content to be on the best blogs.
Make sure you post your guest blog posts on niche-related blogs. If you blog about camping cooking, for example, you need to stick to guest blogging on other camping cooking blogs or even general camping blogs that have a cooking category. It’s best to guest blog on topics that you write about on your own blog. You’ll often be more passionate about it as you write the post out.
Look for blogs that are actively posting guest blog posts. If you choose a blog that doesn’t have any guest posts, chances are they will reject your guest post request. Not every blogger is into accepting guest blog posts for whatever reason. Try to focus your attention on blogs that are not only posting guest blog posts but have had recent guest blog post submissions. You’ll have better luck with them.
When trying to find blogs that accept guest blog posts, Google search is your best friend. Use search applicators like “guest blog” and “by guest blogger,” along with keywords about your niche. This is one of the easiest ways to find other blogs in your niche that accept guest blog posts.
When trying to find a home for that perfect guest blog post, look into the backlinks of your competitors. Search for websites and blogs that link to them. See if they allow guest blog submissions. If they do, reach out and ask them to consider accepting you as a guest blogger. Many of them are already going to be into your content.
Steer clear of spammy blogs. Many new bloggers make this mistake. A spammy blog or a low-quality content blog will only hurt your ranking. Google might detect that you’re just trying to get quick links. That can harm your ranking. It also tells the search engines that your blog might not be trustworthy if you are posting as a guest on websites and other blogs that don’t have the best content.
Pitching Your Perfect Guest Blog Post Idea
Determine your goals before you start seeking to pitch your perfect guest blog post. Why do you want to post a guest blog post on a particular blog? What do you want to get out of it? What do you want the blog to get out of your guest post? Setting goals will allow you to have a strategy in place. Having a strategy allows you to get more acceptance rather than more rejections.
When pitching your guest blog post idea, be you. Write in your voice. Don’t pretend to be someone else. Don’t try to fake it until you make it. Looking like a fake on your own blog can hurt your reputation. Looking like a fake on someone else’s blog can make other blogs never want to do collaborations with you. Don’t automate emails or copy and paste responses. Be genuine each time. Be yourself.
If you don’t care about the topic you want to write a guest blog for, then don’t do it. In order to write a perfect guest blog post, you need to be passionate about the topic you’re writing about. You should stick to your niche and your greatest passions in life. You want to guest blog to promote your own blog, after all, right? Then, guest blog on blogs that share those same topics.
Have an outline ready before you send the guest blogging request email. Offer to follow up an email with your article outline. It’s good to wait until they accept you sending them one so you don’t look like a spammer or someone who is too desperate. Make sure your outline has a great title, headers, and bullet points about what areas you will cover within the guest post.
Show social proof of your work in your email to potential host blogs for guest blogging. If you can show them that you’re already making great content that people like to read, it will boost your credibility. This will be especially helpful if you have a good following. The more like an influencer you look, the easier it will be to get guest blogging gigs.
Be polite with rejection and move on. It’s really that simple. Don’t try to beg the blogger to give you a chance because it makes you look bad. Instead, thank them for actually reading your email, compliment their blog, maybe even a recent post you really enjoyed, and then wish them luck. After that, they’ll either not respond, respond with the same type of reply, or maybe even respond with a change of mind and accept your guest post after all.
Try to “have it ready” strategy and recycle if needed. What does this mean? It means that you write the post before you get an acceptance. Then, you propose that you post in a follow-up email to them. If they accept it, great. If they don’t, you can use it on another guest blog post request if it’s appropriate or use it on your own blog. This is why it’s so important to create the perfect guest blog post – so that it can be recycled if needed.
When requesting to guest blog on other websites, try to keep track of what happens. Keep track of acceptances and try to determine why it was accepted. Then, keep track of rejections and determine why they were rejected. This information can help you with your email pitches for getting guest blog post acceptances.
If you send out a guest blog request and never get an answer, try to send a follow-up email. Just say that you haven’t heard from the blogger and that you’re still interested in being a guest blogger if they’re looking for them. If they don’t respond on the second attempt, consider it a lost cause and move on to the next blog.
Guest Blogging for Backlinks Doesn’t Work
Don’t try to be a guest blogger for backlinks.
Google has already stated again and again that guest blogging for backlinks is a waste of time.
But I did say guest blogging has a backlinks opportunity at the start of this post, right? I did. I meant it, too. But it’s not the actual link in your bio that gives you the opportunity. It’s the reputation and authority that helps you get them. People will know about you, find your content, link to it, and share it around.
That’s your backlink opportunity, especially when you write the perfect guest blog post each time you get accepted.
10 Tips for Writing the Perfect Guest Blog Post
Want to write the most perfect guest blog post that you can possibly write? Then follow these 10 super easy-to-follow but super powerful tips.
1 – Write for Their Audience
Don’t write for you; write for them. Don’t write a post that you know your audience would love; write a post for the audience of the blog you are writing for. Your content is for the blogger and their audience.
2 – Align with Their Brand
Try to align with their brand. Take some time to research their brand and what they’re about. Try to write your perfect guest blog post to be perfectly aligned with their brand.
3 – Align with Their Format
Take a look at the last 20 or 30 blog posts of a blog you want to write for. Try to understand their format. Do they create a lot of “how to” articles? Or maybe they create a lot of listicles? Or maybe some other format? Try to write your article in a way that matches their format. They’re going to like it, and their audience will be used to it.
4 – Provide Actionable Content
Write actionable content. It needs to be value-packed and of the highest quality. You should answer the hardest questions and solve the biggest problems. Make sure you align it to the needs and wants of the audience of the blog you’re writing for, but make sure you give them something they desire.
5 – Don’t Make it About You
I need to repeat this a few times. It’s because it’s a really common mistake that is made. Bloggers tend to write for themselves before they write for others. Make sure your content is about the readers and not about you.
6 – Include a Great Headline
Like with your own content, you need to have a hook. Your title or headline is your perfect hook setup. Make sure you don’t use clickbait or look spammy with your headline. But make it grab the attention of readers and make them want to learn more.
7 – Create Your Best Content
Treat your perfect guest blog post like your own blog post. Write every guest blog post like you’re trying to write the best article you’ve ever written. A great article is going to get the most attention. Write great articles, and you might be a regular contributor to the blog instead of a one-time guest blogger.
8 – Write with SEO in Mind
Try to keep SEO in mind when creating a guest blog post. Make sure you follow the SEO style of the blog you’re writing for if they use one. Some might not want you to write with SEO at all. Make sure you follow up with the blog before you do it.
9 – Provide the Images
If you have photos and graphics that you can provide to the blogger, you should provide them. Don’t use copyrighted material! It can hurt the blogger and ruin your reputation. If you provide your own images, make sure you grant them a license to use them.
10 – Be You
The most important thing you can do when writing the perfect guest blog post is to be yourself. If you’re trying to be someone that you’re not, you won’t look real. It’s easy to spot a fake in this day and age. Everyone can tell when you’re not being honest.
Write the Guest Blog Post
Write a guest post that has some length. Try to aim for 1,000 to 1,500 words or more. Make sure every sentence counts, though. Don’t use fluff words or filler just to make the article look bigger. Write the blog post like you’re writing a bestselling novel.
Make sure your guest post is original content. Don’t copy something you’ve already written. It also needs to be evergreen, too. Evergreen means that the content stays valuable for the life of its existence. It should be something that people can use no matter what year it is.
Try to write your post for beginners in the niche. Typically, content for beginners does better than other content. However, check with the blog you’re writing for first. The blog might wish for you to target a different audience than beginners, especially if you’re an expert in the niche.
Try to keep your sentence short. Try to keep your paragraphs short, too. Use line breaks, white space, and formatting. This is recommended because most readers are using mobile devices, and they’re scanning rather than reading the whole thing.
Try not to link to your content unless the blog you’re writing for has permitted it. Instead, try to link to their content within your post. Link to their better content that gets more attention. If you can get readers of your post to stay on their blog longer, it’s going to be very helpful for the blog you’re writing for, and that will get you invited to come write for them again and again.
Optimize for SEO if you have permission to do so by the blog you’re writing for. You should research the keyword and place it in important areas within the content. Just try not to over-optimize, as it can hurt not only their blog but also your reputation since your name will be attached to it.
Use original images and don’t violate copyright protections. I once used images provided by a guest blogger without looking into them. It was a mistake on my part. In the end, I got slapped for infringement and had to pay the copyright holder. Don’t ever put someone in that position. I’ll never do business with that blogger again, and I’ve warned everyone about their misuse of copyrighted images.
Make a great bio at the end, but don’t make it spammy. Include your link once. Give some details about you as a person, your experience within the niche, and why you’re so passionate about it. Keep your bio short – about a paragraph long. Remember, your perfect guest blog post isn’t about you.
Make sure your bio link is set as “nofollow,” or instruct the blogger to set it as that. Google has already stated that “do follow” links can hurt your SEO because guest blogging isn’t intended for getting backlinks. Many bad bloggers try to cheat SEO by getting these backlinks, and most of the time, Google’s algorithm will catch it and penalize them.
Include a good headshot photo for your bio. It’s important that people can see what the author looks like. You should try to use a photo that you use on your branding so that you can be quickly recognized. Some bloggers want to use blog logos instead. Most of the time, those types of logos get less traction. People are automatically attracted to photos of other people because we’re such a social species.
Reply to Comments and Promote the Post
If you’re allowed to, you should reply to all comments made on your guest post. Try to make very high-quality comment replies. Comment with the intention of keeping the discussion going. The better the comment response on the post, the happier the blogger will be in the end, and there people will get to understand who you are.
Make sure you promote that perfect guest blog post, too. Promote it on your social media pages. You might even link to it on your own blog posts when appropriate. You want to get readers to come read the post. As I said above, it helps the blogger you wrote for, and it helps you, too. Just make sure you don’t spam it.
Excessive Guest Blogging is a Bad Idea
Try not to get too many guest blog posts in a short amount of time. Google and other search engines will take notice of it and assume you’re trying to get backlinks or using bad tactics to get readers.
Getting too many links (even if they’re nofollow) at once time can do more bad than good. I would recommend a once-a-month or even a once-a-quarter strategy for getting guest blogging gigs.
You don’t want to make yourself look desperate for links.
My Final Thoughts About Writing a Perfect Guest Blog Post
My final thoughts about writing the perfect guest blog post are very simple.
Write the post like it’s going on your own blog. Keep your reputation and authority in mind when guest blogging. Don’t write for backlinks. Try to focus on the audience of the blog you’re writing for.
Guest blogging is getting harder and harder to do. Don’t give up if you get rejected at first. Keep trying. It gets easier the better you get at it.
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About the Author
Shawn Gossman has created content, blogged, ran online communities, and shared a passion for digital marketing for over twenty years. Shawn believes the best way to help content creators, businesses, brands, and marketers is to give away more than you sell. The same advice is recommended for the readers that follow this blog. Shawn also offers a variety of services for extra help in the area of content creation, blogging, forums, and digital marketing. Learn more about Shawn Gossman by clicking here.
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