Guest blogging plays a critical role in search engine optimization (SEO) by providing the opportunity to reach a captive audience and build credible backlinks. Building a strong backlink profile is one of the most important components of SEO.
Whether you’ve been guest blogging for a while or you haven’t started yet, there are certain things you need to know. For example, if you want your links to stick, you need to develop a relationship with the entity publishing your content. This point, along withs several more, will be discussed below.
1. There is a right and wrong way to guest post
When you think of guest posting, what comes to mind? Do you picture yourself sending thousands of emails to blogs asking for the opportunity to write a piece for their audience? Or do you target blogs in your niche and pitch a well thought out piece you’d like to write for the blog’s audience?
Asking for links in exchange for an article is the wrong way to approach guest posting. The only way you’re going to get high-quality backlinks is by approaching editors with the intention of providing value for their readers.
Spammy tactics earned guest blogging a bad rap
Guest blogging wrongfully earned a bad reputation thanks to comments published by Matt Cutts, former head of Google’s Web Spam team. Cutts essentially stated that guest blogging for link building is done because it’s become too spammy.
Many people interpreted his comments to mean that guest blogging isn’t effective and should be avoided completely. However, that’s not what Cutts was actually saying. A well-written article titled Guest Blogging: Is It a Powerful Link Building Catalyst or Waste of Time? clarifies the context for Cutts’ comments on guest blogging. In a nutshell, Cutts was pointing to guest bloggers who solicit a link in exchange for a blog post. Technically, that’s not authentic guest posting – that’s spam.
Authentic guest posting is when you write content for a website with the intention of adding value to the publisher’s website. You will get the opportunity to include a link back to your website, but the primary focus is a high-quality, valuable piece of content specifically written for that blog’s audience.
2. Write well-researched content
Well-researched content is the cornerstone of all content marketing and link building strategies. In fact, it’s impossible to write an SEO-optimized article without proper research.
Research will connect you with interesting facts, stories, and industry names related to your subject. Using this information in your article will boost your article’s credibility. Performing in-depth research will also give you statistics to cite, which will tell you even more about the subject you’re writing about. For example, articles longer than 1,000 words receive the most shares and links. If you’re writing about SEO, this would tell you that content is king, but length still matters.
3. Come up with a truly unique story
Editors reserve the right to remove content as they feel is necessary. The best way to ensure your guest blogs stay published is to write articles that provide a new angle on the publisher’s subject matter.
Finding a truly unique story angle can be challenging. However, there is a secret to sourcing unique content ideas. Dig around to find out what unsolved problems exist in your target industry. Then find out who has solutions. Write about the problem and offer solutions. If you do enough research and write amazing articles, you could end up with a regular column.
4. Write content specifically for the target blog’s readers
It should go without saying that all guest blogs should be written specifically for that blog’s audience. Forget about your political or personal opinions and views while writing the content. If your perspectives and beliefs happen to align with the audience you’re writing for that’s fantastic. However, don’t write in favor of perspectives that will turn off the target audience.
If writing from a different perspective seems hard, you’ll have a hard time guest blogging. Consider challenging content blogs an opportunity to learn new perspectives so well you can write about them as if they are your own beliefs. If you can do that, you’ll make a great guest blogger and you’ll get more referrals.
Have fun guest blogging
Although guest blogging takes hard work, make sure you enjoy doing the work. If it becomes a chore, you can always outsource your content creation to a professional marketing agency.