There are two groups of content marketers out there.
The first group of writers tries to hack their views, reach, and popularity of their site with various SEO hacks, popups, ads, backlinks, redirects… you name it.
The second group doesn’t believe in having tricks up their sleeve so they go back to the drawing board and focus on pure unadulterated content – they improve it’s quality, work on length, pictures, relevance, etc.
What if I told you that you could combine both strategies? The way you do it is with Guest Blogging.
Writing a guest post on other sites not only helps you with SEO, gets you a backlink, but also brings more visitors to your own site and allows you to focus on doing what you love most – writing great content.
So how do you successfully pull off a guest post?
Here are the 5 top tools and tricks that I use to score a guest posting opportunity:
Step 1 – Find the Best Blog for Your Post
A lot of people limit themselves to either the top blogs in their industry or the least visited ones. If you only go after the top ones you might get discouraged, because they are busy and do get a lot of guest posting requests. While going for the smallest blogs out there will not get you a lot of traffic, and will not prove concept.
So the strategy is to go for both!
Here are some of the most successful ways I have found to accomplish that:
Look up Blog Lists
Go online and look up top blog lists. Search blogs by your industry, size, popularity to make a list of about 50-100 blogs that you want to outreach to.
I work in marketing so when I look up top marketing blogs I get a lot of various lists of blogs. It’s easy to pick out the ones that fit my style, niche, traffic requirements.
Use LinkedIn to find other content managers
Once I have a list of blogs to outreach to, I go to LinkedIn and directly message the people that work at those companies.
I usually go for the content managers or editors but if those are not available I will message anyone at the company and ask for the best way to get a guest post published.
Don’t be shy. People love interaction, and love to be directly contacted for something.
Don’t back down from the first no, but if the person is rude to you then I guess they weren’t meant to be on the your journey to success, right?
Use a Content Tool
There are numerous great tools out there that help you find the most popular content out there.
Here are my favorite two tools:
Zest is a Chrome extension that displays the top articles in online marketing, content writing, and social media when you click new tab.
So instead of the bland window that you usually see when you open a new tab, or a list of your most visited sites, you will see numerous articles on subjects that you care about.
If you are blogging about marketing or related topics this is the best Chrome extension you could get.
eClincher is one of those hidden gems in the content world. It’s primary purpose is to automate your social media and boost your engagement, but it also has a variety of awesome tools you could use to find the top blogs for your industry.
I usually use the influencer tool to look up the top influencers in my niche and then I DM them directly.
I also use the content feed tool to look up the top content in my niche, which gives me a nice idea of about who are the top blogs in that topic.
When I looked up Blogging I found a cool article by Jeff Bullas about how to repurpose your videos. I can see that Jeff has a high influencer rating (92/100) and I could reach out to him directly on Twitter to ask for a guest post or just to connect.
Step 2 – Apply for a guest post
Take the generic route first. The first place to apply for a guest post should be through the website. Most blogs have a contact us box or a guest post application process form that outlines the exact way they would like you to apply for one.
The next thing I would do is sign up for their email newsletter and once you get the first one click reply and send them a personalized email.
Show that you are part of the community, that you’re connected to them, and that you’ve read some of the content. This will ultimately be a better way to contact to contact the blog than the generic contact box.
Message them on LinkedIn
Sometimes this could take a long time so I would also definitely contact the content manager or the editor on LinkedIn and I asked him directly if you could write a guest post for them.
Look them up on Social Media
I would also look up The same people on Twitter and the various social media channels that they may have an interact with them there as well. Several of my guest post opportunities I’ve received by DM-ing people on Twitter.
Use a tool to discover their email address
Another great way to contact people directly is by looking at their email is in one of the email tools available. There are various tools out there that help you find persons email just by searching their first and last name and the name of the company they work for. It’s a great way to find someone’s contact info and I’ll being a stocker.
Step 3 – How to Craft the Best Email
One of the most effective email strategies is going straight to the point. Don’t you hate long marketing emails? You already know what they want to say, but you just get annoyed with their style.
This is why I like to dive right into it. I try present exactly what I’m trying to accomplish and what value I can bring to the person I’m emailing, in the first sentence.
Here’s one of my favorite email templates to use:
Step 4 – How to Write the Best Guest Post
There are a ton of great strategies on how to write the perfect guest post, but here are a few of them:
Don’t focus on selling
Whatever you do don’t write obsessively about your product offering. The reason you’re writing the guest post is to bring value to the readers of that blog.
If you’re writing about a related topic to your product you can always mention it in of the sections but don’t make the whole post about it (unless it’s a press release).
Always have sources to back up what you’re saying is links that relates to the herb content as well as links on that specific blog.
People love statistics so you can definitely use statistics in your post a lot of great synthesis out there that will add a new Deb for new level and also credibility to your post.
Be specific and focus on solutions
There more specific your post is the better. Focus on sharing tools, tips, and strategies to bring more value to your readers.
Think of your target audience and the people that will be reading your post. Try to think of a problem that they may face or knobs the cool growing a business and right about some solutions encountered.
Think of something that you have done in the past and you can describe from your experience so that the post will be more authentic and original.
The best marketers out there do this:
– pick a topic and
– then experiment on their own business and
– then write about the strategies that worked best for them.
If you don’t have the funds for the time then you can always quote the best strategies and case studies that have been done before.
Let your post serve as a reference guide
There is yet another type of post where people summarize a bunch of different information, quoting many sources. These posts become very popular because they are comprehensive and often have detailed list of strategies or statistics with a lot of links of quotes to back it up.
Sites are much more likely to share your post if it’s comprehensive if they feel that they post really covers the entire topic of conversation.
Lots of people would share it without even reading it, just trusting you on the amount of information you’ve packed in it. That’s why longer posts with 2000 to 3000 words do better in terms of the SEO and on social media.
127 stats about social media have never heard about.
The definitive guide on XYZ
Top 80 social media tools of 2017
Step 5 – Use Social Media for Maximum Exposure
Last step is super self-explanatory – share the heck out of the guest post that you wrote. This is important.
The more traffic, shares, and comments the article gets – the more likely you will get more guest post opportunities on that site.
Here are several cool ways to do it:
– Post on all of your social media channels
– Post the article on related Facebook groups
– Leave the link on a comment to another article
– Answer a question on Quora and cite your post
Those are our 5 steps to absolutely smash every guest blog post you write.
Have you used these techniques before? Which ones worked for you and which ones didn’t? Let me know in the comments below, cheers! 🙂
Ben Kazinik (@eclincherrocks) is an inbound marketer for eClincher, the world’s most powerful social media management platform. He enjoys hiking, cooking, soccer, and visiting his family around the world. Email me at – firstname.lastname@example.org