If you want to reach a targeted audience and grow your blog, you need to consider guest post outreach and how you could make this part of your blogging routine. Read on to learn more about what outreach is, why it matters, and how to do it successfully.
What Guest Post Outreach Is
Guest posting is where you write a blog post that appears on someone else’s website. At the bottom of this blog post, you include information on you/your business and a link to your website. You contact other bloggers in your industry with a pitch for a guest post that you would like to appear on their blog.
Please keep in mind, that guest posts differ from so called niche edits, where you reach out to a blogger and ask them to embed a link into an already existing article on their website.
Why Guest Post Outreach Matters For Your Business
Running a business online is a lot like fishing. Your business is set up at one fishing spot. Every time you post something, you are putting a line into the water and seeing if any of the fish in your pool bite. As you work on your marketing, you are working on attracting more fish to swim into your pool.
When you guest post, you are putting a line into a whole new pool. This is a school of fish who haven’t heard of you before, and who you might not have ever discovered your pool if you hadn’t come over to visit.
Guest post outreach matters because you are exposing your business to a new set of potential customers. This audience is already interested in reading things from this platform and is interested in your industry. This is a low-cost method for reaching a targeted audience.
This isn’t the only benefit to practice guest post outreach, but it is the key reason to make it a habit.
Other Benefits of Guest Posting Include:
- Building a Relationship With Other Bloggers In Your Industry
- Establish Authority In Your Niche
- Practice Engaging A New Audience
- Build Links To Your Website
The Best Practices For Guest Post Outreach
1. Find the Right Blogs
You need to do your research. One of the major benefits to guest posting is that you can reach a targeted audience. When you submit somewhere that is clearly not a good fit, you’ll likely be turned down, so submitting is really a waste of your time and the blogger’s.
Find blogs in your niche. Subscribe to their feed and follow them on social media. Read a few of their posts and look at the tone of their posts. Does it align with your business? Take a look at some comments on their blog and replies on their social media posts to get a feel for what their audience is into. Is this an audience you should pursue?
While there are websites that may accept your pitch who haven’t advertised that they accept guest posts, search around their site to see if they have a guest posting policy as many sites will. You can also look through their feed to see if you can find a past guest post. If you can, take a look at it for style and to see who it was they’ve accepted in the past. This will provide insight on whether you might be the right fit.
When you’re looking at their site, also consider how big of an audience this site has. Look at their interactions on social media and number of blog comments to see how engaged their audience is. See if you can get a feel for how well they rank on Google, and how active this site is. Does this site feel worth your time for the size of engaged audience you would reach?
2. Create a List of Post Ideas
As you are researching the blogs you want to approach, keep a list of topic ideas and mark the ones that would fit well with these sites. What would be best for you to write about that would align with their audience? What would best engage their followers and make them curious enough to follow you back to your blog?
3. Warm-up The Relationship First
Popular bloggers have busy inboxes. They get a lot of requests for guest blog posts. It’s uncomfortable to ask a stranger for something. How does this person know that you know anything about their site? How do they know you’re really interested in reaching and connecting with their audience and providing value to their website?
You’ve already followed the social media and blog feed. Now, over the next couple weeks or months, comment on some of their blogs and social media posts. Be genuine and authentic. Ideally, you are networking with this fellow blogger in your industry and becoming familiar with them, not just trying to get this one guest post opportunity.
4. Be Polite and Professional In Your Pitch
Remember that bloggers are busy and keep your message polite but brief. Let them know that you enjoy their site. Briefly mention that your audiences are similar and mention something specific that makes them similar, as this tells the blogger that you are familiar with their site and the needs of their audience. Then propose a topic for your guest blog and briefly explain a few key points why the post you would write for them would provide value to their audience.
Bloggers want quality content for their site they don’t have to write, but they only want quality content that will keep their audience engaged.
5. Prepare For Rejection
You may never hear back or you may receive a polite rejection. That’s okay. You will get turned down more often than your pitch will be accepted. That’s part of writing. If you still enjoy this blog and they do accept guest posts, consider pitching them again, but wait awhile before you do.
In the meantime, move on to the next blog on your list.
While quality matters a great deal when you are selecting blogs for guest posting, this is also a numbers game. You need to pitch many blogs before you get one yes. Don’t let this overwhelm you. Instead of trying to pitch a hundred blogs all at once, set a more realistic goal for yourself. Every week you will spend a certain amount of time researching blogs and then have another time limit for how many you will pitch each week. If you can make this a continuous part of your routine, you will eventually find some success and the rewards will build over time.