Entries Tagged 'Becoming a guest blogger' ↓

“Don’t Guest Blog For Links”, Says Matt Cutts

As the owner of two blogs (this one and Briar Copywriting Blog), I usually get at least one email a day pitching guest blog ideas.

Some are genuine and from writers that produce great content, but others are an obvious attempt to buy their way onto my blogs. Yes, they actually offer to make a ‘contribution’ for the kudos they’ll get for appearing on a high-ranking blog.

Guest blogging is a practice that’s been exploited over the years by people who saw it as a quick way to get links back to their sites. The result is an awful lot of dreary, sub standard copy that’s no use to man nor beast.

If you do it, stop now.

If you don’t believe me, this is what Google’s very own Matt Cutts has to say about guest blogging:

“Okay, I’m calling it: if you’re using guest blogging as a way to gain links in 2014, you should probably stop. Why? Because over time it’s become a more and more spammy practice, and if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company.

“Back in the day, guest blogging used to be a respectable thing, much like getting a coveted, respected author to write the introduction of your book. It’s not that way any more.”

Guest blogging and SEO

It is important to make the distinction between high quality guest blogging and the practice being used for search engine optimisation.

If you write fantastic articles for multi-author blogs (that are high quality sites) you have nothing to worry about. Google’s wrath is reserved for low quality posts, spammy sites and those who offer to pay for the privilege of being published on blog sites.

To help clarify that for you, here’s Matt’s latest video on the subject.

If you are also inundated with guest blog requests, tread carefully. As a rule, only accept those from people you know (personally or through business) and trust.

Guest Blogging That Doesn’t Look Like Paid For Link Building

There are several ways to get links for your website, one of which is guest blogging.

But with so many companies out there placing sub-standard blogs on websites in return for a paid for link, how can genuine bloggers be sure their links count in the eyes of Google and not classed as paid for links?

This video from Google’s Matt Cutts should help.

Thanks Matt for your words of wisdom.



Why You Should Want to Guest Blog

In today’s search driven world it’s a given that you should be blogging.

After all, Google has an insatiable appetite for fresh, quality content so if you want to keep in its good books you have to give it what it wants.

But blogging just for you isn’t going to cut it. Even if you blog religiously you need to widen your reach to be a success and that means guest blogging.

By persuading other bloggers to take your posts you’ll increase your web presence and reinforce your status as an expert in your field. This is especially true if you approach websites that are prominent in your particular industry.

I know what you’re thinking, guest blogging is hard work – that’s true, but if done well it will pay dividends in more ways than you can imagine.

Expose yourself

Please don’t take that literally.

Writing for other people will widen your reach as an expert, as with anything, the more often you’re seen the better. It’s just like adverts – consumers have to be exposed to a brand several times before they are ready to buy. So the more people who see your name (and in the more places it’s seen) the better. It will become lodged in their brain, so when they need your particular service they’ll call you.

Web cred

This is street cred for online marketers.

The chances of you being accepted by a big hitter in your field immediately are slim, so start off with some smaller sites to build a portfolio of guest posts. Then you can approach the big players.

Let’s face it, the bigger the website the more credibility you’ll get.


The beauty of guest blogging, other than getting your name plastered all over the web, is that it will generate valuable inbound links to your website.

Now, admittedly, not all websites will allow you to place self-serving links in the body of your article, but they usually allow an author’s bio that can contain a link back to your website.

Of course the bigger the fish you land, the more kudos the link will give.

Social media

How will guest blogging widen your social media audience?

Simple, just about every blog out there offers social sharing buttons. So when your article is read and loved (as it obviously will) the reader will probably share it through social media. It will then be seen by others, generating more Google+ and Twitter followers for you.

So as you can see, guest blogging isn’t just about getting links. It’s about gaining the right kind of exposure online and in the social world.

It takes a lot of time, but the rewards speak for themselves.


Sally Ormond is an international copywriter and MD at Briar Copywriting Ltd

Why Not Everyone Loves Guest Bloggers

Sad but true, not everyone likes guest bloggers.Guest blog writers

Apart from the ones that email you claiming to love your blog only to offer a post that is completely unrelated from your niche (I was recently offered a post on parenting and childcare from an ‘avid’ reader of my blog…really?), some people just refuse to accept posts from other people.

Personally, I love to hear from people who want to write guest posts – that is assuming they actually offer something that is relevant to the subjects my blog covers.

To me guest bloggers offer a lot of pros:

  • They offer fresh content for my readers
  • Their posts offer a new way of looking at things
  • They enhance my blog with expertise that I may not have
  • They reduce my work load (very important)
  • They could bring in a whole batch of new readers to my blog

So, on the whole, there are a lot of good reasons why you should accept guest bloggers.

But as I mentioned earlier, not everyone shares my point of view.

 The cons of guest bloggers

After reading my list of reasons why you should accept guest posts (I’m sure there are loads more, but they are the ones that stand out for me), it may be hard to think why anyone would be anti guest posts.

Some people are very precious about their blog, only wanting their voice to be heard through it, which I guess is fair enough.

Others believe that bringing in outside writers may turn-off their readership. Not really convinced on that one, after all surely a new perspective would be welcomed? I don’t think the odd guest post would put anyone off. After all how many novel readers out there only ever read books from one author? Most people like to try others out for size too.

Then of course there are those who think they may lose readers when publishing a guest blog because there’s a chance that their readers will prefer what the guest author has to say and they’ll jump ship. But surely your readers will remain loyal and thank you for introducing them to a new voice that they may also want to follow?

Finally, there’s always the concern over being offered content that’s just been scraped off another site, or an article that’s been spun. But you can get round that by using tools such as Copyscape and Plagiarism checker.

What do you think?

Despite the cons above, I still think guest bloggers are worth their weight in gold (the good ones that actually read your blog before offering a post). For me, the pros far outweigh any possible downsides.

But then I am just one little voice in a vast blogging sea.

What’s your take on this issue?

Are you for or against?  Leave a comment below.

If you’re interested in writing a guest blog for me, email me for the FCB guidelines along with your idea.

Author: Sally Ormond, Copywriter and MD of Briar Copywriting Ltd

The Qualities of a Good Guest Blogger

You want to widen your audience and what better way to do that than pitching for guest blogging slots.Qualities of a good guest blogger

Did you notice I used the word pitching?

A lot of people will write something, email it to a blogger and expect it to be accepted. Life doesn’t work like that.

The first thing to remember is that you don’t have a right to be published on another blog. That decision remains firmly with the blog owner. It is your job to convince them that your writing will:

  • Bring new readers
  • Suit their blog’s tone
  • Fit in with their niche
  • Entertain their readers

So how to you go about making an approach?

What not to do

If you do either of the following, you’re unlikely to be accepted and you may not even get a reply.

  1. Send in any old post and ask for it to be published
  2. Chase them within a couple of days if you’ve not heard anything

Why? Because it shows a lack of regard for their blog and respect for them as a blogger.

How to make an approach

First of all do some research and find blogs that you can write for. If your post is to be interesting you’re going to need some background knowledge and experience within the niche you’re writing about.

Once you’ve found a good fit, read through some of the old posts to get a feel for the style, voice and approach used.

Then, you can make contact.

In the first instance, email asking if they would be interested in accepting a guest blog from you. Tell them a bit about yourself and why you think your writing would benefit their readership. Give them a few suggested titles for posts and ask them which one they feel would be useful to their readers.

Don’t be surprised if you don’t get an instant response. Leave it for a week before chasing, and if you do chase, be polite!

You get the green light

Once you get the go-ahead it’s time to write.

You would already have researched the tone and style of the blog you’re writing for, but also think about your layout. Blogs with sub headings and bulleted lists are much easier to read than those that are just a series of long paragraphs.

Keep your language simple, make sure you include some great information and follow the guidelines given to you by the blog owner.

Above all make it interesting and informative. If there is any whiff of a sales pitch going on (however well hidden) your submission will be rejected.

Finally, take great care with your spelling and grammar. The blog owner may be willing to correct the odd typo (after all, we’re all human), but if your post is written badly with loads of errors they are not going to use it.

If you are rejected because of this and manage to get them to agree to a re-submit, make sure it is absolutely perfect otherwise it will be deleted and that will be the end of your relationship.

If your submission is accepted, thank them and offer them another post (although before agreeing they may want to see how your first post is received by their readers) and start building a relationship with them.

As a blog owner myself, I know how valuable good guest bloggers can be – but if you want to get on the ‘good’ list, you’ve got to work for it.