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Guest Blogging Tips – How To Get Your Guest Posts Published

One of the most common questions I get from visitors to Guest Post Tracker is, “how do I make sure my guest posts are published when I submit them?”

So using three of the most useful posts out there that teach the most effective tactics (see Resources at the bottom of post) and created these guest blogging tips on how to get your guest post approved.

If you’re a writer and you’ve never considered guest blogging, you are missing out on some huge benefits that have been proven over and over to drive traffic and sales.

All the big bloggers have used this guest posting trick – they either started out by guest blogging and made name for themselves by posting on other writers’ websites, or now that they’re “famous” in the blogger world they accept guest posts from bloggers who are trying to build a name for themselves.

You could be one of those bloggers, if you play your cards right. Getting a guest post accepted isn’t an automatic process…there’s a technique to pitching yourself to fellow bloggers. It requires research, patience, finesse, and diligence.  In other words, it ain’t that easy to get guest posts placed!

If it were easy, there wouldn’t be so many terrible, failed pitches circulating the email circuit.  In fact, many of the big bloggers say they get thousands of pitches per year and most of them are simply awful.

So that you aren’t simply adding to the ocean of failed pitches, here is the ultimate guide to getting your guest post approved.

Why guest post?

Guest posting is still a hot item for writers who want to increase their backlinks, raise brand awareness, and increase traffic to their websites.

  1. Backlinks. If you want your website to rank someday, you’ll need some quality backlinks from authority sites.
  2. Authority.  A byline on someone else’s blog is a nice shot in the arm to your authority as a writer or as an expert in a certain field.  It acts as a form of social proof, which is a key indicator of authority. It’s also super helpful for promoting your “brand”: the more exposure the better.
  3. Traffic.  When you write a guest post, very often the blog host will let you put a link to your own website. That means referral traffic for you!  Sometimes they’ll let you put links to your social media, too.

Where to guest post…what to look for.

Now that you can see the benefits of guest posting, it’s time to begin targeting some blogs. There are many steps to take before you finally send your pitch and before you write your very first guest post.

First, know what you’re looking for.

You don’t necessarily get much “authority” from a blog that simply accepts every post from every writer. There are some major collections of garbage out there, so avoid these.

What you want is a blog that’s clearly edited for quality and which carefully considers the target audience so as to present an engaging blog for readers who will come back again and again.

What you want is a blog that has a real set of followers.

Blogs to avoid:

If a blog has a post on finding the best credit cards for students next to a post on anti-aging skin care, then your Spider Sense should be tingling. These are highly competitive (read “money-making”) areas of internet commerce that don’t have a whole lot in common with each other except there’s money to be made.

Any blog that has posts about both of these topics might simply be a blog mill that won’t help you with all your objectives.

Now, narrow your list.

You should have a pretty long list of guest blogging opportunities by now. It’s time to weed out the undesirables and focus on the best. Weed out these types:

  • blogs that don’t let you link to your site/social media account
  • blogs whose followers would not make good targeted traffic for your site

Blogs with huge social media accounts are great because if and when they post your article, they’ll hopefully also tweet it, share it, or otherwise spread the word on social.

Butter them up before you ask for a guest post.

Before you send out your requests, work on ingratiating yourself first. There are essentially three ways to make a name for yourself with strangers:

  1. Spread some love (about them) on social media.
  2. Post some authentic comments on their blogs.
  3. Send the blog owner an email.

Twitter is a fantastic spot to get acquainted with someone in your field.  But don’t just retweet- engage!  The nice part is, your Twitter headshot appears every time you make contact.  That provides a wonderfully helpful visual memory jog for the blogger you’re trying to get to know.

Once you have a reason to actually email that person, include that same profile picture in the email and they’ll make the connection:

“Oh yeah, that’s the guy with the orange shirt…he always has something interesting to say on Twitter”.  

Blog comments are another way to make yourself known before you go in for the pitch with guest posting. Of course it goes without saying (but it needs saying anyway) that your comments should be thoughtful and legitimate…they’ll love you for it.

Finally, for the biggest leap into risky territory, you can try emailing the blogger. Remember: this is foreplay, not the actual pitch.

Flattery always works to soften someone up, so send them a note, for example, to express how much one of their posts made a difference in your life.

Be specific about which post you mean, and take the time to find one that truly speaks to you so you can write a halfway decent (authentic-sounding) note.

Now, brainstorm some topics.

Since you’ll need a little time between the buttering up stage and the actual pitch (perhaps a few weeks, during which you should continue the buttering techniques), here’s what you should do in the meantime: make yourself a list of winning topic ideas.

“Winning” has a couple qualifications:

  1. the topic should be incredible: fascinating, of course
  2. the topic should be relevant to the blog for which it is meant

So…you’ll have to forget that idea you had about writing one piece of content and putting it up for grabs to the first taker. Plan on writing a post that’s completely tailored to each blog you write for. Believe me, tailoring it to each blogger is a winning guest posting strategy.

Take these steps to ensure that the post you write is relevant for the blog to which you are submitting it:

  • Read the blog and find out what’s already been covered. Sometimes the blog hasn’t covered a particular topic in quite some time and you can do an update. Referring back to the original post means major bonus points for you, but be very careful not to criticize. It’s easy to step on toes in this business so be respectful: just because an old post is outdated, doesn’t mean it wasn’t cutting edge at some point in the past.
  • See what other guest bloggers have managed to get posted. This informs you on what type of guest posts this blogger likes to see.
  • Gauge audience expertise with your topic. Technical levels vary out there, so know the audience. Jargon-filled posts are OK only if the blog readers have the necessary background knowledge to handle that type of writing.

How to ask for a guest post…what NOT to do.

Pitches get rejected when they look like spam. But even if they aren’t spammy, they can be so poorly conceived that they automatically disqualify your pitch, just as if it were spam.

Quickly, here are the worst offenses you can make in your pitch. They’re quite obvious, so then we’ll move on to some real pitch advice for people who already know better:

Worst Pitch Mistakes:

  • grammar errors
  • lack of personalization
  • lack of research on the blog in question
  • saying only that you want to place a guest post (no “WIIFM”)

Don’t Pitch Like This

I recently got this email from a potential guest blogger:

bad guest post pitch

I didn’t take me more than 10 seconds to know he had never read a single blog post on my blog. If he did he would also have easily learned my name.

Note: Instead of saying things like “topics related to your blog”, say what the topic of the blog is.

How to get in…what you SHOULD do.

If you keep at the forefront of your mind the idea that you’re pitching to offer value to the blog owner, all these bits of advice you’re about to read should naturally fall in line and make total sense.

Erase from your mind that you need something from the blogger. Bloggers simply don’t care about your needs- they care about their own! Therefore, once you switch your focus from you to them, you’re on the right track.

On that note, here are some specifics to remember when making your pitch:

  • Make your pitch personal.  Read the blog, find out about the blog owner, see if they’re currently involved in big projects, analyze their comments, and take a look at their writing style. That way, with insider knowledge, you can offer what they need, rather than what you need.
  • Clearly state how the readers will benefit.  Ultimately, your target audience is the blogger’s target audience and you both want to please them.  Stating what’s in it for the readers will help the person reading your pitch visualize success with your post.
  • Eliminate the grunt work for the blogger. Submit your post in .txt format so it’s ready to go into a blog. Make sure there’s no extra work to be done, or they won’t choose your post. Don’t submit something that needs to be formatted or edited.
  • Set the right tone in your pitch. Don’t be too confident but don’t be a wet noodle, either. Here are some phrases that are either too humble or too arrogant (and a third one that’s too formal):
    • I’m humbled by your writing- please accept this meager offering
    • Here’s an awesome piece that will blow your readers away!
    • It’s come to my attention that you accept guest posts. Please accept this post as commitment to a beneficial relationship between our businesses.
  • Make a person-to-person connection. Don’t make the blogger feel as if you’re doing a blanket request to all bloggers with your pitch.  Tailoring the pitch should take care of that, but it helps to come across as friendly and helpful, too.
  • Add a touch of humor (if you can swing it). Making the blogger smile will carry your pitch further than anything- but this takes extra finesse and caution because it can easily backfire.  Use only when appropriate and genuine.
  • Do some background checking. Check out the “About Me” page on the blogger’s site, or see what he/she’s doing on social media. Gather info on their interests, their current projects, or their passions. Twitter streams are good for current undertakings of the blogger you plan to pitch. Look for common interests, or something you can mention in your pitch. The idea here is to show that you did your research and you’re serious about gust posting on their site.
  • Name drop, if you’ve got some names to drop. Have you already guest blogged elsewhere and you’re proud of it? Let the blogger know he or she is making the right choice by selecting you…it’s social proof at work. The more well-known the blog, the better.
  • Look for an opportunity to help the blogger. Look for an opening where your blogging would come in handy for the blogger. Is she going on vacation and you could fill in while she’s gone, posting away while she hits the beach? Are they starting up a new blog, and might need you to write for it? Does the blogger have a book that you could promote on your own blog or social media? Maybe they’re halfway through a book? You could offer to help them finish the book (or edit), or even brainstorm ideas for new chapters. Offer your services, be of help, and your pitch rises above the rest.

A final word.

Guest posting is a way to market your brand and increase traffic to your website through referral links and maybe through search engine traffic as a result of the backlinks you get from your guest posts.

It works if you treat it as a process, not as a shortcut for reaching your marketing goals. Building relationships with other writers takes time as well as energy, and you’ll have to give a lot in the beginning before you “get”.

Start now, give it time, be consistent, write a lot of guest posts, and you’ll soon be on your way to making your mark. Oh- and don’t forget to follow up with all your pitch emails. Good luck!

Where To Go To Find Good Blogs To Submit To

Now that you know how to pitch authority blogs to get them to accept your guest post, you need to find blogs in your niche to pitch.

Because I do SEO for clients every single day I also needed a good list that I could work from.

I spent hundreds of hours searching for and collecting blogs that accept guest posts.

I had friends in the SEO industry beg to share the list with them which I finally did.

I knew that if I needed others who were trying to do blogger outreach could use the list as well.

So I created Guest Post Tracker.

It is my (constantly updated) giant list of blogs allow guest posts and it is sorted by category.

gptforp

I do charge a very small one time fee to access the list.

I charge the fee so that blog owners don’t get slammed with thousands of requests, and so I can afford to keep the list awesome and updated.

Once you join, I also have video tutorials that teach you how to use blogger outreach to dominate the search results. I show you some pretty sneaky tactics that force other blogs to pass maximum link juice to your site.

Give it a try.

Get Instant Access To The List of 1000+ Guest Blogging Sites

Or

 

Resources

  1. The Definitive Guide to Guest Blogging
  2. How to Get Your Guest Post Published
  3. How to Land a Guest Post Every Time: 21 Secret Tips

/// 37 Comments:

  1. Amelia Reply

    For some reason, guest blogging scares the hell out of me! I don’t know why exactly but whenever I even think about having to write a post for another blogger I get all panicky and can’t focus at all. Needless to say I didn’t get any of my posts approved by another blogger yet.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Amelia, just spend the time writing a good article that adds value and there is nothing to be scared about. The reality is most of the guest posts submitted are garbage so even if yours is terrible, you’d fit right in. 🙂

  2. Denise Reply

    I’ve never considered guest posting as a way to promote my blog. I was always under the impression that if you write good quality content people will eventually come to your blog. I guess I was wrong and it’s better to be proactive rather than wait for it, no?

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Denise, yeah the old adage that if you write content people will come is very misguided. Go to where your audience is and submit a guest post and people will come.

  3. Miranda H. Reply

    I’m ashamed to admit it but I am one of those people that wrote bad emails pitches like that . It was 3 years ago when I was just starting out and I didn’t really knew what I was doing. I must have wasted so many chances to connect with people…

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Miranda, believe me everyone has written a bad guest post pitch. But now you are equipped to get approved every time with awesome pitches.

  4. Katrina Reply

    I have a little blog in a certain niche and I usually get 3-4 emails like that one you mentioned (the “dear editor” one) and most of them are pure garbage. How do people actually expect to make me want to publish some of their work after sending me these ridiculous emails?

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Katrina, yeah it seems so obvious because from our point of view the emails are terrible but to these people it is a numbers game. Send out a thousand and hope someone says yes. They would have so much more success if they just sent 10 awesome guest blog pitches.

  5. Madeline Reply

    I like the whole idea behind guest post tracker and I wonder why anyone didn’t do this by now. Anyway, I’ll probably give your service a try seeing as I can’t get my blog posts approved even though my writing is pretty good (at least that’s what I think but what do I know).

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Madeline, Im glad you like Guest Post Tracker. I built it because I needed it to help promote my businesses and other websites. It definitely has proved useful.

  6. Jesse Yusufu Reply

    Wow this is really a great and well written article, any body can just understand it easily. Thanks for sharing such an amazing insight into guest blogging. I hope all those guest writers will see it before submitting rubbish articles to be published. Thanks

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Jesse, yeah I hope to educate bloggers so that more high quality guest posts are being approved and posted on the top blogs around the web.

  7. David Reply

    All your tips are spot on. I always try to make all my pitches personal and I invest a lot of time to get to know the owner of the blog I want to guest post on. I think I start with at least 3 months in advance and post blog comments, send him/her emails with helpful ideas, share their posts on my social media profiles and so on.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      David, that is a great strategy. Making that long term investment in creating relationships will really pay off in the end.

  8. Felicia Reply

    We all like to be buttered up but I hate it when this is not true at all. I can usually sense it when someone is approaching me just for their own benefit. If you don’t really care about me or my blog, then I don’t care about you.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Felicia, I think that is the common thought process for most blog owners. Thanks for commenting.

  9. Damian Reply

    Caring about someone else’s blog and trying to help them out will open a lot of doors for anyone. I did this for a much bigger blog in my field and the owner was so happy for the help that we become very good friends and we worked on several projects since then.

  10. Mark Reply

    Whenever I have to brainstorm ideas for blog posts for someone else I get into this “blank mind” phase. Whatever I seem to be doing doesn’t work then except for this: I just leave everything behind and leave town for 2-3 days. It usually clears my head and gives me many ideas to write on.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Good idea Mark. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Greta Reply

    Proofreading your post before submitting it for review to another blog is crucial. I’ve must have found numerous errors in my spelling along the years, errors that I would have missed without proofreading my post. And I always make sure I do this twice.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Greta, yeah Im embarrassed to say I sent off a guest post to a big publication and forgot to proofread it. Thats when I realized I left the entire introduction out of the post. Needless to say they didnt accept it.

  12. LibraryLady Reply

    Wow, I feel like I just went to the “how to guest post” master class. You have a lot of good ideas here, and have inspired me to try harder to bring traffic to my blog. I had to smile at your tip about reading the blog first! Seriously? I’m sure this is not unlike querying a magazine editor or book publisher – you need to do your homework if you want to be taken seriously. I sometimes think the immediacy of the internet makes people think they can be more casual. Not true. Anyway, thanks for the great suggestions.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      LibraryLady, Im glad you liked the post. Im really hoping this helps people get over the hump and start getting their guest posts published.

  13. Kendra Reply

    I am so happy that I found this page! You learn something new everyday. I feel like I have been out of the loop for years because I never even heard of guess blogging until I came across your site! I’ve been trying to establish a personal blog with no real luck for years and I kind of gave up on that for now. But with this information, I’m going to take a new approach to blogging and building my brand. Thank you so much!!

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Kendra, Im glad it was helpful to you. Guest blogging is an awesome way to build your brand, and get paid too. 🙂

  14. Vicky Reply

    Hi,
    I’m getting the idea that writing for “payment” in links is truly competitive, and I’m inclined to start treating it the way one looks for an agent or book publisher–multiple submissions. Is this acceptable or expected in the guest-posting world? If there are two acceptances for a pitch, is it OK to tell the second one you’ve already placed the article, or do you whip up a new version on the same topic, or should you not be pitching completed articles to begin with (unless asked to)? Thanks, appreciate your thoughts on these matters.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Vicky, thanks for the comment. I would say it is a risky way to do things because everyone would prefer unique content. If you have one of the publications come back to you and say yes and then you publish with them and another comes back you’re most likely going to have to write a new post or burn a relationship with the second group.

  15. Auki Reply

    Reading this article I think I have been putting off volunteering to be a guest blogger for far too long. I’ve actually turned down a couple of requests to do guest blogging in the past not realising what a goldmine it might be in terms of valuable SEO for my own site(s). Thanks for the handy tips on the pitch too, I think it’s probably a good reminder that there is an advantage of utilising the real human element with making contacts within your industry or niche and not relying on automatic software and scripts to run your SEO campaigns.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Auki, yeah its amazing how many website owners don’t use guest posting for promotion. For me it is always an instant influx of traffic and sales and long term SEO benefit.

  16. I really needed these tips. Landing some guest posts nowadays are becoming harder because everybody want to guest post. Thanks Adam for the tips! However I was wondering, what is your take on writing emails for your pitch with a casual tone (e.g. using emoji)?

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Emmerey Rose, yeah it is hard to stand out from the 50 other guest post requests a blog gets every week but if you approach it as building a relationship you will probably have a much higher success rate.

  17. Most of the bloggers wish to create a separate blog to Guest Blogging Tips and Trick suggest hare their ideas but very rarely people consider about guest blogging. Guest blogging is a great option to increase your visibility and assures better reach to the targeted audience.
    Create a long lasting relationship –get to know the blog owners before writing a guest post for them. This is a door to write more multiple guest posts.
    Get the right exposure – Select the guest post according to the audience, create links that get back the viewers to your website and build a strong credibility by publishing in the right place.

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      guestbloggt, you’ve made some good points.

  18. Lineisy Kosenkova Reply

    Found your post and love the content. So many great ideas and deep insight to get me started with guest blogging. Thanks!

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Lineisy, IM glad you are enjoying the content.

  19. Banaraswala Reply

    hi, it was helpful ,thank you

    1. Adam White Post author Reply

      Banaraswala, Im glad you liked it.

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