Today another guestpost, this time it is actually on the do´s and don´ts of guest blogging and how to go about it:
Keeping a diverse (let alone a natural) link profile has been a struggle for many webmasters, brands and their in-house web developers. Internet Marketers who like to outsource everything (save checking traffic stats) and even the most battle-hardened SEO consultants have always had a hard time keeping up with Google’s whimsy.
Over the years, we’ve premised much of our work in the social media on decent rankings on search engines. The social media marketing in the Philippines (or anywhere else for that matter) must always go hand in hand with a great showing on Google.
Hugo Weaving’s V for Vendetta puts it; “A revolution without dancing is a revolution not worth having.”
Enter Guest Blogging.
Guest posting, guest blogging or cross-posting is one of the very few SEO tactics that have remain unscathed in the way of Google’s furry stuffed-animal-themed penalties. Exact match domains no longer work; anchor text is hanging by a thread but guest posting remains to be a viable way build links.
Here are a few tips on how to use successful guest blogging as part of your social media marketing:
Approach with caution.
Blogs and the communities surrounding them are very tight-knit, almost jealously guarded pockets of humanity in the Internet. Bloggers go to great lengths to come up with bigger, better sometimes larger-than-life posts to drive traffic in the hundreds of thousands of readers over a span of weeks or months.
They engage their readers directly and answer each and every comment to the best of their abilities. Hence, the warning:
Never approach a blog for a guest post simply for the sake of having a guest post. Unless your boat floats with rejection don’t approach every other blogger on your industry or niche for a guest post opportunity. Most of them are likely to say no; competition is still very much alive in the Internet as it is in the real world.
What you can do is approach other blogs and webmasters on related niches. If you’re in the business of selling timing belts and clutch discs, you might get a good shot if you approach a 4×4 enthusiast. If you’re selling Shih Tzu shirts, you might do well to talk to a blogger on pet food.
Pay or play your way.
Depending on your targets or your social media marketing budget, never hesitate to recompense blogs for hosting your content. While those who offer you free opportunities might outnumber those who won’t; paying for a link isn’t anything new.
Your content essentially upsets their readership. Their fans and audience take comfort in the familiar and enjoy the tranquility of repetition. You might as well make it worth their time.
From your end, you might be getting a valuable link AND a chunk of their (hopefully targeted) readership. Expect to pay anywhere between $30- $300; that’s for a year of staying power on their blog.
If you can’t pay your way to a guest post then you might as well be part of the community. From my experience, it doesn’t really take a lot of infiltration to become one of “them.” Simply leave a handful of thought-provoking comments (and try not to undermine the blogger’s authority) and you’re good to go.
If you can ignite lively discussion in the tiny white space of the comment section, there’s an equally good chance that you’ll be approached for a full guest post opportunity in time. If you’re feeling confident; approach. See tip number one.
Make every post count.
Guest blogging is a very intelligent, very social way of getting better traffic from search engines and perhaps, up to a point, from the movers and shakers of a given niche or industry. The blogosphere is a fairly intelligent community; let’s try to keep it that way.
Don’t submit a guest post without first understanding the content standards of a given blog. Try to tune and see what makes their readers tick. Look for the most commented posts and learn why they worked.
Talk to your host and ask for some inputs on the topics you’re proposing. Exchange a few emails and keep your line open for revisions. Format your post accordingly. Proofread your work and attach your own images if you can.
When your guest post is up; don’t just leave it there hanging. Graciously thank your host and try to check in periodically to respond to the comments.
To sum things up, here are a few things you need to remember when you’re using guest blogging as part of your social media marketing strategy:
- Blog regularly; it doesn’t have to be every day but there’s nothing like fresh content bonus to keep your company website ranking on Google. Space your posts evenly in between. If every other day Thursday works for you, commit your time and stick to it.
- Talk about your customers, not about yourself. Shameless self-promotion can drive customers in the opposite direction in a real hurry. Focus not on making sales but on keeping your current customers aching for more.
- Don’t litter the Internet. Black hat gimmicks work; they almost usually do but until when? If you can come up with content that not only actively engages your readers but moves and impels them to the direction you want your business will thrive long after search engines die.
Have you tried to use guest posts to grow your readership or to increase your traffic? How has it worked for you, so far? Share your thoughts or simply join the discussion below.
About the Author: I’m Shandi Tan, and I work as a Community Manager for Pulyetos, a brand leader in online reputation management solutions and social media marketing in the Philippines.You can read more about it here: www.pulyetos.com/blog.