How to be a great guest blogger
Providing guest posts for other people’s blogs is a great way to raise your visibility. I’ve discussed how to snare these opportunities in “How to guest-blog on personal finance and investments, Part I: Your approach” and “Part II: Blogs that accept guest posts from financial advisors.” However, your responsibilities don’t end once you’ve sold the host blogger on your idea. There are more steps you can take to deepen your relationship with your host and her or his readers. Become a great guest blogger and get results!
1. Provide your post as promised—the first rule for a great guest blogger
If you’ve promised to submit a 400-word post on emerging market debt by the first of the month, do it. Your host may be counting on you to fill a hole in the blog’s editorial calendar. Don’t disappoint him or her by flaking out or writing on an unrelated topic.
2. Proofread your work
Take more care than usual in proofreading your draft before you submit. Sloppy errors undermine your credibility. Your hosts—and their readers—may wonder if you manage your clients’ investments as carelessly as you treat your words.
You can find proofreading tips in
- Why I love Adobe Acrobat Pro for proofreading
- Stop sending emails with errors
- Bloggers’ top two punctuation mistakes
- Investment commentary numbers: How to get them right
3. Follow through on host requests
Provide whatever additional materials your host requests. For example, I ask my guests for a headshot photo and a one-to two sentence bio. Your host may ask you to edit or clarify something in your draft. Go along with those requests, assuming they’re reasonable.
4. Keep your requests reasonable
It’s reasonable to expect at least one link to a web page or social media profile of your choice in your bio. After all, readers should learn how to find you.
Don’t go overboard by inserting a gazillion links or overtly promotional text in your guest post. You can get a sense of what’s reasonable by looking at earlier guest posts on your host’s blog. Some blogs are more tolerant than others.
5. Help the host with PR
Your host will appreciate it if you spread the word about your guest post via social media. If you’re on Twitter, earn extra points by including your host’s Twitter name in your tweet. For example, “TITLE is my guest post on @susanweiner‘s blog: URL.”
6. Respond to reader comments on your guest post
Engaging with your guest blog’s readers will deepen your relationship and increase the odds that they’ll visit your website or blog. It’s important to respond to reader comments.
Of course, you can’t respond to comments if you don’t know about them. A good host will send you a message after the first comment. Typically, when you post your reply, you can subscribe to be notified of additional comments.
If you don’t want to rely on your host for an initial notification, you can leave a “thank you” comment on your guest post. It could be something simple like “Thank you, NAME, for this guest-blogging opportunity. I’ll be happy to respond to any comments or questions from your readers.”
If your blog offers a good audience for your host, it’s nice to offer her or him a guest slot on your blog. Of course, that assumes his or her expertise is relevant to your audience.
Did I miss any tips for how to be a great guest blogger? I’m always open to your suggestions.
Note: This post has been updated since it originally appeared on a blog hosted by Tony Vidler.
Clapping people image courtesy of Ambro at FreeDigitalPhotos.net