Guest Posting is a great way to get your name out there. Today Chris Garrett from ChrisG.com (and co-author of the ProBlogger book) sheds some light on some common mistakes made my those doing Guest Posts.
You will notice this is a guest post. This isn’t Darren writing, it is some other guy filling in while The ProBlogger takes a well earned relax.
When Darren asks I always try to send over at least one guest post. Guest posting is a great way to get your name out there, build links, enhance your credibility and gain subscribers. If it is done well it is also a good deal for the blogger who posts this free and fresh content.
No surprises then that many people are out there now shopping around their guest posts. Just make sure you are not making the following mistakes, foul-ups and pitfalls:
10 Common Mistakes in Guest Posting
1. Making Demands
A guest posting arrangement is supposed to be a win-win arrangement. Making a fuss, being a diva, badgering the host, or just generally a nuisance will not endear you and don’t expect to get any referrals or even asked back. Nobody is going to give you an administrator account for their blog on the first article, and guest post means exactly that, you are just a guest so act like one.
2. Being a Doormat
The flip side of the first point is the arrangement should be fair for the writer too. One or two guest posts is a great arrangement, a regular gig might also be worthwhile for the visibility, links or traffic, but don’t be taken advantage of. There is a point where guest posting should cross over into blogging for pay. Agree on deadlines, word count, what you will do and how the content can or will be used by either party.
3. Holding Back
If you want to create the best outcome from your guest posting you need to bring your best stuff. Make sure you hold your self to high standards and work hard to create unique and valuable content. Don’t hold back your best tips, advice or humor. Otherwise you are just adding filler.
4. Ignore the Audience
There are two ways guest posters ignore the blog audience. First is not taking into account the particular likes, needs and style of the host blog, and secondly not responding to questions. Now, a good host blogger will notify their guest writers of any comments or feedback directed at their guests, but the guest should also look in once in a while.
5. Over Self-Promotional
Of course there are benefits and any writer will want those benefits, but if you make your guest article all you-you-you, full of links, or maybe dropping affiliate codes, don’t be surprised if it backfires.
6. Not Delivering
It seems some wannabe guest posters send out so many enquiries they are surprised when someone says yes. If you make an offer, ensure you can come through with the goods. Otherwise you will not be asked again.
7. Hindering Rather than Helping
The reason why you accept a guest post is because it is supposed to make life easier. If you are causing hard work for the blogger don’t expect your content to be used. Do your own spell check, read through for grammar goofs, and make sure all your links work.
8. Causing Problems
Writing one guest post does not make you a representative or voice of a particular blog. I have seen bloggers use guest posts to try to make connections or open doors that they are not really due. Also, don’t court controversy on someone else’s blog. If you are going to be snarky, damage your own brand.
9. Offer No Credibility
Why should the host blog accept your guest post pitch? What do you have to offer? What are your ideas? Do you have writing samples to show? Have you got real expertise to share? What will you add to the blog? “Just because I need the link” is not a valid reason for anyone to accept your guest posts.
10. Duplicate or Steal
It shocks me that this still goes on, but if you accept a guest post, make sure it is unique and original. As a way to short cut the writing process people are taking content from ezine directories, other blogs, or running content through rewrite software. Don’t be tempted to do it or accept it. Another aspect of duplication, much more innocent, is writing about something the blog has already covered – d’oh!
I am sure there are other guest post goofs that people make. Have you got any more to share? Please let us know in the comments …