I know what you’re thinking.
Oh no, Carmen! Tell me I don’t have to come up with even more content!
But guest blogging is one of the most effective ways to generate traffic for your small business blog or website. More traffic means more business, so I’m sorry – you’ve just got to do it!
What is Guest Blogging?
Guest blogging is writing for a blog or publication on the web that you don’t own. Essentially it’s just like writing for your own blog, but you’re offering the content to someone else instead.
Why on Earth Would I Guest Blog?
Guest blogging achieves several things for your business. First, it provides a steady stream of legitimate, high-quality backlinks.
A backlink happens any time another blog or website links to your blog or website. When you guest blog you’ll have an author bio and in it you can place a link back to your website.
It does all sorts of nifty things for SEO, but I also like to think of it another way. When you create a backlink you are essentially leaving a trail of bread crumbs all over the web.
Like Hansel and Gretel, interested people follow those bread crumbs all the way home, back to your site. Each breadcrumb increases your chances of being found, sometimes independently of SEO.
Another way of thinking of it is in terms of what I like to call “web presence.” People who are really successful on the web seem to be everywhere.
People know their name because they’ve been participating and interacting with others on the web, which is exactly what you’re doing when you guest blog. They get talked about because you can’t help but run into them if you care about the industry they are in.
I’m sure if you think about it you can think of some big name bloggers or web experts in your own industry. You’ve probably seen them guest post in addition to finding them on their own blogs and social media sites.
The relationships they build with other bloggers means that those bloggers often make a habit of reading their content, which means those bloggers link to their posts and reference them without any prompting on the part of the experts.
You’ve seen us do it here. We link to quite a few other people’s blogs when we know of them and think that the content is very good!
You don’t have to get too technical about web-based marketing to be very successful just by focusing on building your web presence.
Choosing a high-traffic, high-authority blog to work with helps you piggyback on that person’s traffic and audience. It gives you a kick start, especially while our own traffic is still fairly low.
It also casts you as an expert in your industry. Blogging on your own blog is good, but guest blogging gives you another expert’s endorsement. This strengthens your credibility a great deal!
In addition, any traffic that you get from guest blogging is targeted traffic. You already know that people who read the other blog are interested in your industry! This means more of your visitors are likely to convert into buyers.
Guest blogging is also free. It’s a win-win for both you and the blogger. You get a free source of targeted traffic, and they get free content.
How to be a Guest Blogger
Every blog that accepts guest posts will have submission guidelines posted somewhere on their site. Usually you can be pretty successful just by reading those submission guidelines and following the directions.
In the next post I’ll be showing you a way to find places to guest post that will take you about 5 minutes. For now, start by looking around industry blogs that you read on a regular basis.
Today’s Action Item:
- Find a blog to target for a guest post.
- Follow that blogger’s directions and submit your very first guest post!