Guest Blogging and Blogger Outreach Master Plan: Complete Blueprint For Guest Posting in 2022
Guest Blogging and Blogger Outreach Masterplan: Complete Blueprint For Guest Posting in 2022
What’s the fastest way of growing your website?
Use someone else’s. Really!
Bloggers have a lot of followers, and you can use it to your advantage through guest posting. But it’s not as easy as it sounds.
Case in point, Freelancers use guest blogging strategies to earn a full-time income. Businesses use guest blogging to get backlinks, brand awareness and much more.
In this blog post, you’ll find; my complete guest posting roadmap, including tips and strategies to find the best guest posting sites, as well as practices to avoid while executing your guest posting strategy.
- What Is Guest Blogging In SEO?
- Difference Between Guest Blogging, Guest Posting & Blogger Outreach
- Who Can Benefit From Guest Posting?
- Guest Blogging Benefits
- Guest Posting Roadmap
- Have a Guest Posting Strategy in Place
- List of Guest Blogging Sites
- Write Email Templates
- Sending Out your Emails – Tools vs. Manual Sending
- Follow Up
- Scalable Guest Blogging Solutions – Do They Exist?
- In-house Vs. Outsourced Scalable Guest Blogging
- In-house Scalable Guest Blogging
- Outsource Scalable Guest Blogging
- In a Nutshell
Guest blogging in SEO is the process of writing content on someone else’s website to grow your business and win a backlink.
In simple terms, it’s the practice of contributing your content (mainly blogs) to another website. Companies and individuals do this to grow their brand awareness.
But for the most part, guest blogging in SEO is for link building. And why not? Links are one of the primary ranking factors on Google.
Guest posting offers an excellent opportunity to secure a do-follow (in some cases) backlink from a website.
Bloggers are always looking for fresh and unique content to post on their sites. This makes guest blogging a win-win situation for both parties involved.
The guest blogger gets a backlink, and the blog hosting website receives unique content.
Short answer? Yes, but like any tactic, guest blogging has been abused over the years. Therefore, search engines value guest blogging on niche-relevant sites.
For example, if your business sells shoes, your guest blogging niche should be lifestyle or fashion. I have shared a complete list of guest posting dos and don’ts below to help you avoid shady practices.
But before we move into the advanced section of this master plan, let’s start with the basics.
While guest blogging is writing for a website and having your content published, blogger outreach is the preliminary step.
Before your content is published or your writers start working, you need to connect with the guest posting website. For that, you’ll need blogger outreach expertise.
Since an average blogging website gets 100’s of emails for guest blogging, you need to stand out and strike the right chord with them. This is where blogger outreach comes in.
Blogger outreach is a strategic process of building a relationship with the guest posting website and attaining a backlink. In most cases, you’ll need a strong blogger outreach program to acquire Do-follow links (links that pass on authority to another website, thereby, positively impacting its ranking).
Now, blogger outreach is more than just writing great emails, this relationship is built over time, and it often results in greater and more frequent guest blogging opportunities.
Guest posting is a crucial part of content marketing. It can help anyone put a word out for their product/services.
Therefore, guest posting can be highly beneficial for individuals and companies alike. Imagine if you secure a backlink (via a guest post) on a website that has around 10-15k monthly organic traffic. Think of all the potential visits YOUR website can get.
A quick Google search will tell you that most guest blogging service providers price their services according to Domain Authority (DA) or by organic traffic. The higher the DA or traffic of the publishing website, the more you have to pay.
Here’s a quick look at the average cost of guest posting across the industry.
|Domain Authority||Publishing Fee|
- Prices based on an industry average of the top 20 guest posting websites.
These rates vary based on the industry you are targeting. For example, “crypto” guest blogging is more expensive than “food.” Rarity in niche and content is a contributing factor towards different prices. A cryptocurrency blog needs to build more authority in order to be considered trustworthy, then say, a food or a lifestyle blog.
I use the rule of 1% to determine the cost and benefit of all my content marketing strategies. It’s a simple rule that takes only 1% traffic and 1% conversion rate. Here’s is a detailed example of it.
Let’s say you sell web design and development services, and your most popular package is $699.
By assuming 1% conversion and spending $1000 on guest posting you gain backlinks, and brand exposure.
If only 1% of your reach clicks on your blog post, you get a significant number of visitors. This translates into high-quality leads and more sales.
Put the same rule on your business and see the benefit vs. cost of guest posting yourself.
But building contacts and finding a niche relevant site for guest posting results in high opportunity costs. You can be spending this time on your core business activities.
One possible solution is to outsource your guest posting efforts to a reliable agency that specializes in SEO, and ultimately, guest posting services.
Besides link building and brand awareness, guest posting has numerous other benefits.
For starters, you can:
- Boost social media shares– If you are publishing on a site with exponential social media activity, you can expect your blog post to receive the same level of attention if your content is worthy.
- Boost your following– By posting on authoritative brands in your niche, you allow their followers to trust your product/services. For example, a technology guest post on The Verge ensures maximum brand awareness and credibility.
Even if you don’t have a website and run your operations through social media, you can benefit from guest posting opportunities.
You can link your social media page to your guest post to gain traction. From there, you can apply a “lookalike” audience in your social media advertising to attract more customers of the same profile.
This drastically improves your chances of generating quality leads.
Conversion-oriented benefits of guest blogging include.
- Shortening the sales cycle– Sales funnel has always been challenging for content marketing. You can introduce your brand’s value proposition on other websites through guest blogging. Think of it like this, instead of waiting for customers to enter your store, you put your product in supermarkets.
- Generating qualified leads – Instead of mass marketing, guest blogging narrows down your target audience. Hence you generate qualified leads. For instance, guest posting on Allure means your target audience will click on your site if you sell beauty products. The difference between this and the “boosting your followers” point above is that you link your landing page in your guest post, not your social media.
Now that you Have a basic understanding about guest posting, guest blogging & blogger outreach, let’s dive into the Guest Posting Roadmap.
This is the base of all your guest posting operations. Without a solid strategy in place, you cannot expect to achieve your desired results.
If you are new in your industry, a conversion-oriented guest posting strategy will be less likely to succeed compared to a brand awareness guest post. This is because you need social proof before pitching your product/service.
Here’s a quick example.
Moz has a great digital presence. Whether it’s their website DA or their social presence, any content by Moz can expect A high number of followers means more reach. Getting your guest post published on Moz can increase your website’s authority and traffic.
· Moz Facebook and Twitter Reach
For small businesses and businesses in general, a link back to their “money pages” is an acceptable strategy. This ties in with my aforementioned conversion-focused guest posting strategy.
However, if you do not have a diverse backlink profile, I’d advise you first build a base of DA20, DA30, and DA40 links before you spend thousands on a link from Forbes.
Sticking to low and medium DA guest posts will diversify your link profile, giving your website the foundation to get that coveted DA75+ link a few months down the line.
Simply put, you don’t want your link profile sticking out like a sore thumb. Make it natural.
If your brand has an existing backlink profile that has been built over the years, you can go after guest blogs with high traffic in mind.
This guest posting strategy emphasizes high traffic over a high domain authority. Since your website already has a strong brand image and a high DA/PA, you don’t value link building as much as leads.
Now that you probably have a guest posting strategy in place Let’s move on to the execution.
After you decide what you want to achieve from your guest posting, it’s time to list down relevant sites.
According to John Muller – Google Search Advocate, Spamming guest posts doesn’t add value to your website. In fact, Google devalues sites with spam guest post links.
I shouldn’t be surprised – there are new people starting on SEO all the time (yay!), but it’s all years old in the meantime & nothing has changed there at all. Unless this storm in a teacup triggers a lot of people to start, I don’t see a need for the webspam team to jump in.
— 🐐 John 🐐 (@JohnMu) June 14, 2020
So what do you do?
You find niche-relevant sites.
Google abandons websites with links from sources that aren’t relevant to their business. Therefore, always find credible online platforms within your niche for guest posting.
Here are some relevant examples of guest posting websites for the technology businesses.
Examples of guest posting sites for the beauty niche.
Examples of guest posting sites for the home improvement niche
Examples of guest posting sites for the carpet cleaning micro-niche
Examples of guest posting sites for the digital businesses niche
Besides the aforementioned list, there are plenty of guest posting sites on Google.
A quick Google search can identify numerous websites that are accepting guest posts.
You can do this by typing
- “Keyword + write for us”
- “Keyword + guest posts”
- “Keywords + become a guest blogger”
- “Keyword + send tips”
Replace “keyword” with your keyword when you search on Google.
Remember, your keyword specifies your niche. For example, if you sell shoes, here’s how you can search for guest posts.
Other than this, you can use online tools to find guest posting sites. In my experience, these tools have saved me a lot of time.
For instance, you can look up DA and PA with MOZ Google chrome extension.
After you download and install the MOZ extension, you’ll need to sign up. Once you log in, click on the MOZ extension in chrome, and It’ll show you the DA of the website you are on.
Similarly, you can use the Similar Web Extension for more details on your guest posting sites.
Here’s what you can find running the Similar Web Extension on a website.
Go to the blog section of your guest posting sites and run similar web extension. The details you can see in the above picture will assist in understanding more about your publishing site.
- Monthly visits will tell you how many web visitors you can lead to your website.
- Pages per visit show how many pages an average web visitor at The Verge checks before leaving.
- Average Visit duration explains how long visitors stick on a website.
These metrics allow you to plan your guest posts.
For example, a website with fewer pages per visit indicates fewer chances for your guest post to be opened when someone visit’s The Verge’s home page.
Therefore, this number must be above 60 to become a part of your guest posting list.
Similarly, the country section shows where visitors are coming from. If your business is within these countries, The Verge is the best guest posting site for you.
Marketing mix entails your keyword strategy. For example, you can see that 55.51% of The Verge’s traffic comes from Google searches. Therefore, your guest post should have optimum keyword density and high-quality content.
After finding your guest posting sites, you can organize them in MS-excel or Google sheets by domain authority, organic traffic, niche, etc. This will help you identify related and marketing overlap guest posting sites.
Finding guest posting sites is one thing; reaching out to editors is a whole new ball game. This brings us to our next point.
After shortlisting your guest posting websites and having them in your sheet, you can start writing email templates.
Yes, it is important to get to the point and not waste the reader’s time, but a little personalization goes a long way.
Having more than one email template is a great idea. This will help you identify which approach is more fruitful.
But before you start sending blogger outreach emails, you need a strong plan of action.
The blogger outreach formula establishes a concrete step-by-step master plan that assists in reaching out to top bloggers.
With this formula, I have landed several guest posts in top publications. But enough about me. Here’s the blogger outreach formula in all its glory.
Awareness + Desire + Interest + Action
I know it’s a simple sales formula, but how you use it will affect your blogger outreach campaigns.
For blogger outreach, the real power lies with” Twitter.” Many industry-leading and gifted writers are on this social media platform.
You need to build a relationship with them before asking for a guest post. Here’s how you can do that.
- Engage with them– Follow your niche-specific bloggers and engage with them on their tweets. Read their content and share genuine compliments. (Attention)
- Give them credit – Blogger outreach is pure sales play.You need to read your bloggers content to make them aware of your existence. For that, you’ll need to give them credit for their work. Go through your blogger’s latest publication and share a quote you loved. (Interest)
- Agree, but with an explanation – It’s not nice to oppose someone you are trying to please. But blatantly agreeing will put your efforts in jeopardy. Agree with bloggers on Twitter but always share an explanation.
- Create a discussion –This is isn’t easy, but it’ll be if you know your blogger’s niche. But to start a discussion, you need to disagree. Do it politely and share references of why you think otherwise. (Desire)
Following these steps will build frequent communication and allow you to step into your blogger’s bubble.
Once there, you can pitch your request (action). It’s not as easy as it sounds, but practice makes perfect.
Whether you are new to blogger outreach or can do it your sleep, it’s wise to check your strategy once in a while.
My nature of work revolves around talking to PR pros and marketing champions. So I always update my blogger outreach campaigns according to the latest trend.
Therefore, I present to you my Do’s and Don’ts of blogger outreach.
An excellent blogger outreach template has 3 things,
Use these three principles to design your campaign. But you can also make edits to my email templates.
These templates have successfully rounded up the top talent in digital marketing. But I have changed them to sound general. You can add your twist to make them personal.
There are plenty of ways of sending out your blogger outreach emails. You can choose the cheaper option and do it manually.
Or you can use paid tools.
Here are the differences between using paid and free email tools for sending out guest posting emails.
- Saves time
- Can send bulk email
- Can use pre-designed templates
- Paid email platforms have reporting tools that allow you to see the status of your email (whether the recipients opened your mail or not)
- Manual sending is cost-effective because you don’t have to pay for third-party tools. However, it’s less efficient and time-consuming.
- Easy to use as compared to paid tools.
Ultimately, your choice of email tools will depend on your expected usage, availability of resources, and personal preference.
Never give bloggers a chance to turn you down. You might subconsciously do that by pitching a question. Therefore, it’s best to put a rhetorical question that serves as a CTA.
Once you get the green light from the publisher, it’s time to start writing your post.
Make sure you follow the guest posting acceptance criteria shared by the publishing site. It’s usually on the “write for us” page.
Most publishers share their criteria when they respond to your emails. If you can’t find that, you can outright ask them via email.
When your post is ready, send it to the publishing site mentioning that it’s a “draft post.” This allows the publishing site to send it for revisions if it doesn’t meet their criteria.
If you send the final draft in the first mail, the publishing site might reject your proposal.
The best time to send a follow-up mail is between 9am to 12pm. This is because 1pm till 3pm is lunch hour in most organizations, and after that, editors are itching to get home.
If you sent your blogger outreach email and haven’t heard back from the publishing site – don’t lose hope. I once waited 3 months for a response from a high DA site. There is no ideal wait time.
The best you can do is send a perfect pitch and wait for a response. That’s why most companies believe scalable guest blogging is a myth.
Well, yes and no. As you’re probably aware, there are companies out there that allow you to acquire thousands of links per month.
However, not all of these companies are trustworthy. The use of PBNs, low-quality links, and other blackhat techniques has left customers wary of such companies.
Companies may do this via an in-house team of outreaches or hire blogger outreach services to carry the load.
Scalable guest blogging is possible, and there are only two ways to achieve it.
- Hire a team of outreachers and writers (In-house)
- Hire a professional blogger outreach company (Outsource)
Both solutions will help you achieve your guest blogging goals. But they come at different prices.
If you are looking to oversee your guest blogging tasks, you can hire a team of writers and outreachers.
However, you’ll have to pay their salaries and on-job benefits. This can mount up to a substantial cost.
Moreover, you’ll have to hire the right resource to accomplish your guest posting objectives.
Outsource blogging can boost your business without disturbing your core activities. Your hired company will be responsible for generating backlinks and boosting your brand awareness.
For example, if you own a web designing agency, outsourcing guest blogging will help you focus on your core business objectives. As a result, you won’t have to manage additional resources unrelated to your core activities.
By now, you must be exhausted reading all that’s mentioned above. So I’ll keep it short here. If you lost track of the information I shared, here’s a short recap.
Guest blogging in SEO is the art of winning over other websites and placing your blog on their platform. You need to sound convincing and express mutual benefit.
The convincing part falls under “blogger outreach.” Whereas hunting for relevant sites and shortlisting based on their DA is a part of the guest posting strategy.
Don’t be confused; guest blogging and posting are similar, but blogger outreach isn’t. The latter is the art of connecting with a blogger.
Just avoid being too salsey and read through your blogger’s content before sending blogger outreach emails. This’ll improve your chances of winning a spot on the best guest posting sites.
Below are some FAQs that address basic questions about guest posting. They aren’t long-form, so I’ll urge you to go through them.
What Are The Criteria For Accepting Guest Posts?
The criteria for guest blogging are shared by the website you are emailing to. Once you get a positive response, the webmaster will share a link to their criteria page or send it via email.
How Does Paid Guest Posting Work?
Paid guest posting works through a monetary exchange. Paid guest posting websites have daily writers, so they don’t need content. You can pursue them by paying them the price they request.
Is Guest Posting Black Hat Seo?
Guest posting isn’t black hat SEO, and it’s a legitimate content marketing practice. However, Google clarified that spammy (irrelevant backlinks) guest posts devalue a site’s ranking.
How Do I Promote My Guest Post For Better Reach?
You can promote your blog post by targeting relevant keywords – a practice most businesses don’t follow but actually works. Moreover, you can hire guest blogging services to find relevant sites, write content and post them for guest posting.