I have often heard writers ask if guest blog posting is worth it. Some people will say no, that it’s a waste of time. But I say it’s not—if you use your time wisely.
One can easily get caught up in writing blog post after blog post since they are usually short and many blogs have themes, making it easy for you to come up with a topic of interest. Another thing about guest blog posting, and this is a down side, is that you don’t get paid for your time or your piece on most occasions. This is where using your time wisely comes in.
I am presently spending a lot of my time promoting my novel that recently came out, writing my next novel, and working on various articles, stories, and assignments that pay.
Those things alone keep me extremely busy. Trying to fit guest posts in can be almost impossible. However, I need to make sure I spread the news about my book, reach people whom I have not reached before, and continue to get my name out there so that it begins to look familiar to people.
If you are considering guest blogging here are some ways you can make it work for you without it taking over your life.
1. Sign up to newsletters
Sign up to receive a newsletter that lists blogs looking for writers. I use Cathy Stucker’s Blogger Link Up. I’m sure there are others, but I haven’t taken the time to search them out. This one works great for me so why waste time looking for more?
2. Scan through the lists
Once you sign up for a blog newsletter, scan through the lists sent to you. Searching the Internet can be very time-consuming. You may only plan to spend five minutes, but the next thing you know it’s been two hours and you have found nothing. I literally spend only a few minutes three times a week, which is how often I get an email, scanning through the list looking for those blogs that are a good fit for me.
3. Find profitable blogs
Choose only blogs in your niche that can be profitable for you. Many blogs allow you to post links. Don’t guest post if they don’t allow links and don’t pay (What’s the point?). So if you have a recently published cookbook, look for cooking themed blogs. This gives you more of a chance readers will buy your book or follow you on your own blog, since you know the followers of the blog enjoy cooking.
4. Target the right readers
Look for blogs that have readers you want to reach. If you write for kids, then target blogs for mothers. They will be the ones to make purchases for their children. If you write for the Christian market you will probably not find any buyers for your work on blogs that post erotica.
5. Look at the follower numbers
If possible, look at the number of followers or subscribers a blog has. If the blogger is new to the Internet and only has 24 followers, this may be one you want to skip. Bookmark it to your favorites if you feel it’s a perfect match for you and your writing so you can go back to it later when the following has had a chance to grow.
6. Look to your peers
Look for professional and well-established blogs. The readers of these blogs keep updated with new postings, ensuring they will be more than likely to read your post.
7. Find link backs
Make sure the blog hoster allows link backs with your post. If readers can’t simply click on a link to find out more about you then you’ve accomplished nothing. You want to make yourself as easy as possible to find.
8. Follow up
Follow up on the blogs where you have posted. Make sure they did actually post your blog when they said they were going to. If they are dependable you can always choose to guest post once again. If they are not dependable, don’t bother with them anymore.
9. Monitor activity
Monitor all activity. Watch your website that you link back to or book sales during the time your blog was posted. Have more people come to your site? Did you notice an increase in sales that day? If so, offer to guest post again.
10. Show your thanks
Thank the blog hoster. If you have written a book give her a copy. Maybe she will later write a review and post that for you as well. Use other social media when she has posted your blog to let those in your circles know about it. She will appreciate the reach you are able to send to her site.
Guest blogging is a good opportunity for writers in all genres to get their name out there a little more and to find new readers. However, you must be wise in your guest blogging efforts. Following the tips above can help you neither waste time nor effort.
About the author:
Ruth O’Neil has been a freelance writer for more than 20 years, publishing hundreds of articles in dozens of publications. Her first novel Come Eat at My Table came out earlier this year. Her second is on its way. When she’s not writing, Ruth spends her time quilting, reading, scrapbooking, camping and hiking with her family. Visit her blog at http://www.ruths-real-life.blogspot.com or website at http://ruthoneil.weebly.com.
More articles by Ruth O’Neil:
1. Getting the Most Mileage Out of Your Articles
2. Freelance Writing for the Christian Market
3. What Editors Really Want: 10 Tips for Freelance Writers and Book Authors
4. Write the Story of Your Life
5. Teaching Others to Write
6. Writing for the Holidays