Writing guest posts for other blogs is an easy (and free!) way to broaden your reach, increase your traffic, and (hopefully) build your online following.
In order to have a guest post published on another site, you first need get your post accepted by the site owner or editor. This can be a process that requires some effort, but it is worth the effort!
Over the years, I’ve accepted hundreds of guest posts on my site, and I’ve rejected thousands of guest posts and guest post pitches for my site. So I wanted to share three insider tips on how to get a guest post accepted…
1. Follow any and all guest post submission guidelines.
The first thing you should do when you want to submit a guest post to a site is to visit the site and look for a page that details out their guest post submission guidelines. Not all sites have these, but many blogs and websites have a page with all the nitty-gritty details about guest posts.
This page will often include what kinds of posts they’re most interested in, how to write your post, guidelines, and more. There might even be a system in place to submit your guest post through a form on that page. (See our page on MoneySavingMom.com here.)
Be sure to follow all of the rules on the guest post submission page. It’s very frustrating to receive a guest post pitch from someone who clearly didn’t even take the time to read the guest post submission guidelines or notice that there’s a place to submit their guest post right on the site!
If a site doesn’t have a set system for how to submit a guest post, then it’s time to work on your guest post pitch email!
2. Don’t make the pitch sound generic.
A blogger is much more likely to pay attention to an e-mail that is pitched in a personal way. I receive SO many guest post pitch emails that appear to be generic template emails. In many cases, it looks like the same pitch has been sent out to dozens of sites and the person who wrote the pitch doesn’t even really know anything about your site at all. (In many cases, they will even call me the wrong name or get my site name wrong!)
If a guest post pitch email seems like it’s just a form e-mail or generic e-mail that someone has sent out to dozens of people, I delete it immediately. I am interested in guests posts from people who have great information to share, but who also love my site guest post from someone who truly loves their site and understands the mission statement and readership of their site.
Note: I will also immediately delete any guest post pitch email that is riddled with typos or poor grammar. I don’t expect everyone to be English majors, but I do expect a level of professionalism. And if that’s not there, I’m not interested in accepting a guest post.
A blogger is much more likely to pay attention to an e-mail that is pitched in a personal way. Include details on why you love the site and why you feel like your guest post would be a great fit. (And don’t just pick the first post on the blog and comment on that! Take some time to really get to know the site and the site’s mission, if it’s not a site you are really familiar with.)
If you have any personal connection to the site (you’ve been reading it for 3 years, you remember when the site owner visited a place you’ve been to before, you both have mutual friends, etc.), include that as well. For me, when someone takes the time to genuinely share about a way that my site has impacted them or about an interesting connection we both have, I take notice!
3. Make sure your guest post idea is a really good fit for the blog.
Don’t just go to the site, pick the first post you see on the front page, assume that’s what the blog is all about, and reference that post in the e-mail pitch. If you are pitching a guest post idea to a blog or site you haven’t been a regular reader of, do your homework.
Read the About Page, look for listings of some of the top posts, check out their social media, and see if the blog has a “Start Here” or mission statement-type page. Get to know what the site stands for, who their target market is, and what types of content they regularly produce. Also, search for other guest posts they have published to get a feel for what kinds of posts they have accepted in the past.
Then, think of what types of posts you could write that would be intriguing, compelling, and helpful to that particular target market. Once you have decided on these ideas, do a search to see if this site has ever written posts on those topics. You want to make sure your post is fresh and different, while still being very much in line with that site’s mission and market.
Tip: When possible, include a few links back to other posts on that particular blog within your guest post. It not only shows the site owner that you did your research, but it also helps them not have to put the work in to find links to other posts on their site to include when they publish your guest post!
By following these tips, you’ll have a much better chance of getting the attention of a site owner or editor — and hopefully getting your post published!
Have you ever written a guest post for another site? If so, what tips would you add to my list?