How to Grow Your Blog While You Guest Post

By: | February 8, 2015 | Tags: , , , | 10 comments

cars photo3In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt:

Guest Blogging for Dummies.

Recently, I wrote How to Increase Traffic To Your Site…Don’t.  The response was, and still is, so favorable that I realized there is great interest in the topic.  The way to drive traffic to your site, I explained, is by driving traffic to someone else’s site.  In other words, guest post.

In the days that followed, many have written me to agree that guest posting is important and share their positive experiences.  Many others have also written to lament that they haven’t made guest posting a priority.

Sadly, I fall into the latter category.  Considering the positive experiences I’ve had with guest posting and the desire to further grow my blog readership, I wasn’t guest posting to the extent I should, and it was even my 2015 New Year’s Resolution!

Happily, just one month into the new year has passed, and I have recently discovered how to find quality guest posting opportunities.  I stress quality because the post you write for must fit criteria, or it won’t help you grow your blog traffic.

What NOT to Do

I heard to find guest posting opportunities, I needed to go into Google and type my brand (blogging) and the words guest post and niche.  Indeed, guest posting opportunities presented themselves.  I took one of them, and the host of the blog actually printed my post within the day.  However, I did not get one new follower from the experience.

My blog is called Reflections, so let’s reflect.  I was so excited about the opportunity to grow my blog by guest posting, I did not make sure that the host had the potential to help me grow my blog.  It didn’t, and my blog didn’t get one new follower or any increased traffic as a result.

What TO Do

How could I have ensured the site I guest blogged for would help me grow my readership?  *Here’s the criteria:

  • Are there enough followers to give you the potential to grow your blog?

Look at the comments and the shares on one of the blog’s posts.  If under ten, look at another one at the site.  If the comments and shares are consistently under ten, I’d pass.  If, on the other hand, the blog consistently has thirty or more comments and shares, it has highly engaged readers.  A high readership alone doesn’t cut it if they don’t read the blog.  Comments and shares prove the blog has an active readership.

  • Do they accept guest writers?  in 19 Easy Ways to Dramatically Increase Blog Traffic I talked about schmoozing the host of the blog.  If they get to know you, perhaps they will let you guest post.  Around the time I wrote the post, I was writing about entertainment.  I met a really funny blogger with a huge following.  He had an entertainment blog, so I asked if I could guest author for him.  He told me he didn’t accept guest bloggers.  His rejection felt awkward considering the nice rapport we’d built.  If I had taken my time to check to see if he accepts guest bloggers, the rejection and the bad feeling I got from it never would have happened.

How You Can Know if a Blog Accepts Guest Authors  Look for a “Write for Us” link.  You could also look to see if there are other authors on the site in addition to the blog administrator.

  • If the blog does accept guest authors, will it give me credit and link back to my site so I can gain new readership?  On my About Me page, it says my writing has been featured elsewhere.  In two of those experiences, the host did not have a link back to my site.  Fortunately, they gave me the courtesy of approving the post before they published it, and they ultimately linked back to Reflections at my request.

How You Can Find Quality Guest Posting Opportunities

  • Google your brand (again, in my case it would be blogging) and add the word blogs.  Look to see if the blogs that come up meet the three criteria I explained.
  • Are you already reading other blogs in your niche?  Look and see if they meet the criteria.

Follow my readers’ suggestions. I know I plan to.  Here is a disclaimer, though: I have not checked out these ideas first-hand to see if they meet the criteria for a quality host.

  • http://loraleehutton.com/dev/resource-guides/guest-posts-resource-guide/
  • http://www.ivetriedthat.com/2012/05/23/7-websites-that-pay-50-or-more-for-guest-blog-posts/

Did you read the link?  That one actually pays money.

In conclusion, they say a disappointing experience is a learning curve.  I have learned how to make sure a site I write for has the potential to help me grow my blog, and today I’ve shared that knowledge with you.  If you follow the advice in this post, your frustrations growing your readership should End Sign Photo

*Source: Boostblogtraffic.com

When my readers shared these ideas, they helped me, if you think these tips can help others, please share.

Readers, what are your experiences with guest blogging?  Are there any other quality guest blogging opportunities I haven’t mentioned in today’s post?  We all want to learn.  I look forward to your ideas.

 

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  1. memeethemuse at 8:35 pm

    I have been blogging for just over 3 months now and having guest posts since month 2 because, frankly, trying to pump stuff out every day is time consuming, especially for a beginner– it’s not the lack of thoughts it is the lack of time to code it all!!!!

    I have not as yet had people come to me and ask to post on my site (and as of right now I wouldn’t fit your criteria anyhow) however, I have noticed that the things that I approach people about putting on my site seem to see an increase in traffic. Though the guest stuff does not get the “likes” or the comments than mine do. I always gain at least one new follower. So I am choosing well. It’s a slow build but fascinating. Sometimes I wonder if it is that my writing stinks or I am more boring in writing than I am in real life… my stuff tickles me and that’s really all that matters. But knowing other people are reading and getting something from my meandering mind would give me some additional rewards 🙂 Thanks for posting this. I’ll keep doing my thing and hopefully, in time, I will fit the criteria where people come to me to guest post.

    ☀ Memee

  2. Jim Bauer at 7:52 am

    Actually I found this quite interesting since I had never even given any thought to using guest writing as a way to increase traffic to my own blog. But I like the idea. In fact, I often write for revenue sharing sites, and sometimes some traffic comes from that. But mostly not. Much better to write for another blog that is relevant to my own, and I think gain more from it than other sources. Thanks for the advice.

    • Janice Wald at 2:52 pm

      Hi,
      I’m glad you found it helpful. Of all the tips that I’ve been given, getting new eyes on your writing is the best way to grow your readership, I feel.
      Thanks for reading what I wrote and reaching out to me this week.
      Janice

  3. Pingback: How to Get Noticed Online Without Looking Like A Spammer Part II
  4. Cally at 1:24 pm

    Thanks for the advice. I have just started blogging, I work full time and am only able to work on my blog at night so its been a very steep learning curve for me. I am learning so much everyday. I have not approached anyone to guest blog yet but when I do I will know how to approach it! Thanks!

    • Janice Wald at 1:27 pm

      Hi Cally,
      You came to the right place! I help new bloggers here. I would love to encouorage you to subscribe. I have tips for improving content, engaging readers, and increasing traffic. I have a Follow to Follow Directory that would also get you new subscribers within hours.
      Thank you for reaching out to me today and letting me know you enjoyed my article.
      Janice

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