I hope you’re enjoying this week’s series on blogging. Today, let’s talk about guest blogging. “Guest blogging” basically means writing an article for a blog for the SEO opportunity – for a link to somewhere or other. The hope is that the website to which you link from a guest post will get a boost in the rankings.
This kind of thing works, until it doesn’t. Guest blogging for search engine rankings has become something of a craze, and once that happens, Google dials up its algorithm, and rather than benefiting from this strategy, websites are penalized.
For this reason, I advise my clients against guest blogging solely for links. It’s not worth the hassles it can cause.
That said, I do like guest blogging when it’s done for readers. It gets the site which wants publicity some exposure, and the hosting website gets great content. Win-win.
Now let’s see how you can turn guest-blogging into income.
1. No freebies: “If it’s free, it’s for me”
My rule for over a decade has been: “If it’s free, it’s for me”. In other words, when you’re writing great content, you write it so you get something out of it, preferably money.
This means that I advise my clients and writing students not to write guest articles if all they get out of it is a link and some temporary exposure. If you’re writing great content, it either goes on websites you control, which make money for you, or someone pays you to write.
2. How much to charge for guest blogging?
Blog posts are articles, so how much you charge is up to you. My advice: if you’re writing an article for a popular blog, which will get traffic and income for the company for which you’re writing, you charge a dollar a word.
Here’s why. Writing articles for popular blogs takes time. Firstly, you need to come up with an idea for a post. You’re writing for the blog’s audience. So you need to consider what the blog’s already covered, and what their audience loves.
Then you need to write a query: an email message which contains enough information that the blog for which you’ll be writing wants the story badly.
Finally, you’ll write the blog post to conform to the host blog’s style… it all takes time, as we’ve said.
3. How to find guest-blogging opportunities
How do you find companies which want you to write guest articles?
The easiest way is to promote guest blogging as a service to your current clients.
Let your clients know that you’re happy to write guest posts for them. Then, look for websites and blogs which are complementary, and which might welcome a guest post.
By “complementary” we mean that both websites benefit.
Here are a couple of examples.
- You’re writing content for a party planner.
It’s easy to get local gigs, because you’ll usually be the only writer approaching local businesses.
Everyone has parties, so look for local blogs for which to write guest posts for your party planner client – food blogs, travel blogs – any blog which is local would probably be complementary.
- You’ve created some brochures for a local real estate business.
Again, almost any blog would be complementary. Once your client’s on board, find local blogs, and approach them with ideas.
Have fun with guest blogging. It’s an easy service you can offer your clients, and as long as you charge what you’re worth, it can become a great income stream for you.
Blogging Maestro: Make 13 Years of Blogging Experience Yours
Blogging is a master skill for writers. No matter what kind of writing you do, a blog will help.
If you’re a new writer, your blog gives you credibility… it also increases your income, because it acts as a writing sample. Not only does your blog get you writing jobs without hunting for them, it also gets you better jobs.
Your blog can be a business, and a career. Students have been nagging me to create an “all in one” blogging program for months. It’s finally ready, and you can find it here, at Blogging Maestro.
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