The Dos And Donts Of Guest Blogging

The Dos And Don'ts Of Guest Blogging

The world of guest blogging is gaining speed and quickly becoming one of the most popular and most effective ways to build links.  Most people saw what guest blogging was doing for everyone else and decided to jump on the bandwagon even though they didn’t have any knowledge of what it entailed.  It should be easy, shouldn’t it?  All you do is write an article, throw in a couple links and you’re good to go, right?  WRONG!  Guest posting is about a lot more than that.  If this is your mindset, it’s time for a change.

The Dos And Don'ts Of Guest Blogging

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There are three sides to guest posting: the author, the blog owner and the reader.  Each has their own responsibilities and expectations.

Author Do’s and Don’ts

As an author it falls under your umbrella of responsibilities to make sure you are writing good-quality, unique and engaging articles.  You may think it’s easy to submit an article but unfortunately many authors make mistakes when they approach a blog owner, when they submit their article and even once the article is posted.  There are several things that you need to make sure you do or don’t do.

Do send a polite email to the person in charge of guest posting when you first approach them.  Review their blog beforehand! You are asking to be published on their blog, know what it’s about.  Present either a fully written article or a list of 2 to 3 ideas you could write about.

Don’t leave them hanging.  Respond to all emails they send you, even if they reject your submission or you decide not to let them publish your article.  You want to have a good reputation, always follow through.

Don’t send them an email and ask what they want you to write.  Provide them with an article or a couple ideas.  If they don’t like any of them, they will tell you.  If they have something specific in mind, they will let you know.  You shouldn’t expect them to do all the work for you.

Don’t demand that you’re submission be published.  This is one of my personal pet peeves.  If the blog owner determines that you’re article, for whatever, is reason is not a good fit, you can offer to change it, but don’t demand that it be published.  I have received several submission emails from prospective guest authors that look something like this:

Kathryn,

                Here is my article.  Post it on www.blog.com on Monday.    I expect you to send me the link when it goes live.

Sincerely,

Your Next Rejected Submission

This email is rude, there’s no other way to explain it.  There is a difference between showing initiative and offending the person who decides what to do with your article.  As a guest author you should be trying to build a good reputation with blog owners.  You should be polite and courteous.  Say ‘please’ and ‘thank- you’, even if they reject your submission.  There are so many guest posters out there and that makes you expendable.  You can and will be replaced if you are hard to work with.

Don’t submit articles that have nothing to do with their blog.  The blogs I accept guest posts for are about real estate, internet marketing, finances and entrepreneurs.  I can’t count the number of submitted articles I have received that are about owning an exotic pet, vacationing in Europe, or even how to make this Valentines Day special.  These articles have nothing to do with what my readers want.  It is your job to make sure that you are submitting the right kind of article.  Do your research on the blog; find out their niche.

Do edit your article before submitting it.  You should be sending in your final draft, not your first.  It is not the blog owners’ responsibility to edit your grammar, word choice, paragraph placement or even the general flow of the article.  These are things you should take care of.  If English is your second language, find a native English speaker to edit it before you send it.  It wouldn’t hurt to have someone else read it even if you are a native English speaker.  A second opinion is always good.

Don’t get discouraged.  If your submission is rejected send a polite email asking what you need to change or fix.  Work on those things and continue writing and submitting your articles.

Don’t fill your blog with useless or unrelated links.

Do follow all the guidelines the blog has set for guest posts.  Don’t think that you are exempt from them for some reason.

The Dos And Don'ts Of Guest Blogging

Read More: The 10 Reasons You Should Guest Blog with TechWyse

Blog Owner Do’s and Don’ts

Do respond to emails promptly, even if you are rejecting the submission.  Authors need to know if they should move on to another blog or if they can expect to be published through you.

Do be polite.  Even if the article is horribly written, write the author and let them know what they need to work on.  If the article is great, tell them; those are the authors you want coming back, encourage that.

Do allow a byline and a place for the author to include their personal link.  There is a reason they are guest posting, it’s all about link building.

Don’t tell someone you will post their article and then not follow through.  It has happened before.  Blog owners get busy and forget about a submission and never post it.  It’s your job to stay organized and make sure you are posting articles where and when you say you will.

Do approach authors you want to publish on your blog with a polite and encouraging email.  Give them ideas for articles they could write for you.  Express your interest in other articles they have written.  Let them know why you chose them to write for your blog.

Reader Do’s and Don’ts

These articles were written for you to enjoy, to learn from, to peak your interest in something new and even inform you.

Do take time to make comments, positive or negative; both can help the author improve.  They also let the blog owner know what their readers want more of and what they don’t care for.

While many of these tips may seem like common sense, it’s amazing how many people disregard them.  Following through on these things will help you to build a good reputation as an author, a blog owner, or both.

Post By Kathyrn Mott (1 Posts)

Kathryn Mott is a content creation assistant for Professional Marketing International; a company that teaches entrepreneurs the skills they need to be successful.  Learn more about what our students have to say at http://www.youtube.com/user/pmieducation.

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21 Comments

  • avatar

    You made some clear points there. I did a search on the subject matter and found most guys will go along with with your blog.

  • avatar

    While many of these points are pretty basic etiquette, this article is certainly helpful for both new guest bloggers as well as senior guest bloggers – in my experience, the more experienced guest bloggers can almost be worse – they sometimes expect that they’ll be treated like regular writers just because they’ve been writing longer; my response to them is simple: You will be treated as a guest writer – you will certainly not be condemned for it, but you won’t be treated like a god. To potential guest bloggers, I have one simple tip: be polite!

  • avatar
    Shawn Gossman 

    on 

    I have really enjoyed reading this blog! I like how you gave Do’s and Don’ts for the guest blogging, the blogger and even the reader. This has been the most unique guest blog information post I have ever seen! Good job at that! 🙂

  • avatar

    What a useful article! I too have had the experience of my blog submission being rejected purely because I misread a vital part of the instruction email. This was early on in my writing career and I felt awful for days afterwards! Nowadays I don’t take this sort of rejection to heart but it was a good lesson in reading all instructions twice at least.

  • avatar
    SimplySidy 

    on 

    Great post yet again. The biggest plus that I see on this post is that it will not only help many understand about the dos and dont’s, but it also tells us to be polite – not only on the write up but also on the conversations between the blog owner / guest writer.
    The importance of being polite is always many pluses and even if the write up might not be apt still, it will definitely increase a chance of being considered. For newbies and also for seniors, this is one thing which should always be remembered and practised.

  • avatar

    Well, you’ve opened my eyes to an aspect of guest blogging that I didn’t know about. I thought that guest blogs were always written by friends of the person who owned the blog. You have given me something to think about. I did have one person offer to guest post, but it was an obvious scam, and I doubt it even found its way to my blog via a human source.
    Thank you for your article, and for the do’s and don’t’s which ought to be no-brainers, since they are simply pointers on how to be polite in business. Sometimes, we don’t catch no-brainers if they are not pointed out to us.

  • avatar

    I’ve always read that you should write your best posts/articles as a guest blog as this is the way you can reel in new traffic. Writing a mediocre piece is not going to attract new people, it will just put them off.
    Also, you should tell the blog owner how they can benefit from your post on whatever subject and try to make it about them and not what you want from the opportunity.

  • avatar
    Marlon Cruz 

    on 

    “You need my article”
    It is saddening that this is the behavior of some authors educated in the wrong way.
    Sites do need articles – but they need it so that the readers could benefit from it.
    It is always about the readers. Even if someone pulled out a very good article, if it would not benefit the readers, then it will be rejected.
    And authors should respect that.
    Authors should think that the site owners are making them a favor by giving them exposure. If your article has been rejected, then better luck next time.
    Create greater articles instead and try again.
    But next time, learn to build relationship in the request instead of saying “You need my article”

  • avatar

    A very good guide here to submitting guest blog posts. Most of it seems quite obvious, but a lot of people do forget things like making sure the article is final and generally being polite. The reminder for blog owners to provide feedback is a good point too.

  • avatar

    I have been “preaching” this for a long time now as many people lack the social etiquette to properly conduct business. I think one of your best points was when you mentioned that readers should edit their article before submitting it. Many people send me work that I usually have edit before I repost it– primarily because I don’t want anyone to sound incompetent.

  • avatar
    TheMarkSquared 

    on 

    Guest blogging can really help when it comes to promoting our own website. The readers on the blog we’re guesting in may or may not like our content. Nevertheless, I personally believe that connections are important if we want to succeed in our endeavours. Just like in blogging, if we have know blogger friends, we can promote each other, and thus, make our blog more successful.

  • avatar

    It was nice to see the last “Reader Do’s and Don’ts”. I as a reader don’t usually write any comments on the blog posts I read even If those are helpful. As an author I know it’s rewarding to have some feedback from the other side of the screen. Now as a reader will try to make some time to leave that feedback.

  • avatar

    As someone who’s written a few guest blog posts, I can’t believe the audacity of whoever sends you those curt emails (“here’s my work, post it on x date”)! This was a great post because you illustrate the things that both the guest blogger AND the blog host should be doing or avoiding. After all, if done right, guest posts are a symbiotic relationship in which both parties benefits.

  • avatar

    Thanks for the info I agree with the First guy the photo does make this seem more personal and in the future I would recommend that

  • avatar
    R.E. Danielson 

    on 

    This is an excellent list for authors and blog owners alike. People often forget the importance of being polite and taking the initiative when it comes to their work. Blog owner’s are very busy people and it’s always nice to have a reminder of what authors expect. As always, feed back is greatly appreciated from readers. Excellent tips.

  • avatar
    bigbrownies 

    on 

    Very informative. Although some are obvious, they are good reminders. We may tend to forget things as time goes along

  • avatar

    Great post, it amazes me that people continue to post articles with poor grammer…also nice to see that you included do’s and dont’s for readers, after all that is why we write.

  • avatar

    Very informative post! You cleared up a lot of information for me about guest blogging in your article, thank you!

  • avatar

    I wish a few people who have sent me articles over the years had read this! I’ve seen countless numbers of e-mails from people who have taken little to no care with regards to the spelling and grammar of their post but still asked me to put it up, which is quite disrespectful. Then there’s the people who ask if they can put up a post about coffee on my music blog…

  • avatar
    Ramkrishnan 

    on 

    Useful stuff.

  • avatar
    cliverederson 

    on 

    Great post. One thing I would add is I always notice is that a little photo of the writer really helps give a blog a more personal feel. I think this would apply even more in the case where it’s a guest, and not someone you’re used to reading content from.

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