Guest blog – checklist

Guest Blog Checklist

Before putting together any guest post, make sure to review this checklist. It will ensure you cover all your bases when providing quality content and will make it as easy as possible for the target blog to publish your content. 

Note: “target blog” simply refers to the blog on which you want your blog post published. 

Getting Your Post Together:

Put your best foot forward with the content of your post. Here are some tips to help you do that.  Read Through the Blog: Look at recent posts and focus on a category you want to write about. Don’t duplicate something that has already been done. Make sure your post is compatible with the blog’s overall tone and style. Read the Comments: Take a look at the comments on the blog to understand more about the readership, their interests, and their questions. Create a Quality Post: Make sure your guest post is as good as possible, and free from typos. If you wouldn’t post it on your own site, then it’s not good enough for a guest post! Create an Original Post: You will also be creating completely original content and offering exclusive publishing rights, unless the blog does not require it.  Create a Targeted Post: In addition to having a quality and original post, you want it highly targeted to the audience. Mention things that are relevant to the readers and link to previous posts and any relevant products the blogger may have.  Avoid Self-Promotion: You can mention what you do for a living in your post, as it adds to your credibility, but don’t try to sell your products or link to a bunch of your own pages inside your post.  Craft Your Byline: In addition to developing a relationship with the blogger, you also want your site to benefit from the guest post. Make sure you craft a byline that is targeted to the topic and provide a link for them to claim a free offer (in return for an opt-in) on your site. We’ve also included a document with more byline tips and some templates you can use for best results.   

Formatting Your Post: 

Formatting is also important. It shows extra care and attention, and makes it easier for the target blog to publish your post. Use good web writing format by using short sentences and paragraphs. Use bullet points and subheadlines to make your content easy to read. Format your subheadings with <h2> tags or whatever is appropriate for the blog. Format your links, so they can be pasted into a blog and be clickable. For example:

Jeff recently went <a href=”http://clickme.com/previous-post”>fly fishing</a> here. Include images, and make sure you have either created the images or you have permission to republish them. You can host the image on your site and include the html code for the blog to display it automatically, but you may want to also attach the image (be sure the image file isn’t too big) so they can upload it themselves.  Do keyword research and optimize the post for a relevant keyword or phrase. Just don’t let SEO take over, as the quality of your post is always the most important thing. 

Contact the Blog Owner: When you have a polished product, contact the blog owner. You can contact them prior to writing the post, but you’ll probably get a better response when they see a finished article. Use the templates provided with this course to help form your letter. If you have a connection with the blog owner through Facebook, Twitter, a website forum or anywhere else, send them a quick private message to let them know you emailed them and verify that you have the best email address.  Don’t harass the blog owner, but do follow up. If you don’t hear anything within a few weeks, you can use the post somewhere else. But do give popular bloggers extra time to respond since they may receive a lot of requests for guest blog posts.

Do More Posts and Work Together If your guest blogging effort is a success, do more of it. Do a follow up to your previous post, answer questions people had in the comments or attack a new subject.  Work together to grow the relationship further. If you’re not sure how else you can work together, go back and check these great ideas out. And really, treat this like you would any other budding friendship. 

Overall, it’s important to put your best foot forward. Don’t skimp on quality or polishing your post before submitting it. Do your homework, write your best work, check it twice and ensure you’re saving your new connection time rather than wasting it. People appreciate when you’re well prepared and are more likely to respond and want to work together

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