The Complete Minimalist Outline to Finding and Pitching Guest Posts

· Provide so much value they need to read more from you and will subscribe

· Otherwise, most people will skim the article or not read the whole thing

· Target the right sites

· The site must have sufficient targeted traffic

· Don’t guest post on sites without traffic

· 2 types of sites you target:

§ Broad authority sites (Forbes, Huffington Post, or Business Insider)

· Even if a small percent is your target audience, it’s worth it

· Neil’s posts on Forbes generate a lot of business

§ Leading industry blogs

· Much more niche-specific

· Mostly made up of your target audience’

· Don’t post too frequently because most of these people already know you. 1–3 times a month.

· How to find sites

· Search broadly

§ Google “business” for the top business authority sites

· Search strings

§ [your niche] + “[a guest-posting search string]”

§ Guest posting search string examples:

  • “guest post”
  • “contributing writer”
  • “this is a guest post by”
  • “contribute to our site”
  • “guest posting guidelines”
  • “suggest a post”
  • “contributor guidelines”
  • “guest posts wanted”
  • “writers wanted”
  • “write for us”

· Your Keyword “guest article”

· Your Keyword “guest post opportunities”

· Your Keyword “want to write for”

· Your Keyword “submit blog post”

· Your Keyword “contribute to our site”

· Your Keyword “guest column”

· Your Keyword “submit content”

· Your Keyword “submit your content”

· Your Keyword “submit post”

· Your Keyword “This post was written by”

· Your Keyword “guest post courtesy of ”

· Your Keyword “guest posting guidelines”

· Your Keyword “suggest a post”

· Your Keyword “submit an article”

· Your Keyword “contributor guidelines”

· Your Keyword “contributing writer”

· Your Keyword “submit news”

· Your Keyword “become a guest blogger”

· Your Keyword “guest blogger”

· Your Keyword “guest posts wanted”

· Your Keyword “looking for guest posts”

· Your Keyword “guest posts wanted”

· Your Keyword “guest poster wanted”

· Your Keyword “accepting guest posts”

· Your Keyword “writers wanted”

· Your Keyword “articles wanted”

· Your Keyword “become an author”

· Your Keyword “become guest writer”

· Your Keyword “become a contributor”

· Your Keyword “submit guest post”

· Your Keyword “submit an article”

· Your Keyword “submit article”

· Your Keyword “guest author”

· Your Keyword “send a tip”

· Your Keyword inurl: “guest blogger”

· Your Keyword inurl: “guest post”

· allintitle: Your Keyword + guest post

· Your Keyword “my posts on other blogs”

· Your Keyword: “guest post”

· Your Keyword “my guest posts”

· Your Keyword “my guest blogs”

· Your Keyword “posts on other blogs”

· Your Keyword “I’ve been featured on”

· Your Keyword “sites I’ve written for”

· Your Keyword “my posts on other blogs”

· Your Keyword: “guest post”

· Your Keyword “my guest posts”

· Your Keyword “my guest blogs”

· Your Keyword “posts on other blogs”

· Your Keyword “I’ve been featured on”

· Your Keyword “sites I’ve written for”

· Your Keyword “guest posting sites”

· Your Keyword “accept guest posts”

· Your Keyword “guest post sites”

  • Example: SEO “write for us”
  • Steal your competitor’s target list
  • Choose an influencer in your industry
  • Search “top [niche] blogs” to find them
  • Search name of influencer
  • If there’s too many people with the same name, add a major keyword at the end (“SEO for Brian Dean)
  • Start scrolling down past their own website and you’ll start seeing guest posts.
  • Or use Google Reverse Image Search
  • Grab the URL of their headshot and pop it into Google Images
  • Use Social media to find:
  • “[keyword]” + guest post
  • Example: “weight loss” + guest post
  • Use Twitter and Google+
  • Find blogs through back-link tracking of your 1st and 2nd page competitors
  • Alltop.com
  • Enter your keyword niche. Find blogs.

How to tell if the blog’s worth your time:

1. Average Number of Comments column

i. Look at 5 to 10 posts

ii. An average of at least 5+ are good targets

iii. 50+ is the best

2. Use average social shares as a measure (use a social tool or native site counter)

3. High quality content

4. Authoritative website

5. Has a real following

6. Won’t bury your link in an author bio at the bottom

· How to pitch a guest post

· Send out personalized requests

§ Templates don’t work anymore

§ Show them a list of big sites you have already guest posted on

· Slowly build up this list. Start with niche blogs to build your reputation.

· Follow guest post guidelines exactly

§ search for “[your target blog] + [guest post guidelines]” to find

· If no guest post guidelines are published…

§ Develop a relationship with the blogger (especially if you’re unknown)

· Sign up for their email list and reply to an email

· 1st email: Tell them how much you liked one of their recent posts (and mean it). Tell them you took advice from the post and actually applied it.

· 2nd email: Share results if you got them. Offer to write a case study.

· 3rd email: If you don’t have a case study, a week or two later, send an email like this:

Hey [Blogger],

The [outcome from taking advice] is still producing great results.

I seriously appreciate all the hard work you do to create useful, actionable advice about [topic].

I know it’s difficult to produce top-notch quality consistently, so I was wondering if you’d like a hand with it.

I’ve already brainstormed a few ideas that I think would really resonate with your readers:

  • [Idea 1]
  • [Idea 2]

I’ve written a lot in this niche. Here are some examples of my articles that capture the quality of my writing:

  • [link to a guest post or your own blog article #1]
  • [link to a guest post or your own blog article #2]

I know you don’t accept guest posts often, but I’d be honored if I could contribute to [site name].

If not, no worries — I won’t stop reading your posts :p.

Best Regards,

[your name]

§ Email the site for the guidelines

· Analyze their most popular posts for topic ideas

§ Look for posts written in the last year as they’ll reflect the current audience most accurately

§ Use Buzzsumo for social shares

§ Go for SPECIFIC topics

· Write a killer headline(s) to pitch

§ Take proven topics and headlines and put your spin on them

§ List posts perform best

· Give them topics to choose from

· Write a killer description

§ Answer the 5 Ws: who, what, where, why, when

· Short and sweet

· Personalize the template(s) below to reflect your personal voice and send:

· Subject: you should blog about [insert your guest blog post topic]

· [insert their first name],

· As an avid reader of [insert their site name], I would love to read about [insert guest blog post topic], and I think your readers would as well.

· Your content on [insert existing post from their website #1, insert existing post from their website #2, and insert existing post from their website #3] is great, but I think you can tie it all together by blogging on [insert guest blog post topic].

· I know you are probably busy and won’t have too much time to blog about it, so I’m going to make you an offer you can’t refuse. How about I write it for you? Don’t worry, I’m a great blogger and have had my posts featured on [insert previous guest post URL #1] and [insert previous guest post URL #2].

· Let me know if you are interested. I already know your blogging style, plus I understand what your readers love as I am one of them.;-)

· Look forward to hearing from you,

· [insert your name]

OR:

Hey man!

Hope all’s well.

Been working on a blog post that I think will do really well, and could potentially be a great fit for [blog name here]. Would love to publish there (and help promote to our [# of subscribers we have]. Recently did posts on [previous guest post site] and [previous guest post site] — let me know if you want first crack at this one J

It’s about some interesting results we found from [info and results about post here].

The post tells that [what the post does]

Mind if I send the post your way for review?

Thanks,

[Name here]

OR Brian Dean’s battle-tested template:

Hi (name),

I’m a long time reader. You may have noticed my comment on your post on X (awesome article by the way).

I’m writing to you because I’d love to contribute a guest post to Example.com.

I’ve been brainstorming some topics that I think your readers would get a ton of value from:

-Idea #1

-Idea #2

-Idea #3

I’ll make sure the piece overflows with information that can’t be found anywhere else.

To give you an idea of the quality I’ll bring to your site, here’s a link to a guests post that I recently published on Example.com.

Cheers,

Me

· Great guest post pitches come in all shapes and sizes

· But most of them:

o Are fairly short

o Demonstrate experience (other guest post samples and/or big blog names)

o Pitch a specific topic

· Start by linking to your best blog post on your site. Link to blogs you’ve wrote on over time. Work your way up.

1. Write an EPIC guest post

a. The definition of epic changes based on the site you pitch

i. It should be clearly better than 95% of the other posts on the site

ii. “epic” is relative

1. A basic article on “7 things entrepreneurs should do on Twitter” would do well on Forbes but would get laughed at on Moz for being too beginner.

2. A super in-depth post on technical SEO would go over the heads of Forbes reader and get unnoticed. But it would do well on Moz.

b. Guest posts for Tier 1 Sites should be good or better than what’s on your own site (pillar content).

i. Sparks conversation

ii. Spurs action

iii. Changes minds

c. Make it data driven and actionable

d. Have custom images

e. Format the post for maximum readability

f. Get an editor/proofreader

g. Provide the post in HTML to preserve formatting

h. Give a call to action for a free bonus offer at the end

i. “Get your free eBook, How to Influence The Right People — a guide to breaking away from the herd.”

ii. Case studies work well as bonuses

iii. Use a landing page

i. Ask for an in-article link if you provide an epic post. Sometimes they are willing.

j. Have a super-enticing author bio

i. A compelling reason to click through to your site

ii. Give a free gift or report

iii. Tell them the benefit

2. Promote the guest post

a. Post to aggregator sites

i. Inbound.org

ii. Subreddits

b. Email anyone mentioned in the article

i. Let them know you featured them and linked to their site

ii. Ask them to check it out

iii. Invite them to share or comment

c. Email your list and tell them about it

i. Ask them to comment

d. Share on your social media

e. Respond to every comment

3. Send a thank you note

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