Guest blogging: waste of space and time or a precious way to build thought-leadership and brand recognition? Let the debate begin.

Guest blogging’s fans defend the act as an affordable way to improve website SEO, boost brand recognition and grow the audience.

Critics, however, complain that the whole blogging scene is obsolete and writing guest articles is a waste of time.

Let’s tackle the four most common arguments and see where we land on the anatomy of a perfect guest blog post. 

Guest blogging brings no clients

What Critics Say

“Bah, guest blogging doesn’t work for our business anyway. We’ve never seen any clients coming in through guest blog posts nor any other kind of measurable results.”

How to Turn it Around

Number one decision to take when considering guest blog posting is to choose the platforms strategically. Of course your ideal clients won’t find you if they’re not following that particular media.

Aim to choose partners whose audience is similar to yours but whom you are not directly competing with. Ask questions about the size and demographics of their audience beforehand to ensure you’re aligned. Focus on quality and strategic partnerships instead of spreading your precious articles on any platform that accepts them. 

Results are hard to measure

What Critics Say

“Guest blogging doesn’t grow our business fast enough. Results are hard to measure, too.” 

How to Turn it Around

Guest blogging, as any content project, should start from goal-setting. If the goals have not impressed you in the past, ask yourself these two questions: Were the goals clearly set? Were they realistic and aligned with your business goals?

Guest blogging typically works well to drive website traffic, grow an audience and build an email list. However, improving sales quickly can be tricky, given that the audience of the host platform might not be familiar with your business yet. For this reason, choosing realistic goals that match your business needs is the first step.

When it comes to measurement, an easily measurable goal for guest blogging can be website visits, which can easily be tracked through your website analytics tool. Call bookings or ebook downloads are other ways of keeping track of the impact of your guest articles.

Writing takes too much time

What Critics Say 

“Writing guest content takes so much time! We don’t have enough time to populate all of our own channels as frequently as we would like to.“

How to Turn it Around

Repurpose content for guest blog posts. Don’t reinvent the wheel (while you might want to consider reinventing some of the metaphors) but tweak and readjust your existing content, such as evergreen blog content created for other platforms. 

However, it’s important to find a twist that works for the targeted audience and gives fresh spirit to your blog post. Don’t recycle content used before without any amendments and don’t reuse your blog articles elsewhere, unless agreed upon.

Guest blogging feels inauthentic

What Critics Say

“Guest blogs are just useless bragging and service selling. We’d rather focus on building our own channels.”

How to Turn it Around

When it comes to content, guest blogging isn’t any different than any other form of content marketing. Like your own blog, podcast, social media content or newsletter, guest blogs need to lead with value. 

While it’s important to keep the strategic goals in mind (such as building an email list or generating website traffic), value needs to come first. That is the way towards sustainable content marketing that grows your business over the long term.

Find your first guest blog idea!

Where to start with your next guest article then?

A good place to start is your own blog or social media channels. Pick a topic you’ve covered before and come up with a fresh and topical twist that will serve the host platform’s audience specifically. 

If you’re running out of ideas, maybe my Complimentary Content Guide could help? You can download 10 Fresh Ideas below.

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