Thanks to Brad Shorr for contributing today's guest post.
Last November, Barbara wrote a valuable post on how to be a great guest blogger. She offered some great advice about both how to approach a blogger and actually write an effective post.
Important stuff, to be sure!
Getting published on other blogs is tremendous for brand awareness, establishing your credentials, and SEO.
In terms of SEO, guest blogging has really become a hot topic, as people are getting the message that Google is overlooking or penalizing those cheap and easy links, while rewarding quality links – like the ones involved in a quality guest blog post.
Since scads of people are looking for guest post opportunities, a strong pitch is vital. With that in mind, Barbara invited me to share some beneficial tips that work for me, as I find myself on both sides of pitches several times a day!
Here are three pitch tips I’ve picked up: I hope they help.
How to Pitch a Blogger on Writing a Guest Post
1. Define what you’re looking for.
If you approach bloggers haphazardly, it will show and you’ll get a lot of rejections. It’s better to create a model of the type of blog you’re looking for, and go after those opportunities with laser focus.
Things to consider include –
a.) Subject matter – Can you write authoritatively about the blog’s themes?
b.) Style – Can you write it the way they want it?
- Number of comments
- Social media presence
- Other factors
d.) Receptivity to guest authors
2. Give the blogger everything he/she needs to evaluate you.
If your pitch email leaves a lot to the imagination, don’t be surprised to get a rejection or a no-response. Bloggers are too busy to be proactive in filling in your blanks. In my pitch letters, I like to include:
a.) A brief explanation of why I could write an effective post on this particular blog
b.) Two or three links to other posts I’ve written that are as similar as possible to the style and/or subject matter of the blog in question
c.) How soon I could submit a post if asked to write one
d.) One or two topic ideas (including a title and thumbnail description)
e.) Express a willingness to write on other topics if these are not suitable, or if there is something “hot” the blogger wants covered
f.) End with a definite call to action, such as, “Would you like me to proceed with one of these topics?”
3. Follow up.
Pitching is selling, and all good sales people follow up. If you don’t hear from the blogger within a few days, it’s perfectly fine and totally professional to ask if he/she has had a chance to review your inquiry. When you follow up:
a.) Be polite and professional
b.) End with a call to action (see 2f above)
c.) In some situations, you might say that if you don’t get an answer within a few days, you will offer the topic(s) to other interested bloggers
Inherent in all of these tips are the need to do your homework, and to take a personal and customized approach to each pitch. This may seem obvious, but on pitches I receive, only a handful do those things. It’s too bad, because my suspicion is a lot of writers are much better than their pitches.
Over to You
What pitching techniques are working for you?
Today’s guest post is by Brad Shorr, @bradshorr on twitter.
Brad Shorr is Director of Content & Social Media for Straight North, a Chicago web design company. The firm works with middle market B2B firms doing everything from online payment gateways to safety leather gloves. Join Straight North on Facebook and Brad Shorr on Google+ for conversation on SEO and other Internet marketing topics.