Let's imagine you're a professional writer.
You get paid hundreds of dollars an hour for your writing, and your clients regularly tell you that, since they launched their new website with the copy you wrote, there's been an upturn in business. Their phone is ringing, the orders are coming in and they're delighted with your work.
It feels great.
Then you set up a blog to promote your own business because you believe in the power of words and you believe in the power of content marketing. You start writing blog posts and (modesty aside) they're good stuff but not many people are reading them. To be honest, hardly anyone is visiting your blog.
You learn that one of the most highly recommended ways to get new readers to your blog is to write yet more great blog posts and give them away to other bigger blogs. You find out that this is called guest blogging and that you won't get paid for writing those guest posts. In fact you'll have to give away all your wonderful well written words free of charge.
That doesn't feel so great.
But you're desperate so you decide to give guest blogging a go.
Guest blogging is hard. You choose the blogs you'd like to write for, you study the type of posts they share and you write something great. Finally you work out who to send the guest post to, email it to them and wait. And wait. And wait.
Often no one even replies and when they do you get the old ‘thanks but no thanks' brush off.
You're about to give up with the guest blogging tactic. In fact you're about ready to give up blogging completely, but you decide to give it one last go. You write one last guest post and send it off.
Nothing happens as usual. The blogger never gets back to you and you feel terrible. Hopeless. Depressed.
But then the next week as you're checking your blog stats for the 200th time you notice something strange. There's a massive spike in traffic and it's growing fast. So you tell your husband your stat counter has broken and he tells you it hasn't, that you're getting a lot of new blog traffic and it's all coming from that big site you sent a guest post to last week who've published it without even telling you.
It feels bloody great.
And greater still the blogger loves you and his readers do too. The comments are flying in and the post is going viral on Twitter and Facebook.
So now you've finally experienced the power of guest blogging and the thrill of being acknowledged in the blogosphere you decide to stick with it. You keep blogging and you keep guest blogging. Your traffic keeps growing and you become well know and respected in your community.
Now you don't think about guest blogging as giving away your best writing free, you think about guest blogging in 5 new ways:
- Better than free advertising on prime time TV.
- Giving you glowing referrals from celebrities.
- Instant social proof.
- The testing ground for new ideas.
- A fabulous networking opportunity.
And that my friend is my personal guest blogging experience from my travel blog Get In the Hot Spot.
It's why I recommend guest blogging as the best way to grow your blog and why I recommend Jon Morrow's guest blogging course which will take away the pain of writing guest posts which don't get published.
I won't try to sell you the course although I'm an affiliate, but I will tell you that if you do the guest blogging course you'll get a sound strategy for securing, writing, and submitting guest posts so you don't have to learn how to do it the hard way like I did.
If you're not convinced guest posting is for you here's an email I got yesterday from Donna Moritz at Socially Sorted.
I owe you a favour! As I mentioned, you piqued my interest about guest blogging when I heard you speak at the Web Wednesday event over a year ago. You talked about the early impact that guest blogging had on your own success with Get in the Hot Spot and Successful Blogging. I dipped my toe in the water with guest blogging, and I am so glad I did!
I interviewed Nikki Parkinson (winner of best blog in Australia, 2011) for an article that was featured in Social Fresh, and now I write for them. After writing a guest post for Amy Porterfield, I was picked up by Entrepreneur.com for a couple of articles and I just joined their team as a contributor! I am very fortunate to now be writing for some great websites including Social Media Blog in Spain (they translate!) and Nimble, and I was recently featured in Yahoo Small Business and Forbes.
I am very grateful to have a dream list of blogs to post for and I can say with certainty that guest posting has been the one thing that has sky-rocketed my own blog and business. Everything that has happened comes back to guest blogging and now that we do infographics for bloggers, it has opened a lot of doors.
It's amazing the opportunities that open up when you put yourself out there! Thanks for the advice!
If guest blogging sounds like what you need to take your blog from blah to boom then check out Jon Morrow's Guest Blogging Course here.
Even though I'd already had guest posts on major blogs like Copyblogger, Zen Habits and Problogger I paid for and completed Jon's guest blogging course last year and only wish it had been around when I first started guest blogging because it would have saved me months of time, endless headaches and lots of heartache.
Even if you're not a professional writer the Guest Blogging course will teach you how to act and think like one and, once you've your first guest post has been published people will start to see you as a professional writer too.
But I guess that's just another added bonus. Guest blogging is one of the best ways to boost your blog, career or business whether you're a professional writer or not.