How flattering is it when you are asked by an online platform or other medium to join a team of guest bloggers and contribute articles on a regular basis? It happened to me a few times in the past six months. I accepted the first invitation quite spontaneously. After that I became a bit more careful and started to ask myself a few questions first.
What do you need to consider before you decide to become a guest blogger? Please find the most important questions you should ask yourself below.
1. Does the medium reach my target group?
A simple, but easily overlooked question. Recently, I was asked if I would be interested to write for a Dutch platform Women and Passion. I really like the focus of the platform, however, while talking over the phone about it, I realized that 80% of my clients are men. That was one of the reasons not to go ahead.
Before you say yes, try to figure out the readership; what is the background of the readers in terms of gender, professional interest, industry, level of seniority, etc.?
2. What is the reach of the platform?
How many unique visitors does the platform have on a monthly basis? Compare it with other, similar professional or consumer platforms. If others are bigger or more targeted, then consider to approach these yourself, if you think that guest blogging can help you to move your business forward.
3. What is the reach of the platform on social media?
Figure out how many followers and fans the platform has on social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. Do they promote the content of their bloggers on these platforms? If so, guest blogging could help you to get more followers yourself and expand your reach on social media. If they do publish the content of their guest bloggers on for example Twitter, ask them to mention your twitter name in the tweet. Then you can easily track who retweeted your blog and you can get in touch with these people.
4. Are there other bloggers writing for the platform with a similar background as you have?
If you are asked to share your expertise with the readers of a platform, check out if you are the only guest blogger in your field of business. I am a contributing blogger for Social Media Today, an American platform for social media and online marketing specialists. I am definitely not the only one with a social media background there. However, if I would be asked to write for a platform that for example would focus on the financial industry, I would definitely check if they have another person writing about social media.
5. What goals do you hope to achieve?
Writing articles just because you enjoy writing can be a reason to accept an offer. However, if you want to go beyond that you should ask yourself what goals you have with your guest blogs? Would you like to create more visibility for your company? Do you want to expand your reach on social media? Do you want to generate leads? For me the main goal of writing guest blogs is that it creates the visibility of my company and it helps to be seen as an expert in my field of business. Besides that, it is fun to see how many people read my posts and to interact with them. In addition, I like the idea that my knowledge and expertise can help others to perform better.
6. How often do you need to publish?
Check with the editors how often they expect you to write a blog. Is it monthly? Bimonthly? Be honest to yourself and ask yourself if you have enough time to write on a frequent basis. It is often not the first blog people struggle with, but more the ones that follow after. Sometimes because people lack ideas for new blog posts, or they underestimate the time they need to write and edit.
7. Are you allowed to reuse content?
Check if there are any guidelines regarding the content you contribute. Are you allowed to publish the blogs on your own website or on LinkedIn? Are there any other rules you have to stick to when it comes to reusing the content? Can you use blogs you have written before or does it have to be fresh content? In the latter case you could rewrite previous blog posts. That saves time and you still contribute valuable, new content.
What about you? Do you have any experience with guest blogging? How do you benefit from it?