A huge percentage of small businesses and startups do not actively pursue guest blogging. What’s difficult about writing a guest blogging piece is that the format for writing it differs from site to site. Many sites prefer guest post pitches via email while some prefer pitches posted in their guest blogging forum and in some cases, you can even pitch your idea while completing a form to apply for content creation opportunities.
There are two ways to approach guest blogging. You can either choose to guest blog on just any site or find those blogs with huge audiences who have their eyes on your specific niche. The second method obviously has a much greater chance of success, but it requires you to do some extra research and certainly more work.
In this article, we will share with you the techniques and tools that will allow you to write a guest blogging pitch that actually works.
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How to Land a Great Guest Blogging Gig?
Let’s say you’ve written an amazing article and you want to get it published on a popular site. The only problem is that, in order to reach the marketing director with your pitch, you have to dig through their website for contact information.
It’s an old trick of the publishing world: if you want to write for magazines or be a guest expert, you have to “pitch” your ideas. What does it mean to pitch an idea? It means to get your idea in front of the right editor so they’ll be interested in running it. But how do you actually pitch a blog post idea?
Here are ways to Write a Guest Post Pitch that Actually Works?
1: Find the Right Fit
Let’s say you’ve got a background in technology. Technology has changed drastically over the last 10 years, and if you look at different verticals like business, education, marketing, e-commerce — all these verticals have moved toward being more technology-forward. As a result, you could likely write for any number of tech or business sites depending on your word choice and how you frame your content.
When you’re pitching a guest post on a site, think about what fits well with what you’re trying to do. While guest posting is a great way to gain exposure for your content, it is also very competitive. There are many bloggers trying to make their mark on the web.
Pitching can be daunting. You’ve spent countless hours writing and editing, and now you’re asking someone to pick it up. To be honest, there is a small part of me that cringes when I have to write an email to pitch a guest post. But if you think about it, pitching is just another form of self-promotion. It’s a simple statement: “I wrote this thing, and I want you to read it.” If you approach the pitch from this angle, it makes it less scary and more like an ask with your readers rather than a stranger.
For example, if you are emailing an editor who writes about fitness, you would want to make sure your guest post idea is tailored toward that audience as well. It’s also possible the site already has published similar content before, so it’s best to find out if your topic has been covered or if it’s fresh enough to be accepted by the website you’re pitching.
2: Research the Company
Once you have the right fit, it’s time to do your research. Read their blog posts and recent news articles, and get a sense of what they’ve been writing about — topics that interest them, things they care about or feel passionate about. This will give you some insight as to what types of pitches you might craft that are more likely to resonate with them.
It’s important to learn as much as you can about this company because the more you learn the better your chance to get a guest post on their blog. To start, do a simple Google search for 10min to see what people say about this organization.
What are their goals for the next 5 years? And how can you help them achieve those goals? Once you know the company well enough, come up with a great question that their audience would love to know that they’ve never been able to find out. This will be your angle for pitching them the guest post.
With the information you’ve collected, choose three top bloggers or editors at the destination site and do a little digging on them. Look at their Twitter feeds and see who they follow. Read their bios and learn what drives them.
Once you have a sense of what the company is about, you can begin looking at both their success and competition. The most important question, whether you’re pitching an individual or a company, is always going to be: how could I help?
When you know the answers to those questions, you’d want to analyze if there are commonalities or similarities amongst those organizations. Again, do research on them and just think: if I were one of them, what would I be feeling, or worrying about? What problems do they have that resonate with me?”
As a new contributor, you should know everything possible about the company. Try to understand not only what they do and sell, but also what their mission is, and how it’s reflected in their values. This helps to ensure that your content aligns with those values and doesn’t rub anyone the wrong way.
3: Analyze Their Blog
There are two main aspects of the blog that you will want to look at. The first thing is the kind of practitioners the blog is reaching out to. Blogs in your industry might be reaching out to certain types of people or targeting particular kinds of projects, initiatives, or business areas, depending on who their readers are and what needs these people have.
For example, does this business magazine appeal primarily to managers/executives, or also to software developers? If it’s targeted at managers/executives, then it must not only have a strong focus on new developments in the market but also provide some tips for managers/executives as to how they should handle upcoming developments.
Use the Newsletters to get a feel for the frequency and style of content they put out. Is it once a month, or daily or is it more sporadic? A gut feeling here will give you an idea. You then want to look for any recent articles that aren’t only posted on their blog but are also reposted on various other outlets even if they are just shared with links again. If they have an established following and recognition in the industry then this could mean a lot more eyes landing on their content as well as driving more traffic back to their site.
A lot of companies have built their brand on their blogs. If you were to analyze those blogs, you would find out that they have their target audience in mind and create posts accordingly. They usually write with the target audience in mind.
For example, if a company is more B2B and they were to write an article that is very targeted at other software developers, it would not make sense (even though there are benefits of doing this just like other forms of outreach). Companies have to understand what they are trying to get out of these types of articles beyond the obvious increase in traffic.
4. Show Your Value
This is where the next phase of the guest blogger strategy comes into play: developing post ideas that demonstrate your value as a guest blogger to potential gatekeepers. So how do you come up with these topic ideas? The first thing you need to do is take your company and blog-specific knowledge and combine it with the audience research you’ve already done.
When pitching guest articles you need to convince the editor you have something new or different to say. Instead of rehashing the same ideas and methods, think about the problems they’re facing that you’ve solved in your day job.
You must demonstrate that this added value could provide them with a solution to their problem. This is how you capture their interest and show off your expertise at the same time. To start, look them up on Google News and see if there are any recent articles with similar headlines.”
The starting point for guest posting is building a value proposition for the company you want to pitch. What’s that, you ask?
You’re going to want to use your new blog knowledge to find blog topics that give some clear, explicit value to the company you’re pitching. To demonstrate the value you can bring, you have to highlight what makes you different and better than other options. There may be more than one resource available for a given topic, but there is usually something that no one has done quite as you do—and that’s where the value of your topic comes from.
For example, if your reader is having trouble with creating social media marketing calendars, then the reader will probably not be looking for a tutorial on the general process of creating calendars—but they might very well appreciate a tutorial that reflects their unique challenge.
5: Write Your Pitch Email
When searching for guest blog post opportunities, lots of people tend to contact the blog owner via their personal email address. While this works well for personal blogs, chances are an editor whose email address is readily available on the website is going to be alerted when you send a query over to them.
This can result in rejection and frustration as you may not be aware that you just have to send your pitch to a different email address. In order to ensure that your email doesn’t end up being a spam message, you should tailor your query to each individual blog. And here’s how you do it.
Before you pitch, know their homepage and/or blog thoroughly. Go to the page and study the information on it. Take note of the most important topics that are repeated or updated frequently. Pull out the most relevant points and expressions. The idea is to find a good match between your article’s content and the publisher’s overall message in appearance or “theme” of their platform
Pitching an article for publication on a blog can be intimidating for new contributors. However, with the right tools and mindset, it doesn’t have to be. If you learn how to tailor your pitch to fit the blog’s form and style, you’ll endear yourself to the editors (and increase your chances of getting published and building a relationship), while also showing that you really understand their site.
After all, they want bloggers who can understand and reflect their editorial voice.
Beginning a pitch to a potential guest post client can be tricky. Because while you don’t want to come off as desperate, begging for a guest spot (because let’s face it, no one likes that), you also don’t want to come off as too aloof and be passed over for another blogger who may not understand the brand as well as you do.
Even if they do: there are still many things you can learn about the company by doing a little research, and without that preparation, you may not end up pitching the right topics or talking about their brand in the correct way.
Guest blogging has gone a bit out of vogue recently, but it is still an effective way to get content on your site and connect with relevant audiences online. At the root of any successful guest blogging experience lie powerful pitches that convince companies to let you share your ideas with their audience in their space.
Successful pitches help the company understand why they will benefit from your post, how you plan to execute your concept at a high standard, and what sort of results you’ve achieved in the past with similar strategies.