Guest blogging can be an excellent way to build your business. It gets you and your work in front of people who may never have otherwise heard of you, and helps you build authority in your niche.
However, when guest blogging is done wrong, it can be completely ineffective, and even harmful to your brand. This post will look at 10 common mistakes to avoid when engaging in guest posting for your business.
1. Writing about your business.
If you’re lucky enough to get a guest posting opportunity on a great site, don’t blow it by writing a blog post about your business or products.
Most likely, the blog owner won’t even accept your post in the first place. They know their readers don’t want to read an ad or promotional post, and probably won’t be thrilled that you tried to use their platform for your own purpose.
Even if your post does make it onto the blog, your promotional post is unlikely to get many views, shares or links – the very reasons you’re engaging in guest blogging in the first place.
2. Not linking back to your website.
While SEO shouldn’t be the main purpose of your guest blogging efforts, including a link back to your site is still vital. Without a link, readers will have no way to find you or to read more of your content.
Keep in mind that sites may or may not allow links within the body of your post. However, the vast majority of sites who are curating content will at least let you include a link in your author bio. This bio (and link) will be the key to generating referral traffic and leads.
If you’re allowed to include links within your content, use that opportunity to provide additional valuable resources to your readers that relate to your topic. While you’ll definitely want to link to other, outside sources for your article, including a couple of links to your own (relevant) content is usually just fine.
3. Not including an enticing offer.
If the primary goal of your guest blogging is brand recognition, including an offer in your author bio isn’t absolutely necessary. In fact, in my own bio, I rarely share anything except a brief introduction to myself and my business, and a link back to my homepage.
However, if you’re looking to generate leads through your guest post, I’d strongly encourage you to include a free offer in your bio. This could be a free ebook, guide or other downloadable resource, and should ideally relate directly to the topic of your guest post (e.g., offering a free ebook on how to get clients when posting on a business-related site).
4. Writing for a site that won’t send targeted traffic.
The appeal of writing for a popular, high-traffic site is undeniable. Many business owners work on the assumption that all traffic is equal, and that a site with tons of visitors is better than a smaller site with less traffic.
However, it’s also important to consider the quality and relevance of that traffic. A small, niche site with a loyal and responsive audience is often better than a larger site that covers a wide variety of unrelated topics. These niche visitors will be more likely to engage with you one-on-one, and to be interested in your offer (see # 3 above).