March 1, 2023
March 1, 2023
Did you know that over 60% of blogs publish between 1-5 guest posts per month? With so many news outlets accepting guest bloggers, how do you find the perfect opportunities to target?
In this article, our Digital PR gurus outline several techniques that you can use to find blogs that accept guest posts, how this benefits your SEO, plus a completely free blogging pitch template that you can use when messaging publications.
How do you find guest posting opportunities? There are several ways to find guest blogging opportunities, including:
Read on to find out how to spot guest blogging opportunities, how to pitch your blog to a journalist, and how to maximise your guest blogging ROI.
Guest blogging is creating content that for a site that isn’t your own, also known as an ‘Off-Site’ SEO technique. Find out more about off-site SEO in one of our recent blog posts. This type of content marketing strategy is used on websites for SEO. This is because it increases backlinks and brand awareness.
Guest blogging is sometimes abused to gain links in any way possible. This means posting on spam sites, sites irrelevant to your industry or producing masses of low-quality content. This is known as a ‘black hat’ SEO technique. Spammy tactics will likely lead you to a Google penalty. This could result in a dramatic loss in all rankings and any chance of visibility in SERPs.
In this article, we’ll discuss how to incorporate guest blogging into your SEO strategy. We’ll also cover the recommended best practices, ensuring you stay within Google guidelines.
Guests posts help to increase your domain authority, which is calculated using three key factors:
The higher your DA, generally the better your site will rank in SERPs. Guest posting helps to improve the ‘link power’ element. When you write content for other sites to publish, you’ll usually gain a ‘Dofollow’ link, which acts as a ‘vote of confidence’ from their site to yours, which is a green flag in the eyes of Google.
There are several website elements that Google considers when ranking your website, with links only playing a small part. Find out more information about the other on-page and off-page Google ranking factors in one of our latest blogs.
Sometimes journalists may not reward you with a follow link (i.e links that pass value onto your site), however, this isn’t the end of the world! You’ll still increase your brand awareness from guest blogging, resulting in visits to your site from a relevant audience and potential customers.
In fact, this is a strategy we undertook for one of our clients, Centric HR. Learn more about that campaign in our detailed case study.
We’ve outlined a few of the simplest ways to find guest blogging opportunities on relevant websites below. Pick one or two, or use a combination of them all to maximise how many relevant publications you find guest blogging opportunities for.
Although this might sound simple, one of the quickest, easiest, and most cost-effective ways to find guest blogging opportunities is by using a search engine, such as Google. Use business or industry-relevant keywords and then one of the following phrases to find guest blogging opportunities online:
From here, you could reach out to the publication via phone or email, or you could find the journalist on LinkedIn and send them a message.
Help a Reporter Out, most commonly known as HARO, is a free tool that you can sign up for guest blogging opportunities. You’ll receive a number of emails in your inbox each day, each filled with journalists seeking sources for articles, podcasts, and interviews. You can tailor the categories of the communications that you receive.
The platform is regularly used by big publications including the likes of Forbes Magazine, Marketing Week, The New York Times, Bustle, and The Wall Street Journal – giving you opportunities to connect with esteemed journalists that you may not have had otherwise.
Wildcat Digital Tip: Only choose to respond to HARO requests that are relevant to your industry. If you keep responding with irrelevant answers or you aren’t an expert in that field, you may find yourself blacklisted by journalists.
The chances are that if a website has accepted a guest post from a business similar to yours, it’s likely that they’ll accept one from you too. Tools including Semrush or Ahrefs are excellent ways to audit competitor backlink profiles, allowing you to spot several high-quality guest blogging opportunities quickly.
Look at the incoming links to a competing site, specifically which publications are linking to them and the type of content that contains the link. You’ll also be able to see the contact details of the journalist on the website, usually towards the bottom of the page. Contact the journalist with your own article ideas based on what you’ve found during your competitor audit.
There is a whole community of Digital PRs and journalists on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn alike. Start by creating a detailed profile and connecting with journalists in your particular niche.
Like you would if you used Google, simply searching a keyword and then “guest bloggers” or similar will return many posts relevant to what you are searching for.
Twitter also has a handy feature called ‘Lists’, which you can use to curate a list of journalists and publications in your industry, which you can check daily for guest blogging opportunities. You’ll have blogging opportunities popping up on your timeline before you know it!
Before reaching out to a journalist, you should first check that the opportunity is worthwhile. Here are a few simple steps to undertake:
When contacting a publication, you must ensure that your pitch is unique and relevant to their news outlet, without being sales-y. You must also ensure that your guest blog idea gets approved before wasting your time writing an entire blog post.
We’ve created the following email template that you can use when pitching your guest blog post:
Hi there [journalist name],
My name is [your name], and I’m reaching out as a representative of [your business]. We specialise in [what your business does and any relevant USPs]. I’ve been keeping up to date with your blog for some time now and I’d love the opportunity to contribute some of my own expertise.
I’ve seen some content around the topics [topic 1] and [topic 2], and so I thought your readers may also be interested in the following article subjects.
I’ve written a number of guest posts and my own articles recently, which I’ve linked below if you’d like to find out more about my subject specialism and writing style.
[Link to article]
[Link to guest post]
Please let me know what you think. I hope to hear from you soon!
All the best,
Don’t feel disheartened if you don’t get a response immediately, or if they reject your offer. You never know, although some simply may not be interested, they may contact you in future if the appropriate opportunity arises.
Wildcat Digital Tip: Don’t be afraid to send a follow-up email after a few weeks, some journalists may have genuinely forgotten to respond!
If the thought of Digital PR or guest blogging overwhelms you, why not get tailored advice from our team of digital experts? Wildcat Digital is an award-winning digital agency, specialising in helping ambitious companies grow online through strategic SEO, PPC, and Paid Social Media campaigns.
Although some publications do charge for guest posts, there are plenty of free opportunities available to target instead, so it isn’t always worth it.
The only time you should consider paying for a guest post is when the DA authority of that publication is high, the website is relevant to your niche, and if you are likely to get a good ROI (Return On Investment) from the brand exposure.
You should be very careful when paying for guest posts. Paying for a specific link on a site is considered a ‘black hat’ SEO technique, however, paying for a guest post is not.
Typically, guest bloggers won’t get paid, but instead, guest bloggers get a return in the form of valuable brand exposure, backlinks, or website traffic. You may get approached and paid for a guest blog if you have a good reputation and/or a large following within your niche.