According to a 2013 infographic on “Where to Source Guest Blogging Opportunities” from James Brockbank, guest blogging can be neatly broken down into three areas: 50% devoted to writing the post, 25% spent on outreach AKA that old familiar game of email tag with a site editor to ensure that the article meets all standards necessary for publishing, and an additional 25% for sharing the post once it goes live.
But sharing is ultimately more of a two-way street for both the business hosting the blog as it is for the blogger – which we don’t think about as much as we should. The opportunity for a guest writer to get their name out there online is just as good as it is for the business that helped provide that opportunity with their company blog and serves as an excellent method to help refer the site along to more guest bloggers interested in having their posts published. If you want a guest blogger to chat up your brand as much as you do them, here a few tricks of the trade to follow to ensure a happy word of mouth relationship.
1) Exchange social handles together.
This is easy enough on the business’s part - ask the guest writer for the handles to their Twitter account (the @name), and any other links back to their website or outside social outlets they’d like to include. Typically, these will all fall in the author’s bio portion of the post. But since your business’s website doesn’t get the luxury of having a bio included too, you’ll want to be sure that they have all of your social contact information too. Never assume that a blogger will be able to find your company Twitter account either – sometimes these names come with underscores or might even be under your own name. Rather than opt for just leaving your information in little buttons under your email signature, include a quick sentence about where the writer can find you online with little hyperlinks included on the Twitter @ mention or linked into a phrase like “Facebook page.” If you’re still worried that your pages won’t be seen, just add in the URLs to the places where your brand can be found.
2) Once is never enough.
Don’t do the bare minimum in tweeting out a guest post once and never showcasing it on your feed again. Showcase the guest post from time to time with the writer’s Twitter handle included so that they see that the article is still making the rounds online. Additionally, it’s never a bad idea to feature the post within the company e-newsletter or see if outside syndicates to your business are interested in having it published on their site too – so long as you have the writer’s permission to distribute it there, of course!
3) Follow your writers!
Starbucks follows over 82,000 of their fans while Coca Cola hangs tight at close to 68,000 – huge numbers to follow with an even larger following base for both brands. Maybe your business won’t follow this many accounts (and nor would I expect it to at first) but it’s always a good thing to hit “follow” on the people who write for your blog. The rapport doesn’t end in the email tag together. Take it to the next level by keeping up with their social accounts and what they’re up to from here on out! If they got their start with your blog and go on to great things after, it makes for a nice success story on your end!