The Spice Girls may not be as “in” as Miley Cyrus, One Direction, or whoever the kids are listening to these days, but you have to admit, their all-time hits such as “Wannabe” and “Stop” are timeless and can still get people up on their feet.
Not to mention, the Spice Girls taught the world a lot about good times and girl power. [And about dancing in platform wedge shoes.]
But they can also school us about guest blogging. From how to approach bloggers correctly, to what to do after your article is published, here are a few guest posting lessons we can learn from this all-girl group that took the world by storm way back in 1996.
Lesson #1: “If you wanna be my
lover blogger, you gotta get with my friends”
A huge part of guest blogging is building relationships—not just with the owner of the blog, but with their readers.
You have to understand that blogs are more than just websites that serve up content. Rather, they are communities that are kept alive by people who discuss and share ideas.
So when you’re submitting a guest post, don’t just pop out of nowhere and start pitching; warm up the conversation by making friends with the blogger and their readers. Check out previous articles and leave comments. Get to know the blog’s most active members by visiting their websites and sharing their posts. Doing so not only helps you establish rapport, it also gives you more insights about the blog’s audience, allowing you to craft better pitches and articles.
Lesson #2: “You have got to give. Taking is too easy, but that’s the way it is”
Always approach bloggers with a *giving* mindset. They are after all, letting you borrow their audience.
Avoid being too self-centered (i.e. “I have a great article,” or “I’m an awesome blogger.”) Instead, read their blog, offer sincere compliments, and tell them how your guest post would benefit them and their readers.
A lot of people send pitches that are all about them, instead of the blog owner. Here’s a sample email that demonstrates what NOT to do:
This is [Name] a blogger from United Kingdom.
I’ve been through your blog crediblecopywriting.net found it really very interesting. Even I would like to share a few things related to the context of your blog.
In return I would like to have clean back link to my website.
Waiting for your response
Let’s just ignore the fact that this was obviously a canned pitch. Notice how the sender was completely focused on her interests. Save for her mention of “crediblecopywriting.net” she didn’t say anything about how her guest post would be beneficial to me and my audience.
Don’t make the same mistake. Think about what’s in it for the blog owner, and show them that you care about their interests. You can do this by offering specific reasons why your post would be a good fit for their audience.
To illustrate, below is an excerpt from a pitch that I sent out a few months ago. [Emphasis is mine. I also tweaked some of the details and changed the headline to protect privacy.]
I’m thinking about writing a post entitled, 5 Ways to Supercharge Your Article. It will provide tips and tweaks that writers can apply to their work to give it more oomph.
I know that [Blog Name] readers are always looking for ways to make their posts more powerful, so I think that the topic would really interest them.
In the second paragraph, I put the focus completely on the readers. Bloggers love this because it shows that you’re paying attention and that you respect their community. Consider doing the same thing the next time you pitch an article.
Lesson #3: “Hey you, always on the run, gotta slow it down baby, gotta have some fun”
Don’t be in such a hurry to get your posts out there. Take it slow. You’ll build stronger relationships and write better that way. Focus on quality over quantity. Know that one well-written guest post on a top-notch blog can send more traffic to your page than 10 mediocre articles on unknown websites.
Take your time choosing a blog by reading previous entries, getting to know its readers, and determining if it aligns with your guest blogging goals. Also take your time when pitching the blog owner by personalizing your approach. Finally, take your time producing the post by researching a worthy topic and crafting a meaty, insightful article.
And remember to have fun while you’re doing it. Choose blogs that you enjoy reading and write about topics that you genuinely like. It’ll show in your writing.
Lesson #4: “And all that I want from you is a promise you will be there”
Don’t just publish and run. It’s rude to the blogger and to the readers. Stick around to share and respond to comments. Check back even after weeks or months to see if there are any new discussions.
This doesn’t just apply to comments, by the way. It’s also a good idea to maintain a relationship with the bloggers who have allowed you to post on their sites. Connect with them on social media and share their stuff.
In other words, stay on their radar. When the blogger sees how active you are, you’ll increase your chances of getting an invite to guest post again.
Your turn: Win $50!
Can you name other Spice Girls songs (or a line from a song) and relate it to lessons you’ve learned about blogging?
Share it in the comments below and the best answer will receive a $50 prize via PayPal. We’ll choose the winner at the end of January 16th, 2014. Good luck!