Guest blog posts can benefit a web site in a variety of ways. You may not be getting requests from others to post on your site…yet, but you will one day–and you want to be prepared for that day. How do you do that? Take to heart the tips offered by Beth Bauer (@JourneyofBethB). They will help you know how to respondto guest blog posts requests
One rainy day, a couple of years back, I opened my e-mail and saw a request from another blogger asking permission to write a guest post for my travel blog. A big smile spread across my face as I remembered when I first started blogging. I sent out a bunch of the same requests to other successful bloggers.
Now, the tide had shifted, and I was the one receiving the requests, not sending them. I saw it as a sign that I had arrived. Then, I stopped to wonder if I should accept the guest blog request or not.
There will come a day when you find yourself wondering the same thing: “Should I accept this bloggers request to write a post for my site? Do I want to publish their work on my blog?”
If you find yourself asking those questions (now or in the future) and wondering how to answer them, don’t worry. There are five essential pointers for dealing with guest blog requests.
Research the Sender and Their Writing Style
The first thing you should do after receiving a guest post request is conduct a Google search on the sender. Don’t only look at their blog, but research them as a person. What else do they do? Make sure you can trust them and will feel confident that they aren’t involved in anything controversial that could damage your reputation.
Spend some time reviewing their writing style. Is it similar to yours? Is their writing grammatically accurate? Is their content engaging, or are you already bored just a few sentences into a post? Ask yourself if it would be a good partnership.
Once you’ve determined whether you want to allow the blogger to do a guest post or not, respond to the request promptly. If you are going to turn the person down, avoid the temptation to ignore their email. You may want to spare them any disappointment, but not responding is unprofessional and will do them a disservice. It could also hurt your reputation, especially if you do it often enough. Bloggers are a community, so treat others like the professional colleagues they are.
Be Honest and Polite
Not too long ago I received a guest post request from a girl that obviously spoke English as a second language and struggled to use the correct grammar and punctuation. This reality was painfully clear from her e-mail, and even more apparent on her blog. I sent her a polite response, thanked her for reaching out, but explained that I didn’t feel her English writing was accurate enough for my readers. I encouraged her to improve her English skills and then send me another request.
Get Permission to Edit Their Work
If you agree to let someone do a guest post on your blog, make sure you get his or her permission ahead of time to do any minor editing. We all occasionally omit a word or make other common little mistakes. Even the best grammar checking software doesn’t catch everything. Ask them if it’s okay if you make a few edits. Then, if you do make some changes, before posting the article, send it back to them with the revisions highlighted so that they can see the edits you’ve made. Avoid any debate about the changes. It’s your blog. If they get defensive and can’t accept constructive criticism, kindly end the partnership.
Make Sure the Post is Right for Your Audience
When you receive the guest blog post, read it carefully several times. Ask yourself if your audience will enjoy the article. Will it keep their attention? Is it content that will add value to your site? Will the post be shared and reread? If not, be honest and ask the sender to rewrite it, or professionally terminate the arrangement. Don’t feel obligated to post substandard work on your blog.
Give the Blogger Full Credit
Once the article is ready to post, publish it yourself. Never permit someone else to post on your website. Don’t share your login credentials with anyone. Make sure that its format appears like all of your other posts. And be sure you give the author full credit. At the very top of your blog say something like, “This article is a guest post from …” and then reference their website. Also, it is a thoughtful practice to share with them any comments you receive about the post.
Benefits of publishing Guest Posts
Including guest posts on your blog gives you credibility. It shows your readers that other bloggers respect and admire you enough to write for your site.
Additionally, publishing guest posts might increase your site’s traffic. You might pick up some of the guest blogger’s followers.
Plus, it feels good to help others when you can. And publishing someone else’s work can help them in numerous ways.
Try to live by the golden rule and treat other bloggers—especially those who want to write for your blog—as you would like to be treated. The principle applies to all aspects of life, including guest bloggers.
How do you decide if you should publish someone’s guest blog post? Tell me in a comment below.
About the Author
Beth Bauer is a freelance writer, travel blogger, yoga instructor, and entrepreneur currently working on her third novel. She has traveled to over 20 countries in just the last two years and enjoys life as a digital nomad. She is originally from the Pacific Northwest of the U.S.A., and when she’s home lives on the Long Beach Peninsula with her dog, Ozzie.