How to Use Guest Blogs to Build Relationships

Guest blogging is a popular link building strategy among many brands.

But only a few of them use it successfully.

Why is that?

Guest blogging seems like a pretty straightforward idea: you post content on an external site to secure the links to your site.

Basically, you are trading your well-written content for a quality link.

At first glance, it looks awesome.

But is it really a profitable way to acquire links?

In my experience, a good article cannot be written overnight.

You need time and resources (editors, topic experts, etc.) if you want to publish great content – and that’s why the cost per link is soaring.

Plus, how many posts can you write per month? Five? Ten?

Even if you are able to write an article a day, this strategy is still quite difficult to evolve.

If you want hundreds of links, you’ll need hundreds of posts. And there’s more to it than mass production of content.

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Along with a well-delivered blog post, you should also spend time pitching your ideas to editors.

Every month there will need to be new editors so that you can post to many different sites and not get stuck with a few.

As you can see, there is a ton of ‘hidden’ work when it comes to bonding as a guest contributor.

So I decided to share how to get the most out of this strategy and secure quality links through regular blogging in your niche.

3 ways to improve your guest blogging strategy

The first rule of guest blogging is to have quality content.

Obviously, no one wants boring or poorly written blog posts on their site.

Once you’re sure your posts are great, it’s time to think about how you can get the most links with each guest post you submit.

I have good news for you!

After reading this article, you will know three secrets of the trade that will help you boost your guest blogging strategy.

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Let’s dive into it.

1. Link to sites that invest heavily in a link building process

There are many sites that strive to make their brands more visible. They are a perfect target for you.

These sites are constantly on the lookout for new ways to link and that is why they will be very interested in partnering with you.

By assigning links in your guest posts to such sites, you could establish mutually beneficial relationships with them much more easily and, as a result, get links much faster.

This strategy could drastically reduce the cost of each link you acquire through guest blogging.

So how do you find these sites?

Unfortunately, it is not that simple.

It can take a while, especially if you don’t know what types of sites are accepting guest posts in your niche.

I would recommend using this search query as a starting point where you place your term related to your niche as “your keyword”:

“[your keyword]”(Titled” write for us “OR title:” write for me “OR title:” guest contributor “)

For example, this is what a search request will look like if I want to find sites that accept guest posts on SEO related content:

“SEO” (titled: “write for us” OR intitle: “write for me” OR intitle: “become a contributor”)

This research process is fairly straightforward, but it becomes quite repetitive.

If you’re like me and just want to do boring tasks like SERP scraping as quickly as possible, there is a workaround for you.

You can go to the BuzzSumo tool and get a list of the top writers in your niche just by searching for a relevant term.

For example, below you will find top link building authors where I am in the top 3 right after Julia McCoy, which is really amazing:

Once you have your list, navigate through BuzzSumo to a report called Web content analyzer under Content and search for all articles by the authors:

How to Use Guest Blogs to Build Relationships

Finally, you have a list of blogs that the top writers have contributed to. This is a great starting point for a list of sites with guest bloggers.

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Then just export a list of posts that have been posted to those blogs over the past few months and you’re good to go! This BuzzSumo report will also have a separate column with the names of the authors for your reference.

I’m not going to lie to you, putting together a list of guest contributors in your niche isn’t fun.

But I have good news:

You only need to do this once.

To note: If you want to try this strategy before you invest so much time in your research, start with the people who blog on the same blogs as you.

The biggest advantage of these contributors is that you already have something in common and as a result they tend to be much more responsive.

Great, now you have a list of contributors who are also working on making their brands more visible in your niche.

So what you need to do is connect with them and ask if they are interested in teaming up with you to bond.

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2. Link to articles on blogs where you plan to feature your next guest post

Sounds obvious, right?

But surprisingly, I rarely see people using this strategy.

A link to the blog first leaves a good impression and shows that you are genuinely interested in becoming their contributor.

What better proof of this than to give them a precious connection?

Doing such “pre-work” always helps to melt the ice.

However, do not rush to give links to all blogs.

I always advise people not to give a link without coordinating it with the publisher first as this will ensure that:

  • You’ll bring them a link to the content they’re currently working on to be at the top of Google. This link will therefore be much more appreciated than any other.
  • You are much more likely to get a response because you are not offering them anything.
  • You will build relationships before sending your guest post. Thus, the chances that your guest post will be accepted in the future becomes much higher.

After engaging in these conversations with the editors, I’m sure they’re happy to consider your guest post for their blog.

3. Ask editors to connect you with other guest contributors or blog editors.

This step takes the previous strategy to a whole new level.

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As we discussed earlier, by helping publishers with links, you are building mutually beneficial relationships.

So, at some point, it is quite okay to ask for help in exchange for your favors.

A good thing to ask is to give yourself a warm intro to other blog contributors or even other blog publishers so that you can expand your network and see if there is any chance for collaboration there.

Next thing you know, instead of looking for guest posting opportunities, those opportunities will find you!

Get connections by helping others

Guest posts are great not only for securing quality links, but also for building relationships with editors and bloggers.

It will take a little while at first, but it gets better as you go, especially if you follow the three strategies we have discussed in this article.

Basically, the more people you know in your niche, the easier it is to acquire links.

As a rule of thumb, try to be really helpful and people will be happy to return the favor.

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Image credits

Featured Image: Created by Author, December 2019
All screenshots taken by author, December 2019

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