What People are Saying…
"And it giveth light unto all that are in the house"
The Power of a Guest Post
A guest post is a blog post written by one individual and then posted on someone else’s blog. Blogs allow, and often ask for, guest posts to increase the blogs’ content and keep readers engaged. A popular travel blog, for example, might allow a sandal company to contribute an informational post on comfortable travel footwear. Such an article will likely please the blog’s readers, improving the blog in their eyes.
Why Guest Post?
Pardon the religion, but Jesus was on to something when he said, “Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house” (Matthew 5:15). By putting your expertise on candlesticks and waving those candlesticks high in the air, you build your reputation as an expert and you make it easy for customers to find you. Consider your company’s website an access point for your customers to get the help that they want. Guest posting adds access points and creates a web of sites that bring customers to you.
Since rankings on Google are heavily affected by outside links, getting a blog to link to your company’s site can really increase business. In addition, guest posts open relationships with individuals who are well attuned and well connected to your customers. Nourish these relationships wisely. A successful company will save guest posts and begin to build a cache of well-written content. Finally, individuals who spend time writing posts solidify their winning business strategies in their own minds.
How to Guest Post Like a Pro
1. Before you put together a guest post or pay your brother-in-law to feature you on his site, identify blogs that have high page ranks (generally 3+), and are tailored to your desired customers. Firefox has a plugin called SEO Book that can provide you with all sorts of statistics for different websites.
2. Once you have identified a blog, contact the owner or editor and pitch your post. Most bloggers will not accept an overtly promotional post, so explain why your informational or entertaining article will be of interest to the blogger’s readers.
3. Keep your 9th grade English class in mind as you write your blog. Good grammar and spelling is important because you are trying to impress both blog visitors and the blogger who so graciously accepted your article. Every guest post is customer facing material and ought to be as carefully crafted as the content on your own website.
4. Include targeted keywords and links in your post. These are your money makers, so do not skip over this step. Think about what phrases or words people might search in order to find you.
5. Once the article has been posted, follow up by sharing your newfound fame on Facebook, Twitter, your own blog, or wherever. Include links to your post and let your network work for you.
Remember to focus on the bottom line. Follow up every new lead you get until it turns into a sale, and then ask the lead for a customer referral. You are not guest posting just to add customer access points, get more Facebook friends, or increase the traffic to your site. You are guest posting to find new customers.
Small business innovation is the focus of many small business owners, but sometimes it is hard to visualize how to breed a culture of innovation within your small business. Well, it is easier than you think. Here are 3 ways to drive innovation that can open up a world of opportunity for your small business.
One of my favorite quotes has always been: “Always put off till tomorrow what does not absolutely need to be done today.” That lets you off the hook, even if you do have time. Then, of course, when you get one of those days where too many things “absolutely need to be done,” well, you are screwed.
At some point in your small business career you will hit a moment when you realize that you really have a small business. It’s not a hobby, not a paying pastime, but a real business. That realization comes with a whole set of new learnings, one of which is that your business can be killed off with kindness.
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