Silly mistakes of Guest Blogging – 5 tips to do it right

In internet marketing, probably no subject is as disparaging as the idea of guest blogging. You have people who fall into 2 camps - one that thinks it’s dead, the other thinks it’s the key to growing your online presence. Here’s the truth: Guest blogging is one of the best waysto improve your traffic dramatically, BUT only if you do it right. And that means not committing any of these fatal mistakes that can cripple your guest blogging strategy. Yes, content is king. You’ll still need to write valuable and engaging articles fluently. Once you can write well and avoid these mistakes, you’ll start gaining more traffic and experience pleasantly surprising results.
MISTAKE #1: Choosing the wrong targeted blog The blog you are guest posting for can become a mismatch for your guest post for a couple of reasons: Maybe there just aren’t enough readers, or the blog’s audience aren’t your type of audience. Choosing the right target is crucial - Pick the wrong blog, and you could write a thousand guest posts and get no traffic; Pick the right target, and you could multiply your traffic several times with just a single post. But how do you determine if a blog has a big enough fanbase? Sometimes blog owners publish their numbers on their info page. A good rule of thumb would be aiming for a blog that has at least 5,000 subscribers. Here’s a couple of tricks you can use if you can’t find the figure:
Look at the blog’s social media pages: The follower count on their Facebook or Twitter page is a good indicator to how much traffic they are getting and how many eyeballs you can reach with your guest blogging efforts. • Check the average social shares and comments per post: You can even determine the engagement level of the blog’s readers by checking the number or social shares and comments. A high number of 100 or more comments and shares means that this blog is popular and highly-engaging. • Use traffic software: If you own SEO software such as SEMrush or Ahrefs, you can easily obtain traffic information of the guest blog. SEO software costs money, but they provide a more in-depth look and take the guesswork out of the equation.
MISTAKE #2: Choosing the wrong topic
This mistake probably much common than you think. Choosing the wrong topic can affect your guest blogging efforts. Your post won’t resonate with the blog’s audiences, which leaves them little to no motivation to check out your website or share it through their social network. And before you know it, it becomes nothing but a distant memory. The key to choosing the right topic is to write about, usually by selectinga topic that is trending.
This creates timely relevance to your blog post, allowing it to circulate around social media, increasing your reach. There are a ton of ways to formulate the perfect topic for guest posting. There area different type of software out on the market like BuzzSumo and EpicBeat that can tell you what sort of trending topics to write about. There are also many ways to do your topic research for free if you are willing to spend a bit of time and creativity:
Quora – Quora is the internet’s favorite Q&A website, and it’s a goldmine of trending ideas and topics if you have no idea what to write about. Just run a search in your related niche and see which question is getting the most views.
Reddit – Also known as the ‘front page of the internet,’ you can browse trending topics from subreddits (or subs) that belongs to your niche. It’s a bit less user-friendly, but Reddit is a great source if you need to dig deep for inspiration
Medium – this is a community-based blogging platform where anybody can share information and ideas on every topic under the sky. Simply go to ‘Popular on Medium’ link on the homepage, and you can see what are the top stories right now.
Google Trends – Trends is an excellent way to find the most buzzing topics that are relevant to your niche. You can receive a daily email digest whenever new content is picked up by Google’s search algorithm For example, if you’re in the business of selling luxury cat food, just set an alert for keywords ‘luxury cat food’ and Google will inform you daily if something new pops up.
These are just the tip of the iceberg. Social media, forum boards, and RSS news feeds are all really excellent sources to get trending topics to blog about for free.
MISTAKE #3: Having a poor Call-To-Action (CTA)
People are lazy - They avoid taking action whenever they can. As a guest blogger, if you can’t motivate them to check out your website, you won’t be seeing any results. Most guest bloggers just leave an outbound link to their website and hope that readers will click on it. But readers usually won’t bother clicking on the link because they just aren’t compelled to.
That is why you need to create a strong call-to-action (CTA) which incentivizes the reader to take the next step (which is clicking on your link). A great place to leave your outbound link followed by a CTA is in your byline – a short paragraph that talks about the blog post author. Here’s an example of a typical byline most guest bloggers write:
Anna Anderson is an internet marketing strategist has a blog at She writes an ebook to help people sell more. This CTA is poorly written because it doesn’t tell the reader to do anything, or why they should do anything. So instead, you should write your byline with an explicit command to take action:
Anna Anderson is an internet marketing guru who helps aspiring entrepreneurs. You can get her latest ebook for free to learn how to run a successful email campaign.
By elaborating the incentive of getting an ebook for free makes the CTA much more compelling for the reader. Remember, if they ain’t clicking, your website rank ain’t moving!
MISTAKE #4: Not promoting your guest post
Once you’ve finished writing, submitted and published the guest post, the work is not over. In fact, most guest bloggers make this mistake of over-relying on the blog itself to drive all the traffic. If you don’t put in the effort to market your guest post, your results will fall flat. Just depending on the blog’s reader base alone is not enough to get the traffic push to your website.
While it’s true that the basic idea of guest blogging is to widen your audience’s reach, but most people fail to realize that leveraging on the guest blog’s popularity can actually have a multiplying effect on your marketing efforts. So use every strategy that you know and promote the heck out of the guest post, especially if your guest post is publishing on a high-authority website like Forbes or INC. Promote your post through your personal network, influencer marketing, social media, niche bookmarking sites, email outreach blasts, and all the usual bag of tricks.
MISTAKE #5: Not doing enough guest posting
Sometimes even the best efforts to plan a guest blog post just don’t pan out and ends up as a failure. It could be due to any number of reasons, such as the mistakes mentioned above. You may never know for sure unless you keep on guest posting regularly and tweaking guest posting tactics. You’ll be surprised how many undiscovered opportunities you can unlock from guest blogging. Guest blogging is after all an outreach effort, so you may never know who you reach out to.
For example, a guest post on a popular website such as Search Engine Land might not drive enough traffic once it's published, but that post stays on the blog for years. Sometimes, a prospect may pick up your article through related news feeds and feel resonated with your guest post a few years down the road. Also, guest blogging tends to have a compounding effect, especially when you blast several guest posts during the same time period. That means writing 4 or 5 posts and getting them published on different but related blogs.
That’s because readers of a specific blog tend to be fans of related blogs too. A Business Insider reader tends to follow or read Forbes or Entrepreneur blog as well. So he or she is extremely likely to come across your brand name more than once, and that creates a compounding effect on the mindshare that you are getting.
It’s your turn to do it right
Now you know what the silly mistakes that most guest bloggers are likely to commit, you’ll be able to stand out from the rest with a competitive edge. At the end of the day, guest posting is just like any other skills. It really boils down to experimenting with different tactics and doing it repeatedly until you are good at it. The benefits of guest blogging will not take shape immediately, you need to give it some time and be constant with your efforts.
Guest blogging is not magic, it takes a lot of hard work to make it right. But it feels like magic once you get it right and experience the results.