8 Questions to Ask When Guest Blogging

8 Questions to Ask When Guest Blogging
Michele Linn - Thu Oct 18, 2012 @ 11:59AM
Comments: 56

file0001419571127.jpgA fellow marketing professional and I were chatting the other day, and she told me she had been approached about guest blogging. She was interested, but she wasn’t sure if it was the right fit for her business and what she needed to know.

As many of you B2B marketers have experienced, the more you write, the more people will approach you to write for them. How do you know if it is something worth your time? What questions should you ask to make  the process run as smoothy as possible? Here are 8 considerations – from my perspective as someone who has written guest blogs and who has edited hundreds of posts.

Who is the audience for the blog?

This should go without saying, but make sure the audeince for the blog is one you want to attract in your marketing efforts. Ask the editor to get as specific as possible. For instance, at the Content Marketing Institute, we are (obviously) writing for content marketers, but more specifically we are publishing posts geared towards marketers at mid-to-large size organizations. This nuance is important because these marketers have different challenges than those who work for small business. Along the same lines, ask how large the readership is so you can determine what priority to place on the opportunity.

What are the guidelines around republished content?

Some blogs accept content that have been published elsewhere, and others only will consider something that is original. Figure out what is needed so you can plan your time commitment.  On a related note, you also may want to find out if and how quickly you can republish your article on your blog or another source.

How does the editing process work?

Some blogs will publish your content mostly as-is, while others go through a fairly extensive editing process.  It’s good to understand how much your work may be changed and how much of your time may be entailed after you submit your post. Also ask if you will see the edits before the post is published or if the editors will work directly with you.

How will I be notified of comments?

As a blogger, you likely want to follow up on any comments your post receives, but if you are writing for multiple sources and/or you are uncertain when your article will be published, it’s good to know how you will be in the know when it comes to comments.

What is the distribution process?

One of the reasons you want to  blog for other sites is to get your name out there. If this is important to you, ask how your article will be shared on social networks and if it is automatically syndicated to other sites. You may also want to see what the expectation is for you to promote your posts. 

What type of posts have been best received by your audience?

Different audiences like -- and have come expect -- certain types of content from various blogs. To make sure you are writing the right kind of post for that blog's audience, ask to see a few posts that have been especially well-received. You'll also get to see what is typical in terms on social sharing if you want to benchmark your efforts against other articles on that blog.

Are there certain topics you want to cover?

Some blogs are very niche, or the editors only want to run certain types of posts. For instance, at the Content Marketing Institute, we only accept  posts that are a how-to, case study or example. While we have received interesting posts that fall outside these categories, we typically do not run them. 

Will I be notified of publication date?

Along the same lines as the editing process, every blog has a different approach to letting you know when your post will run. If you only want to run on certain dates or if you want to be on the look out for comments, make sure you ask when your post will be published. 

What questions what you add to the list? Do you have any other advice for guest bloggers? Let us know in the comments. 

Comments: 56

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Informative and a very nice post. I have also seen several people neglecting all the things mentioned above. I really believe that the audience for which you are writing should be focused and well entertained.
Thank-You for the information.

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It's also important to follow guidelines set forth by the blog owner such as word count or formatting. Typically it's good to break up a blog post with bullet points or sections. It makes it easier to read.

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