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Howdy once again! We’re a fair way into this course, and there’s still a good few gems of information I have lined up for you. By now you should have started implementing some of the traffic generation strategies I’ve outlined, and started to see traffic for your efforts. I hope this has been inspiring for you, and you remember that things can only move up from here.
Today we’re going to look at another strategy that will get you even more traffic. What’s more, if it’s done right, this will be traffic that will keep coming in long after you implement it.
As I’m sure you’ve guessed from the big bold title at the top of this page, in this lesson we’ll be looking at guest posting. Most likely though, this isn’t guest posting in the way you commonly know it. Guest Posting Extreme has a slight twist to the usual guest posting routine, and one that will give you a lot more reward for your effort. All will be revealed about the ‘extreme’ part soon enough, but first let’s look at exactly what guest posting is.
Aims Of This Lesson
- Gaining Traffic.
This lesson will help you gain traffic to your website without the direct use of Google.
What Is Guest Posing And Why Is It Useful
OK, so let’s look at what guest posting is and why it’s useful. Guest posting is the process of doing a post for someone else’s website. So instead of creating content and putting it on your own blog or site, you put it on theirs. You will of course need to talk to the person who’s site it is first, and check that they are OK with you posting on their site. Once you’ve agreed this is OK, you can send them the guest post and they will publish it when they are ready. Providing they like the post that you sent of course.
But why would you write content for other people’s sites instead of adding that content to your own site? Well, there are two main reasons for this:
- Guest Posting Gets Us In Front Of Other People’s Audiences.
This is the main reason we want to guest post; To get in front of other people’s audiences! While we will have people finding our site directly through forums, Youtube, and the other types of traffic generation strategies we will be using, it’s still important to remember that there are other sites in our niche that will also have a lot of good quality traffic. They could get this traffic through their own social networking activities, through search engines, or anywhere else they have been putting effort into. Where they get their traffic from isn’t important. What is important though, is that they probably get visitors that don’t yet know about your site.
Buy doing a guest post on their site, you are getting yourself in front of a new audience and letting them know you exist. If you then add a link going back to your site and a call to action, you can funnel people back to your site and get them to become part of your community too. We’ll show you how to do this as the lesson goes on.
- Guest Posting Provides Credibility.
Sometimes, you will do a guest post and you won’t get much traffic coming back to check out your website. This is usually because the site you’re guesting on doesn’t get much traffic themselves. Despite this, this guest post can still be useful. First of all, it can help give you credibility. When people do a search for you, if they see your name has appeared on a number of different relevant websites, they will more likely be convinced of your status. It provides social proof; Someone who has appeared on all of these niche specific sites must be a credible figure in the industry right?
Guest posting is also seen as a good way to get natural and relevant links back to your website to help boost your SEO score. While this can help, this is only a byproduct, and not the main reason we will be guest posting.
Types Of Guest Posts You Can Do
Although people usually have a set idea in mind when they think about guest posting, there are a few different types of guest post you can do. These include:
- Text Based Guest Posts.
This is the standard type of guest post that a lot of people do: A text based post that is sent to another website owner. If your website is text based, as is the site you’ll be writing for, this is the obvious option to go with. These types of guest post work well for the strategy we’ll be using in the ‘The Introduction Of Guest Posting Extreme (GPE)’ section below.
- Video Based Guest Posts.
If you are into making videos, this is an option for you. In all honesty, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone but myself do a video based guest post. This isn’t to say that it won’t work or that other people aren’t doing it, but I’m saying this just to make you see how untapped this option is.
If you go with this option, it’s also good to include a transcript of the video as well. You can either do this inside the guest post, or add the transcript on your website and divert people from the guest post to your site to read it. The first methods is probably the better of the two options as it’d be better to divert people back to your site for new information. Also you want to make sure your guest post is as strong as possible so it can drive you more traffic both now and in the future.
- Audio Based Guest Posts.
If you want to do something different then the normal type of text guest post but don’t want to (Or can’t) create videos, then doing an audio guest post is another option. Once again, this isn’t something I’ve ever seen before, and is something that many people would probably be open to adding to their site. This could work especially well in niches where podcasts are popular. You could even do a guest podcast for someone if they wanted it.
- Infographics Based Guest Posts.
Infographic guest post are something that I’ve seen a few people doing recently, and have even had people approach me to put some infographic guest posts on my site. If you’re not sure what an infographic is, then check out the layout image of this course. This is an example of an infographic; An image that has a load of information and pictures on it instead of straight text. If you can make these, then this is an option for you. The great thing about infographics are they stand out as they’re still relatively unused in a lot of niches.
- A Combination Of The Above.
A good idea can be to mix and match the type of guest posts you do. For example, even if you guest post is mainly text based, you should still add in pictures to liven things up a bit. This will make it more attractive to readers of the post, and make it more likely that people will use your submitted guest post. Some people will only want your text and add their own pictures though, so ask them which one of you should provide pictures when you apply.
Similarly, if you submit a video guest post, it’s also a good idea to include a text transcript of the video for both people who can’t watch videos and for search engine purposes.
The Problem With ‘Normal’ Guest Posting
While I’m recommending that you should do guest posting as a way to drive traffic to your website, there is a major flaw with the way most people go about doing guest posts. Yes it can give you a quick flood of targeted traffic and help you get known in your niche, but the problem is this:
The benefits of most guest posts only last so long.
What do I mean by this? Basically, you will only keep getting traffic from this post for a certain amount of time. This amount of time is often short lived. Due to the nature of blogs, when your post is new and first published, it will usually get the majority of it’s views then. You will get people reading the post, and a percentage of them going on to check out your website. This is all good.
With each day that goes past though, you will get less and less readers of your post. Not only will the majority of that site’s readers probably have read your post already, but as new posts start to appear on that blog, your post will also get pushed down the page and appear in front of people a lot less. Eventually you will get no more visitors from this site, or just one every few days or so.
Baring this in mind, you’ll need to keep posting new guest posts regularly in order to keep getting traffic from the guest posting strategy. Unless that is, you use my Guest Posting Extreme method.
The Introduction Of Guest Posting Extreme (GPE)
Guest posting extreme is a type of guest posting strategy that I have put together that ensures your guest posts work a lot harder then they normally would. It’s pretty much the same as normal guest posting, except for one major things:
You Create Guest Posts That Could Potentially Rank In Search Engines.
Now I know what some of you are probably thinking. “But I thought the whole point of this course is to rely a lot less on Google as you keep pointing out”. Well yes, it is. We want our website to get traffic from as many different sites as possible in case out site ever gets hit by a Google update. Having said that, if our site was to ever get hit by an update, that doesn’t mean the site we’ve guest posted on will. And if we’ve written a post that ends up ranking in search engines, Google will keep sending them traffic which will funnel down into our website. This will happen regardless of whether or not our site gets Google traffic directly.
This one small change in how we approach our guest posting will make a big difference in terms of how many visitors we can get from this type of marketing. Some of the sites you will be guest posting on could have authority, and it’d be easy to rank for certain keywords on them. The site owner may not know much about keywords, so may be missing out on a lot of traffic they could otherwise be getting. Therefore this strategy helps you both greatly: They get a load of new traffic from search engines, while you get some of that traffic filtering back to your site. It’s win win for you both.
As you’ll be guest posting on a number of different sites as well, you’ll be ‘hedging your bets’. If you do 10 posts on 10 sites that end up all ranking, even if one or two of those sites go down in an update, you still have the other 8 continuing to bring you traffic. On top of that, you will still get the initial traffic flood from the site’s community when your guest post is first put up.
It is important that you treat these guest posts with the same respect you’d treat your own site. Don’t do any artificial link building to these sites; that will often do more harm then good, and isn’t a nice way to repay someone who was kind enough to let you post on their site. If it’s a trusted website in your niche, there is a chance that you will rank for longtail keywords very quickly and without an additional push. You may even find your post will rank on the first or second page of Google simply by you putting it up.
Guest Posting Extreme is a great way to make the most of your guest posts, and doesn’t require much additional effort other then a bit of keyword research.
Choosing The Right Keywords When Using Guest Posting Extreme
So as I said, when submitting a guest post to someone’s site, we want to make sure that we include keywords which we can potentially rank for. This will allow our guest post to continue to receive traffic from search engines, and in turn filter traffic to our site. So how will you know which keywords to use in your posts?
You have a few options here. Firstly, if you have some posts already on your website which do well in terms of keywords, you may want to make a note of these keywords you get found for. Don’t use the exact same keywords you are getting found for and are already making money with, as you don’t want to do another article on another site then out rank yourself. Instead, use similar keywords that also relate to the ones you have doing well. Create this article for the other site, then link it back to your article that is doing well with your original keywords.
Note: Although I mentioned using an alternative keyword then the one your article is using, you may want to use the exact same keyword if you’re confident the guest post won’t overtake your rankings. And even if it does, as least it’s still linking back to your site right? As long as you can get your link up high in the guest post (Rather then in the author box) then you will have a good chance of getting some good traffic back to your site.
Another way to find keywords worth chasing, is to think about the questions that people in your niche may have. You should then create articles for each of those things, and post them on different people’s sites. If you are in this niche yourself, you shouldn’t have a problem thinking of these questions. What things have you wanted to know about the niche when you first started out in it? What kind of questions would you ask even now? I’ve found that doing this is one of the best ways to think of article ideas that will get traffic.
A final option is to get keywords from the Google keyword tool. You can use another keyword tool if you want, but this one is free and one of the easiest to use. Here you can type a starting keyword in the tool, and have it suggest other keywords that are similar. It gives you an idea of how many times these keywords are searched per month, just be sure to tick the ‘[Exact]’ box over the ‘Broad’ one.
The good thing about using a keyword tool is that you can see when you have a high volume keyword on your hand. The bad thing is it’ll mean you may overlook other keywords that will get a decent amount of traffic easily if you done an article on it. So don’t use keyword tools alone, use it in conjunction with the ‘question in your niche’ method mentioned above.
Note: Although keyword tools can uncover some high traffic keywords, the keywords you do find may not be that easy to rank for them. People tend to compete for the high traffic keywords, so it’ll be harder to get a decent ranking for your guest posts. Having said that, if you’re guest posting on a big authoritative site, you may be able to rank for this keyword quicker then you would if you was to post the same article on your own site. So if you find a website like this that ranks well for decent volume keywords, do a few tougher keyword based articles for them to get a load more traffic for you both. Don’t neglect keywords with a lower volume of traffic though, they probably have less competition and can still gain you more traffic and income.
Boosting The Strength Of Guest Posting Extreme
So with Guest Posting Extreme, not only are we writing great posts that visitors from other websites will love, but we’re also making it so these posts can potentially rank in the search engines and continue to bring us traffic for some while to come. While some of the post you write will rank right away if you place it on an authoritative site and use uncompetitive keywords, others may take a little longer to rank then you expected them to. That’s no problem though, as there are a few things you can do to make sure your article is found more in future.
- Link Your Guest Posts Together.
One of the things you can do is link your guest posts together. Somewhere in the article, let the readers know you also spoke on another site, and that they may find the information there relevant too. Not only will that mean people will go on to check out more of your writing, but you also increase the likelihood of people finding something they really enjoy and sharing it on their website or social networking site. On top of this, it could also boost your SEO score and help raise all of your linked guest posts in the search engines.
- Share Your Guest Posts Socially.
Don’t depend on just the audience of the place you guest post on, make sure you also share your new article on your own social networking sites too. This can help your campaign on a few levels. Firstly, it can help you get more guest posts from this person in future. If the guest post you did gets a lot more attention and shares then they usually get, they’ll most likely notice and be open to receiving more articles from you in future.
Another way this helps is by getting your post on the ‘sharing ladder’. You will of course want people to share your post, but don’t just expect that to happen without your first starting it off. So do the first share or two, and set everything into motion.
Lastly, social shares can help with your search rankings. The more shares you get, the better chance you have of your rankings increasing.
As I mentioned before, the one thing you should never do is build artificial links to the site you’ve managed to guest post on. It can do more harm then good, so don’t inflict that on someone who has let you write for their site. You can always promote your guest posts in the same way you’d promote your site, but remember that promoting your own site and getting people on your mailing list is still the main aim.
How To Find Places To Guest Post
OK, so let’s look at how you can find places to guest post. Half of the battle of guest posting is finding the places to do so, so once you have a variety of places to guest post, you’re in a good position.
Some ways you can find websites accepting guest posts include:
Read Other Blogs For Ideas
A good way to find places that accept guest posts is by reading the other blogs in your niche. When you do this, not only will you become more knowledgeable about the industry and more in touch with issues that are happening around you, but you will see that on some sites there are also multiple authors. Some will make it clear by mentioning that this was a guest post and include a link to the author’s website, while others will make no such claims and have no link to the author’s website.
If the second is the case, then there is a good chance this was a paid post, as in the author was paid to write for this website. You could still get in contact with this website, as even though you won’t get traffic back to your product or website via a direct link, you will gain both a pay check for your efforts, as well as some more credibility in your niche. Any website that is willing to pay people for content must be at a good size and somewhat respected, so associating your name with that brand will normally do you good. Just make sure you make it clear your work was featured on these sites on you ‘press’ page or elsewhere on your site.
But back to the original point; By reading other sites in your niche, you will naturally find spots that accept guest posts. Make a note of them so you can send them guest posts when you are ready. You will also find other websites in your niche you may not have known about before, and these can lead to you finding other new sites and guest post locations.
Sometimes other bloggers in your niche won’t mention anywhere that they accept guest posts. They may not have a single guest post on their site, and there might not be any clues that suggest they would accept them. Having said that, if you was to approach them and tell them you’d be willing to do a high quality post for their site, there’s still a chance they’d say yes.
Some websites haven’t got any guest posts up simply because they hadn’t thought about it before, or because no one has ever approached them to write one. Other people may just not accept them, but you never know until you ask right? If you manage to get a guest post on one of the sites that don’t advertise that they allow them, you’re already setting yourself apart from all the other bloggers who guest post on all the ‘obvious’ places in your niche.
Check People’s Backlinks
If you know someone else in your niche is also taking part in a guest posting campaign, you could always check their backlinks to see if you can see anywhere that you didn’t see on their sites. You can check the backlinks of other websites by using the tool SEO SpyGlass. I personally use the free version of SEO SpyGlass, as it does pretty much everything I need.
Using this tool you can see your competitors backlinks by entering their url, then selecting what stats you want to see of theirs. If you see any other related sites in your niche that they’re linked on, make a note of them and see if you can also submit a post to them or be featured in their blogroll.
Search For It In Search Engines
One final option is to search for websites that accept guest posts in your niche. You can do this using Google, Yahoo, or your desired search engine.
Searching something like ‘guest post niche‘ (Where you replace ‘niche‘ with your niche name) can turn up some places which have already accepted guest posts. So for example, if you’re in the interior design industry, you could search for ‘guest post interior design’, ‘guest post house design’, and any other relevant variations to that search string.
You may also want to search for ‘guest blog niche’, ‘guest author niche’, or anything else you could think of that people would type in a guest post to show they have a guest post on their site.
Should You Guest Post On Smaller Websites?
Baring in mind we want to use guest posting to drive traffic from an existing blog we don’t own to our site, should we bother guest posting on sites that don’t have a big traffic supply or are relatively new? Yes, we should. Here’s why.
- You Can’t Always Tell How Popular A Site Really Is.
You can analyze a site all you want, but sometimes it’s simply impossible to tell how big a website really is. I’d seen sites with a PR of 0, a bunch of scrapped content on the site, and a really unprofessional site layout. When they scrapped some of my content however, I found that I got a large influx of traffic coming from that web address. And this wasn’t low quality untargeted traffic, this was people who were highly targeted and interested in the niche I am in. A lot of them went on to sign up to my mailing list, which is as good a result I could have hoped for at the time. So even if they’ve only got 10 Facebook fans or they haven’t got a load of backlinks, don’t count them out of being places worth guest posting on.
- The Site Can Grow.
Just because a site is small today, that doesn’t mean it won’t grow into a big site with loads of readers. And with your guest post being one of the first articles on there, there is a good chance that it will rank well in search engines as time goes on. It also has a good chance of being an article the author and others refer back to if you make sure it’s quality. So even if you don’t get huge amounts of traffic from it right away, it may still send your regular visitors in future.
- You’ll Earn Respect From The Author.
If your website has a bigger name then the place you’re guest posting on, you’ll sometimes find that these smaller website owners get really excited to have you submitting a post for their site. As they probably haven’t been given many big opportunities in terms of networking, this partnership will be one they remember as the beginning of them ‘making it’, and will often try to keep that partnership up. They will go out of their way to promote what you’re doing, and look up to you if you keep the relationship good. You can then use this respect you’ve gained from them to help promote other projects when needed. It’s always easier to form partnerships with others before they hit their peak in popularity. If you can build up good relationships when people are up-and-coming, they’ll still be more likely to help you when they start to get well known themselves.
- The Post Can Still Help With Social Proof.
Even if the website isn’t the biggest, your guest post can still help in terms of places you have written for. If you are keeping a career CV, having these extra sites you’ve appeared on can help boost up your CV. It also looks good for people that search for you and find you’ve appeared on all these other websites. Not everyone will know these sites aren’t that big, so it’ll still look good for you either way. While this isn’t one of the main reason we’d still post on smaller sites, it is still a handy bonus.
As long as the website isn’t an unprofessional one in terms of the content they have up, you should take guest posting opportunities on relevant sites whenever you can. You won’t want to do more then one guest post on these smaller websites, but doing at least one is a good idea. Focus your ongoing guest posting efforts on the bigger sites that send traffic directly, but do one off guest posts for these smaller sites in between.
If the website appears very unprofessional though, it may be best to steer clear of guesting on it. If all the posts and content on that site are junk, you won’t want to associate your brand with that kind of site.
This lesson is continued in Lesson 9 Part 2: The Guest Post Opportunities Which Will Drive You Real Traffic.