Having guest blogged a few times and hosted many guest bloggers, I’ve run the gamut from absolutely amazing professional behavior to seriously unprofessional actions. So I thought I’d put together some pointers on guest blogging in general. These are all golden rules for my blog.
1. When someone offers you the opportunity to guest post or participate in a Q&A on their blog, they are giving you their real estate for free. In return, you are providing original content that will be used solely on their blog. Fresh, original content is the lifeblood of the Internet. Linkbacks are always allowed but the original content in its entirety should only appear on that host blog. You do not have the right to allow anyone else to reprint that content without the blog owner’s express consent.
2.When the host requests information like your bio, photo, book excerpt, and links to your social media and books, do not tell them to go look for it on your Website/Facebook page. It’s not their job to hunt down all that info. It’s your job to provide it in a professional manner.
3. If the host gives you a word count limit, do not exceed it. Especially if the host is known for short blog posts and yours goes on for pages. You risk alienating the host’s blog readers and harming the host’s blog.
4. When the host requests a recent photo, provide one. Don’t send a picture of you twenty years ago or a baby photo or a photo of a superhero. The readers are being introduced to you for the first time. They want to know who is providing this information. Would you wear a mask to a writer’s conference? No. Be professional and be yourself.
5. When a host allows you to post an excerpt, select lines that are absolutely representative of your book. Your best writing. Something to tantalize the readers. This is your chance to capture a new audience.
6. Before you guest post or do a Q&A, spend at least 20-30 minutes getting familiar with the blog. Read a couple posts. Check out the comments. That way you’ll be able to personalize your post a little more for that blog.
7. When you have a guest post or a Q&A post, make sure you visit the blog several times on the posting day to respond to comments and interact with readers. This is your chance to make connections with a new audience–seize it!
8. When in doubt about what you can/should do, ask the host blogger. After all, it’s their reputation they are putting on the line for you. Be considerate and be gracious.