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How NOT To Pitch a Guest Post

Having trouble getting other bloggers to accept your guest posts? Maybe they’re not really as mean and cold-hearted as you think. Maybe, just maybe, it has something to do with your pitch. Just sayin’.

Don’t Use Misleading Subject Lines

Using “Hey!” or making your email look like it’s a reply or using some other trick to make the blogger think you’re a friend or close associate is a clear indication, right off the bat, that you’re not a reputable blogger.

Using “Request for guest blog post” in the subject line just makes it look like you don’t have a good command of the language. Technically you’re asking the blogger to give YOU a guest post – a key indicator that your blog post is probably going to be poorly written.

Google places a lot of emphasis on top-quality content these days, which is causing blog owners to take a closer look at the quality of the guest posts they accept. If you can’t even make it past the subject line you’re not going to get accepted.

Don’t Use A Form Letter

I’ve received countless requests addressed to the wrong blog and the wrong blogger. It’s obvious these are form letters and the person making the request forgot to change the information. If you’re not concerned about this minor detail, you probably won’t be concerned about the details in your guest post, either.

Most bloggers use their name somewhere on their blog, even if it’s only on the Contact or About page. Your pitch will carry a lot more weight if it’s addressed to the right person at the right blog.

Flattery Will Get You Nowhere

Yes, I know I have a great blog. Thank you. But flattery will get you nowhere. All this tells me is that you want a link and in this business, links are like gold. Save the flattery and tell me what your post is about.

Ignore The Rules

Go ahead and ignore the rules and you’ll be automatically rejected. Popular, high-traffic blogs get dozens of guest blog pitches and submissions every week. Most have a page that gives details regarding what they’ll accept and how they want it submitted. It’s up to you whether you follow these rules, but if you want you post to be accepted…

Pay particular attention to whether or not the blogger wants you to pitch the article first or if he wants you to just write it and submit for approval. Many A-list bloggers are too busy to worry about approving a pitch – that’s another email or two they’re going to have to deal with. If they just want you to submit an article, then do it.

Don’t Worry About Being Relevant

The other day I received a pitch email from someone who wanted to write a post about investment opportunities. Really? If you can make that topic relevant to my readers then please tell me how you’re going to do it when you pitch me. If not, why would I even consider it?

Before you pitch a guest post, read the blog, find out the name of the blogger, and craft a professional email that includes your article idea or the edited, ready-for-publication article, where applicable.

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4 Comments (Add one)

  1. Daniel DiPiazza
    Daniel DiPiazza

    Great points, Ste. The hardest part for would-be bloggers is remembering that outside of just getting a guest post…this is about building relationships. So if you frame a relationship, no just a one-and-done post as your goal, you have to put time in effort into crafting a pitch and an article that will really hit home with that blogger. Most people don’t want to do this!

    1. Sté Kerwer

      You’re right Daniel. There is a lot more to a guest post than the post itself.

  2. Sue - The Spin Cycle

    Solid advice all the way around. I especially agree with the issues of relevancy and rule following. Seems like this would all be common sense to most, experience has taught me that it’s not. Off to retweet now!

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Sue, if there is something that I learned while working online, it’s that what may seem like common sense is rarely applied.