Ever thought about letting someone else take the wheel of your blog for a bit? Guest blogging can be an excellent way to breathe fresh air into your content strategy. But hold your horses! Before you give away the keys to your blog kingdom, remember that an unorganised approach to guest blogging can cause more harm than good to your brand.
Build Guest Blogger Guidelines: The Blueprint for Success
What Do You Expect?
Right off the bat, make sure you've got guidelines that specify what you're expecting from your guest contributors. This should cover the whole shebang—topic relevance, content quality, length, and formatting. These guidelines work as a reference for potential contributors, helping them get a sense of what fits well with your audience.
Timelines and Editorial Calendars
Nobody likes to be kept in the dark. So, ensure your editorial calendar is transparent and set clear timelines for submitting drafts and final pieces.
Tone and Style
Your blog has its unique voice and style, and you wouldn't want that compromised. Be sure to include stylistic preferences and the tone you aim for. This helps maintain brand consistency.
Legalities: Contributor Agreements
Last but not least, always have contributors sign an agreement. This avoids any potential misunderstandings about ownership, deadlines, and publication dates.
Vet Potential Contributors: Choose Your Crew Wisely
Sample the Goods
Before you even think about saying yes, take a thorough look at a potential contributor’s previous work. Is it up to your quality standards? Does it resonate with your target audience?
Reach and Alignment
Review the contributor's own platform and social media reach. Are they aligned with your audience's interests and demographics?
Trial Runs for New Writers
New writers need to prove their mettle. Limit the number of pieces from new contributors until they have demonstrated their worth and reliability.
Collaborate on Content: Two Heads are Better Than One
Topic Direction vs. Creative Freedom
While you might want to give a general topic direction, allow contributors the freedom to develop their own unique angles. This ensures the piece remains fresh and engaging.
Let Them Be Themselves
Encourage your guest bloggers to infuse their own perspective and voice into the piece. This is the essence of guest blogging—a blend of different tones and perspectives.
Be Open to Evolution
Sometimes the writers may suggest alterations that could improve or expand upon your original idea. Don't be too rigid; sometimes collaboration produces the most valuable insights.
Edit and Curate Carefully: Your Blog, Your Responsibility
Before you hit publish, make sure to review drafts with a fine-tooth comb. Make any tweaks needed to align the guest post with your brand voice.
The Cutting Room Floor
Remember, it's your brand on the line. If a guest post doesn't quite hit the mark either tonally or content-wise, don't hesitate to cut or make significant changes.
Promote Your Guest's Content: Show Some Love
It’s a Two-Way Street
Once the piece is live, give it a proper introduction to your audience via social media, emails, and featured blog posts. Encourage the writer to share the content across their channels as well.
Make Them Feel Valued
One of the best ways to maintain a stable of high-quality contributors is to make them feel valued. Take the extra step to showcase their pieces, perhaps with a “Top Guest Posts of the Month” feature.
The Road to a Well-Oiled Guest Blogging Machine
Guest blogging can be an enriching experience, but the devil is in the details. Keep things organised and maintain stringent editing standards. Remember, your blog is not just a platform; it’s an extension of your brand and mission.
For those keen on mastering the art of guest blogging, there are plenty of resources available to help you manage guest contributors successfully. Cheers to a harmonious blend of voices on your blog!