Whether you are looking for guest posting opportunities to expand your business, get backlinks, increase your ranking, or just to enlarge your network and get your name and ideas out there; many of us encounter problems in finding leads, and especially good ones. As guest posting is spreading and becoming more and more of a used and abused tool, it is getting quite difficult to find relevant sites and people proposing relevant content to be posted on our sites.
Know Your Nice
This can never be stressed enough; every market is competitive and you MUST know your niche very well. You should be aware of major events in your industry, what is hot at the moment, important names (most famous people, most discussed people, most active contributors and so on), you should be able to foresee what will happen and what will be interesting in you niche. If you are able to find great sites, but are not up-to-date and produce updated content that nobody is interested on, you won´t be able to publish your work.
Let´s say you work within the fashion industry, then you want to find sites that: talk about fashion, display the latest trends, showcase the latest fashion designers, emerging brands and fashion products.
You will want to write for online fashion magazines and popular fashion bloggers (INDUSTRY)
You will need to keep up with the interested readers. What brands are they most interested on? What kind of events or catwalks they like to follow or attend? What are the latest trends, what is everybody talking about? (AUDIENCE)
Are these bloggers and magazines ´readers sharing and actively commenting on these sites (POPULARITY)
Is the site owner active on social media? Does he/she promote posts and articles and news within fashion, clothing and trends? (PROMOTION)
So, if you want to get your work published you need to look for:
- Niche-specific sites
- Sites that are popular within the niche
- Sites with a relatively big and engaged audience
- Sites that promote their posts and contributors
Use Your Network
Initially, your network could be a great source. Ask your friends and contact s (both online and offline) if they know anybody or follow anybody within your specific industry. If you already have your own blog within your niche, make sure you subscribe to specific groups and follow popular sites.
Sticking with the fashion niche example, if you have your own fashion blog, you can use social platform like Bloglovin, Independent Fashion Bloggers etc. Build valuable relationships, follow the 10 most popular fashion bloggers, and engage with them. They could turn to be valuable guest posting opportunities. Allow for guest post exchange.
Google search can be another great place in which to start. In order to find good sites, make a list of keywords within your industry and use those keywords with specific guest posts queries. Given your fashion niche, and the initial keyword “fashion” you could try some of the following:
fashion “write for us”
fashion “submit a guest post”
fashion “accept guest post”
fashion + write for us
fashion + contribute
fashion + guest blogging
fashion + submit an article
Change keywords and change phrases, spice things up and monitor what comes up!
Google Search Alerts
Google Alerts is another way to do your keyword search.As before, type keywords within your niche and/or phrases such as “contribute” or “guest blogger” or “submit guest post or again [your niche] keyword + guest blogging or [your niche] keyword + submit an article and so on.
If you write guest posts within your job and you are looking for sites; make a list of your closest competitors and pull down a spreadsheet of all their backlinks. You will notice that many of them are sites or blogs that accept or a looking for guest posts within your nice. That is right; your competitors are doing exactly the same of what you are doing!
If you do not have your own in-house tool to do this, help yourself with:
Open Site Explorer
Through a Google search such as: domain.com “guest post”.
This way you will find those sites for which your competitors have written articles for. Make sure to substitute the “domain.com” with your competitors ‘domain.
Easy Guest Blogging Opportunities
With the least of effort, you can subscribe to some of the many guest posting services and sign up for their newsletters. Every day you can get emails with a list of sites looking for guest posts. Some also provide a “filter” option, for which you can select the industry in which you are looking to guest post. The ones below are just a few options:
- Guest Blogging Websites
- Technorati’s directory of blogs
- Google Blogsearch
Though, make sure to always check a site rank and social metrics before contacting. As guest posting is becoming a very popular way of getting links and authorship, the system is being quite abused and many sites with almost no quality, are on the lookout for guest posts. Don´t waste your time with poor websites; make sure your effort are well reworded and try to stick out from the mass.
It is a good idea to also approach sites that do not specifically asks for guest posts. By building a network within your niche and writing quality posts, people that are not initially interested in guest authors, could change their minds thanks to your high quality content and approach. Moreover, this will have more value in Google´s eyes due to current and future´s updates.
When searching on Google, besides using fixed guest posts queries, you can select a couple of different options. Returning to the fashion industry example, use your keywords, such as Fashion (make sure to also use less generic keywords) and use the “More” dropdown menu and click on “Blogs” to find blogs within your niche ( this is usually used for a quite broad search within a specific industry) or “Discussions” to find about sites that are most relevant within forum community.
As bloggers and writers would usually share their published content on social media in order to reach a greater audience, keywords search can also be made on platforms such as Twitter, Google + and Facebook.
It is a good idea to not always submit keywords like “write for us” or “submit guest post”, try to use only niche-keywords, such as: fashion, clothing, womens clothing and so on. This way you will also be able to scan those sites within your industry that are not necessarily open to guest post contributions; but that with some relationship-building could come potential interested guest posts platforms.
Now that you know how to find guest posts opportunities, make sure you come up with great ideas and great content for the sites you wish to write for. Write a personalized and informal outreach email and strictly follow the site ‘owner guidelines!
For a deeper approach you can read: “The Ultimate Guide to Advanced Guest Posting” on seomoz.org/blog
A final note: when you contact many sites to find guest post opportunities, no matter how precise you try to be in keeping track of blogs you have already contacted, mistakes can happen. It is not professional to contact the same site twice. If a site looks familiar, but you can´t find your post on it, a good way to double check if you have already published on that site, is to use the Google search and type:
site:doman.com anchor text
domain.com is the domain you are looking for and “anchor text” is the word in the article that you used to link to your site or profile.
Example from this post:
Site: lostintechnology.com Sara Coppola. As per in the author bio on this post, my name links to my Google + profile. This way you will find if you have already published an article on that specific site, using that specific anchor text.
And now, Happy writing!