About two weeks ago, I had the idea of guest posting on various blogs that I frequently visit. The blogs that I envisioned guest posting for seemed pretty impressive until a playful little voice in my head said something I hadn’t thought of: “Why don’t you submit one to Problogger?”
Let me give you all a bit of a background here. Problogger was one of the websites I discovered a couple of years ago that kept me entertained and educated regarding the world of pro blogging. In fact, I even bought the first edition of Darren’s book, Problogger, and have to finish reading the second edition soon.
When that playful voice threw me in for a loop, I asked myself, “Why not? It will probably be declined or need to be severely edited. And that’s fine if your goal is to improve anyway.” With that in mind, I had my work cut out for me.
I wish I could tell you that there is a straight-forward formula for coming up with posts; there really isn’t. Usually I sit down on my computer chair, open up MS Word (ha!), type a title that I want to construct the post around and let my thoughts take over.
Within this process is a lot of refinement. For instance, the post that I submitted to Problogger wasn’t originally titled what it is now nor contained the same content. Through a fair amount of editing, I was able to pull out the heart of the post and refine the title until I was happy with it.
To be honest with you, I very much liked the post but didn’t think it would be published on Problogger. We are our worst critics, right?
The guest post I submitted, 10 Realizations that Will Crush Your Little Heart In Your First Year of Blogging, wasn’t a tutorial or a success story. Once again, it was my own honest viewpoint over the last year regarding my blogging efforts on EIP.
In other words, it had heart.
And when something has heart, people relate to it. Simple as that. Even I underestimated that!
The best advice I can give you is this: whatever you are writing, write from your heart so you can reach out to as many people as you can. Connect!
For many of you, the statistics may be disappointing. For me, they were damn well exciting. My purpose in submitting a guest post (especially to Problogger) was to get invaluable links from a big blog, to promote good content, to promote the EIP brand and myself, and to increase my newsletter opt-ins by spreading To the Moon & Back.
Naturally, the traffic has been low this month since I haven’t been publishing posts consistently here. My time and energy are being spent on guest posts that will bring in new readers. New guest posts also means new content for you.
Please click on the image to view it clearly. On November 27th and 28th, I received 468 and 467 visits respectively, dropping to 321 on the third day and 180 on November 30th and finally down to 128 on December 1st.
The reason for the drop of numbers over the next few days is simple: as the post ages, you’ll see the post shift from front and center on Problogger to bottom of the page, eventually dropping off the page completely. I am still cherishing the fact that my guest post is the first listing on Problogger’s “Current Hits” widget.
Two exciting things to observe are the bounce rate (under 52%) and the average time on site which is about four minutes. I think the average time on EIP of four minutes is quite excellent! It is extremely hard to get readers to stay put on your blog or website so four minutes is quite an achievement.
Does Your Call To Action Matter?
I better hear a collective “hell yes!” here. Take a look at my call to action at the end of my Problogger guest post:
I struggled with my author resource “box” a lot. Did I want to also include a link to my feed to increase my subscriber base? Absolutely.
But with the new release of my ebook, I wanted to expose the EIP brand and increase my newsletter audience, especially with the new year looming around the corner. Obviously a link to my ebook won. My conclusion was that I had provided enough links that if a reader loved what I was hooking them in with, then they’d willing subscribe to my feed. That’s it!
At the time of writing this, I have had over 115 ebook downloads! Again, this gives me a very, very nice jump start to increasing my subscriber base.
There Were Other Things Too
Statistics are fun to look at but there is more to posting guest posts on a major, well-established blog. I really loved reading the comments on my post. I had not realized that I would touch base with so many people struggling with the same things I have.
Not only that, where and how else would I have managed to receive 48 Facebook likes, 389 tweets and 76 comments?
Thanks to this guest post, my name and EIP reached out to hundreds of people and I also received link juice. Do I really need to preach why you should be guest posting?
I’ve only began guest posting and after getting only one published on a major blog, I am absolutely shocked and horrified that I didn’t start doing this earlier. It’s not as if I hadn’t read about the benefits of guest posting.
I’m not sure if these results are good or “bad” by anyone’s standard or if these are even typical. I only know that the results have been excellent for me and far surpassed my expectations.
I’m working on a couple of other guest posts and I hope you guys will pick them up around the web (and help spread the love around).
Your first step can be to publish a guest post on a blog that’s as old as yours to get some practice in and to break through any reservations you have.
It would have taken me weeks to get these kinds of results (more like months). So why not instead focus on 3-4 hours of serious work and expose your brand, make connections, receive a sick amount of likes and re-tweets and grow your readership?
What’s holding you back from guest posting? Have you observed any major benefits from guest posting?