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High Authority Guest Blogging Guide

new-imageI’m sure you’ve heard the news: guest blogging is dead, because Matt Cutts said so.

Guys, what Matt Cutts said about guest blogging was so obvious it should have never made front-page news on any kind of marketing site.

He was talking about scaled-up, low-quality guest blogging. The crappy stuff.

Stuff that I actually don’t like – it’s lame and annoying.

Getting links on SEJ, Forbes, Huffington Post, and Read Write will never be crappy stuff.

That is baller stuff. Yes, even stuff that gets you ranking competitive keywords in 90 days or less.

That is what this post is all about.

I’ll leave the rest of the dumbstruck SEO-world in their stricken state, while I continue to bank on my high-authority guest blogging formula. This is guest blogging, 2014 style.

2014 Guest Blogging Rules

Before going any further, I want to lay down the ‘rules‘:

  • Do not use the same author bio
  • Do not use exact anchor texts in your guest post
  • Only link naturally in your guest posts (you’ll need to build resource pages on your site that are easy to link to, but always try to link to your home page in addition to a resource page)
  • Only link your G+ to the super high authority sites

Your First Post (Grind Phase)

Ahh, the grind. You don’t have any relationships in your niche. You don’t have any sampled work to show for, either.

You need that one trophy guest post url that you can show people when you do future outreach.

The best way of proving your belonging is to show them published work at reputable, known sites. So, first and foremost, go for a guest blog deal that is high authority but relatively easy to publish.

Start here. This is a list of over 100 higher-authority places to guest post:

http://www.petersandeen.com/list-of-guest-blogging-sites/

Homeboy compiled lists of high authority blogs that accept guest posts in different industries.

Nicely done.

Simply put, if the content is epic (or trendy/current), you can be bold and approach some of the heavy-hitters on that list. Use a writing service like Textbroker (level 5) or Elance and hire a writer to help you with the piece, if needed.

If you are in the marketing space – or even in the general business space – publish for these two sites:

B2C (PR6, DA 81, PA 84)
Social Media Today (PR3, DA 85, PA 87)

Usually, I wouldn’t name-drop the sites like this, but both of these sites publish dozens – if not, hundreds – of posts daily so I’m not too worried about it. They’re both well-branded and well-known, and do a good job of pushing out the content to other networks on the web.

This is a post I did with Social Media Today. I never promoted the post, but it still had over 240 tweets:

social-media-today

Think about it…over 240 tweeted my article. There is definitely an opportunity to capitalize on those tweets, which we will discuss later on in the guide.

Ok, now you have your first post. You now have some proof and you are going to take that momentum into your outreach.

Effective Email Outreach

For your targeted email outreach, you can use tools like Followerwonk and Technorati to find influencers, or by manually digging blogs up on Google using advanced search queries.

USE these advanced search queries:

“keyword inurl:blog”
keyword “guest post by”
keyword “guest post written by”

DO NOT USE these advanced search queries:

keyword “guest blogging”
keyword “write for us”

(or any query that is blatantly seeking out sites that have guest blogging or ‘write for us’ pages)

We do not want those links.

Save those sites for off-shore SEO companies. Most high-authority sites don’t have a “write for us”, “guest blogging” or “become a contributor” page because they know they’d get too many requests.

The Pitch:

Once you get their contact information, pitch them with two content proposals.

Keep it concise, and make one topic obviously more appealing than the other, so subconsciously they are saying yes to one of the topic ideas given.

This is great sales psychology that was shared on Brian Dean’s Backlinko blog a few months ago, and I have found it works great.

So, using a marketing example:

Hey Dave,

I was published on SocialMediaToday last week and it did pretty well (put link here).

I’d be up for the challenge for (site name) because I think your readers will enjoy my no-nonsense style. For your audience, I was thinking these two topics:

7 Hypnotic Conversion Tactics for Your Website
How to Convert More Customers

Talk soon, Jeremy Page
@twitter skype:username

Email checklist:

  • Did I make it short and concise?
  • Did I toot my own horn with recent published piece?
  • Did I explain why they need my content using “because”?
  • Did I suggest two topics, with one more appealing than the other?
  • Did I leave some real contact info to build credibility?

Write the Content Before Pitching

Sometimes, high-authority sites will want to see the content before giving a nod. That was the case for me with Read Write. I emailed them several times before finally hiring a level 5 Textbroker writer to put together a piece.

Then, I spent several hours editing the post before sending it over, adding my own touch and personality. After emailing the finished piece, one of their editors messaged me back a few days later saying it would go live in a few weeks.

This isn’t a terrible way to go, considering you will need to write the article anyways. However, your article may not get approved (or even looked at, in some cases) and then you will have to shop around your article.

Not super fun, but if it’s a great piece, it shouldn’t be hard to find a quality home.

Moral of the story?

Editors will usually say no to emails, but they usually won’t say no to an epic piece that has never been published before.

This takes hard work. But so worth it.

If you do have your content pre-written, and you know it is a home run, here is a great pitch that I stole from Tommy Walker in his post on Income Diary:

(this exact pitch landed him a top-tier post that went viral on ChrisBrogan.com)

Hey Chris,
How are you? I know you’re a busy dude, so I’ll keep this brief.

I have an article that I wanted to run by you and see if you’d be interested in accepting it as a guest post.

It’s 106 Excuses That Prevent You From Ever Being Great. Jon Morrow has said that he really liked it, and I think it would work perfect for what you write about.

Hope all is well, and hope to hear from you soon.

Screenshot Technique

The ‘Screenshot Technique’ involves taking a screenshot of your best published guest post and attaching it to your email outreach.

Just a small snippet will do, like this:

sej-postChoose one that shows excessive social activity and interaction.

I know, we could just email them our published guest posts urls, but this is our way of becoming the “purple cow” of email outreach. We are distinguishing ourselves from the rest of the pitches.

This works very effectively. A picture or two will give your guest blogging reputation instant credibility.

Twitter Love Technique

Remember I talked about taking advantage of those tweets on my guest blog earlier?

This is where the Twitter Love Technique comes into play.

This is a vastly underrated concept that I haven’t heard any other marketers talk about. And truthfully, I have found some top-tier opportunities using this method.

What kinds of people would more than likely be tweeting my article? In my example (Social Media Today), it was marketing people, right?

Marketing consultants, marketing agencies, affiliate marketers, network marketers. Basically, members of the internet marketing “link-erati.”

So, do a search inside Twitter (a few days after the post goes live) for the exact title of your guest post and go through the twitter profiles of the people who tweeted it out.

Here is a search I did today for a post I published in December:

twitter-love

Most of the people that tweet your stuff will have websites, and if it appears their site has an active community that has authority, just reply to their tweet and say something like:

@twitterhandle hey thx for the love, glad you liked it…i’d be up for writing on [their site name] sometime, what do you think?

Bingo.

This works really well. You’ll get a much higher response rate than email outreach.

Think about it, they’ve already vouched for your work!

Take this post, as an example:

broke-blogging-snippetFrom this post alone, I secured deals with SEM Rush, Unbounce, Crazy Egg Marketing Blog, and Huffington Post.

Connections are formed, like this:

sem-rush

Heavy Lifting Technique (How to post on elite publications)

Yes, it is possible to get links from Huffington Post, Forbes, Business Insider and Mashable…

…you just have to do the heavy lifting for the writers so they’ll work with you.

Now, with this technique, you aren’t going to get credit for the article.

No biggie.

The goal is to get a link or brief mention to your website.

Step one: come up with a trending topic and put together a well-written, informative piece. Link back to your site in the trending story in a way that gives your content more value.

Step two: find writers on the top publications of your niche.

For example, if I was trying to find a writer on Huffington Post who specialized in real estate, I would seek out those writers in the real estate category on Huffington Post.

Then, I would seek them out elsewhere on the web until I found their Linkedin, Twitter or personal email.

Step three: reach out to the writers and let them know you have a cool story idea for them. Let them know you’ve done the research for them and send over their ‘rough draft’.

See, by you doing 80% of the work for them, they are given an opportunity that is hard to resist. This is direct advice coming from a buddy of mine who is a regular contributor on Forbes.

Parting Thoughts

Yes, this is hard work. But I highly doubt there will ever come a day when these types of links will be devalued.

A natural-looking citation on a high authority blog is one of the best links you can get. A fleet of 10-15 high-authority guest posts recently got a review page ranking for a 49,000 exact-month keyword.

And even in the last month where SERP turbulence has been the highest in months, and banter on guest blogging has been at an all-time high, my rankings have only increased on sites that were heavily dosed with high authority guest blogging.

So, back to Matt Cutts.

Remember, Google pays him the big bucks to distract the SEO world. Don’t get caught up in all of that. Guest blogging still works very well as long as you are the Rolls-Royce of guest bloggers.

Keep it ‘high authority’ and you’ll stay away (and ahead) of mainstream SEO.

[BONUS CONTENT] Can’t get enough? I recently cut a 7-minute video exposing my ‘rank & bank’ blogging formula. Click here.

And Finally…

Did you guys get some good value from this?

Please share it out. I’d also love to hear your comments – both good and bad, and how I could have added more value to this guide.

Thank you,

Jeremy Page

45 comments… add one

  • This may be obvious to some of you, but I feel like it’s worth mentioning as so many people miss it completely.
    As Jeremy said, you need to connect with the right person. I’m surprised that people still send emails to those info@domain.com emails or use contact forms.
    Personally, my first step is to find the right person(s) on Twitter. I don’t reach out right away. I’ll retweet some of their stuff, comment on their blog, then mention them in some jokes/value-add news or info. Then, after a week or so (takes like 20 mins over a week) I reach out with whatever proposal I have.
    Of course, this applies mostly to blogs which are run by a single person, not so much huge authority sites.
    Thanks for the post Jeremy, Shared!
    Jeff

    • Jeremy Page

      Thanks for sharing, Jeff. The blind outreach to domains is always a rough battle. A lot of people don’t even check their web mail. Twitter is the better way to go, and when you zero-in on the people that have talked about you or tweeted out your stuff, it’s much easier to close the deals.

  • Thanks for such a detailed post Jeremy, lots of value.

    This approach is very genuine and will never lose favours with Google no matter what algorithm changes they make.

    Glad to have found this post.

    Cheers!

    • Jeremy Page

      Jawad, thanks for the comment. Lemme know if you have any questions, I’d love to help out.

  • What up Jeremy?

    Came across your content the other day…you’re def killing it bro…I just got started in EN not to long ago…working on finishing my site and sales funnels…Lead with value and the multiple streams of income begin? You’re a testament that this concept works…Keeping crushing bro…look forward to craving out a piece of the pie myself

    • Jeremy Page

      Sylvester, I appreciate that, means a lot. Lemme know how I can help out in any way.

  • As an editor of a high authority blog, I would appreciate the kind of approach you outline here – pitching some content so I can make a decision over whether it is suitable.

    However, Cutts was clear that guest blogging for link building is dead. Perhaps this is bluster, but I think guest blogging should be carried out for the purpose of greater exposure in front of an audience you want to target, and to build a reputation as a thought leader in your field.

    At Econsultancy, we don’t want people guest blogging for links. I’m tired of receiving dozens of low-quality pitches every week which are obviously just for links. So we insist on a commitment to longer-term blogging, and we do not guarantee links. We’ll link to the author’s site and social profiles in their bio, but these are no_followed.

    I would advise any blog to do the same. We have some excellent guest bloggers, and I value their contribution. Many of them have gotten great exposure through our blog, and have won business on the back of this. This is way more valuable than a link or two.

    • Jeremy Page

      Graham, nothing is more annoying than low-quality, template outreach for the sake of links. I agree. I get those all the time from some of my smaller niche sites. Even worse, they have attached an article for you to post in their outreach, so who knows how many other people are publishing the same guest post on their website.

  • Damn, Jeremy you crushed it with this one!

    I especially love The Screenshot Technique. I know when I pitch a guest post I mention a post on another site that had done well. But giving them an image that shows them EXACTLY how well it did it nothing short of brilliant.

    • Jeremy Page

      Brian, thanks for the love, I appreciate it. Glad you liked the Screenshot Technique…I’d love to hear how it goes after you try it.

  • Absolutely love how you went into such actionable detail Jeremy. Great stuff. This one is getting added to my Buffer :)

    • Jeremy Page

      Justin, appreciate that buddy. Let me know if you have any questions about the techniques and I’d love to hear any feedback.

  • JB

    I take issue with rule #1. It’s not always possible or practical to link to your own content within the body of a guest blog post. That’s my biggest problem with articles like this, using your own marketing/SEO-related articles as examples. It’s an informational industry. Linking to an article you wrote is expected, and linking to sources or innovative ideas is widely accepted. How does that translate to a commercial industry where your website is about selling a product or service? It really doesn’t. That’s why the typical guest blogging model is linking from the author bio, because it makes the most sense. Try sneaking in a link to your personal loan company in an article about how to be financially savvy and the editor will (or SHOULD) remove it faster than you can say Matt Cutts. Whereas it will slide in the author bio because hey, that’s the company you work for.

    Second problem is a lot of industries just don’t want to deal with guest bloggers representing corporations/for-profit companies. I’ve gotten more “no thanks, we don’t like your kind around here” responses than I can count. So what am I to do? Use a gmail account, be sneaky about who I work for then try to slip in a link hoping they won’t notice? It’s a fools game.

    I’m simply ignoring Matt Cutts on this one because the idea that there will be an algorithm update any time soon that can tell the difference between a “good” guest post and a “spammy” guest post is laughable. Any penalty will be manual and as long as you’re targeting high-quality, relevant websites, varying anchor text and utilizing guest posting as one piece in a more comprehensive link building strategy, you have nothing to fear, doesn’t matter where your link is in the post.

    • Jeremy Page

      JB, addressing your first concern, I 100% agree that sneaking in a link to your own company is not cool IF it does not provide any value. It’s a hard route to go, but if you put the hours into building top-tier resource pages that you legitimately feel are the best in the industry, you can feel good about linking back to your own stuff.

      And addressing your second concern, I have done a ton of outreach the past three years (working for agency/in-house and for myself) and the bottom line is you have to over-deliver with value in your offer. That’s why I talked about writing the content before the pitch…it’s hard to say no to epic content, even if you are a ‘high-&-mighty’ company or publisher.

  • Hey Jeremy, Excellent post, man. Like I said on Twitter, one of the best and most honest I’ve seen on guest blogging. I’ve never been a fan of attaching docs in outreach emails but I love the idea for a small screenshot.
    It really all goes back to doing 80% of the blogger’s work for them and knowing what they want. It’s like what Ryan Holiday talks about, if a blog wants traffic, show them how you’re post is going to deliver and get them traffic. Don’t just give them content and ask for a link.

    • Jeremy Page

      Thanks, Joel. I like the idea of taking the time to show them HOW the content will deliver…great insight.

  • Chris Dyson

    Some good tips in here that not too many people share publicly & I really like the screenshot idea – consider it stolen – simple yet effective

    • Jeremy Page

      Chris, thank you. Lemme know how it goes, I’d like to hear your results.

  • For a long time now, I’ve thought that the SEO, social media and internet marketing “powers that be” have been desperate for content and will write about anything and everything while confusing their audience. I think this is why they went ape over Matt’s post on guest posting.

    Thx for posting this Jeremy. Very detailed and hit it right on the head…

    • Jeremy Page

      Steve, thanks for your feedback. I try to avoid nebulous terms and vague talk in my content.

  • Thanks for your constructive criticism on my “antique” guest blogging post. Much appreciated. Wrote that 5 years ago so I had to dust it off and update it as a result of your note. SO MUCH has changed over the last 5 years. Solid insight and a bunch of actionable takeaways in your post here. Well done sir.

    • Jeremy Page

      Bill, you were one the pioneers of guest blogging. I actually enjoyed reading your article from the perspective of 5 years ago. It’s interesting to see how the practice has evolved. Thanks for your comment.

  • Matt

    SUPER post, very helpful and actionable tips that I’m definitely going to use.

    I’d love to get your input on my strategy….I plan on creating a blog for my persona….something that looks and is completely legit. I am then going to outreach from as the author of the blog. I have found there is much less resistance if the person asking for a guest post is a blogger and not a writer for a commercial site. I then plan to sprinkle my link into my guest post as sort of a place to learn more or a list of resources about the topic. I’ll make sure to include other commercial properties so it’s not obvious which one is mine and to sort of mask the commercial link. The link will not go to a sales page, but more of a resource page on the target site.

    Thoughts?

    Also, have you tried outreach as both a male and female? I’ve always outreached as a female thinking conversion would be better, but maybe I’m wrong.

    Thanks again!
    Matt

    • Jeremy Page

      Matt, thank you for your comments! I think using your resource pages as a way to get links is a good strategy, providing that the resource pages are top-tier.

      I am not a fan of outreaching under a different persona, and would classify that as a low-quality guest blogging strategy. Most high-authority blogs won’t fall for that. They’ll want to see your past work, your FB profile, Twitter, etc

      • Matt

        So you outreach as yourself from @multiplestreams.org? Don’t the editors see you as an SEO and deny you right away?

        • Jeremy Page

          Matt, I actually just use my private gmail account. But I think they’d come to my blog…see value, see engagement, and want my contribution. Maybe it’s wishful thinking haha but its worked so far.

  • Hi Jeremy,

    Crazy post! Great write up buddy. What I really like is the choosing the type of sites you are going to post in. I always choose something that is related to my niche (or at least topic) and making sure the site is absolutely revelant.

    No point sending out 1,000 write ups. Just a couple and that would make all the difference!

    ~Reginald

    • Jeremy Page

      Reginald, thanks for the comment! Agree 100%

  • 100% with your views, guest blogging is not dead but many people stopped accepting guest post because 95-99% guest post are written for the purpose of SEO juice.

    Also if you’re allowing guest bloggers to add link in return of quality content then it’s again Google linking guidelines. So don’t publish guest post for getting links (high authority). Instead add backlinks to guest author’s social profiles so readers can follow him.

    • Jeremy Page

      Well, I agree that it is a good idea to link to your G+, Twitter or Linkedin in your author bio if you are posting on a very reputable site. However, I think linking in the post contextually (& naturally) to your company or business site will be your best long-term bet. This makes it look like an editorial link, which is the most natural-looking link you can get.

  • I love that you posted some actionable, unique tips and not just the same ole’ regurgitated facts about guest blogging.

    You should also write a post on how you used email to send people here…Thumbs up to this article! :-)

    • Jeremy Page

      Lisa, thank you very much! I appreciate it. I actually stole the idea from Brian Dean’s SEO That Works course;)

  • Great stuff, Jeremy! I found my way here via a link at the end of one of your guest posts and am really glad I did. Looking forward to putting some of these tactics into practice. Thanks.

    • Jeremy Page

      Damien, glad you liked it and super stoked you’re taking action. I see you do top-tier copyrighting, I could use some services there. I’ll email you.

  • Luke Neely

    What are your thoughts on ranking solely on content with no guest blogging techniques implemented Jeremy? Is it relatively doable?

    • Jeremy Page

      Luke, its doable, definitely.

  • Great post….. I am new to guest blogging. Hope I can learn more from you. :)

    • Jeremy Page

      Lemme know how I can help after you take action, Eng.

  • Muscle Care

    thank you very much! I appreciate it.

  • Deepak

    I am new in SEO and looking for high authority guest blogging guide and found your guide. Keep rocking and thanks for sharing such a informative post.

    • Jeremy Page

      Either comment spam has become more robust or you were really looking for “High Authority Guest Blogging Guide”…

      Either way, thank you.

  • Great post on guest blogging. Not something I have tried before but great to know that there are authority domains that can help to spread your reach. I personally do my promoting on shared articles. Great job anyway.
    Best,

    Tony

  • Kritika Goyal

    I am new in SEO and looking for high authority guest blogging guide and found your guide. Keep rocking and thanks for sharing such a informative post.

    • Jeremy Page

      Glad you enjoyed it.

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