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The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission

The difference between pitching a thought-provoking post and pitching a thought-provoking post that gets accepted is making it easy for your editor to say “yes.” But how can you do that? Let's see!
By Kaley Nguyen | EnvZone Staff
on August 26, 2019 | 12 min read
Image credit: Reader’s Digest

If you have been in the blogging game for a while, you must be familiar with the term “guest posting”. Simply put, guest posting – also known as guest blogging - is the practice of contributing a post to another person's blog - a targeted publication that your audience trusts. Once done right, guest posting is a win-win situation for both parties: You get to expand your reach and share your expertise by getting your content in front of new readers, and the publication is offered the chances of running new content that shares diverse insights and ideas with its readership.

This all might sound too good to be true until you remember that editors aren't going to publish just anything. If you're pushing lazy content to editors, no one wins. It’s up to you to create and submit content that’s so good no editor could possibly reject it.

But how in the world could you do that? Let’s go explore!

1. Consider Editors’ Goal When Accepting a Guest Post in The First Place

As fore-mentioned, your guest blogging outreach has to be a win for everyone involved. A publication editor is by no means obliged to grow your readership or establish your credibility. That’s your job. An editor’s job is to build up his or her publication and share fresh yet expert ideas with his/her audience.

In fact, those unique perspectives, as well as fresh ideas, are the biggest reason why editors accept guest posts. Thus, every time you’re going to submit a guest post or even when you’re thinking through topics to blog about, take that into close consideration.

Plus, it’s noteworthy that being relevant is just as important as being original. Actually, the majority of editors (around 56% to be more specific) face the problem that the content of posts they receive from guests isn’t a fit for their readership. 

With that in mind, before you begin to craft a blog, let’s read through the guest blogging guideline as well as have a look at some posts that are already published on the guest blogging sites you’re interested in. Figure out what specific topics the editor of each site likes and which seem to elicit the most engagement, then tailor your content accordingly.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 1
Courtesy: LifeHack

Under no circumstances should you parrot the ideas which are already circulating on the site. Remember that your guest post is going to get accepted only if you manage to deliver relevant and unique pieces of content.

2. Start Your Blog in The “You” Voice, Not The “I” Voice

The truth is that your audiences want to feel like you and them are in a real-time conversation, in which you exchange exciting ideas and helpful advice - not just boast about yourself. Whereas some occasional anecdote can be effective, your best bet is to start out your post by talking to the readers and convincing them about how what you’re about to share will change their life. Then delve into your personal anecdote.

To take an example, instead of writing that “I have some tips to have your guest posts get accepted by every editor”, you can begin your blog by “Struggling with getting your guest blog accepted? Don’t panic! Check out our tactics below”

That’s not the catchiest intro, but you get the idea—it’s written with “you” rather than “I”. This will enable you to touch the heart of your audience as they believe that you put yourself into their shoes to empathize their concern. Actually, this concept is essential throughout your piece, but most important in your introduction.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission -Fig 2
Image credit: Elite Daily

3. Choose The Right Content Format

Whereas there is no doubt that audiences consume content in a wide variety of formats, video seems to be the most favorite one.

It’s remarkable that video content is all over our social feeds, and everyone and their mother has a favorite podcast. The truth is that the editors also adapt to these changes: Besides written posts, 67 percent of editors reveal that they plan to publish video content; 52 percent are looking to include infographics; and 40 percent are interested in podcasts.

No matter how large the amount of available video and audio content seems to be, don’t let yourself undermined. The good news is that you don’t have to be a great videographer or have the perfect podcast voice to produce masterful content. It’s alright to hire a professional and then have his/her adapt your stunning content into a relevant format. 

Whereas video emerges as the growing trend, written words still well perform their communication role. Actually, written content remains one of the most effective and easily scalable forms of content that you can use, and it’s still the primary format for guest post submissions. Neither should you overlook the potential of new format (such as video) nor you should ignore the importance of the traditional one!

4. Craft A Compelling Headline Even If You Don’t Have To

Sometimes, you may not be required to write a headline for your post, but guess what? It does make your editor’s job easier, which in turn pleases them. The headline can be the hardest part: not only should it get to be catchy but it has to be relevant and more importantly,SEO-optimized. Also, it should match the voice of the other headlines on the site.

That means it will probably take some time to come up with a good one. But rather than completing your post and pitching it straight away, consider the additional effort it takes to create a fabulous headline part of the assignment and soon you will reap the desirable outcome!

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 3
Courtesy: Thought Catalog

Moreover, it’s undeniable that if your headline is great, more readers will be attracted and deeply engaged in your content – they will read, share and comment on your post. In this way, you’ll get more clicks on the link in your byline and then higher return for your investment. If you leave the headline up to the editor, there’s a chance they’ll come up with one that satisfies your interest. If you take the time to do it yourself, however, you know you’ve done all you can to perfect your posts and keep your audiences’ eyes glued to them.

Of course, it’s always the editor’s prerogative to change the headline, but that should not prevent you from giving it your best shot. Invest efforts into a stunning headline and your editor is going to appreciate that!

5. Avoid Some Silly Guest Posting Mistakes

One of the most common headaches that almost every single editor has is overly promotional content in the guest post submissions they receive. Undoubtedly, it’s natural if you want to talk about yourself. It was revealed that individuals, just like us, spend an average of 60 percent of our conversations talking about ourselves — and when we’re online, that leaps to staggeringly 80 percent.

However, the thing is, your life story or all the cool things your company’s accomplishing might be riveting to you, but they’re not necessarily so interesting to editors or the readers they’re looking out for. Bear in mind that your potential editors are only dedicated to delivering unique value to their targeted readers - not to you or your company. Hence, as you prepare to submit guest content, don’t make it about yourself; rather, prioritize the publication’s audience.

Another thing that easily turns an editor off is to receive content that’s a jumbled, disorganized mess. An editor is, well, someone who edits things, but that doesn’t mean he or she is going to do a rewrite on your submission to make it work for his/her publication.

Under no circumstances should you expect your editors to clean up your messy content. Instead, always submit a guest post that’s already been well written and professionally organized. This might sound like common sense, but actually, there remain silly mistakes in some guest post pitch (typically, typos or grammar mistakes) which are annoying enough to drive your editors up the wall.

6. Create A Perfect Email Pitch

Once you have crafted your content and it’s ready to be pitched, it’s time to move on to one final step: actually sending it to the editor.

Alexa's recent survey has suggested that around 76 percent of editors publish between 1 and 10 guest articles every single week, and 94 percent say they plan to increase or maintain the current amount of guest content they publish this year. Whereas there seem to be many chances, you may face some certain amount of competition to capture the editors’ attention.

Another noteworthy truth is that almost all editors are busy people. They don't have time to carefully examine every single pitch that is sent their way. If you want to submit a guest post that immediately grabs their attention, then you have to break through the inbox clutter with a pitch that stands out.

Your pitch email to an editor should reflect the effort that you've put into the content itself: It should be professionally written, clearly organized, engaging as well personalized. It's advisable to come up with a descriptive subject line, open with a personable greeting, include a synopsis of the content, and most importantly, demonstrate respect for the editor's time and schedule. When editors can see that you've invested serious effort into your pitch email, they’ll be more likely to consider reading the content you’ve been passionately devoted to crafting.

Top Guest Posting Sites For Submission

In this digital age, every single marketer is constantly in the hustle of getting quality links from a variety of referring domains. Whereas average sites still bring you some decent traffic and a backlink, there is every likelihood that you will get a higher ROI for your blog if you invest your time writing for a high authority site.

Get lost in determining which specific site is authoritative enough to boost your blog's organic traffic? Let's go through our pick for top guest posting websites that are worth your attention.

a. HubSpot

HubSpot offers a full stack of software for marketing, sales, and customer service, with a completely free CRM at its core. It is well designed to help businesses and individuals generate traffic, convert leads, and attain high ROI (Return on Investment).

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 4
Courtesy: HubSpot

Categories featured: Email, Sales & Marketing, Content marketing, SEO, Web Design, Business

Accepts republished content: No

Submit to: guestpost@hubspot.com

Guest post guidelines: http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing-guest-blogging-guidelines

b. OutBrain

Outbrain is an online advertiser that brings the audience and content together to help people drive more engagement and revenue to their business. Also, they develop the feed technology that makes the act of exploring and discovering new things on the open web possible.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 5
Courtesy: Outbrain

Categories featured: Business, Content Marketing

Accepts republished content: No.

Submit toOutbrain Contact Form

Guest post guidelines: http://www.outbrain.com/blog/2015/06/guest-blogging-guidelines.html

c. The Huffington Post

The Huffington Post is amongst the leading sources for news, entertainment, personal stories, wellness, style, technology as well as the trendiest topics. Would like to find a guest post site that accepts bloggers in multiple areas? Then The Huffington Post is going to be a perfect match for you.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 6
Courtesy: The Huffington Post

Categories featured: Politics, Business, Lifestyle, Popular Media, Entertainment

Accepts republished content: Yes

Submit to: Huffington Post Contact Form

Guest post guidelines: http://guestblogging.com/huffington-post-toolkit/pitching-strategy-guide/

d. Mashable

Well regarded as the media source for everyone, Mashable is a website specializing in digital innovation, breaking news, entertainment, technology, and resources. It is also a diverse community in which around 45 million monthly visitors exchange their ideas, especially about the latest technological advancements.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 7
Courtesy: Mashable

Categories featured: Technology, Digital Culture, Entertainment

Accepts republished content: Yes

Submit tonews@mashable.com or Mashable Contact Form

Guest post guidelines: http://mashable.com/2008/04/18/bad-pr-pitches/#0px8iN1m5kqi

e. Investopedia

If you take interest in financial themes, then Investopedia, well known as the world’s leading financial education site, is going to be your ideal destination. Over this site, you will come across topics that focus on investing to markets, business and everything else finance-related.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 8
Courtesy: Investopedia

Categories featured: Finance, Business

Accepts republished content: No.

Submit to: Investopedia Contact Form

Guest post guidelines: http://www.investopedia.com/corp/contactus.aspx?type=WriterSubmission

f. Sitepoint

Sitepoint is a place where all web developers connect based on their love for building things on the Internet. One appealing point of this site is that you can get the best training and advice on the latest web technologies.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 9
Courtesy: Sitepoint

Categories featured: Web Design & Development, Technology, Business

Accepts republished content: Yes, occasionally accepts already-published content.

Submit to: editor@sitepoint.com

Guest post guidelines: https://www.sitepoint.com/writing-guidelines/

g. The Penny Hoarder

The Penny Hoarder brings money tips and personal finance management advice to users, with the goal of putting more money in their pockets.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 10
Courtesy: The Penny Hoarder

Categories featured:  Blogging, Money, Finance

Accepts republished content: No.

Submit to: editor@thepennyhoarder.com

Guest post guidelines: http://www.thepennyhoarder.com/contributor-guidelines/

h. Lifehack

The Lifehack breakthrough framework is a proven system for overcoming limitations developed through a decade of experience helping people of all walks of life to break free and get unstuck. Over there, you’ll find invaluable life insights and experience from the hundreds of authors and experts and some days, you can possibly one amongst them to share your ideas.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 11
Courtesy: Lifehack

Categories featured: Lifestyle, Productivity

Accepts republished content: No.

Submit to: Lifehack Contact Form

Guest post guidelines: https://www.lifehack.org/contribute

i. Thought Catalog

Thought Catalog is an online magazine that unites all creative, thoughtful writers – those who are dedicated to expressing their stories and ideas on a wide range of topics, especially relationships and self-reflection.

The Secrets Behind Successful Guest Post Submission - Fig 12
Courtesy: Thought Catalog

Categories featured: Lifestyle

Accepts republished content: Yes.

Submit to: Thought Catalog Contact Form

Guest post guidelines: http://thoughtcatalog.com/submissions/

The Bottom Lines

If you would like to expand your readership or be in the market for targeted traffic and powerful backlinks, guest posting should stay at the forefront of your mind. When it comes to creating and pitching your guest content, the audience that you and the editor share should be your main concern. Let’s follow these clever practices to craft masterful blogs and land your successful guest post submission.

Besides stunning pieces of content of your blog and smart backlink building strategies such as guest posting, you should never turn a blind eye to the online presence of your own site. Should you need any help with a dedicated team to get your site exposed to the digital world, don’t hesitate to get an online presence manager.

This article is also credited to Tiffany Sun, Alexis Grant and Kelsey Raymond.

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