Whether you’re a new blogger or a seasoned one, chances are you will guest post at some point during your blogging career. When you’re a new blogger, getting asked to guest post is like a right of passage and something you look forward to being asked to do. When you’ve been blogging awhile, you look at it as a way to be introduced to an entirely new audience.
Either way, it’s an honor to be asked because it means somebody respects your words enough to invite you over to post on their blog; treat it as the honor it is!
Just like there is certain etiquette to follow when you are invited over to someone’s house, there is also guest posting etiquette to keep in mind.
Guest Posting Etiquette Guidelines
Last month, I sent out the following tweet: “Okay The Twitter…I need your opinion…when someone guest posts for you, what do you expect from them? Links?Mentions? Respond 2 comments?”
Natalie (@MamaTrack) says: “When I GP, the only new content on my blog refers readers to the GP, and I visit all of the commenters’ sites”
Leigh Ann (@latorres) says: “…you know how you dress really nice and try not to drink too much when you’re at a new friend’s house? That’s guest posting.” She also added “I know that when I guest post, I put my best foot forward. I REALLY think about what I am writing, because I really want to please you and your readers, but I also want people to like me and come see me too! I think I work harder on guest posts than I do on my own, honestly.”
Tim (@sogeshirts) says: “Guest post etiqutte is important to me. Why do a guest post and not promote it or answer questions?”
Someone who wanted to remain nameless said: “Lay out if they may repost it and when…I ask not to repost for 30dys”
Jenn (@midwestmomments) says: “I expect a shout out, and some promo-ing on their part.”
Gigi (@akludgymom) says: “on guest posts? How about that they drive traffic to YOUR site, not to their own site for their “I’m guest posting” post?”
Tracie (@fromtracie) says: “I think if you are doing a guest post, you should share your best and be proud enough of your words and work to promote it.” and “I would expect a post pointing their readers to the guest post.”
Melissa (@adventuroo) says: “I expect them to respond to comments (not all but at least some), meet deadline and promote it.”
Rusti (@rustilyn) says: “I check their style, so I don’t offend their readers…”
Jessica (@fourplusanangel) says: “A link to the post on their blog and a few tweets mentioning it too.
Based on all of these responses and opinions about guest posting, these are some things to keep in mind when you are asked to guest post…this is what bloggers expect, and deliver, whether they are the guest poster or guest postee.
And yes, you might make a mistake or two when you first start guest posting, and that’s okay! Here are some forgivable and not-so-forgivable mistakes to avoid when you are guest posting.
Double Posting: Okay, sometimes it’s unavoidable: you have something that you have to post on your blog on the same day that you are guest posting somewhere else. This happens to me occasionally when someone asks me to guest post on a Monday when I have my Mommy Moments feature here. When this happens, I always, ALWAYS still include in my post for the day that I’m guest posting and help get people over to read it by tweeting about it…with a link directly to the other blog, NOT back to my own blog.
Not Responding to Comments: This is sometimes forgivable if, let’s say, you are on vacation when the guest post goes up. Or maybe the blogger is responding to them. Either way, make sure you understand the blogger’s expectations so that you know how to properly handle.
Being Yourself: Totally forgivable. While you really should understand the blogger’s audience and style, realize that the blogger knows yours as well. Don’t change your style completely — the people that read your blog everyday will wonder what the heck is going on!
Tacky And Pretty Much A Guarantee You Won’t Be Invited Back
Double Posting Without A Shout Out: Don’t get me wrong, putting up a post on your blog to let readers know you are guest posting is fine, otherwise how would they know where you are?! But posting a regular post like it’s any other day on your blog without even acknowledging the guest post you’ve got somewhere else? A huge no-no and a total slap in the face to the person who asked you to guest post.
Not Helping Drive Traffic To Your Guest Post: Why guest post if you aren’t going to help get your readers and audience there? If you aren’t going to tweet about it, or tell readers about it on your blog, then don’t guest post!
Tweeting About Your Guest Post, But Sending People To Your Site First: I and many other bloggers have been noticing this one a lot lately; a blogger will tweet “I’m guest posting and so-and-so’s place” and include a link. The link goes back to their own personal blog to a post that again tells you they are guest posting somewhere else and then you have to click another link to get to the guest post! This is absolutely ridiculous, and the only reason I see for doing this is so that they get page views on their blog.
Here is how I handle tweets when I guest post but when I also am posting on my own blog (like if I guest post on a Monday but also have a guest poster here on my blog sharing a Mommy Moment): I tweet out separate tweets about both posts! I’ll tweet out about my guest post with a link directly to the guest post. I’ll also tweet a separate tweet about the guest poster on my blog with a link to that post.
This was much longer than I expected it to be, but I hope it’s helpful! What to-do or not-to-do guest posting tips did I miss? Share yours in the comment section below!