Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Marketing Benefits of Guests

This may be obvious to some of you already, but I'm gonna say it anyway: Having guests on your blog is good for you.

When I say guests I mean guest bloggers, interviews, contests, book reviews, anything. Just guests in general. Here's why:

1. Guests drive traffic from their blog/Facebook/contact book to your blog. Well, duh. But the important part of that is that sometimes those readers will become your readers. Especially if you respond to any of their comments and go visit their blogs.

2. Guests make your blog more well-rounded. Readers get bored. Guests bring new ideas and freshness to your site. Not that you're boring, but really, who isn't after awhile.

3. Guests give you a break. Which can often help with writer's block or blog burnout.

4. Guests build community. I don't know about you, but I always feel more connected to another blogger after I've been on their blog. It creates a bond. And isn't community what it's about for many of us?

A word of caution: too many guests may drive some readers away, unless that's what your blog is about. If your readers love you more for your personality than your content then you may be risking losing your own followers.

And your guests should probably be over the age of 1, unlike the picture above.

What other benefits do you get from having guest bloggers? Do you like guest posts? Do they turn you away? Please share your thoughts!


msugar said...

As always, Laura you offer a wealth of information. I enjoy reading guest post when I visit my favorite blogs. I have toyed with the idea myself, but I have so many questions. As you can see I turn to your blog often for advice so if I am asking too many questions, just tell me to go away. Really, I have thick skin. I can take it.

I have considered having guest bloggers, but have wondered if my blog is too new to go this route. I also have to admit that I have not the first clue on how to do this. Where does one find guest bloggers & how does one approach a potential guest blogger. I keep thinking, why would an interesting blogger who has much to contribute want to be a guest on my new blog? What do I have that I can offer them?

Any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Melissa Sugar

I add that now because sometimes when I comment under my google ID, it links to some other google ID of mine. i haven't quite figured that out yet. And when I comment using my Disqus ID (I am trying this new format for comments) It shows me, but without my photo so I am really confusing people.

Jaye Robin Brown said...

Pertinent post for me - I'm starting a new interview series on Thursday's - hopefully it will be fun.

Stacy S. Jensen said...

Guest posts have introduced me to new writers, books, ideas. I like that. I recently had one guest blogger. She rocked. I plan to have four in November for a special focus on Picture Books. I look forward to the discussion and what I can learn.

Susanna said...

I totally agree with all of your points. Anyone want to come guest blog on my blog :) Seriously, I did a few author and illustrator interviews back when I first started, but have slacked off. You bring up some good points, and I think I should consider doing some more.

susan said...

I like the tips, Laura. I actually do not like it when a favorite blogger of mine has a guest post. I tend to skip their post for that day and come back when they are putting themselves out there. But that's just me :-)

LauraBarnes said...

I USUALLY DO TOO! Because I love my favorite blogger's and I don't know who this other person is. But I have found my personal numbers go up mostly when I have guests. So I think the key is a balance. Realize that every post is not going to be for every person, but try to over all reach the most people.
Thanks for the comment!

LauraBarnes said...

It is never a bad idea to leave your blog address and you never need to explain why. Do it all the time if you like!

Wow, your questions bring up a whole new blog post. I'm going to have to put this down in my ideas for future blog posts. Meanwhile, my short answer is find blogs that seem to have similar themes to your own. Then email them and ask if they would like to be a guest on your blog. You can also put out a standing invite on your own blog, but from my experience, people would rather be asked.

Hope this is a helpful start!


Tricia Conway said...

I'm actually on the fence about guest bloggers. This, coming form the girl who is currently hosting a TWO WEEK stint of guest bloggers on her blog. I'm glad I lined up these guest bloggers to talk about NaNo because it's given me a bit of a break and hopefully pulls some new readers/followers over--both tips you pointed out. On the other hand, you are right. I worry if having 8 guest bloggers is going to be too much. I guess this is one huge experiment for me!

And if Melissa Sugar is reading these comments, please email me if you have questions. I was terribly nervous to ask some bloggers to post. I was worried my small blog wouldn't be worth their time or energy. I was so pleasantly surprised. Bloggers like to help each other out! Give it a shot!

Sarah Pearson said...

Interesting subject. I've never really thought about having guests on my blog. I've done an interview, and may do more of those, but my blog is such a mish mash (marketing nightmare!) that I wouldn't know who to ask :-)

msugar said...

Thank you and I look forward to reading your future post.

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