Writing a guest post blog can be challenging, even to the best authors in the industry. When you get it right, you can earn valuable backlinks from websites with high domain authority. While it’s also an exciting chance to expand your brand and show off your intellectual prowess, it can turn into a disaster.
Have no fear. We understand your situation; many of our readers have asked us how to improve their guest post articles. Besides having a content strategy that works for us, we’ve discovered that many other successful sites use a similar structure for high ranking blogs.
Here are our ten key elements of writing a guest post blog:
- Studying The Guidelines
- Powerful Headline
- Compel Visitors With The Lead
- Descriptive Subheadings
- Engaging Content
- The Function Of Media
- Calling To Action
- Link Building
- The Metas
10 Key Elements Of Writing A Guest Post Blog
1. Studying The Guidelines
The best way to ensure that the editor accepts your guest blog article is to follow the post guidelines. The outline is there for a reason, which is to establish the client’s requirements. To prevent unnecessary revisions, you should diligently work through the content framework before you start.
Here are a few examples of outline elements you may find:
- Heading structure and format
- Word count limits or range
- Tone, core theme, perspective, formality
- Number and density of keywords
- Internal and external links
- Meta title and description
- Target audience and knowledge level
- Language and localization
Some post guidelines are stringent, while others are more relaxed. It depends on the content of the host website. With the latter, there’s more chance for creativity and freedom of writing style. The former also allows for some of these aspects but to a lesser degree.
You can ask the client if there are any samples you can look at with the same outline. There should be examples on the host site or a saved document. Either way, you should stick to the post guidelines as much as possible or ask how much flexibility you have.
2. Powerful Headline
There’s only one core theme in a guest post blog. It springs from the central idea or concept you want to convey in your content. If you find yourself discussing various points, you should consider separating the post over several articles.
Your heading should stand out from all the others available online. It needs to be descriptive, interesting, and engaging. These days, sites have schema plugins that aid you in building the best headline. The essential elements it suggests are power words, numbers, and a positive or exciting tone.
Since the headline is the first thing the audience sees, many experts suggest presenting it as a TV news flash or magazine cover page header. The purpose is to draw the readers in, compelling them to open your guest post blog and see what’s happening.
When it comes to SEO, you also want your headline to answer the user intent on search engine results. It would help if you matched the keyphrase that the audience will search for the most. In most cases, the SEO ranking of your article rises when the title equates to your keyphrase.
3. Compel Visitors With The Lead
Have you ever met someone for the first time, really wanted their attention, and then made a poor first impression? You’ll want to avoid making this mistake when writing a guest post blog. The audience will decide within the first few paragraphs whether it’s worth staying on the page.
It doesn’t mean that you should write a frivolous introduction merely to catch the reader’s attention. It still needs to be informative, explaining what the audience will get out of reading your content. However, it needs to be the hook that reels them in with exciting descriptions and bold statements.
Once again, your keywords are essential here. When search engines crawl your content, it assesses what value your introductory paragraphs have. If it doesn’t present any meaning to the reader from the start, you’re not going to get a good ranking.
Do your editors a favor and impress them with an outstanding lead. In most cases, the buck stops at the editor, who will decide if the guest blog post will land on the site. An excellent editor will be able to provide you feedback on how good or bad your intro is.
4. Descriptive Subheadings
When your audience reads your headings, they should already know what each section contains. It sets the core theme for the paragraphs within them, laying the tone and foundation for the subheading content. H1 headings refer to the main title, while H2 headings follow to break the guest post blog into small segments.
If you have more subheadings, they need to continue in a logical order. You shouldn’t have an H3 following an H1, which then continues onto an H4. It messes with the structure of the article and also sends your audience into a tizzy. Your editor won’t be pleased with you at all.
There are three primary purposes of subheadings:
- Breaks the text, creating a more appealing layout.
- Directs your readers to sections they’re more interested in, as long as you have a proper table of contents.
- Increases your SEO ranking, since search engines love a good outline.
If the post guidelines allow for images, you can supplement subheadings with relevant pictures. Readers love viewing images before continuing with the text, especially if it has to do with the core theme. You can also add videos from your Youtube or Twitch channel, which will assist with funneling views.
5. Engaging Content
As with the headline and lead, your main body must be engaging. Would you like to know what the secret is? Yes, your content should be informative and provide value to the reader, but there needs to be sufficient flow in your text.
For the guest post blog to keep the reader’s attention, it needs to connect your point to another. Where the one section ends, the next one should begin. Your audience should be hungry to continue to find out what you’ll say next.
You may have noticed that we applied the theory into practice in this article. We followed the order in which you would study and execute the post guidelines. The heading, lead paragraph, and body content all create the perfect flow to illustrate our point and drive the message home.
The client’s instructions will usually pave the way for the outline, so as a guest post blogger, you need to ensure that your content leads from one section to the next. However, if you feel the segments need to change around for better flow, don’t be afraid to point it out to the client.
6. The Function Of Media
Hopefully, the client gives you leeway to use images. It’s even better when it’s an explicit instruction. Pictures and videos serve various purposes, a few of which we’ve already mentioned.
Let’s quickly summarize what these points are for writing a guest post blog, and then we’ll go more in-depth.
- It breaks the line of text for more visual appeal.
- Readers will spend more time on your site viewing the media, which increases your SEO ranking.
- It provides further insight, such as in the case of infographics, stats, and documentaries.
- You can integrate keywords in the descriptions and alt-text for search engine crawling.
- You have the ability to include internal and external links, as well as backlinks.
- There’s the potential to present more information in one image than in several lines of text.
As you can see, images and videos do more than just looking pretty on your site. Furthermore, you can provide backlinks from your social media channel videos to your guest post blog, and vice versa. All this linking helps search engines connect the relevant pages and sites together in its index.
Be cautious in the media you choose to include. There may be copyright protection on them, which may lead to a lawsuit if you’re caught using them without permission. If you aren’t the visual content owner, ensure that it has a free commercial license or ask for approval to use it.
7. Calling To Action
All the key elements of writing a guest post blog thus far have led you to this point. You’ve hooked the audience and taken them through a fantastic journey. They’ve reached the mountain’s peak, waiting for you to explain the main reason you’ve called on them.
In most cases, the client will request that you lead the reader to a specific product or service. It may be that they want the audience to sign up for a newsletter, or you need to redirect them to other relevant pages. The crucial aspect of the call-to-action is that you do it in a natural way that invites the audience to participate.
The object of attention could also be abstract. You may want the readers’ thoughts on your post, encouraging them to engage in a discussion about it. Of course, there’s always a purpose to everything, and this engagement will help your post rank well on search engines. The more they comment, the higher the guest post blog’s relevance.
8. Link Building
We’ve mentioned several types of links in this article. Link building is a vital element of writing a guest post blog to the client. The internal link structure helps search engines discover how all your content is connected, which aids in indexing the client’s site faster.
Another crucial aspect of SEO is external links. You improve the brand and domain authority by networking with other websites in the same industry. Also, it prevents site owners from being selfish and keeping all their content to themselves.
This point leads us to the final part of linking building, namely backlinks. External links to other sites are considered backlinks to the recipients. Backlinks are also one of the top reasons that you become involved in writing a guest post blog.
Many freelance writers and content-creation companies take part in guest post blogging for valuable backlinks. You can put an agreement in place whereby the client approves you inserting backlinks in exchange for quality content. It’s a win-win situation, with both of you scoring on the SEO scale.
9. The Metas
It’s common practice for the client to ask the guest post blogger to include each article’s meta title and description. Since the writer does the research and content creation, it makes logical sense to include them as part of the process. We’ve published a guide on creating the perfect meta details, but we’ll briefly discuss it here.
The meta title and description is the snippet featured on search engine result pages (SERP). It’s a summary of what the content consists of, which may also present stars for the rating where applicable. The client will insert your meta details in the schema plugin on its site, reflecting on the SERP when published.
You can view the meta details as positive promotion for your guest post blog. If it’s appealing enough, readers will click on it to read more. You’ll need to include your main keyphrase in both the meta title and description so that search engines know how it relates to the users’ queries.
The final step in writing a guest post blog is proofreading. Writers often skip it, but proofreading is crucial to your article’s success and the editor’s sanity. There’s a blindspot to picking up errors while creating the content that you can usually find during the last reading.
You may think your article is perfect, but proofreading will quickly make you realize how easy it is to make mistakes. You should also keep in mind that your content’s quality will determine whether you receive more work orders. Don’t leave it up to your editor to fix all your mistakes; it’s unprofessional and lazy.
Guest post blogging isn’t only about leaving an impression with the readers but also with your client. Take the time to go through your post one last time to ensure that it becomes a masterpiece and meets all the client’s goals.