If you’re thinking about marketing your online business, guest blogging is one of the cheapest, yet most effective and the most authoritative ways to do it. Why? Guest blogging is a genuine way to build backlinks, authority and to freely advertise your sites to your potential audience. I can talk about the benefits of guest blogging all day! This post is not about the “benefits” of guest blogging. Still, I’ll briefly highlight some of the most important merits. You build authority. Provided your content is top notch and you’re doing it sincerely, you can build authority quite easily and very quickly. You advertise your brand/business for free. Well, free for the most part. The only thing is that you have to put your heart in creating top notch content. You reach out to your target audience. If you manage to choose the right blogs in your niche, you can directly talk to your target audience and potential customers - which means you don’t have to wander around social platforms or generic forums to “find” out your target audience among millions of other people. Natural and authoritative SEO. The way Google and people love it. Referral traffic. Yup! You can enjoy the traffic that comes from the blogs where you guest post. Now I won’t say you get to enjoy all these benefits if you do guest blogging. You need to do guest blogging the right way – the way that suits YOUR business! Again, note that I said the right way is to do guest blogging is the way that suits YOUR business. I mean, there is no one-size-fits-all solution to creating a guest blogging strategy that works. Hang on, I’ve got tips for you! Read on. Have a strategy in place Yes, unless you do it strategically, you will simply be beating a dead horse; things won’t cut for you with guest blogging. You must have a strategy in place before you even think about writing your first guest post. So what is a strategy? How can you identify THAT strategy that makes guest posting work for you as if on steroids? Instead of randomly writing guest posts on random topics on random blogs (that’s a lot of random ha!), you need to first understand your blog’s own needs. If you want your guest blogging campaign to build a strong SEO foundation for you, then you should start guest posting on blogs that have a good SEO status – you need to look at Page Rank, mozRank, Domain Authority, Custom Rank, Alexa Rank etc. Here’s a handy tool that can check most of these numbers and some more. If you want your guest blogging campaign to get you traffic, you need to hit blogs that get a lot of traffic. How can you find blogs that get a lot of traffic? Well, you can use tools like Alexa and/or SemRush. In some cases (like SemRush), you’d be only looking at the search traffic. Still, that counts. Other signs? Yes look for reader activity at the blog. Find out how many comments a single post gets on an average. Take a look at the number of social shares in a post. Some blogs display social proof on their sidebar, such as the number of Twitter followers, Facebook fans, Email subscribers and so on. The higher the number, the better is the blog’s following. Don’t just run behind the numbers. You need to make sure that your best work is published or hosted on a blog that is of great standard! So make sure you visit the blog and be a regular reader for quite some time. Study the posts, the popular ones. Find out if the blog is publishing quality content or not. While on it, if the blog does appear to be of good quality feel free to share its content in social media and also jump into the interactions by leaving thoughtful comments on a few posts (if you do this consistently for quite some time it will be great). Well, why do you need to do this? You can build a relationship with the host blogger and his/her readers by doing so. Even before your guest post hits the stage your audience know about you. How cool is that? Don’t forget about quality Since I talked a lot about strategy, that doesn’t mean you can take quality to the back seat. Quality comes first and there’s no excuse to it. You have to give your very best shot with every guest post you write. I keep my best posts to be published on other blogs and hold that urge to publish it on my own blog! Using quality content and having a right strategy in place, I’ve been able to do close to 300 guest posts as of now. You can read more about my winning strategy on how I managed to get my posts featured on A-List blogs. You know, it’s just about having the right stuff on hand and hitting it on the appropriate target with the right strategy. It might take a while to identify THE strategy that works for you, but you will get there!