Have you already heard this kind of advice?
- You should publish content on your blog every day (from Fizzle).
- One blog post per week is a dare minimum (from ProBlogger).
- You should have a consistent publication schedule (from seanwes).
It seems like everyone is saying it.
Everywhere people tell you to publish consistently, sometimes to publish every day, and that “after some time”, your blog will be successful.
- But if you’re just starting out, this advice is really hard to follow for many reasons:Your time is limited. Blogging is not your full-time activity and you probably have a day job that already fills most of your days.
- You already have a bazillion things to figure out for your blog: The technical side of WordPress, the email list, how to promote your post, even how to write a good post!
- Finally, is it really worth it to publish every day when you don’t have a big audience yet? When is this some time these bloggers talk about? Will you get a lot of subscribers by publishing on your website? Lots of unanswered questions.
The answer is: It is not worth it.
You don’t need more content on your website.
Keep reading to know what you do need instead.
Why Blogging Every Day Is A Silly Strategy (and What to Do Instead)
1. Stop Publishing On Your Blog
Have you tried following their advice and publishing on a regular basis on your blog? And what results did you get out of it?
You probably noticed nobody read your articles… It’s as if nobody cares about you.
Sure, you send the article to your email list, but there aren’t many people there yet, so in the best case scenario you get a few hundreds hits on your blog, and that’s it.
Worse, this traffic is useless. It comes from people who already know you! You would rather put your content in front of new people, not just your current audience.
What are you supposed to do instead? Start Guest Blogging.
When you’re just starting out, it is FAR more worth your time to publish content on OTHER websites: Websites with a big following and a lot of people who have never heard of you yet.
By putting your content in front of their eyes, you’re telling them you exist. And if you show them good content, they will follow you and subscribe to your email list in return.
Do you know Danny Margulies?
On August 17, 2014, he launched Freelance to Win and wrote his first blog post.
His second article appeared only 8 months later.
And another 6 months later, he was launching his first product and made 6 figures.
This kind of thing doesn’t happen randomly. Danny didn’t waste hours and months of his time publishing on his website because he knew it was completely useless and that nobody would read his content.
So he took the time to create Minimum Viable Content with just two excellent blog posts (his second one got 700 shares and 200 comments) and then focused his efforts on guest blogging.
Danny only had 2 posts for more than a year, but still made a 6-figure launch
By focusing on getting these guest posts published, he built his email list very quickly.
I tried both strategies: Guest blogging and publishing more content on my website. Look at the results I got.
2. The Difference Between Guest Blogging and Publishing on Your Website
The difference is HUGE.
Results from Guest Blogging
I published many guest posts. Some worked very well, others were a waste of time. Here are 3 examples:
- How to Write 1,000 Words Every Day and Massively Create Remarkable Content: This massive post got me 375 new subscribers and actually keep bringing new ones almost one year after publication.
- How to Write 1,000 Words per Day Consistently (Even If You’re a Beginner): This one got me almost 200 new subscribers.
- How to Find a Mastermind Group That Transforms Your Business and Keeps You Focused: This article was a failure and got me less than 10 subscribers.
With ONE guest post, you can get hundreds of new subscribers.
The best part is that I didn’t even spend a lot of time trying to promote them since they were already published in front of thousands of new potential readers.
I learned it doesn’t always work though. Sometimes you publish a guest post and nothing happens.
There is some uncertainty with guest blogging, but we’ll see below how to virtually guarantee success with your guest posts.
Results from Self-Posting
With less than 1,000 subscribers, I don’t have a big following yet.
As a consequence, it is NOT worth my time to publish on my website yet, and I learned this the hard way:
These are not actual visits to the articles, but clicks on the opt-in links
The worse part is that I spent a TON of time trying to promote these articles, only to get at best a few dozen subscribers.
If I got 46 opt-ins on the guide on blog post ideas, that’s because I spent hours and hours reaching out to influencers, sharing the article in Facebook groups and trying to get always more people to see the article.
So why is it that they got me very small results? They aren’t of a lower quality than the guest posts. On the opposite actually, I think they’re even better!
But because they’re on my website, nobody cares.
There is no big influencer sending an email to his list saying “Hey guys, check this, it’s good”.
So nobody comes. Nobody subscribes. I wasted hours.
3. How to Guarantee 50+ Subscribers For Your Next Guest Post
Now you know that publishing on your own website is a silly strategy, and you know that instead you should get guest posts out.
But, should you get any guest post out?
Of course no.
When I tried to get my first guest posts published, I was so desperate I would pitch any website with my ideas.
As a result, I wasted hours writing posts that got me only a handful of subscribers. You don’t have to learn it the hard way like I did.
How to know in advance if you will get 5, 50 or 500 subscribers?
By testing and experimenting, I found the determining factors that would tell me in advance whether my guest post would be successful or not.
These predictors are the following:
- Does the website receive a lot of traffic?
- Is the audience of the website engaged?
- Do I like the website and its owner?
- Will I be able to write a good CTA?
If you can get these right, you are virtually guaranteed to get at the very least 50 subscribers with your guest post. At the end of this article, you can download a checklist of the key elements that will ensure you dozens of subscribers per guest posts. Don’t miss it!
Let’s look at these elements more closely.
1. Does the website receive a lot of traffic?
This might be obvious, but there is no use to guest post on a small website. Even if it’s better than on your own, you won’t get outstanding results.
However, this shouldn’t be an issue too frequently, as if you’ve heard of a website, that’s likely because it gets enough traffic to be worth it.
Evaluating traffic can be useful to rank websites between them and know where you should put your efforts.
Here is how to evaluate traffic on a website:
- The Alexa ranking: Enter the website domain and get his overall ranking in terms of traffic on the Internet.
- The Social Authority: Enter the Twitter handle of the blogger here, and you will get his social authority. The higher it is, the more influential the person is.
- The Domain Authority: Enter the website domain, and you will its domain authority. This could be seen at how influential the website is on the Internet. Again, the higher it is, the better.
- Your gut feeling. Finally, sometimes you just need to trust your instinct.
Traffic and size is not everything though.
I already guest posted on a website with 2,000 subscribers and got 100 for my email list out of it.
I also guest posted on a website with 20,000 subscribers and got… only 10.
This means traffic is not enough. What you really need is engaged traffic.
2. Is the audience of the website engaged?
In fact, I would rather publish a guest post on a small website with a very engaged audience than on a big website where most readers aren’t engaged at all.
There are several ways to estimate engagement of the audience:
- Are people commenting a lot? Getting 10+ comments on each blog post is a strong sign of good engagement.
- Is the blogger engaging with his email list? Does he try to connect with their readers and engage a conversation? If yes, then his readers will be more loyal and will take more care of what he sends to them.
- Are people retweeting on Twitter? Commenting on Facebook? You can gauge engagement by looking at social media as well.
3. Do I like the website and its owner?
This one might surprise you, but I found it was one of the best predictors of the results of a guest post.
Every time I published on a website I truly liked, I got amazing results (i.e. 100+ subscribers).
It was more pleasant and easier to write the post and communicate with the blogger.
When you write a post for a blog you don’t care about, or that publishes content different from what you’re used to writing, you create a barrier between you and their audience.
Because of this barrier, people will have a hard time connecting with your content and simply won’t come to your website.
4. Will I be able to write a good Call to Action?
Finally, the CTA. I kept it for the end as it is the MOST important part of the guest post. If you do it wrong, it will spoil all your previous efforts.
You can publish the best guest post ever on a high traffic website and get 0 subscribers if you screw up your CTA.
A good CTA should be visible and valuable for the readers.
Let’s start with an example of a pretty bad CTA:
This CTA is terrible because nobody sees it (do you actually see it? it’s right at the bottom of the picture) and it’s completely irrelevant to the readers. Let’s see why.
Because my CTA is at the very bottom, and because there are many others CTA for the website above mine, nobody can see it and click on it. They ask the readers to:
- Leave a message in the comments.
- Join their Mastermind group.
- Subscribe to their email list.
- Check out their previous/next article.
- Only now comes my CTA.
By the time the reader gets to my CTA, he’s either overwhelmed by the many choices and doesn’t take action, or he’s already taken action and is out of the page. As a result, nobody clicks on my link.
The second reason why the CTA is weak is because it is completely irrelevant to what the readers want. My bio at that time said:
“He helps creative freelancers get more productive to grow their business faster.”
The article was about “How to Find a Mastermind Group”.
The bio is completely irrelevant to the topic, is centered on me and what I’m doing, and because nobody cares about me, nobody clicks. In addition to that, there is a typo!
Now let’s look at a good CTA:
The CTA is much more visible (that’s the only thing you see on the picture) because I can write it over several paragraphs and it appears right at the end of the article, in the conclusion. The reader who’ve come so far can’t miss it.
Other CTAs, such as a share bar, an incentive to comment or check other articles, appear only later. My own CTA takes the priority over everything else.
Additionally, the CTA is relevant as it provides the reader with a PDF guide and a checklist directly related to the article. If he liked the article, why wouldn’t he click?
There are other factors impacting the results of your guest post (for example: the quality of the article, the engagement of the email list, the visibility of the link, etc.), but the CTA is the most important of them. You can’t afford to fail this part.
Get Started Now
Guest blogging can be very intimidating, but it’s worth it at the beginning to build your email list.
You can spend an entire year writing blog posts on your website and at best you’ll get a few hundred subscribers. If instead you write those blog posts on OTHER websites, you’ll get thousands of subscribers.
You know now there are good and bad guest posts.
I prepared for you a checklist you can print and keep with you, so that every time you consider a website for guest blogging, you can evaluate very quickly whether it will be worth it for you or not to guest post.
Simply click on the image below to download it.