Published on February 6th, 2013 | by Amy Edwards1
#Win – How To Successfully Pitch & Acquire Guest Blogs Via Twitter
By Amy @BubbleJobs
Now, I’m a relative newbie to Twitter. For years people had been telling me to “forget Facebook; Twitter’s the social network you need to be on” but it wasn’t until six months ago that I seriously started to use Twitter as a social networking platform and now, I’m ashamed to say, I’m totally addicted… so much so that a few weeks ago I culled my Facebook account indefinitely, much to the disgust of the majority of my friends who “still don’t get Twitter.”
Now, I’m sure you all know why Twitter’s so great – you can keep up to date with the latest industry news, celebrity gossip and current internet trends quickly and easily – and it’s just so instant. Forget waiting for your friends to check their Facebook and react to those terrible photos from Saturday night – the majority of Twitter users are switched on and connected around the clock, meaning 9 times out of 10 you can an instant reaction.
The other great thing about Twitter, and the thing which I’m sure will prove to be the final nail in Facebook’s coffin, is the way you can connect and instantly communicate with figures that might not normally be within your reach. OK, so generic email addresses are easy to get hold of, but the fact they’re so available means there’s a big risk your email might never get seen, let alone reach the right person. With Twitter you can find the prominent speakers and the real key influencers and tweet them directly – OK, so there’s still a chance they might not see it/react but at least you’re giving yourself more a chance!
With that in mind, it’s easy to see how Twitter can be an invaluable tool for journalists, writers or content marketers who are searching for story contributors or publishing platforms for their content… which brings us on nicely to the subject of guest blogs.
With the world and his wife jumping on the guest blogging bandwagon following the old-school SEO-killing Panda and Penguin updates of yesteryear, getting a guest blog published is now tougher than ever. Publishers can now afford to be picky when it comes to the guest content they accept and publish which means it’s now not as easy as just pitching an idea to a generic email address and crossing your fingers – you have to think ‘outside the box’ and approach it from it a different angle… which is where Twitter can prove invaluable.
It’s fair to say that over the last few months, Twitter has become my number one tool, not just for getting guest blogs published but for scoping out and approaching talented individuals to guest post on our blog too. Like I said before, Twitter allows you to make direct contact with the key influencers, the people who have the final say on what gets published on their site and their Twitter handles are normally much easier to find and more freely available than their email addresses – but you need to make sure you get your approach right.
PERFECT YOUR PROFILE
Firstly, when it comes to pitching a guest blog on Twitter, make sure your profile’s up to scratch. What am I talking about? Well, once you’ve sent your tweet, there’s a good chance the respondent will take a look at your profile if your tweet has sparked their curiosity so you need to make sure it doesn’t let you down! There’s nothing wrong with having personal tweets on there but make sure they’re not too offensive/controversial – remember you’re trying to build a professional business relationship, not make a new best friend!
BECOME A FOLLOWER
Once your profile’s up to scratch, it’s time to start following your respondent if you haven’t already! Following them means your respondent will be alerted to you as a new follower so will already be familiar with you as an individual before you contact them.
Next it’s time to construct your tweet. Now, you need to think carefully about this – you can either go in all guns blazing (“I’m amazing, publish my blog NOW”) or take a more softly, softly approach. The approach you take will depend on your pitch and who you’re contacting but I’ve always found the softly, softly approach works best – sending something like “Hey, just wondering if you’re the right person to speak to about guest blogging on xx? ” is a great way to reach out to someone in a friendly, non-pushy way – remember, if there’s one thing publishers hate more than anything when being pitched to, it’s pushy, obnoxious writers.
If you’re contacting a writer to try and acquire a guest post, flattery can go a long way. I’m not saying suck up too much but tweeting them saying “Hey, really enjoyed your recent blog on XX. Would love to feature something similar on Bubble” is definitely worth considering. The above tweet shows you’ve taken the time to research them and makes it clear that you’d love to feature one of their articles on your platform.
After you’ve sent your tweet, it’s time to play the waiting game. Now, if you’re contacting key figures within your industry, chances are they’re busy people with busy lives… so you’re going to need to be patient! They might not respond for a few hours or even days but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to… tweeting you back is probably on their to-do list along with another 57 jobs! If they’ve not responded after a week or so, tweet them again – go along the lines of “I just wanted to check you got my tweet?” rather than “Why didn’t you reply?” to make sure you stay on their good side – OK, so you might be annoyed by their lack of response but shouting at them really won’t help!
TAKE IT OFFLINE
Once you get a response, it’s time to take things off Twitter. Ask them if you can email them to discuss things further or DM them with your email address (unless you want the world to know) and go from there.
STAY IN TOUCH
Once your blog has been published, ensure you promote it on Twitter and make sure you stay in touch with the publisher moving forward – just because they’ve helped you once, it doesn’t mean they won’t be able to help you again – and it certainly doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to repay the favour in some way and help them out in the future!
Think all this sounds good in theory but it’s never going to work? Believe me, it does! Like I said over the last few months, Twitter’s been an invaluable tool in our online marketing campaign, particularly when it comes to content marketing – and if we can do it, there’s no reason why you can’t either!