7 Benefits of Guest Posting For Startups
- August 01 , 2023
- 14 min read
Blogging is still alive in 2023 and shows no sign of slowing down.
A curated list published by Demand Sage indicated that 77% of Fortune 500 companies maintain a blog, and 55% of marketers think they’re effective in guiding customers through the sales funnel. This is despite the emergence of new marketing platforms, like photo and video-driven social media platforms, in recent years.
Globally, more than 600 million blogs are published on about 1.9 billion active websites, according to 2023 estimates. Over 6 million blog posts are published daily, translating to 2.5 billion blog uploads annually. And where there’s blogging, there are numerous opportunities for guest posting.
When done right, writing relevant and valuable posts for external sites provides multiple business benefits. In this article, we’ll let you in on the basics of guest posting, explain their advantages, and throw in a few guest posting tips.
Understanding Guest Posting
Guest posting is a common content marketing practice that involves creating content for another website. By getting other sites to accept your article, you can introduce your brand through your byline as the company CEO or by embedding your organisation’s website link within the blog.
Startup companies are newly formed ventures with promising growth potential even in their early operational stages. To sustain this, startups must hit the ground running by intensifying their marketing campaigns, including crafting guest posts.
But writing exceptional posts as a guest author isn’t enough. Ultimately, the goal is to get published by more established non-competitor sites, discuss topics that interest both organisations’ target audiences, and subtly lead them onto the sales funnel.
The Benefits of Guest Posting for Startups
Based on a 2022 Content Marketing Institute (CMI) report, short articles or blogs, videos, and virtual events were the three top-performing content assets created by business-to-consumer (B2C) companies. While the survey covered all business types and not just startups, the fact remains that when done strategically, blogging, including guest posting, can be used to attract potential buyers, boost brand exposure and reputation, and form a community of loyal customers.
On that note, it’s time to discuss the benefits of guest posting for startups:
- It’s An Effective Marketing Strategy
Despite the availability of multiple media channels, consumers still prefer to get product information from blogs than traditional advertisements. According to a recent survey, there is a strong aversion to ads across all age groups. People born between 1997 to 2012, or the so-called Gen Z, are most likely to skip promotional content, except when the content features humour and good music.
Guest blogging is a good way to overcome such a challenge, as it feels more natural and organic. That said, guest writers must avoid adopting a promotional tone when writing for other websites. Consumers and host sites can sense promotional articles disguised as guest posts and are likelier to skip reading them immediately. The same goes for top websites, which impose strict editorial rules and are highly protective of their brand.
So, what makes content effective?
With these challenges, is guest posting worth it? Definitely, if you know what makes your post interesting to readers. Based on the information gathered by HubSpot, readers are drawn to blogs that provide entertainment, valuable insights, and industry trends. True enough, a Statista survey indicated that how-to articles (77%) are the most regularly produced blog types, followed by news and trends (49%) and ebooks and guides (47%).
Producing engaging blog content is a must-have because it takes seven interactions on average before a customer decides to purchase an offer. Consumers can easily recall your brand if they often hear or read about it. And if you’re wondering whether compelling pieces can influence a consumer’s buying decision, ask 61% of US consumers who’ve made purchases after reading blog recommendations.
- It Helps Startups Build an Email List
Email marketing is another cost-effective strategy meant for marketers. According to HubSpot’s State of Inbound Marketing Trends for 2022, it’s the third most popular marketing channel for B2C and business-to-business (B2B) firms behind social media and blog websites. Like written articles, emails can turn one-off customers to repeat clients if done strategically.
But in this digital age where hackers and the black web pose threats, users are understandably more cautious about giving out personal information, especially email addresses. It seems challenging for startups to generate leads, build an email list, and convert prospects successfully.
So how can startups generate leads and build their list of potential customers? Besides integrating landing pages on their sites and internal knowledge base, guest authors can embed an outbound link that directs leads to their landing or any webpage, preferably an email sign-up page.
Before inviting people to subscribe to your newsletter or gated content, your guest post should be engaging enough to compel users to click. At this stage, you can assume the reader enjoyed your post well enough to reach the bottom part, making them more likely to be receptive to your proposition. Complementing this with a compelling call to action (CTA) and an irresistible offer increases your chances of gaining more sign-ups.
Once you’ve hooked a fair number of readers, keep them engaged with content upgrades and similar resources. Ultimately, running a successful content marketing campaign requires you to get into the minds of your readers and learn their preferences.
- It Helps Expand a Startup’s Audience Reach
Some blogs remain on a company’s website, relying on sound search engine optimisation (SEO) practices to exponentially boost online visibility. Besides on-page SEO, businesses can employ off-page SEO tactics, including guest posting, among other off-site methods, to increase their organic search rankings.
Submitting posts to other sites can help your business expand its reach, helping your business explore previously untapped audiences. It may even open doors to a market you thought you’d never break into.
Ensuring you’re posting on a relevant site is the first step in the guest posting process. Every targeted host site must have a considerable number of readers, subscribers, or followers you can tap to further your goals.
You can use various online tools and metrics to determine your target host site’s popularity. For example, here’s a website authority checker from ahrefs.com:
Ahref’s propriety metric is calculated using different factors and ranges from zero to one hundred, like Moz’s domain authority metric. Higher ratings mean the site is more authoritative.
After identifying a site’s authority, browse the site to create a unique winning piece that’ll surely get published. More importantly, study its editorial guidelines.
As a startup executive, you may need to work on lesser-known blogs to increase your chances of getting published. Earn your way up by building your knowledge base and networking with other businesses. This will get you noticed, making it easier to post on authoritative blogs in the future.
For 2022, social media has overtaken blogs as the primary marketing channel for all business types, according to the Hubspot survey referenced earlier. This isn’t surprising, as there are about 6.8 billion smartphone owners and 4.9 billion social media users globally as of the latest count.
As such, almost 96% of businesses promote their blogs on their social media channels. Undoubtedly, this platform is a valuable resource for startups, allowing them to get recognised by more people in a shorter period.
Promoting guest posts via social media can dramatically increase a startup’s reach, whether they hope to promote brand awareness, increase site traffic, boost engagement, or grow their subscribers. If the host site’s readers find a guest writer’s content useful, they’re more likely to engage, leaving comments and sharing them with their family, friends, and colleagues. As a startup, promoting guest posts on your social media helps grow your online footprint, which in turn helps enhance brand awareness and recognition.
- It Helps Enhance Brand Authority and Reputation
Building trust is one of the significant challenges of startups, especially when facing more established brands. By writing valuable, relevant, and compelling content, especially outside your company website, you can build your portfolio as a guest writer and eventually position yourself as an industry or subject matter expert.
Guest blogging is extremely helpful in boosting brand reputation and building authority because the audience will associate your company with your status. If you’re viewed as a niche specialist, readers are more inclined to read your guest post, visit your website, and click your offers.
Similarly, getting published as a guest writer on popular sites will earn readers’ trust and confidence. According to a recent survey, most readers trust peer reviews, third-party publications, and user-generated content better than company-produced content.
However, it takes time and effort to become a reliable information source. As a guest author, you must consistently provide useful content or share valuable insights with the audience. When sustained, this long-term activity can contribute to your search engine optimisation (SEO) efforts, helping your site rank higher in organic searches.
Some companies take the shorter route by engaging in influencer marketing. In this digital marketing strategy, a brand leverages a social media personality’s impressive number of followers and subscribers for brand promotion. Unlike guest blogging, influencer marketing might involve hefty costs that startups can’t afford.
- It Boosts Your Link-Building Strategy
Continuously producing relevant content builds trust and authority in the search engine’s ‘eyes.’ Creating several related links that point back to your company’s web pages lets search engine crawlers ‘understand’ what your website is all about, making indexing more efficient. Proper indexation helps machines associate keywords to your site and determine their relevance before being ranked.
Focusing On Quality, Not Quantity
Producing helpful content and backlinking are foundational reasons for guest blogging. But integrating links in your guest post doesn’t automatically warrant a boost in your website traffic. The truth is that SEO-related enhancements attributed to guest posting take time, effort, and the right strategies.
Startups raring to write for other websites must ensure that the host site has a robust online presence and high authority. Similarly, embedding dofollow rather than nofollow links back to your company website could help increase site traffic and, eventually, ranking.
But care must be taken not to overstuff the article with links and keywords if you don’t want to damage your host SEO’s standing. This is why most sites accepting guest posts limit dofollow links to two.
A quality-centric approach applies to writing guest posts too. Time and again, Google has been telling creators to write for humans and not machines, even for SEO purposes.
Indeed, producing high-quality content was the strategy that drove marketers’ success in 2021. In 2022, it was the primary contributor to ranking well organically, per Semrush’s State of Content Marketing Report.
- It Helps Startups Understand The Market Better
As a content creator, learning the trends, writing tone and style, and topics that interest the audience are most likely to be engaging to them. Content management service (CMS) provider WordPress says engaging content hooks readers, pulls them and compels them to digest every word. A writer who manages to answer the readers’ questions, provide actionable steps to resolve issues or improve themselves, and insert a compelling CTA for the brand, has only accomplished part of the goal.
That’s because guest blogging doesn’t end after successful article submission. Whether a startup or industry veteran, companies must track the results of the blog by looking at the page performance metrics like views, comments, and other user interaction indicators.
Several measurements are involved in benchmarking and assessing the impact of specific marketing campaigns. Remember the 2022 CMI survey on the top-performing content assets mentioned earlier? Marketers measured indicators, such as website and email engagements, conversions, website traffic, social media analytics, and search rankings, among others, to cull the results.
A competitor analysis can also provide valuable guidance on which methods work and how you can make them better, even as an industry newcomer. Most content marketers surveyed by CMI said they use impeccable content quality and write about untapped topics to stand out from the competition.
Making Guest Posts More Targeted
As an integral part of an overall marketing strategy, writing for other websites requires businesses to study their current tactics and identify which aspects guest posting and other platforms can help. For instance, most marketers use different content types to appeal to consumers through the buyer’s journey stages.
A guest blogger’s success is measured by how well they can create the right content that appeals to customers and assists them in their buying decisions. For example, those who aren’t ready to purchase can be served with newsletters and gated content for more information. In contrast, consumers preparing for purchase will likely find how-to guides, case studies, and product overviews appealing.
Guest Posting and Customer Retention
Startups may be too focused on drawing in new clients that they skip customer retention campaigns, which according to estimates, cost one-fifth of the average customer acquisition costs.
A steady supply of blogs on-site and off-site could create a network of comprehensive information that not only attracts and educates new customers but keep existing ones as well. Guest posting can be used to provide helpful information about products and services and address remaining pain points.
Doing so helps ensure they remain satisfied and happy with your business. Clients with positive interactions are more likely to share their experiences, post glowing reviews, and draw in new customers.
Remember that, like trust, customer loyalty is built over time. It helps to establish a community with relationships that go beyond business transactions.
- It Fosters Professional Relationships
Newly established businesses may strive hard to make a name in the industry by distinguishing themselves from the competition. While this gets you ahead of the curve, the fact remains that you need other businesses to survive.
If you think you’re too great to rely on other organisations, wait until you run out of raw materials and suppliers decline or delay your request for various reasons.
See, guest posting is a symbiotic relationship between two non-competing businesses. Your host sites hope to improve their performance while you, as a guest author, wish to benefit by expanding your reach and enhancing brand awareness. When things go well, the host site will likely expect more high-quality content from you, leading to a long-term professional partnership.
Because host sites are often more established, maintaining good relations with the editorial staff might score additional guest posting gigs. The more external sites you write for, the better online presence you’ll have.
More opportunities are likely to come your way once you’ve become a credible and trusted subject matter expert, like collaborating with other experts for a webinar or receiving referrals from your professional network.
If not for brand awareness and reputation development, your partnership could improve your startup by getting acquainted with industry veterans willing to coach you or linking with efficient and cost-friendly suppliers. In other words, guest posting can present numerous opportunities to improve several aspects of your business.
Successful companies aren’t built overnight. And while the digital realm provides opportunities to even the field between small and established enterprises, newly formed ventures are often at a disadvantage against their competitors with deep pockets.
While this poses a challenge in attracting and retaining customers, it doesn’t mean that gaining a foothold in the market isn’t doable. As a startup, ensuring that your business can effectively address significant market gaps and letting the public know about the whys and hows is paramount.
On this note, guest posting is one of the many marketing tactics startups can use to get in touch with their audience. Writing relevant and valuable blog posts for an established, authoritative site provides multiple benefits, including:
- accessing an effective marketing strategy
- helping build an email list
- expanding your reach
- enhancing brand authority and reputation
- boosting link building efforts
- understanding your market well
- promoting professional relationships
But one must know how to succeed at guest posting to enjoy these benefits fully. Without learning to strategically choose the host sites, topics, and keywords or understanding your audience, guest posting becomes a useless marketing exercise that’ll cost you irreplaceable time, effort and missed revenue opportunities.
Subscribe to Our Blog
Stay up to date with the latest marketing, sales, service tips and news.