Matt Cutts, the definitive authority on all things search, said in a recent blog post that guest blogging is now harmful, not helpful, to your brand’s exposure in search. What does this mean for your brand? Are you limited to owned media (your website/blog and social profiles), or are you still able to utilize earned media through content published via influencers?
Copy Blogger had a great follow up to Matt Cutts’ comments, encouraging readers that guest blogging is not dead. If it was, digital magazines and multi-author blogs would be up a creek.
Instead, Google wants to make sure that your content is adding value to readers and is not spammy or overly promotional.
You’ve all read the articles or blogs that seem unbiased on a certain subject only to realize that a specific brand wrote the content in order to influence you to spend money on them. This is the content that Matt Cutts is warning about.
What does this mean for you? How can you get your brand’s name out there without Google penalizing you?
This underscores the importance of quality content and influencer outreach.
Make sure that whatever content you are producing first has the customer in mind. This might go against your initial business perspective but keep in mind that if you are viewed as an authoritative source of information, you’ll develop trust among your market, and you will be top of mind when they are looking to make a purchase.
Content marketing involves a longer sales cycle that other marketing types such as PPC, however, it’s equally important for building a brand and gaining repeat customers.
Journalists and publishers are always looking for quality content to share with their readers. If you deliver quality content to them, you will make their lives easier. However, this is where you want to be careful because content that is overly promotional will hurt you.
What types of guest blogging might be beneficial? Consider articles written by a brand spokesperson with their bio included but that doesn’t necessarily amplify the brand. Be sure to include disclaimers so that the content doesn’t seem deceiving.
Keep a list of the contacts you’ve made over time and the relationships you’ve developed. Nurture those relationships to capitalize on opportunities to promote your brand (in non-spammy ways of course).
Make sure these relationships are quality because just as you want your content to be quality, you need the people promoting your brand to be quality as well.
What are some examples of effective guest blogging that you’ve come up with?