As great a tool as the web can be for the proliferation and spread of knowledge, it’s just as easy to fall into the realm of rumors and outright misunderstandings. Don’t believe it? Just look at the current landscape surrounding guest blogging. Once considered the best way to spread awareness for brands online, this tactic now rests firmly on the sidelines thanks to a massive misunderstanding regarding Google’s intentions.
To clear the air once and for all – and potentially uncover a content marketing edge via guest blog writing for your organization – let’s delve into the current outlook of this method, as well as what this search engine giant really wants to see when your brand’s content shows up on other domains and sites.
When Did Guest Blogging Bite the Dust?
The answer to this question lies within what you consider guest blogging. If you’re talking about the “old days” that including keyword stuffing, buying mountains of shady bulk links, and other underhanded tactics that force-fed viewers thinly-veiled sales pitches, then yes, Google did kill this type of guest blogging.
As Matt Cutts – Google’s head honcho at the WebSpam team – explains, this move was all about putting an end to these decaying methods of guest blog writing. While guest blogging once stood as a strong way to generate value for the reader and for participating brands, it was only a matter of time before less than savory factors within the digital marketplace corrupted this ideal for the sake of a quick jump in views.
“Reports of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated”
However, just because Cutts and the rest of the team behind the scenes decided that enough was enough in terms of poor guest blogging practices, that doesn’t mean that this form of outreach is completely off the radar. In his look at this reinvigorated, hardline stance on spam content, Search Engine Journal’s John Rampton notes that Google is still willing to provide benefits and favorable rankings to those who undergo this process – provided that you and your team of content experts play by the new and heavily enforced set of guest blog writing rules.
Capitalizing on the New Wave of Guest Blogging
So what exactly constitutes an acceptable piece of guest blog content? As part of a continuing theme found within Google’s view on virtually everything content and search engine optimization (SEO) related, it all starts with value. If you’re not able to give the person on the other side of the screen something worthwhile and enriching to read, don’t bother wasting their time. Naturally, what constitutes meaningful content can vary from audience to audience, but as long as you keep this ideal at the forefront of your approach, then it’s hard to go wrong with guest blogging.
From here, ensuring that you get all of the details, facts, and information right comes next. Having the right intentions regarding quality is one thing, but following through with incorrect claims and statements is far from what Google would call a strong finish. A good rule of thumb, according to Rampton, is that if you’re trying to put up guest content that would make Matt Cutts want to strangle you, you’re probably better off heading back to the drawing board.
If you’re able to pass this test – or work with someone who knows how to play by Google’s rules – then the sky is the limit in terms of brand reach and awareness. No matter what industry you call home, this is a hard draw to pass up, especially when you stop and consider that so many voices on the web have no problem rushing to tell you that guest blogging is long dead and gone.