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Can your blogger outreach program be saved?
Written by David Harry
Tuesday, 22 May 2012 13:47

Recently we talked about how the death of guest blogging (as a link building tactic) is surely on the horizon. It's worth saying again. In fact, if you're using any type of link building method du-jour, I'd consider planning for it's demise. You need to be pro-active and get ahead of the curve.

From what we can tell response rates to outreach enquiries continues to drop. Keep in mind of course that we do things the RIGHT way. We don't email them about dropping a post (obstensively for a link).

  • We seek to build new relationships in the blogging community.
  • We offer to promote them via our social channels
  • We offer them the opportunity to post on our blog
  • We offer advanced notice of new items (from larger corp. Clients)
  • We offer access to products to review

In short, we take the approach of; what's in it for the blogger?. It is later in the relationship that we start talking about giving them some content now and again. And even from there, we spend staff time researching what's worked on the blog in the past to craft quality content tailored to it.

I fear in the end that even doing things the right way, may not be enough. With the slew of crap-hats out there sending stupid, poorly targeted, emails out by the thousands, bloggers are simply turning off.

Blogger outreach cold call

Check these out

As an example, here's one that came into SNC today;

I am Jason Philips and I came across your blog "http://searchnewscentral.com/" while looking for high quality blogs that publish articles on business, technology, etc. I see that you publish guest posts and I will like to contribute a Guest Article for your website. Below are a few of the articles that I have written, and I am sure they will be a good fit for your blog:

• Can ipad be used as a Public Use Touchscren Kiosk
• Revolution in Technology-Touch screen kiosks for business
• Multimedia kiosk-Ideal for retail outlets
• Are touch screen kiosk invaluable component of today’s information age

bla bla bla bla bla bla.....

PS - I need one backlink in consideration for my article.

Ain't that just freakin' awesome or what? To start with, how the URL is dropped SCREAMs automation or form letter. Secondly, we don't have 'guest posts', we have 'authors'. Next up is the topicality. They didn't even take the time to see that the subjects they're suggesting have NADA to do with our site.

And of course, what's in it for me? Here's one that my pal Doc Sheldon sent me;

“I'm trying to get the word out about my new site, and am attempting to do so by offering to write free guest posts for more established sites like yours. Would you consider accepting a guest post from me for your website I'm JOE SCHMOE and I blog for a site called XXXX. HisSite.com is the only independent online resource exclusively dedicated to online chat and how to safely use online chat sites--by authoring articles on topics like how to protect your privacy and and other personal information online, as well as by providing general resources such as our list of online chat communities, the first resource of its kind. I'm open to ideas about topics to write about -- just let me know if you'd like me to write about something other than your site's primary theme. All I'd ask is that you allow me to add a link to my website below the article, and you'd have a chance to review/approve the article before posting to your site to make sure it fits your specifications. ”

I have a hard time even reading that one. And to be honest, outreach was generally the domain of the PR (public relations) department and is often considered a legitimate tactic. It was SEOs and the addition of a post-for-a-link that turned things on it's head. That and of course the poorly crafted emails and outreach processes being adopted.

And consider this little graph that shows the rise in activity around this particular approach (interesting bubble around the time of the Penguin update);

Google Insights - guest blogging

The writing is on the wall

One could certainly make the point that we don't make it all that hard for Google to sort out the ways we manipulate their good works. There are reams of articles and posts far and wide about it and of course many of the tactics from last year, are bad ju-ju this. This one though, I doubt will even get that far.

Sure, we do know Google doesn't like links (from reviews, post drops etc) from irrelevant or suspect blogs, but that's a far cry from entirely destroying the strategy.

Guest posting is the In-thing!

This one seems that it will be taken out by the reams of SEOs flocking to it as other sources of links dry up. That and of course the fact that so many are doing it in such a pathetic way. If it's pissing me off, I can just imagine how the PR folks are feeling as I am sure their own opening and response rates are dropping as well.

There might be a way to fix it

And yes, with all this gloom and doom, one might get a bit disheartened. As did we. But after some brainstorming around the office and much thought, we had an epiphany! We came up with what I believe is going to be one way around the problem (of declining opening/response rates) for the short term if not longer.

Want to know what it is?

To freakin' bad. Cause I ain't gonna tell ya. That's how we got here in the first place. But feel free to get inventive and think outside of the box, that's where the answer lies.Stay ahead of the herd, (or you can just hire me lol).

David Harry -

Hi my name is Dave and I, am an algo-holic

I am an avid search geek that spends most of his time reading about and playing with search engines. My main passion has always been about the technical side of things from a strong perspective rooted in IR and related technologies.You can find me providing SEO consulting services for Verve Developments.

You can also hook up with me via

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 22 May 2012 13:58
 

Comments  

 
0 #1 Hugh Anderson 2012-05-22 19:47
Ok, I like it. Familiar lessons reinforced by the fact that Big Brother (Google) is getting wiser and wiser to the sneaky tactics, so . . . don't spam, invest time - quality not quantity, do it right or don't do it at all. Then I'm sure response rates to doing it the RIGHT way will remain high.
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