Guest Blog Post Checklist for Startup Founders
Writing guest blog articles for reputable digital publishers is cost-effective to boost brand awareness. If you’re a startup founder trying to expand your reach or looking for investors, you should consider adding guest post publication to your PR strategy.
It would be nice to remember that guest posts are not sponsored articles or content. So you should be careful to pass the publisher’s editorial requirements and create an article that reflects your knowledge and insight into the respective industry.
Here, we listed a few critical issues that will help you write much better guest articles for digital publishers.
Don’t Underestimate the SEO Factor
One of the best things about publishing a guest post on a reputable media company’s website or blog is that you will have much more visibility and reach than publishing it on your startup’s website. So you have the opportunity to utilise their SEO power.
Bryan Hunter, Founder of Space To Be You, wrote a list of mental health startups in London a few months ago for our blog. It’s one of the top-performing guest posts on Startups of London, generating over 1,6% of all page views and ranking among the top 15 most viewed articles each month since it went online. Sure, there are other startups on the list, but the article allows Bryan to present his knowledge of the industry and his respect for competitors.
Ensure Target Audience Alignment
You should consider two questions whilst choosing which publisher best serves your goals. Who are you trying to reach? Does the publisher have a common target audience with yours?
It might not always be the best choice to write an article for the publisher that has the largest audience. So try to get information from the publisher about their audience demographics. It can also help you build your article accordingly. For example, let’s say that you run an EdTech company and trying to get investors’ attention for your next funding round. In that case, it would be a better idea to collaborate with a publisher that has an audience interested in funding startups. Also, you should focus on your financial achievements rather than your product’s capabilities in your article. But, of course, you need to do that without sounding salesy; that brings us to our next point.
Make It Personal
People want to listen to “your story,” how your experience transformed you personally, and how that change affected your business. So don’t be shy to accept your mistakes and failures, but present that you’ve learnt something, put it to practice, and had a positive outcome.
Parikshit Jahoorkar, Founder and CEO of Trawely, follows this path. He wrote an article for Startups of London in May 2021, during which the pandemic’s impact on our lives was much higher. Parikshit tells a story that changed his perspective, inspiring him to identify a pain point that led to a solution to transporting medicine more efficiently with the technology’s help.
Don’t Tell What You Do; Tell What You Achieved
The simple rule that is valid for a successful CV is also credible for a successful guest post. Most of the time, the reader is not interested directly in your startup’s service or product; they usually focus on how you identified or solved a problem in a specific industry. After all, remember that you “write to share, not to sell”—which is probably the most important aspect of guest posts.
Giuseppe Milazzo, Founder of Contapp, explores efficient methods to identify critical sustainability partnerships in an article he wrote for Startups of London. Instead of telling what his product is for, he points out a problem and explains how he solves it among a couple of other startups in the ecosystem.
Respect the Publisher’s Editorial Guidelines
Publishers may ask you to deliver your article in a specific format and style because of technical and editorial concerns. The best way to deal with it is to comply. Trust us, no publisher wants any of their website’s articles to be “trash.” Editorial requirements are for authors’ and publishers’ good alike.
Media companies’ requests may vary and depend on the organisation. For example, they may ask you not to use certain words, deliver a specific word count, limit the number of outbound links to your business website, or reject using particular HTML tags because they may be harmful to their SEO score. So, insisting on going against their guidelines may end up you losing the opportunity to share your insights with a broader audience.
Finally, Use an Engaging Tone
Startups are organisations where people interact more personally than traditional businesses or enterprises. The structure is usually flat and decentralised. So, communicate in a way that reflects that intimacy. This approach can help you connect with the readers and make them emotionally invest in your story. However, there should obviously be a safe distance between you and your audience, which means you should keep things still professional.
Who knows? Writing guest blog posts may become a part of your marketing funnel if you manage to convert one of your readers into a customer or, even better, an investor.