Guest Posting as a Way to Generate Leads (4 Email Sequence Included)

Josh Slone posted this in the Lead Generation Strategies Category
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Guest posting can lead to a number of benefits, not the least of which is for leads!

Guest posting is a part of the hustle that many startups use to generate a small audience early on in their business. It can be an effective method to get your first few customers in the bootstrap stage. Typically, it’s used to get traffic and then that traffic is contacted and pitched.

But what about using it as a method to break the ice with your ideal buyers?

Most have never guest posted at all. In the B2B space, it’s not necessarily a top priority on the things-to-do list. The ROI isn’t clear and there are other ways to get traffic to a website and leads on a list.

I get it.

But, when done correctly, you can have a near 100% response rate to your cold emails. Most of those being really good conversations.

In this post, we’ll cover:

  1. Why guest posting should be a part of your overall sales process.
  2. How to find all the opportunities you could ever want.
  3. Our crafted 4-email sequence to help you break the ice and get responses.

Let’s get started.

So, Why Guest Posting?

There are three primary benefits to guest posting (see image below). We’ll go over each, focusing in on lead generation as the primary benefit.

guest posting

Benefit One: Leads

Arguably the most important metric to any B2B. The number of qualified leads that you’re able to nurture and pitch into becoming clients.

One thing LeadFuze has discovered by sending thousands upon thousands of emails can be summed up in one phrase:

The offer you send in your cold emails should not be what your company offers. 

Typical sales email (that doesn’t get answered): “Hey, we’re the best at [insert product/service here] and you should use us!”

Instead, we’ve found it’s best to give something of interest and value to the lead and use it as a way to compel them to converse with us. It works. The thing is, you have to think of or create something that they genuinely want.

This is where guest posting is valuable.

Everyone understands the need for blogging and creating content that attracts buyers. Most also have a huge issue creating their own content and often have very outdated blogs and are desperate to get new words on the page.

If they’re in your target market, you can speak to their needs and the needs of their buyers — right?

Offer to write a guest post for them, and if they want, an exchange to get in front of your audience. Even though they need content for their site, they’ll likely want to write one for your blog due to take advantage of this opportunity.

The offer you send in your cold emails should not be what your company offers. Click To Tweet

Benefit Two: Partnership Opportunities

Depending on your industry and the target markets that you’re going after — partnerships could be available.

Not the documented, hand-shaking types. But smaller, even temporary arrangements. Even a guest post exchange is a partnership in and of itself. Which makes it all the more valuable. We’ll show our hand a bit and give a real example.

We are an automated lead generation platform. Our blog focuses on helping B2Bs generate, contact, qualify, and close those leads.

Marketing agencies often help other businesses do the same thing (albeit differently). We love exchanging guest posts with marketers. Their audience is businesses (so is ours). Not only can the marketing agency become a client, but we can add value to their current readership. And vice versa.

It’s like a quadruple win.

But think of where else it can go. Affiliate partnership, co-op webinars, the possibilities are staggering. And that’s just with agencies. Think about CRMs, SaaS products, etc…

Now, who can you reach out to that’s mutually beneficial and has more potential than just a post exchange?

guest posting

Benefit Three: Link to the Company Site

While this one is the least glamorous, it’s a long-term play.

The more you reach out to leads in a given industry (that you’re targeting), the more links you’ll get. Then, you can start targeting some of those awesome keywords and have the clout with Google to get organic traffic coming to your blog (presumably full of sweet guest posts).

We try to have a guest post go live both on and off of our site each week. It’s no small feat, but our traffic keeps going higher and rankings keep improving.

guest posting

P.S. If you’re interested in writing for the LF blog, check out our guidelines here.

Finding Opportunities (They’re Everywhere)

There are three primary ways that we use to generate guest posting opportunities. And we generally have enough to average about one post going live somewhere each week.

The contributors to our blog have been a bit slower. But that’s because we recently started doing it and we really only want quality content from people who fit our audience. Very soon, we’ll be hitting our goal of one a week.

Anyhoo. How do we do it?

Tactic Number One: Social Mentions

We have notifications now, but I used to search the Twittersphere looking for anyone sharing our stuff. Once I did, it was an easy pitch.

I’ve screenshot one such email to give you another template (other than the ones below).

guest posting

BTW. This image, along with a detailed breakdown of our social guest posting strategies were featured (in a guest post) that you can find right here.

What if I don’t have traction or traffic on my blog?

No mentions, no problem. Just search (or get notified) for certain topics and keywords. For instance, we’d search Twitter for “generate leads” and such.

Tactic Number Two: Use a Pre-Created List of Opportunities (or make your own)

There are lists of guest blogging opps and then there’s THE list. It was created by Lilach Bullock (who’s guest posted for us :).

guest posting

Here’s the link to it.

You can also create your own by Google searching for “keyword + guest post” or “keyword + contributor guidelines”. Things like that.

Bonus Tip: Don’t be afraid of the competition. We’ve had several posts from what would be considered competitors in some form or another. Like this one and this one. But, there’s value to be had in this.

Double Bonus Tip: Izideo has also compiled a pretty impressive list of sites that accept guest posts, broken down by category.

We're competing against a lead's budget, timing, and objections — not other companies. Click To Tweet

Tactic Number Three: Use Your Leads

The best part about selling to B2Bs is that you understand their basic struggles that go beyond their products/services. You’re trying to grow your business (so are they). You want good content for your website (they probably do too).

It’s hard to imagine a niche without an opportunity to guest post in any B2B. Part of understanding your customers is understanding their customers.

This means that you should be able to speak to their customers’ needs. Use it as a way to start the conversation.

It’s a whole lot easier to transition into how you can help them via your product if you start off by telling them you want to help them by swapping guest posts.

A Word On Writing the Post

If you’ve made it this far, you may have the question: “How will I write this post?”

Could be timing, or lack of practice writing, or a few other issues. Here’s the thing. You don’t have to write it.

Just ask them what they want you to write about and give those details (along with your input) to a ghost writer. Go to Upwork, or PeoplePerHour and find someone with good reviews and a fair price.

Writing is one of the “get what you pay for” things. You can get 1000 words for 10 bucks, but you won’t be able to read it. In 2017, it should cost you around 5-10 cents per word for decent quality.

But if you get an opportunity to be on a big time blog, better spend more than that. If it’s bad, they won’t publish it.

Ready for the Templates?

If you want to experiment with cold email, this strategy could be the best. Why? Simple response rate math.

Asking for a guest posting exchange is usually an innocent request that doesn’t bear the resemblance to a sales call. It’s likely that you can send out a few dozen emails and get a very high response rate. This is especially true if your blog looks decent.

I urge you to send out a few and would love to hear about how it works out. Now, onto the templates.

Happy hunting.

Guest Post Email Sequence Templates

Email 1 – Guest post exchange {{.CompanyName}} <> (((MyCompany)))

>Hi {{.FirstName}},

I love what you’ve been doing on the {{.CompanyName}} blog. I wanted to see if you’d be up for a guest post exchange?

You can write one for our blog and we’ll do one for you.

It’ll get you in front of our 15,000 email subscribers and we’ll be promoting it through social channels as well.

I can send over the writing guidelines if you’d like, {{.FirstName}}?

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. Not the person to talk to? Let me know! Don’t want me to follow-up with you? You can let me know that too!

Email 2 – Re: Guest post exchange {{.CompanyName}} <> (((MyCompany)))

Hi {{.FirstName}},

Even if you don’t want to contribute to our blog, I’d love to do one for your blog. You’ll get a fresh piece of content, and we’ll promote it to our 15,000 email subscribers as well as our social channels.

Can I send you some topic ideas?

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. Let me know if you think it’s best I talk with someone else on your team to share my guest blog ideas!

Email 3 – Re: Guest post exchange {{.CompanyName}} <> (((MyCompany)))

Hi {{.FirstName}},

Do you think I should I speak with {{.CustomData.reference}} about working out a guest post exchange instead?

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. For quick reference, here is a link to our blog to see the quality of content we produce.

Email 4 – Re: Guest post exchange {{.CompanyName}} <> (((MyCompany)))

Hi {{.FirstName}},

I assume you don’t want a fresh piece of content on your blog.

If things change in the future, and you’d like to have us contribute a piece — let me know!

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. If you’d ever like to discuss some different blog post ideas, you can grab a time with me here.

Josh Slone
About Author: Josh Slone
Josh Slone is the Head Content Writer for LeadFuze. Josh writes about lead generation strategies, sales skills, and sales terminology.

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Filip Zafirovski
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Thanks for the share Josh, great article!

What would be other good ways for generating leads besides guest posting?

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