Is Guest Posting Dead?

In 2014, Matt Cutts, former head of the Web Spam team at Google, wrote the following:

“Okay, I’m calling it: if you’re using guest blogging as a way to gain links in 2014, you should probably stop.”

Ever since the state of guest blogging has been debated heatedly. Indeed, guest blogs with low-quality content have truly been dead for decades.

On the other hand, high-quality blogging is an effective strategy to create backlinks, and drive traffic to your website. Even Cutts eventually published a correction, and said: “There are still many good reasons to do some guest blogging (exposure, branding, increased reach, community, etc.)”

So, the question is, how can we create quality guest blogs every time?

Here, we have outlined three easy and effective strategies to create guest posts that are sure to attract links, and bring in traffic:

The Robin Hood Technique

The Robin Hood technique, as suggested by SEO Gold Coast, is a quick and effective way to write guest posts with good quality content. This technique involves recreating great content from popular blogs and offering them to platforms with a low ranking, and less credibility and traffic.

Keep in mind, however, that this does not mean plagiarizing the content – instead, you must only take inspiration from the blog to recreate ideas for your own post.

The following steps can be undertaken for this technique:

Ahref’s Content Explorer Tool contains one billion pages and can be used to find blogs you can write a guest post for

Ahref’s Content Explorer Tool

Source: ahrefs

  1. Enter a keyword corresponding to your chosen topic to find similar articles
  2. Check the “one article per domain” box to find unique blogs related to your keyword
  3. Sort the results according to Language, Shares, Domain Rating, Organic Traffic, and Number of Words to truly find a customized blog post idea

Note the importance of Domain Rating (DR) that showcases the popularity level of a backlink, based on a scale of 1-100.

While it is tempting to only work with high DR blogs, low DR blogs are also worth investing your time and energy in, as they usually have a niche following and are bound to grow.

What’s more, low DR blogs usually receive fewer pitches and have less strict editorial standards – thereby making it easier to get featured or published.

Finally, you can move on to step 4:

4. Read the content of your chosen blog piece, and recreate it by adding a unique spin to it –  conclude by pitching it to low or high DR blogs through email outreach

Splintering Content

Another effective way of guest posting is by splintering or breaking existing blogs into shorter, but authoritative posts.

The point of splintering content is to dive deep into a topic that you have already researched before, as it is easier to recreate, revise, or rewrite.

After writing detailed individual posts, you can then pitch the pieces to online magazines and platforms that would publish it as guest posts, whilst still re-directing the reader to your original blog post – thereby creating quality backlinks.

The Perspective Technique

A small change in perspective can lead to a completely new, and unique piece of writing.

The trick here is to use a previously written blog post and turn it into multiple guest posts by simply tweaking your overall perspective.

For instance, if your previous blog post was on the “The Future of Link Building” – you can now write on a variety of topics by changing your viewpoint, such as:

  • Future of link building for small business
  • Future of link building for E-commerce
  • Future of link building for startups, and so on

Effective Guest Posting

The techniques outlined here are a good way to get you started. Keep in mind, however, that once you start pitching your guest posts, you may be faced with some problems.

For instance, editors and bloggers may routinely reject your pitch, negotiations may take months, or the link to your article may be taken down suddenly and without prior notice.

To address this concern here is what you can do:

  • Focus on creating good quality content for your blogs
  • Pitch to multiple blogs at the same time
  • Include links to your other guest posts to generate more traffic
  • Keep exploring and writing for new platforms and sites

In short, by following the techniques outlined above, you can defy Matt Cutt’s claim that guest posts are dead. Indeed, guest posts are thriving and can be used to generate traffic and brand awareness for your business in the long run.

podcast, economy watch, interest co nz, David Chaston, NZ Economy

Another Podcast launched

Today we announce the Economy Watch podcast by Interest.co.nz has launched. It’s a daily summary of the key overnight news that affects the New Zealand economy.

Short podcasts for news

In scoping the content and audience for this podcast, we decided that a short format podcast was a good choice. Listeners are on their way into work and can catch a 6-10 minute update quickly during their commute to work.

Authored by David Chaston, Editor and voiced by me (Rebecca Caroe), we are really pleased with the early listener feedback.

Please go and listen and tell me what you think. Appreciate it!

Tongue twister podcasting

Now here are the things I’ve found hard to say coherently in the episodes so far. See if you can spot them in the audio

German government bonds sold at a record low yield overnight. They sold 10-year Bunds [bund / bond]

India imposed higher retaliatory tariffs [why was retaliatory so hard?]

China’s Central government coffers [coffers was the issue here]

at the Japanese-hosted G20 summit [not sure why I can’t say summit]


Linkedin, company page, social media tips

10 LinkedIn Company Page Ideas & Suggestions

  1. Create a Showcase page – with updates just for these sub-sets which allows for segmentation of viewers.
  2. Add Company page link to email signatures – update monthly with the pinned post.
  3. The BEST imagery on the Company page – include your logo watermarked into the image. 1,536px x 768px.
  4. Re-write the company overview text to reflect a niche positioning
  5. Check hashtags to follow.  https://www.linkedin.com/feed/follow/?filterType=channel&focused=true
  6. Refresh your pinned post 2x per month.  And re-share it to other channels.
  7. Share your top 5 articles from the blog one every 2 weeks…. Yes repetition is worth it.  And in 6 months change to new articles.
  8. Get more comments by asking questions.  “Are you watching the Cricket World Cup? What’s the best activation you’ve seen?”; Formula 1 Fails at Monaco – did you spot the bad branding in the Casino Tunnel?; What do you do to promote athletes in their off season?
  9. Use URL Builder tool to track web links from your company page updates https://ga-dev-tools.appspot.com/campaign-url-builder/
  10. Set up Content Suggestions so you can do the 4-1-1 model of sharing 4 pieces of content from others to every couple of your own.
LinkedIn Content Suggestions for Creative Agency Secrets

What are your top tips?

LinkedIN new feature, company page linkedIN

2 new LinkedIn Tools – Saved search and Article title edits

Today I came across two new features in LinkedIn which will definitely help marketers and pro-active networkers. And one negative feature.

Throttle Control is ON

LinkedIn is clearly pushing for greater revenues – many of my favourite work-rounds for search and connecting are now getting blocked. Have you noticed this?

I got blocked from searching for 2nd / 3rd degree connections on 10th May. That was because I had apparently already used up my allocation for the month! It renews next month. So pretty irritating….. Having said that, there are some neat work arounds and some new apps which I’m trialing in beta which may help with some aspects of this.

In the meantime, pay up or go away. The choice is yours.

Saved Search Alerts

New LinkedIn Feature

I was doing some searches and spotted what I think may be a beta release feature in the right sidebar…. I was searching in “People” for a search string. And so I made a search alert to save that search. In fact I made a couple.

The saved search name i18n_rail was default applied by LinkedIn. Probably code for something….. suggestions?

It appears to be similar to Google Alerts but with less functionality. The options are only for weekly alerts and to be received by email which suggests this isn’t yet a fully featured roll-out. But a nice touch, especially if we are all going to have to pay to use LinkedIn Search in future.

Company page article title edits

While uploading an article to our company page I noticed another new feature – you can edit the title so that the URL link title is not the default option.

You have to be in the admin view to use this feature. And isn’t it nice that 140 characters is offered as the link text? Importantly this is only link text, not the URL or destination title. I think this will be great for improved keyword searching and SEO – plus those of us who like to write long headlines will have a field day!

Now go and try these – tell me if you can find them in your profile.

Followers on LinkedIN, How to use LinkedIn, Social Selling, B2B marketing

Who’s your LinkedIn Follower?

LinkedIn hides some of its best features – deliberately.

So here is my quick tip of the week to help you grow your connection base.

Do you know about your followers and following feed?

Thought not.

Log into your LinkedIn. Then paste this into your browser and take a look at this URL.

It lists everyone who is following you. The image below shows Philip Goffin – he’s following me. But I’m neither connected to him, nor following him.

Woo Hoo – lots of followers, Famous fellow.

Now for the inverse, Following. These are the people you are following.

What’s the use of following on LinkedIn?

Well, many times you want to see the News Feed updates from people, but you don’t actually know them and so connecting isn’t appropriate.

Or you just think you will see their updates for a while before approaching for a connection request.

Or you are hoping to quietly bring yourself to their attention without being too pushy – so follow them in the hope they notice you and send a connection request.

Go forth…. try it for yourself.

P.S. You can no longer export contact information from LinkedIn and so I’m advising clients to build contact lists outside of the platform for every new contact they make.

LinkedIn not link,

LinkedIn changes you need

Sometimes I just discover things by trying something new. Did you know that you can find people on LinkedIn using their partial email address?

I had met a lady whose surname I didn’t know – but I had her email on the meeting calendar invite – amandam@thisbiz.com [that’s not a real address]. And so I started typing it into the LinkedIn search bar and before I wrote the dot extension, pressed enter and her name and details came up. Handy.

When LinkedIn is not linked

LinkedIn links not linking

I was researching Chris Reed whose speaking agency represents business women speakers. And couldn’t find him on my LI contacts – and so found the company instead, thinking that maybe I’d mis-spelled his name.

There he is, listed on the company site – but the links don’t work. Thinking this was a dastardly strategy he was employing to connect to people and then dis-connect, when he hits limits to connections. And so I wrote to ask him.

There’s currently a bug that’s impacting LinkedIn. People have been talking about it. Some people can’t find their connections and can’t even tag their connections on LinkedIn. Support team at LI are now working on it. It’s a pain now. Hopefully this gets resolved soon.

Chris J “Mohawk” Reed

You can have 30,000 connections on LinkedIn – so no chance I’m hitting the throttle back stage of connecting yet. And the ‘mystery’ is solved, although not resolved.

Sales Navigator plus plus

And if you aren’t yet using Sales Navigator for your new business development social selling on LinkedIn – do some research as it can be very useful.

But do also look at complementary services such as

  • ByPath.com uses Kompass data to overlay org charts to LinkedIn sales prospecting [Note: there is a NZ / AU local reseller I know]
  • MeetLeonard.com automation of repetitive tasks in LinkedIn like auto-sending bulk messages through in-mail.
Follower Count , LinkedIn, B2B marketing, social media marketing,

Advance your LinkedIn focus

Many B2B marketers and brands are using LinkedIn intensively as a channel to market, building awareness and interest in your offering.

LinkedIn is NOT EFFECTIVE a direct marketing channel – it’s for brand marketing.

Today I have a challenge for you. Followers.

Follower Count , LinkedIn, B2B marketing, social media marketing,
Follower Count on LinkedIn.

Who follows you?

Go to your LinkedIn page and log in. Then navigate to your followers page. The link is the same for everyone.

  • Following – these are your connections. [Note: it’s not who YOU are following – a bit confusing]
  • Followers – people who follow your updates. This includes all your connections.

Below each person’s profile and job title is a check box showing if you are following then or not; and the number of people who are following them.

This makes it easy to filter. And one click to follow them back.

Check boxes to show if you’re following people on LinkedIn

What to do about LinkedIn Followers

Three things to do:

  1. Browse the list for people who you’d like to connect with and who are following you
  2. Decide on your criteria for following people – everyone, only those with key attributes, people who could be clients; people with high/low followers themselves etc
  3. Make a diary log to check back regularly for new followers

LinkedIn works best as a business development platform if you have a clear client persona; have a clear content writing strategy [topics, frequency, audience]. Targeting the right audience with good content, regularly.

Unlike Twitter, LinkedIn does not have a ratio of following to followers throttle. And remember, following someone is a great way to get their insights, to become acquainted with their perspectives as a precursor to connecting.

Famous people have lots of followers. If you are trying to break into a marketplace and build a solid profile, my recommendation is this.

Follow people whose follower count is low-to-medium. Their news feed won’t be too cluttered and your content stands a better chance of getting noticed and commented.

spam pingl,

Referral traffic from Pingl is spam

I was checking the analytics on a client site and saw a referral from a website I did not recognise.  And so I investigated it.

referral traffic, analytics referral,

New referral site turns out to be spam

After typing in the reach-publisheral website address manually (I always do this in a new browser window), an automatic redirect came into effect and I ended up on Pingl.net [no, don’t follow that link please].

Black Hat SEO tactics

In the SEO world there are goodies and baddies…. and it’s a game of tension between the unscrupulous on one side and those who follow search engine websites’ guidelines on the other – refereed by Google and Bing.

Black Hat is the term given to tactics that are underhand and try to cheat the system.

White Hat is the opposite – those who work within the framework set by search engines.

Updates to search engine algorithms are usually driven by their desire to undermine black hat tactics.

After a quick search I found several other commentators had found referrals in their analytics also coming from Pingl.  This rings alarm bells.

Who is Pingl?

A set of clever Black-Hatters masquerading as authentic “growth hacking” tacticians.

They use a technique called notification referrer service which is basically a spam referral to your website.  By masking their site identity they make the link “appear” to come from another site – reach-publishinglo  in my case (but others report variants on Ali Baba).  This domain is setup with the sole purpose of sending you to pingl’s home page –  it refers you directly to them.

Although you may be getting a lot of referrals from the masked page, it is not real traffic, and it can ruin your SEO – notably your bounce rate.

How to overcome referrer spam

Create filters in your Analytics to remove this traffic from your results in two ways

  1. Campaign Source Filter – will stop all traffic from the source (pingl) site
  2. Campaign Referral Path Filter – will stop single web pages
  3. Languages Setting Filter – stops traffic from named languages (was useful for Russian spam in 2017)