Monday, 25 November 2019

Eight Tips for Being a Great Guest Blogger • Lynne Garner

A few months ago the talented Moira Butterfield wrote a fab post for us (Tips on writing picture book non-fiction). Now, I've supported a lot of guest bloggers over the last eight years (eight years - where has that time gone?) as part of the Picture Book Den team by posting their content. Sometimes this has been a nightmare. The content I've received needed so much work that it took a lot of work to upload, format and check. However, being the pro that she is Moira's post took less than ten minutes to load, format and check. As soon as I received the content I knew I had to use my experience as a basis for this months post. I'll admit I have also used as my July (8th) post on Authors Electric.
One of Moira's many non-fiction books

So, what follows are the things Moira got right plus a few things other guest writers got right.

Tip one:
First and foremost send your content in plenty of time. Everyone I know leads a busy life and there's nothing worse than receiving content the day before it's supposed to go live. It adds to the stress of everyday life and means there is no time to resolve a problems or ask any questions.

Tip two:
Send everything in one folder giving documents and images simple names e.g. blog, picture 1, picture 2 etc.

Tip three:
Send the text as a word document. Do not format it. If you include formatting it can cause issues. It's therefore easier for the person uploading the post to format as they go, rather than spend time fixing the issues caused by the formatting in the first place. If you want formatting e.g. bullet points then add instructions in red.

Tip four:
Typically as a guest blogger you are introduced at the beginning of the post. If you want to make the life of the person uploading your post even easier then include your own introduction and ensure you write it in the third person.

Tip five:
Within the text state where you want any images to go and include captions if you want some added. For example "image one here - with the following caption........."  To make it clear they are instructions make them red.

Tip six:
If you want internal links to be included then provide these either at the bottom of the main post or as a separate document with an appropriate name.

Tip seven:
Don't forget to help your post be found 'labels' can be added in the post settings. So, if you can think of any labels that will drive traffic to your post then include them. This can be at the bottom of the main post content (remember to label them) or as a separate document in the folder (again with a file name that makes sense).

Tip eight:
Don't write a post that just sells your latest book. Give readers information, advice, share something of interest. It's fine to include an image from your book or the front cover as long as it supports the information/advice you are sharing. Alternately do as I do and place a plug at the end of your post, once the reader has learned something from you post. It also gives the reader the opportunity to follow to the links to your books or ignore.

If you have any other tips on how to be the best guest blogger please share in the comments section.

Last but not least - Moira Butterfield - thank you for giving me the idea for this post.

Blatant plug time

Love a short story? 

Then check out my short story collections (available as ebooks and paperback):

Hedgehog of Moon Meadow Farm (ebook 99p/99¢ - 10 stories)

Fox of Moon Meadow Farm (ebook 99p/99¢ - 10 stories)

Ten Tales of Brer Rabbit (ebook 99p/99¢ - 10 stories)

Ten Tales of Coyote  (ebook 99p/99¢ - 10 stories)

Anansi The Trickster Spider (ebook £1.49/$1.49 - 16 stories)


Penny Dolan said...

A set of really great tips, Lynne (and Moira). Thank you!

Moira Butterfield said...

Aw shucks! Thanks, Lynne!