Sunday, October 23, 2011

[ my thoughts on guest posts ]



GUEST POSTING is popular in blogland and it's a fun way to connect and discover other lovely blogs. However, not all guest posts are created equal.

Have you been bombarded lately with requests from companies to post guest posts on your blog? Well I have! And I just had to share my thoughts on this practise {please bear with me if this post gets long!}

To me, guest posts by companies are an entirely different ball game. They are like advertorials - those special advertising features you see in magazines - like when Scotties tissues runs a spread showing various bathroom decorating ideas, all the while, promoting their newest tissue box designs. And in magazines, placing those advertorials costs money.

While some people may feel flattered that they've been approached by a company wanting to post a guest post on their blog (their emails gush with compliments on how great your blog is), I feel differently. These companies should be paying you to do so. These posts are exactly like magazine advertorials but in blogland. Why should they be allowed to target your blog readers for free? They're YOUR blog readers - people kind enough to tune in regularly to read what YOU have to say, not to read what is essentially an "ad" by some company. {Unless of course they want to offer a fabulous giveaway - then that's a different story}.

I've been approached by lighting companies, real estate companies, vacation rental companies, design companies, clothing companies... all wanting to put up a post on my blog with no benefit to me or my lovely blog readers. No giveaway. No discount. All of them wanting links back to their company website. One company even said they'd do it at NO COST TO ME! Gosh, really?

Rather than purchase a sponsor ad in your sidebar, they take the approach of offering up some original content for your blog ~ they'll do all the work and all you have to do is post it. To me, it's sneaky and a free way for them to get traffic to their websites through you, if you fall for it.

What are your thoughts on these types of guest posts?

lisa

17 comments:

Happy Homemaker UK said...

I have been approached by quite a few lately too, and I think the same thing. I don't really see anyone else using this type of guest post, so my guess is it is not very successful. XOL

Debby said...

Oh, I am totally with you on this one! Thanks for saying it so perfectly. Hope your weekend is going wonderfully. xo

Formerly known as Frau said...

I love it at no cost to you....I think if a give away is involved than thats a win win. There are some blogs that every Saturday it's advertising some products and a giveaway is involved I don't always visit those blogs. I'm not really into the whole giveaway unless it's a unique product. I do like when someone comes across a product that they absolutely love and just want to rave about it. You know when you find a shoe and want all your friends to have the same fun shoe!

I say show me the money!

helen tilston said...

Beautifully said and I might add I would lose respect for a blog should they promote a product which is suspicious. Actually I have stopped reading blogs that have numerous ads.

Great post

Helen

Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage said...

I agree with you 100% and I've been turning down these companies too. Besides the fact that they offer no benefit to me. I think it's a cheapens the blogging experience for my readers. They visit my blog because they have similar taste and want to see what I have to show them; not what some random company is putting on my website.

DREAMS ON 34th STREET ~ French Bread & Family said...

Lisa...Very well stated.

I have allowed one post so far. I made sure that I picked the subject of the post and requested a 75.00 give a way for my readers since an ad was involved.

An occasional give a way is okay,
but that's not the reason that I
blog.

Blogging is about sharing life, creativity, friendship and blessings.

I know exactly where I was when I met you. Whistler, BC.
I remember because I was a visitor in your homeland and you were my first Canadian follower.

oh... I did cave in to one small Google ad. I'm doing it for three months just to experiment. I'm not too impressed so far.

Too many ads can change the name of
a blog to Bill"bored"!
~Lynne
[w/L]

smalltown20something said...

I guess I didn't realize how prevalent this is in the blog world. It definitely seems like advertisements, and if I were approached for something like that I would absolutely say no!

Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

I used to reply and let them know that I only use guest posts from other bloggers with whom I have an online history. Now I just ignore them, it's not like they'll notice the snub since they likely send the exact email to dozens of other bloggers.

Carolyn@SweetChaos said...

I've been getting several of those requests lately and have been very suspicious of them. I totally agree with your opinion on the subject. I follow blogs to read the blogger's posts ... not ads concealed as posts.

Beach Coast Style said...

Amen Lisa, this is a business and if they want to do that money should be attached, a giveaway or some other form of payment.

I of course, have not had that to happen because of being such a new blogger, but I have wondered the how's and why's of all of that.

Thanks for posting about it.

Razmataz said...

Lisa, I am totally with you. If you notice many of the blogs are small timers, like mine. Under 500 followers. I am lucky if I get 250 hits a day...so I think, why does Mr. A....Lighting want to take the time to write to me and put a post on the blog. If he only reached the 250 people, what percentage would be In Canada to buy his product...got me thinking. He really doesn't like my blog or care about my readers, what he wants is links on as many blogs as possible because the more times a link to his www. is in cyberspace, the higher his google rankings get. So he flatters the small time blogger (likely hundreds of them) they put his drivel on their blog at their expense of time and effort and get NOTHING back. As soon as I see one of these "guest posts" I click off. In the meantime Mr. A..had accomplished what any marketing guy would be proud of....links all over the internet..so when people google key words, he comes up. I am betting that those posts are pretty carefully scribed to capture the Google spiders to ensure their rankings go up. THE BLOGGER DOES NOT GET MORE HITS FROM THESE GUEST BLOGS>

One company who did it right however was CSN stores. Virtually unheard of 2 years ago, they approached bloggers big and small..to host a giveaway. And a decent size giveaway $60-$150. Or you could review a product. So readers got to learn about CSN (I do love them) and the blogger got more hits because EVERYONE wanted a chance to win. They got their company name out there ethically and honestly. (now changed name to Wayfair).

I think when these people approach us we should ask them to let us post on their blog/website in return. Or say "yes, provided you provide a giveaway for my readers"

See...now you got me going....

Amy R. said...

I 100% agree with you! I have had several of these too and now I just ignore them and I don't even reply anymore. I am not going to bite. Great post!

Designwali said...

Good post! I've been approached too but I kinda just ignore it. Unless there is something in it for my readers what is the point?

Kristin @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia said...

Wonderfully said. I have allowed one to post but it was all about what my readers love, decorating shabby and it was so nicely written I didn't mind.
Lately though I've had a few companies actually ask to give me or a reader something ($30 value) for a are you ready for this? A ad spot for a year! A Year! I just laughed. CSN sure did it right as Annie Sloan, wonderful companies and very giving. thanks for touching on this, we need to look out for our readers and ourselves.
XO

SHERRY HART said...

I learned so much reading your post and the comments! Sometimes I don't even have time to filter through those kind of request [to figure out exactly what they are] so thanks for the explanation.

Anne-Marie @ 10 Rooms said...

Completely agree! Iwish they would at least have the decency to offer a giveaway, but I suppose that it is an indicator of how many bloggers they are contacting, they can't possibly honour so many giveaways... wishing spammers in general would take up knitting :)

Meagan said...

HEY!!!! This happened to me last week too!! I could not figure out what was going on.... An explosion of sorts.
So glad you blogged about it.
Meagan

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