You're not Kevin Costner (Outreach 101)
- You're not Kevin Costner
- Your website isn’t a baseball diamond in a wheat field in Iowa
- And clients aren’t ghosts!
Click to watch the Video
Build it and they will come (not!)
The idea of build it and they will come is all very well for Hollywood but you’re going to have to be a little more proactive.
The most effective way of getting your ideas in front of a new audience is to guest post on another more popular website. I’m a huge fan of guest posting:
- The site owner doesn’t have to come up with a brilliant article that week
- The site readers get a new perspective
- You get your name and ideas exposed to a new audience
It’s just like dating
So how do you get someone to agree to publish your post – well, the analogy to use here is the dating world – seriously – guest posting is just like finding a new girlfriend or boyfriend – there’s a few basic steps:
1/ Take care of you first
You’ve got to look the part – if you’re presenting yourself as a writer then you need a good looking website with plenty of recent great posts. A potential partner won’t look at you twice if you’re a bit shabby, unkempt and haven’t produced anything of value for months.
2/ Find the appropriate partner
Sure it would be awesome to get a guest post on CNN or on Seth’s blog, but this is like trying to date a super model – it’s not impossible but will require a crap load of time and money to get in the game. Start off with someone more in your league – if you’re a 7 shoot for someone who’s an 8.
3/ Listen to them
Yes guys – I’m looking at you – before you make an approach, listen to what they’ve got to say – really - read their blog, understand their audience, and treat them as a valued partner, not just someone who’s going to give you what you want. Last week’s article on RSS should help you here
Find out if they have a policy on guest posting or if they’ve accepted them in the past.
4/ Flirt with them
Don’t go overboard and send a Tiffany bracelet before you’ve even met them – that would be weird, but over the course of a month – maybe re-tweet one of their articles, like them on Facebook, best of all, add a comment to one of their blog posts – but it has to be a really great and considered comment – no sycophantic “great post Brian” bullshit – you’ve got to add value.
5/ After flirting ask for a date
After you’ve swapped a couple of tweets and maybe a few comments and they know who you are, now is the time to approach them with an idea for a guest post. Remember, it’s about them not you – you’ve got to show them that you understand their audience and that you have something that they will benefit from.
Finally, if they turn you down – hey – there’s plenty more fish 1n the sea; as your mother no doubt told you – it’s their loss not yours!
If you’d like to jump start your web traffic, reply to this email and book a session.