The problem with guest posting

  • 1
  • February 19, 2008
Patrick Altoft

Patrick Altoft

Director of Strategy

Recently I carried out an experiment and accepted a few guest posters on Blogstorm. While the content of most of them was good (the ones I published were excellent) I cut the experiment short and won’t be publishing any more.

The problem is that most guest posters want to show how knowledgeable they are about a particular subject rather than writing something of value to the readers. Sometimes the two overlap but more often than not you have post that contains the Top 20 Things The Guest Poster Knows About X rather than the information that offers good value to the reader.

Accepting guest posts can come across as being lazy. I see blogs like John Chow publishing guest posts that offer very little value to me every week. The reason I read John Chow is to hear what John has to say and nobody else. The reason I read the large multi author search engine news blogs is because the paid writers are mostly top notch and write the news in an informed manner, they don’t feel the need to show how much knowledge they have just to promote a blog.

This might all sound quite negative but I think it is just a fact of life. Every time I’ve written a guest post I’ve always tried to appear really knowledgeable rather than offering value but it’s not until you read some bad guest posts that you realise the problem with this strategy.

If your blog makes money then the best way to help it grow is to pay your writers with money rather than giving them a platform to promote their own knowledge. Feel free to accept guest posts but only when they help your readers more than they help the guest poster.