1. Create your own strong, relevant content - Guest bloggers want to be associated with unique, strong material, so if your blog consistently offers both, it'll be much easier to attract and retain a quality guest blogger. Additionally, a guest blogger will want to contribute to a blog in line with his or her expertise, so if you approach a blogger about a guest post, make sure to show him or her a unique and original post in line with the work he or she has done in the past. If you want to retain a quality guest blogger, continuously post solid content to drive traffic and engagement, so the guest blogger knows writing a post for your blog isn't a waste of his or her time.
2. Forge strategic relationships with thought leaders on- and offline - Creating and nurturing strategic professional relationships is key to recruiting and retaining quality guest bloggers. It's important to form these relationships online and offline. Through social media, you should engage in conversations with thought leaders in your industry, show them the content you're creating online and share their content when it's relevant to your audience. Develop a social relationship that allows thought leaders to recognize you and your content, and respect your industry expertise. Offline, you can develop professional relationships at industry events, trade shows and networking meet-ups. Follow up with an email or tweet after meeting someone, so that you're on their radar and can continue to nurture the professional relationship. Once you've developed these solid relationships, you'll have no problem reaching out for a guest blog post!
3. Provide potential topics or interview questions - Once you've secured a quality blogger, share potential topics with or offer to interview him or her to make the content creation process more seamless. Sometimes guest bloggers can become overwhelmed, so taking the topic or key talking points off their plates makes guest blogging much more worth their and your whiles. Not only is this easier for the guest blogger and you, but also having control over the topics or questions will keep the blog post more in line with your marketing strategy and deliver to your target audience more content they want.
4. Remember to follow up after the blog post goes live - Always thank your guest bloggers for contributing to your blog, share with them the posts, ask them to share the posts with their followers, and provide the guest bloggers any positive analytics you may see. If you follow up with all of these things, you'll be more apt to retain your quality guest bloggers.
Have any more tips to add? Share them with us in the comments below!
*Offer valid through 2/14/13