The Two Biggest Guest Blogging Mistakes You Can Make


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I receive around 20 guest post submissions per week. Usually I let them pile up and once a month I go through all of them, replying to the ones I think would be a good fit for the blog.

There are two types of submissions I discard right away, though, without even taking a look. I also consider those the two biggest mistakes you can make while trying to guest post on some blog. They are:

1. Not including the name of the blog owner

If by opening your email I see something like “Dear Sir” or “Dear Blog Owner” I’ll send it to the trash bin immediately. Why? because it tells me that this is a generic guest post offer, and that you probably sent the same post to dozens of other blogs.

The least you can do is to visit the site where you want to guest post and to discover the name of the owner.

2. Not including the post itself

Many of the guest post emails I receive are only asking if I would be interested in having a guest post written. Something like this:

Dear Daniel,

I have been your blog for a long time, and I was wondering if you would be interested in having me to write a guest post for you. I was thinking to write something about Facebook marketing or email marketing.

Please let me know and we’ll get moving.

John Doe

My thoughts when I see such emails: “How on earth can I know if I would be interested in having your guest post if I don’t know how you write or what ideas you have?”.

Sometimes the person will include the title of the guest post. Same deal. How can I approve or reject a guest post just by looking at the title?

Sure, I could reply explaining this to the person, but why waste my time?

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18 Responses to “The Two Biggest Guest Blogging Mistakes You Can Make”

  • Daniel

    Does sound a bit rude to apply for a guest post without addressing the Blog owner by name.

    As mentioned in other comments above, a quick read of the “Guest Posting Guidelines” should have cleared up any misunderstandings.

  • Anton Acojido

    Laid out a good example! Dealing with the blog owner is the first thing to do, I know there are benefits in guest posting but relationship is important to be build first. First impression matters, and it’s really important to know who exactly the people you will share your thoughts with.

  • Anshul

    This is funny. Love the bit where “John Doe” has already made the assumption that he has got the writing gig: “Please let me know and we’ll get moving”

  • Max Monic

    Great post..

    Usually I will contact the blow owner including half of the completed guest post so that they can verify the quality.

    It works great for me.

  • Stephanie


    Thanks for the info. That is an example of what not to do. Why would anyone approve a guest post for just the title alone. That makes not sense. How about the link to their blog? Examples of their writing etc? That’s ike trying to get your book published and not giving you manuscript to the editor.

    Thanks again for the info,

  • aatif

    I think i made this mistakes in my last blog .. Just approved lot of posts of guest authors .. Now i won’t accept this type of post thanks for sharing your tip

  • Jeny

    the second one is awesome… lol .. die laufing 😀 great job by the way 😉

  • Jai Catalano

    I used to send out submissions as an actor and I made it a point to stay on topic and not cut and paste a well written email I had prepared. Yes some of it was relevant but I was able to book a lot more work because I was specific in the content and I always started with the persons real name.

    Dear Daniel.

  • Geoff

    Hey Daniel, Absolutely right about kicking out posts that are addressed to Sir or Madam…those are ridiculous. My name is written in big letters on the side of my blog. If you don’t take the time to notice that, it’s going to be a crappy post.

    That said, I actually prefer to get a topic idea before I receive the actual post. I think it’s a little presumptuous of a guest blogger to send a whole post and assume I’ll run it. It also makes me think they are blasting out the same post to dozens of blogs and it hasn’t been customized for my site. But when they solicit my feedback and I give them approval, I feel like I’ll get higher quality.

    Of course I don’t get anywhere near the volume of requests that you do, so I’m sure I would change my stance and ask for the full post up front if I needed to improve my efficiency.

  • Tushar@BloggersEthics

    I received a guest post request asking I am interested in writing a guest post. I have to ask him what is the post. It is not that big a turn off but surely something that takes extra time, one extra mail

  • Money space

    Hi Daniel, thanks for this, everybody in the blogging world seems to be advising to get into guest blogging, and I’ve had a couple of requests recently, but I should really start writing some to send out to others, and make sure to get their name! Kathey

  • Jamie Northrup

    Hey Daniel,

    Do you want my guest post? lol just kidding.

    I usually follow both those rules, but was wondering how you stood on another, lets say my post is time sensitive (about an event or date), and I write this needs to be published before x date, is that something that you as a blog owner doesn’t like or is it fine and you just discard it if you happen to see it after the date?

  • Anon

    I always get people who write “Hi Mate, can i post this article” Then when I don’t post it they get upset and send me “Hi Mate” emails every week. It makes me feel uncomfortable that they don’t realise I’m a woman.

  • Amandah

    I do receive ‘guest’ requests that begin with Dear Sir or Madam or Dear Blog Owner. I’m not sure why people still use these outdated greetings.

    I prefer to have guest bloggers send me links to their blogs/websites. It’s easier to review someone’s writing versus having them send me a guest post in the email or as an attachment.

  • Janet Barclay

    I don’t necessarily agree that you should send the whole post at the inquiry stage. You may be approaching several blog owners, and if you’re offering exclusivity (which ideally you should), you won’t want to submit the same post to multiple blogs. Also, you’ll likely want to tailor your content to that particular blog’s audience, and to take the time to do that only to find out they’re not interested isn’t very productive.

    I guess that’s why it’s important to post guidelines for guest bloggers, to let them know what is expected – including whether they should submit the post initially or wait to find out if we’re even considering using it.

  • Irfan

    lol Whoever the person was but sending just the ‘Title’ is insane. A big lol to them 😀

  • jorge jacobo

    Just the title of the post! ha ha that’s funny! 😀

  • Ibrahim Kamrul Shafin

    To Daniel:

    Thank you very much for the tip. As I need to do a lot of guest posting for our new blog, I find the post really helpful.

    To The Readers:

    I emailed Daniel asking different questions, and I got good replies from him. He is a real genius. Try to learn from him the more you can.

    Anyway, Thanks,

Comments are closed.