As I hope you know by now, content marketing (creating useful content that speaks to the needs of your ideal clients) and targeted outreach (introducing yourself in a hyper-personalized way to tell them why you're a perfect fit to help them) are two of the 3 most effective marketing tools for creative professionals (and anyone else who is marketing intangible services especially).
(The 3rd is "strategic networking" and I explain all of this in detail, with lots of excellent examples, in The Simplest Marketing Plan 3.0.)
But when you put targeted outreach and content marketing together, you sometimes get "guest blogging" -- which is when you reach out, not to your ideal prospects, but instead to trade associations and others who are already reaching your niche and, in a hyper-personalized way, you offer your content as a "guest blog post" or yourself as a guest on a podcast.
For example, this blog post, Why I Made Myself Get Out and Virtualize, written by a copywriter I work with and posted on the blog of his niche, allows him to show what he knows about this market and, of course, that he can write. This is one of the things that has made him the "go-to" copywriter in that industry.
So if you want to become a guest blogger, here's what you can say when you pitch an idea to a trade association -- most of which are hungry (not to say desperate) for content, by the way.
Here are the 3 things to include in your outreach message, followed by an example of a sample message:
- Why you chose them and why your content would be of interest to their audience (i.e. readers, listeners or viewers).
- Topic ideas (at least 3 to choose from) for the content you could contribute.
- A bit about you and why you're a perfect resource for their audience.
You can also include a one-pager with highlights about you and a call to action, in the form of a simple question they can easily answer, like, "Can I send you an example?" or "Are you looking for content contributors?"
Here's an actual example from someone who offers SEO services:
Subject line: Pitching myself for your podcast
I listened to your latest podcast on email marketing and loved it! I would like to pitch myself as a possible guest. Here’s why:
All small business owners know that ranking on page 1 of Google search is essential, but most have no idea how to do it. And in this economic climate, without a strong SEO campaign, small businesses will not survive.
I’m the founder and owner of (Company), a (location)-based (business type) with a specialty in (your sweet spot or special skills).
I would love to be a guest on an upcoming episode of your podcast. Here are just a few questions I can answer for your audience:
- Question or topic #1
- Question or topic #2
- Question or topic #3
Find more about me here (link to your web site).
What do you say? Would this conversation/content be of interest to your audience? If so, let's talk.
See how easy?