Hi, it’s yet another time for our community timeout. However, instead of throwing a topic open for our general discussion as we normally do, today I’m bringing in a friend who I regard as a maestro when it comes to guest blogging. With the interest content marketing is generating amongst businesses online today, I think this is a topic that will be of interest to us all.
Of course, this is my first ever interview here on the Web Income Journal and I'm hoping that you will not only enjoy it but also gain some insights from it.
Our guest today is Michael Chibuzor, a web content writer who has written quite a number of guest posts and has been featured on most popular blogs. I’m very sure that most of you may have met him somewhere around the blogosphere.
WARNING: Every line from this interview has something you wouldn't want to miss. So, commit yourself to read through this very carefully. Skipping through it will only deprive you of the nuggets of wisdom hidden within!
And so, let’s get on with the show!
Chadrack: Hi Michael, it’s really a pleasure to have you as my first guest on the Web Income Journal’s interview series. And so, let’s begin by meeting you. Who is Michael Chibuzor?
Michael: Firstly I must say, I’m excited to be here. I’m sure you know me too well but for the sake of those who don’t know much about me, my name is Michael Chibuzor. My blog is contentmarketingup.com. I started my writing journey online in 2007, during the Bum marketing era. You know about it, right? Ok, I later realized that using tricks on Google would only result in pain, over time and so, I made a decision in 2010 to make a change. I hope that is enough for an introduction. Lol!
Chadrack: Yea, that’s great to know. I was sometime into the bum marketing of a thing also. I only changed strategies when article directories like Ezinearticles.com changed their policies and stopped allowing direct links to affiliate websites. Also I discovered that having a website of your own where you can build your own list was better than linking direct to affiliate products. That was when I built my first website sometime in 2006. It's really interesting that you were also involved in bum marketing.
Ok, Michael, I’ve known you for some time now and I can say one thing about you and that is, you are very passionate about guest blogging. Can you let us in why you are so this passionate about it?
Michael: I love this question Chadrack. I discovered the power of guest blogging in 2011, and dived into it wholeheartedly.
As I write this, guest blogging is the only strategy I’ve used so far to grow a successful blog. I’m not very active on social media networks like many other bloggers. In my first 3 months of starting my blog (i.e. contentmarketingup.com), I was able to land my first client through guest blogging!
I was so excited, at the time, that I was yelling at the top of my voice. Lol!
And you know what? Guest blogging has improved my organic traffic and off-page links as well. In fact, I’ve benefited so much from guest blogging that all I can say is, if a system works for you, FOCUS your entire energy on it and become a cognitive expert. That’s the key!
Chadrack: Hmm, great to hear that. Now, let’s go back again to when you first got started with guest blogging. What was it that really motivated you?
Michael: Okay, let me see what really motivated me… All right I got it. I first came into contact with a content marketing blog – copyblogger.com. One faithful morning, I visited the blog and read a fabulous guest post that changed my perspective about article marketing.
I saw the number of comments that a single post got. And I did realize that the author (a guest blogger) was making a lot of money as well. You know one thing? I was broke man… I needed a saving grace. And so, the kind of money I could earn if I do it heartily was my first motivation. Second, I was also motivated by an excellent spirit (The Holy Spirit).
Chadrack: That’s really an honest way to put it. You know some people really believe you shouldn’t be motivated by the money! Lol!
Anyway, let’s try and be specific now. Can you remember how many guest posts you have written so far?
Michael: Wow…! This is serious. I’ve written a lot of guest posts for clients and for my own blogs. The total I’ve written so far is 531 quality guest posts. (75% published in A-list blog, 20% published in B-list blogs and 5% on fresh blogs). See where I shared my 531 published posts and lessons.
Guest Blogging Challenges and How to Overcome Them!
Chadrack: Wow! 531? Hmm, that’s really serious. Now, from my own experience and from what I’ve gleaned from other bloggers' experiences, time management is a major issue with bloggers. How do you as a blogger, running a couple of your own blogs, find the time to write so many guest posts?
Michael: Trust me, time is precious. If you waste your time in the early hours of the day, you’ll desperately struggle to get it. So, what I do is simple. When I wake up in the morning, and set out to work, I don’t check my email or try to see who is on Skype. What I do is just write, write, write and write until I’ve written 3 guest posts (1000+ words count each). I practiced this for 4 months, nonstop.
Despite the time constraint, I still discipline myself to write for other blogs. Now listen to this: there can never be any ideal time to write. You’ve got to plunge yourself into it. Seriously, I write like a maniac. I don’t waste time on Twitter or Facebook, I just write and that’s why my success has been tangible. Please, don’t get me wrong, social media marketing can work for you, when you learn the tenets. Without a thorough grasp of the pros and cons, it’s a time waster.
Chadrack: Yea, I do agree with you on that. Social media without a strategy can be a real time waster! But let's move on.
Hmm, let's see, apart from this time management issue which from all indication you have disciplined yourself to overcome, do you have any other challenges as a guest blogger? And if so, can you tell us which is the biggest and how you have been able to handle that also?
Michael: No, not at all. If you’re truly passionate about what you’re doing, everything come to you like brushing your teeth! Most times, you’d feel like taking a nap, but you must brush your teeth. Writing is my hobby, my passion and the thoughts I think. Sorry, but I want to stress that writer’s block doesn’t exist, except in our imagination. You can kill writer’s block forever, by reading and writing – that’s the only permanent cure to it. NO OTHER CHALLENGES WHATSOEVER!
Guest Blogging and Content Marketing – the Connection!
Chadrack: Hmm, another interesting one there; “Writer’s block doesn’t exist, except in our imagination!” I wonder how many of our readers will agree with you there. Lol!
But frankly, I think I also want to agree with you there. As a writer myself, I want to agree that we are really the ones who create what we regard as writer’s block because when you allow the weakness of the body to overrule your mind, then you would have set up blocks that will cut off the inspiration. I can attest to this from experience.
Alright, let’s look at this guest blogging thing in a wider perspective. At the moment there is a buzz amongst online businesses about content marketing. What advantages do you think guest blogging has as a content marketing tactic?
Michael: Hmm, the truth is, content marketing is already taking the web by storm.
And guest blogging goes beyond getting traffic and backlinks. It’s the perfect brand builder. In fact, I no longer write guest posts for traffic or backlinks, but I do it to push my brand to the top. I use guest blogging to build a formidable portfolio. Sure, in the process of building my brand, the traffic and backlinks, happen automatically.
You would recall that my earlier domain name (blast4trafficnow.net) was all about content marketing. But when I realized how much profit I was missing, I quickly registered a new domain name and did a 301 redirect to the new one – contentmarketingup.com.
And something extraordinary began to happen. Prospects began to contact me for content marketing advice. Overnight, I became a consultant. So, guest blogging is a great tactic for pulling down your content marketing walls and moving on to success!
Chadrack: Wow! You know I’ve also analyzed the potentials in guest blogging and have come to the same conclusion that it is the perfect brand builder. You remember I did a blog series on guest blogging sometime ago? It was because I truly believe that guest blogging can be done better than what many are doing today.
Right now, for my web content writing service blog, I’m putting finishing touches to a special guide on how e-commerce sites can use guest blogging to push their online visibility and improve their brand awareness. So, your describing guest blogging as the perfect brand builder is truly confirmation for me that I’m not progressing in error!
Alright, Michael just want to ask this, seeing how passionate you’ve spoken about content marketing, do you encourage businesses to be more involved with it?
Michael: Read my lips. Every marketer who wants to make her website a go-to resource for her target audience should be involved with content marketing from the word go. To be more specific, I recommend that they start with guest posting first, and then diversify to video marketing, Infographic, podcasting and so on.
How to Choose Blogs to Guest Post on!
Chadrack: Ok, now Michael, I’m sure most of our readers would love to have you briefly tell us how you decide on the blogs to guest blog on? Are there some certain criteria?
Michael: It depends on your blogging objective. Now when I started guest blogging, every blog was my target; I like to call them the A-list (PR 4 – PR 8 Active blogs), the B-list (PR 2 – PR3) and the C-list (PR 0 – PR1).
If you want targeted traffic and quality backlinks, focus on A-list. If you want to diversify your links and make it natural, combine A-list blogs and B-list.
But I’ve made a decision to stick with only the top blogs. My advice to marketers who are getting into guest blogging is to have the confidence. Believe me, the same creativity and hard work that it takes to get an article accepted on B-list blogs is the same thing for authority blogs.
Don’t believe most of the lies online. Guest blogging isn’t difficult once you know the audience you’re writing for.
The Guest Blogger's Mindset!
Chadrack: Ok, Michael, there is one area I believe our esteemed readers will want to have you talk about also, and that is the issue of mindset as a guest blogger. What should be the mindset of a guest blogger? Do you think this is really important for succeeding as a guest blogger?
Michael: Haven't I touched on mindset in this interview? Yes, I said something about confidence. Now listen, every step we take online isn’t accidental. It’s well orchestrated in the mind. Whether we accept it or not, our mindset can make or mar us.
If you want to succeed as a guest blogger, you’ve got to feed your mind. You’ve got to plant seeds of value, seeds that are evergreen wherever you go. Don’t allow inferiority complex to take over.
On the 23rd of February, 2012, I realized that fear was killing my business gradually. I was afraid to pitch guest post ideas to popular blogs. The mere thoughts of writing for authority blogs made me want to puke. I thought I wasn’t qualified. But I was WRONG.
Let nothing stop you. It’s your choice. If you want to get featured at problogger, freelanceswitch or copyblogger, just do it. The worst answer you could get is, “No!”
If that happens, cheer up and start again. If you fail, stand up tall and do it again, and again, and again. In the real sense of it, “NO” doesn’t discourage, it challenges you to become better. That’s your mindset pushing you beyond limits. Go for it.
Chadrack: Oh, Michael it’s been a wonderful time. I’m very sure that our readers have gleaned some nuggets of wisdom and useful information from you. Thanks so much for your time. We look forward to having you some other time. Stay blessed!
Over to you: And so, dear friends I’m sure you’ve heard Michael Chibuzor very well there. Did you learn anything from this interview? Is there any idea expressed that you did not agree with? Is there something expressed in the interview that you want to comment on? Whatever is your take, share with us in your comments below.
And please, I’m sure you will want to help promote this post by sharing it with your friends and online connections. May the law of karma work for you as do so!