I’ve had a lot of guest posters on this blog.
A few of them have been people I knew and wanted to exchange guest posts with.
The majority, however, have been content marketers, who were interested in getting links to their company, campaign, or smuggling ring.
That’s perfectly fine. I know how the game works. You give me a funny post for my audience, I give you some links back to whatever it is you’re promoting (unless it’s porn or instructional videos on how to boil cats).
I get it. In fact, I have a “Be My Guest” page right there in the top menu, specifically for this type of exchange.
There are two ways you can approach me about becoming a guest and getting some links to your blog or website. Both are entirely acceptable.
1) You write me a personal message that shows you’ve read the blog. You suggest a topic that works for Nest Expressed, I publish it and we both do a happy dance on top of a mountain at sunset. I pick the location.
2) You tell me you’re a marketer interested in promoting your stuff on people’s blogs and ask what it takes to be featured on mine. It’s a common SEO strategy and I have no problems with it.
What I do take issue with is dishonest bullshit like this (real email, received yesterday):
Hope you’re doing well!
I’m Andrea Jayson and am an avid reader and blogger, a passion which I think we share.
Your blog “nest-expressed.com” is by far the most interesting I have come across in the recent past, hands down!
The writer in me is yearning to write a piece for your blog, maybe around 400-500 words, or whatever you are okay with. In return I expect one clean back link to my website.
Awaiting your reply.
Thanks for the cookie-cutter copy-paste query, Andrea. It must have taken you a lot of effort to insert “nest-expressed.com” into the [name of site] spot in your ready-made template. Maybe if you didn’t add the generic “most interesting I have come across in the recent past, hands down” line I’d have actually considered you. Instead you sound like my comment spam.
I’m a fair man, so I wanted to give Andrea a way to work around her shitty approach. Here’s what I wrote:
Which post was your favourite? The one about fictional robot goblins? I really like that one myself!
Andrea now had the opportunity to actually open my blog, pick any random short post, skim it and tell me she liked my writing about fart-blocking underwear and creepy dolls. Instead, this was her response:
Shall I Send you the topic for which I want to write the article.
No, Andrea. That is not what you shall do. You shall read the words that are contained within my email. They are not encrypted. My response:
You didn’t like my robots post? I liked that one!
What did you find the most interesting about my blog, to make you so enthusiastic about it? If it’s not robot goblins, then what?
That’s your second freaking chance to make an effort, Andrea. Pick one post, make me believe that you give a shit. But Andrea wrote this:
I have read that post, It is nice.
That’s funny, seeing how I haven’t ever written a post about robot goblins. Side note: I should really write a post about robot goblins.
Well done, Andrea. You went from template lies to custom-tailored lies. All because you’re too lazy to actually visit the blog. My final email to Andrea read:
Awesome! Which part of these three was your favourite:
1) The one where I talk about their wacky mutation
2) Where goblins fight space lizards
3) The part where Danny DeVito appears and pretends to be an alien.
The third one is my personal favourite, but I like to know what my readers enjoy.
Maybe we can work together indeed!
Sadly, Andrea didn’t respond. Maybe she finally understood that I was mocking her and learned the error of her ways. More likely, she figured our correspondence took more time and energy than she was willing to expend. After all, you can spam dozens of people in the time it takes to write a proper email.
Is there a moral to that story?
Yes: don’t fucking lie! If you do, don’t continue to lie when you’re called out.
I don’t care if you don’t read my blog and only want links based on its page rank, or whatever. If you can deliver a funny post, I consider it a fair exchange. But if you write fake, see-through stuff like “your blog is amazing and I love everything about it”, prepare to back that up or, even better, cut that shit out. Otherwise you’re being an unprofessional asshole and wasting everyone’s time.
Don’t be an asshole, please.