There are two sides of the fence here. Sometimes I feel this way: “This is my blog and I don’t want anyone else soiling the content or what I’m all about.”
I’ve gotten over that.
I advocate guest posting and clearly, if you’re a reader here, you see that I host a good amount.
There are many reasons why guest posting is a win-win. I like to think of my blog as a destination where people can learn about a variety of topics, include thought provokers and ideas from not just me but other intelligent writers. A mixed bag or medley, as I like to say.
I call blogging narcissist (it is) but I also blog to hear and connect with others. Guest blogging (here on my blog and also when I’m a guest blogger) has been one of the best avenues for me to connect with other bloggers, meet new audiences and readers, learn new ideas, disagree with their thoughts but still create an op-ed environment and to meet new friends and contacts.
Let me paint a picture with a pretty example: When Matt started his guest blog grand tour, I asked him to write about something he has never written about: his relationship and being engaged in his early 20’s. He produced a great post, which drew readers I had never seen before and a lengthy, engaging discussion (win for Grace). Through the comments, people were intrigued with the topic and loved hearing this new side of his life (win for Matt). Dimpled smiles all around.
Sometimes, I disagree with my guest blogger. Sometimes I’m on the exact same page. I’ve hosted people from around the world, my Dad, and started The Inspiration Series, over a year ago, that led way to many friendships and many subsequent series that I was then part of after. Guest posts likely produce a healthy debate, someone walks away having learned or met someone new, subscribed to a new blog or is inspired to write a supplemental post on their own blog.
That is my philosophy for hosting guest blogs and in writing my own guest post for others: there’s always something new to learn.
With that being said, I am cognizant of who guest posts here. Sometimes I will go weeks without a guest post or sometimes I’m too busy and just don’t feel like it’s the right time to include a guest post. I’ve had brands ask me to guest post and write about their product on my blog – I’m not here to solicit and I’ve firmly stood by saying “no” each time.
I do appreciate that readers come to read my writing first and foremost, but I also want to offer work that is well-rounded. Sometimes that includes collaborating. There are times when I do have to say no (to hosting and/or writing). It’s your right to choose. It’s not just anyone off the street, but my ear is always open to hear a guest post idea.
In short, I feel like it adds enriching content and like Ryan Stephens says, “It’s silly of me to think that you could learn everything from me when there are so many smart people out there.”
So what’s your guest posting philosophy? Do you allow guest posts? Abhor them? What are your thoughts?