One way you can tell your blog is becoming successful is that you start to get job offers from people who’ve seen your blog posts.
If you’ve set up your niche blog right — you’ve got a ‘hire me tab,’ your design is clean, you write great headlines, your posts are scannable and stick to your topic — it impresses readers that you get how to do this.
You start to get comments, and people share your posts
Then, some of those readers realize they’d like you to work this magic on their blogs, too.
That goes double if you guest post on any of the big-name blogs.
Sometimes, these offers are great — they pay well and/or will put you in front of a large, new audience. One of the first offers I got was for three posts a week at $100 per, on a site that gets 1 million views a month. The exposure there got me even more clients.
While blogging isn’t the best-paid type of business writing out there, the advantage here is the steady, recurring income. With a few paid blogging clients, you start each month with some nice revenue pre-booked.
Sounds great, hmm? Don’t get too excited yet.
Not all blogging offers are legit
Just because someone offers you a bit of money to blog for them doesn’t mean you should jump at it.
An increasing number of scam artists and self-promoters are getting wise to blogging as an avenue for promoting their stuff. Often, they’d like you to do that in ways that are unethical or at the very least in a gray area.
I got one of these reach-outs in the past week. It sounds great on the face of it. Here’s the email I got (names have been ommitted to avoid promoting the culprits’ site):
I came across your blog and wanted to get in touch and ask if there is anything you could do to help us get our new guest blogging platform off the ground – <sitename>.
I see that you’ve written for some well known sites and what I have mind is coming up with some post ideas that can include a reference to <sitename>, and getting these published on top sites (your byline).
We might also need some help with content for our own blogs and would be interested to hear what you charge for ghost writing posts.
Just to parse this out a bit, this prospect is asking me to write some guest posts for top blogs like Copyblogger or Problogger in which I just happen to mention their new site. Just drop it in, as if I’m not getting paid by this site to promote their URL.
Anytime you have a paid relationship that you fail to disclose, it’s like you’re lying to your audience.
This is unethical
It’s right up there with failing to disclose affiliate links you put in posts, where you earn a commission if people buy.
These sort of moves put your reputation as a blogger at risk.
Your reputation is all you’ve got. It’s everything in the world of online business.
If you’ve managed to build relationships with some of the top blogs online — blogs that give you huge exposure and bring you new readers and customers — why on earth would you risk that for a few hundred bucks from some client?
Talk about short-sighted thinking.
Sleazebags who reach out about this have figured out how precious these relationships with big blogs are. Instead of building a successful blog and then pitching big blogs, they’re hoping to ride your coattails in the door right away.
They could give a rip about what that might do to your reputation and how it might kill your own blog.
I couldn’t say no to this guy fast enough. I’m betting his “we need ghost-blogging help, too” line is just a ruse to get writers more interested and thinking it’s a bigger-money gig.
I’m never risking the reputation I’ve built to promote some new online platform I’ve never even heard of.
Once those big blogs figured it out, I’d probably never get to post for them again.
No amount of cash is going to make this worth your while.
Have you gotten scammy paid-blogging offers? Leave a comment and let us know what you’ve seen.