Many bloggers earn an income through paid posting and others spend money promoting their blogs the same way. So I thought a piece about getting the most from paid posts would be useful – for advertisers to get the best and bloggers to be aware of some of the checks.

Home Page
It is not enough to just create a post that is hidden from archives, categories and the home page. You want a paid post exposed to the home page, so when you check the post also make sure that it is on the home page of the blog.

The problem – well 24 hours on the home page is considered to be fair game. So you must review all posts within this time. If the post isn’t there then you can reject it or ask for it to be placed there. After 24 hours this is a lot more difficult.

If you find a post not on the home page for 24 hours, maybe even raise it with the network.

Making It Found
Getting your paid post on the home page means home page visitors see it, but what about search engines? On a PR0 blog, Google might only visit once per month. It doesn’t take many posts to make sure that hardly any are found there. So it can be better value to pay for a PR2+ blog, where Google should come visiting at least most weeks for a guarantee that the post will be found.

Be Social
You, the advertiser, can help the blogger and your post! If you haven’t already done so, sign up to stumble, digg and other such sites.

For a couple of very good posts use social bookmarking techniques of stumble, digg, facebook, Twitter and so on to share the post. This can increase the exposure of your post as well as helping the blogger’s traffic.

Especially if the blogger displays most popular posts this could even ensure that every page of the blog links to your post giving it plenty of PR, whilst making your post seen by many people.

Link Saturation
The reason many bloggers try to hide paid posts is that they are afraid of Google punishing them. But in my experience of guest posts on blogs, you can easily get away with 2 or 3 links per post. But, there is a condition.

There has to be plenty of content per post. A 30 word post even with 1 link will be highly saturated. In my guest posting experience the posts were all above 450 words, giving a lot lower saturation.

Uninterested Search Engines
Another problem with 30 word posts is that they do not hold search engine’s interest. Some people say 200+ words, others 250+ words are required to make sure a page is cached.

So buy buying even a 100 word post, you are probably not going to see the post cached on the search engines. It might cost more to pay for 200, 300 or even 400 words, but if it means that the post is cached and the link saturation is reduced, the value is increased many times over. It is well worth paying more.

Off Topic
Does a marketing blogger really want to write about bridesmaid’s dresses? Worse still, do the readers want to read about them?

Choose blogs that are remotely on target, or at least where the blogger has a chance of being able to weave your theme into their theme.

This reduces the number of eligible blogs, but these will have readers that are interested and if you pay them to write 300 – 500 words, the search engines will love the posts.

Is The Blog Worth It?
Before you make the offer, glance through the blog and look at the writing. Does it look as though they will have an audience that is relevant to you?

Favourite good posts and maybe ask them for another post in a month or two.

In summary, social bookmark the best of the posts; check within 24 hours that posts are appearing on the home page of the blog; pay for less posts on higher ranking blogs with longer posts (at least 200 words) and stay roughly on topic.

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