Write for The Guitar Answer Guy – Guest Posting Guidelines
Updated: August 14, 2017
Are you a writer/blogger interested in writing a guest post for The Guitar Answer Guy blog? Sweet! But before you fill out the form at the bottom of this page, I do have some rules and guidelines you should be familiar with before you pitch your idea (please don’t send me full/finished blog posts). These guidelines ensure my readers are getting the best, most helpful content possible, but are also to ensure you and I don’t violate any of Google’s rules and get ourselves penalized.
What You Get in Return (a.k.a. “payment”)
All guest posts will include your photo, bio, and a link (“dofollow”) back to the URL of your choosing. If you’re a blogger, you already understand how important these kinds of backlinks are. That said, I do not offer monetary payment for guest posts at this time. If this blog ever starts earning enough money, I’ll definitely start offering monetary payment for guest posts.
Readers of The Guitar Answer Guy blog tend to have some combination of these traits:
- Beginner to intermediate guitarists.
- Guitarists who want to learn how to do their own basic guitar care and maintenance.
- Guitarists with a specific technical problem or question related to guitar care and maintenance.
- Primarily in the United States where English is their first (and usually only) language.
- Aspiring guitarists who haven’t bought a guitar yet, but are looking/shopping for one.
- People who are not guitarists themselves, but are wanting to buy a guitar (or guitar accessories) for someone else.
Types of Topics I’ll Consider
Now that you know a bit about my readers, you should have a better idea of potential topics you could write about. I’ll accept product reviews, top [x] lists, how-to’s, technical articles, etc. I’ll also accept more philosophical and motivational articles too, as long as they’re geared toward beginners. Some topic ideas include:
- Top 5 Ways to Upgrade Your Guitar’s Sound
- Best Acoustic Guitars for Beginners
- Warning: Don’t Use These Products on Your Guitar
- What to do When You Feel Like Giving Up
- Product reviews (see special guidelines)
We’ve all heard the advice: “Don’t write above a 4th grade level.” I disagree, but I’m not looking for a college dissertation here either. At a minimum, I expect you to understand the rules of basic punctuation and grammar, and you should be someone who would generally describes yourself as a writer, blogger, journalist, etc. When you fill out the form below, please include links to other articles you have written.
A few other points to note:
- Minimum word count is 800 words.
- The “ideal” post length is 800 – 1200 words but your post may be longer, if necessary.
- No profanity. Let’s keep the blog Rated PG.
- Scientific or medical claims need to be backed by sources. For example, if your post claims that “playing a musical instrument helps relieve stress” then please provide 1-2 external articles (preferably reputable medical websites, not other blogs) that support this.
Requirements for Product Reviews
I decided to write a special section for this, because I hold product reviews to a much higher standard–a standard I’ve created by writing my own awesome, in-depth product reviews.
I only review products that I have personally tried, and I take my own photos of the products–of unboxing, of me using the products, etc. The best way for you to get a sense of what I require for a product review is to look at a couple I’ve written: Product review ex. 1 and Product review ex. 2
Here’s a high level summary:
- You must have actually used the product you’re reviewing.
- Product must be available on the U.S. Amazon.com store so that readers can read peer reviews and easily purchase the product if they’d like.
- You must include your own, self-shot photos (or screenshots if it’s software) of the product. The more, the better.
- If absolutely necessary, only 1-2 commercial product photos (from the manufacturer) may be used.
- No need to create the infographics. I will create those for you, just provide me with the info, star ratings, etc.
- You are allowed to include other people’s videos, as long as they are relevant and reinforce the review
If none of that worries you and you think you’d like to write an equally awesome product review, definitely reach out to me.
You may not…
- You may not link to your own content/website within the blog post itself. The exception is your bio at the end of the post (see “You may…” section below).
- You may not place affiliate links into your guest post.
- You may include a photo, short bio, and a single link back to a URL of your choosing at the end of the post.
- You may link to other posts on my blog. In fact, bonus points for doing this!
- You may link externally to other relevant content that you do not own (and have not written), but must check with me first for approval.
You must consent to…
- I may add my own links into your article.
- I may add my own affiliate links, banners, or product images into your article.
- I may add images into your article.
You may include images with your article, as long as…
- The images look professional and are of a similar style to those I’ve used in other blog posts.
- The image is your own, original photo, artwork, etc. or you otherwise own the rights/license to use the image and, more importantly, own a license that allows ME to use it as well.
If you submit images with your article, I may ask you to provide proof of the above.
Please do not, under any circumstances, submit an article that is already published somewhere else. Your article should be original and unique–written specifically and only for The Guitar Answer Guy blog. It can not exist somewhere else on the Internet or in print. Likewise, after I have published your article on my blog, you can not publish it anywhere else. Doing so will cause Google to penalize us both for duplicate content.
Your blog post is your intellectual property, and you will be given full credit for the article with a photo, short bio, and a link to a URL of your choosing. However, you can not republish it elsewhere while it is live on The Guitar Answer Guy blog. If you ever wish to do so, you must notify me 2 months in advance of when you would like to publish it elsewhere. That way I can remove it from my blog and take other measures so that neither you nor I incur Google penalties.
I’m not a control freak, but don’t be offended if we go through 1-2 rounds of revisions, especially when it comes to the title of the post.
After your final article is submitted, I may make last-minute corrections if I happen to see a punctuation or spelling error. This is simply because it’s easier for me to just do it on-the-spot rather than asking you resubmit the article every time. I will never make major changes to the article.
How to Submit a Guest Post Idea
I get a lot of automated, spammy, or just downright BAD guest post inquiries. I won’t reply to those–they go directly to the trash. If you’re interested in writing a guest post, here’s what I look for when I receive guest post pitches:
- Decent grammar, punctuation, etc. in the text of the email itself. It probably goes without saying that how you write the email gives me an indication of your writing skill
- Some indication that you’ve at least skimmed a few of my blog posts and/or understand my audience
- Links to 1-2 other guitar-related blog posts or articles you’ve written
- 1-3 blog post ideas (can simply be titles, or can be concepts) that you think you’d like to write for my blog
- Bonus: Include your own website’s URL, social media handles/accounts, etc.
- Bonus: Unique ideas. The Internet doesn’t need another “10 Reasons to Learn Guitar” post
I always respond to guest post inquiries, even if it’s to say “no thanks,” within 7 days. If you don’t hear back from me at all, it’s because you didn’t do something listed in the bullets above.