A brief word about guest articles on Tnooz

Any media brand or blog with a healthy following and strong page rank will get countless requests for guest articles every week.

Pitches are almost always via email (though we have seen quite a few requests come in unsolicited via Skype), and usually follow a similar path as the following:

Hi editor/webmaster/[rarely]Kevin.

I came across your site www.tnooz.com and think it’s awesome. The content is an inspiration to me and the industry and I have been following your work for years.

I wondered if you would publish an article from me on www.tnooz.com? It would 100% original and ideal for your readers. All I ask is for a backlink to a URL of my choice.

Please let me know.

***** ********

Nine times out of ten, such emails find themselves heading straight to the bin. Tell tale signs that it is almost guaranteed to be waste of time are the sender’s email address (exclusively GMail or Hotmail these days), lack of any actual ideas for that guest article, not bothering to look at the name of the recipient and obvious insertion of a link to our site.

But sometimes it is worth seeing what’s on offer, even just to reinforce the belief we have 99% of these emails are absolute nonsense.

Hi ***** ********

Thanks for your interest and kind email. As you might imagine, we get lots of these requests every week, so I suggest you look VERY carefully through our site and send me FIVE draft article ideas, based on what you understand to be our audience and the focus of our coverage.

Cheers!

Kev

Now, such a response from us usually yields radio silence, or one of two replies:

Hi, that’s awesome, please find attached an article on top hotels in Bermuda.

Please let me know when it is live.

Thanks.

*****

Or:

Hi, that’s awesome, do these titles work for you?

  • 101 things to do in Prague
  • What you don’t know about Changi Airport in Singapore
  • Best restaurants in New York City.

Let me know which one you like and I’ll send over immediately.

Thanks,

*****

On the rare occasions that we haven’t already lost the will to live, we might reply:

Hi *****,

I’m not sure whether you read my email about carefully looking through our site, but I do not get the sense that you have done so at all given that we would never write about any of these topics, as we focus on the digital travel economy from a B2B perspective.

Kev

Some emailers are terrifyingly persistent (“I thought your readers might be interested because Prague/NYC/Singapore is awesome”, etc), some are just plain stupid (“What is B2B?”), others clearly haven’t read a word we said in our response (“So will you publish my article?”).

This type of nonsense is a waste of our and their time. Get the pitch right, show some knowledge, don’t do it for marketing or SEO purposes, and we might be interested.

What is particularly irritating are those that realise we use GMail as an email client and then send an instant message weeks later to ask why we haven’t published any of their articles.

Be warned.

So, the bottom line around guest articles is that we will happilyย publish guest articles on Tnooz, and have done so since we launched in September 2009.

But they are done so under the following guidelines:

  • They have to be strategic, offering guidance, analysis or tips about a particular industry issue or following up on a news story.
  • Although we prefer not, some articles can on rare occasions be about a company – some case studies we have published have been fascinating and very useful to the wider readership.
  • Do not expect heaps of links back to content on your own sites (in the byline is the normally the most you will get).
  • Show that you understand our audience and the scope of our coverage.
  • Position yourself as a so-called thought-leader, rather than a sales person, and it will go a long way to getting your article published and, indeed, read.

Shocking as it may seem to some who prefer to hide behind emails and social media, we like people to be a bit old school and pick up the phone to actually have a chat with us about some ideas and what direction the article might take.

Stick to the guidelines above and we might be interested. Use the earlier approach and, sadly, the likelihood of us actually publishing anything are about as remote as Tnooz opening offices in NYC, Prague and Singapore simultaneously.

NB: Guest house image via Shutterstock.

NB2: With inspiration from Grumpy Traveller.

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Kevin May

About the Writer :: Kevin May

Kevin May was a co-founder and member of the editorial team from September 2009 to June 2017.

 

Comments

  1. Mike

    This Is a Great website. LOVe iT!!

     
  2. Happy Hotelier

    Hah and you don’t mind me congratulating you on this very professional Avatar you have today;-)

     
  3. Happy Hotelier

    @Kevin uhm you are keeping the backlink?

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @happy – err, no. ‘Tis gone. ๐Ÿ˜‰

       
  4. Mario Mucalo

    When I first started to read the article I thought “Oh, my God, this is exactly the way my initial e-mail to Tnooz started!”. However, reading further, I noticed that I was not the inspiration for this article.

    I guess that you really must have had a lot of these email last week, so much that they have actually made you complain in public, ha, Kevin?

     
  5. Brandon Dennis

    This kind of marketing outreach makes me twitch. We all understand the value of a backlink, but professional marketers take pride in what they do and put work into their pitches.

    A couple of times a month, I solicit popular blogs or magazines in my industry with the idea of getting an article published with them–as do many online marketers these day. But I take extreme care to court each blog, read their content, engage with the community by commenting (when appropriate) and sharing their content on my social streams, before ever pitching them a story. I make sure I know the names of their editors and that I understand the kinds of things they like to publish. Nothing peeves me much more than someone so lazy that he can’t even learn the name of the person and blog he’s communicating with.

    This isn’t because I’m OCD (well, maybe I am) but simply because I take pride in what I do–as should all marketers. I’m constantly deleting SEO spam comments on our company blog from people who, for some silly reason, still think that backlinks from comments help their SEO. Did they miss the memo on Penguin and Panda? On one of my personal websites, I had to place “meta=noindex, nofollow” on the dynamic header of my forum because I was deluged by forum post spam with backlinks to Chinese websites, dozens of times a day. Even though they gain absolutely no SEO benefit from posting on my forums, they still come and post!

    Hiring an SEO agency to ‘solve’ all of your SEO woes is a tempting thing, because it almost carries with it “magical pill” promises. “Hire me, and I’ll get you to the #1 spot on Google. Hire me and I’ll fix your online reputation.” But these efforts very rarely work because they don’t actually care about your product or your message. They care about your money, and once they have it, they’ll do the cheapest and easiest thing to make it look like they’re working for you, regardless of the actual result–and this usually takes the form of hiring some mechanical fingers for $5 to use Xrunner or other tools to spam forums and blogs with comments and posts with anchor-text optimized backlinks–which actually hurts your SEO.

    This is why I’ve always advised to hire in-house, so that the inbound marketer working for you actually cares about your product, knows the product, knows your value prop and has a lot riding on your success.

    So yeah, this kind of thing strikes a nerve with me.

     
    • Greg Pearcey

      @Brandon you speak the truth. We live in a world were we want to see results instantly, and that is what many business owners expect. When I tell owners that the keywords they want to rank for might take six months to a year or more to rank for, and that for it to be a successful campaign they have to be involved in the process, many decide to go for a quick fix company that’s using SENuke. But it doesn’t bother me……… well maybe a little bit, especially when I see their sites and they’re not doing some fundamental on page SEO! To me SEO is more about building relationships, providing value to your audience, and building a strong foundation for your website than about getting backlinks by any means possible.

      @Kevin I’ve read about guest blogging and the SEO benifits it can bring, I’m not just talking about backlinks, but also the fact that if you do get published on another blog it exposes you to a larger auidence. Which would be nice, but I haven’t pulled the trigger yet to ask, but we I do I’ll pick up the phone first.

      By the way this is the third post I’ve read on your blog today, a few more and you can expect a call/email/skype, or not as I might have found another great article that was worth reading!

       
  6. Aleah | SolitaryWanderer.com

    Aside from those “offers” from questionable SEOs (which I also get occasionally), what I hate more is receiving spammy emails from legitimate companies. Doesn’t the art of communication exist anymore? Where’s the professionalism in sending copy/pasted emails to people you really want to network with?

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @aleah – yup, very true…

      PRs are often just as bad as the spammy SEO folk.

       
  7. Andrea

    Great article – and brilliant idea to lay it all out and cut down on the churn in your inbox. There’s something to be said about smartly approaching any partner, specifically in the media, and understanding your audience. It’s simply lazy and inefficient to do it any other way. I’m planning to use this piece to explain media and influencer relations down the road – thanks for the great resource!

    -Andrea

     
  8. greg

    Brilliant! or is AWESOME more appropriate? your repitious use of that word makes me wonder if the majority of the offenders could be lumped in a single geographical locale? ๐Ÿ™‚

     
  9. Alastair McKenzie

    I get around two of those a day.

    I analyse & carefully consider them as a future investment for my site for about as long as a banker does a share transaction – IE. I delete them in just under 3 nanoseconds.

     
  10. Psycho

    It’s much easier to get trackback link from Tnooz, I guess (for example, see trackback for this article). ๐Ÿ™‚

    And I have a question about your Tlabs project – how hard is it to get covered there? Do you receive many emails from showcase candidates?

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @psycho (nice name!) – thx for the comment…

      Re TLabs – mail me.

       
      • Psycho

        Heh, thanks for noticing my name – maybe some day I’ll tell how it appeared. ๐Ÿ™‚
        By the way, send guys who want to send b2c guest articles to info@travelatus.com – we accept guest posts on our “Guide” part. Although, it’s not as cool as Tnooz, of course. ๐Ÿ™‚

         
        • Kevin May

          Kevin May

          @psycho – thx!

          “itโ€™s not as cool as Tnooz, of course”… neither is shameless plugging in comments sections…

          hehe ๐Ÿ˜‰

           
          • Psycho

            Em, sorry, didn’t understand your point about “shameless plugging”. Please, forgive my stupidity – English isn’t my native language. in fact. ;(

             
  11. Pete Meyers

    Cripes, there goes my “Cheapest hotels in Paris loved by Justin Bieber” pitch.

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @pete – yeah, sorry about that ๐Ÿ™‚

       
  12. Jenn Seeley

    Know what this makes me want to do? Submit a proposal to write a post for you! Think I’m kidding? Stay tuned for an email (not from gmail or hotmail or any other free mail) full of awesome that you just can’t deny ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Truth. Oh, and this was a brilliant idea to hopefully combat some of the time wasting that you clearly encounter all too often.

    Jenn Seeley – Radian6, Community Engagement

     
  13. Andy Ryan

    Kev – I reckon you should request that TechCrunch publish this as a guest post of yours ๐Ÿ™‚

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @andy – ha!

      Mashable will publish anything, so I’ll try there ๐Ÿ™‚

       
  14. Olery

    Absolutely agree on the above, Kevin.
    Too bad that most of the people you’re addressing this to, like their email, won’t read this post either.

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @olery – part of the purpose of the post is so that i can quickly send the link to any prospective pitchers ๐Ÿ˜‰

       
      • Olery

        Haha, good idea. I reckon you are OK with us using this link as well? ๐Ÿ˜‰

         
  15. Sam Daams

    I often ask for the site that the link is to go to, and then reply that I’ve forwarded it to Google’s spam team or call them out on Twitter. Any company stupid enough to hire an SEO company like this is going to see their brand headed for the toilet, hopefully sooner rather than later! What kind of idiots outsource their brand like this anyway?

     
    • Kevin May

      Kevin May

      @sam – brutal ๐Ÿ˜‰

       
    • Cornelius Aesop

      I have a canned email response set up to deal with most of the replies, and the fact that I only offer No-Follow links usually ensures radio silence but I like the reporting aspect. I may just add that to my disclaimer. If I may ask where do you go to report the SEO companies?

       
 
 

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