As an SEO and keen guest-blogger, I read with great interest over the weekend, an article written by Mike Hall, Senior Online Marketing Executive at Coast Digital.
The post on Mike White's blog, entitled 'Blogger Outreach - To be (anonymous) or not to be (anonymous)?', got me thinking about the various pros and cons of anonymity when guest blogging, and whether it has a place in online marketing today.
It has always been a contentious issue for guest-bloggers and SEOs as to whether being totally up front with your outreach efforts performs better than creating specific aliases for various clients, or to suit the blog that you're reaching out to. Like Mike, I've always been a fan of the upfront and honest approach and have always reached out to bloggers using my work email address and explaining exactly what it is that my client can add to their blog.
Google Authorship Mark-up
I think it's particularly important in a post-Panda/Penguin world to publish legitimate articles that add value to a blog and drive traffic in their own right, rather than just acquiring a link.
The issue faced by agency-side SEOs is how to approach outreach for multiple clients in multiple business sectors. The best way to attack this is to have a point of contact within your client's organisation who is happy to be the 'face' of the company and have posts published under their name. This tactic not only enables the publication of guest posts for the client, but raises the profile of key individuals within their industry.
Google's introduction of it's Authorship Mark-up has lead to the concept of AuthorRank, whereby an article may rank better in Google's results based upon the strength/authority of the author. Therefore, as part of my outreach strategy, creating individual author accounts for my clients has proved successful, by adding a face and author to what would otherwise be an anonymous post with limited authority.
I'd be very keen to find out what you think of my approach, and whether you agree with Mike's article. It's a topic that will continue to cause debate in the SEO community, but I think the days of anonymity are over.