Guest blogging can be very beneficial to all parties involved. The blog owner can effectively get relevant content for his or her blog without having to pay for it and the guest blogger has the opportunity to reach an entirely new audience, opening up chances to build up backlinks, add people to lists or even directly promote a product or service. A big part of the challenge is connecting the right blog owners with the right guest bloggers.
Calling itself a “community of guest bloggers,” Guest Crew is effectively a marketplace where guest bloggers can post up the articles that would like to see published and blog owners can seek out the relevant content that they’d like to share with their readers. Let’s get started with the review and see how this whole system works.
Bloggers and Blog Owners
Both blog owners and guest bloggers can sign up for a free account with Guest Crew in a matter of seconds. All you have to do is choose a username and password, then confirm your e-mail address.
What’s interesting is that if you are the blog owner looking for free content, Guest Crew can faciliate that. There is absolutely no cost to you, as you can apply and publish the guest posts for free. That being said, the process is not completely automatic, because you must first “apply” for the particular content that you’d like to publish. If the guest blogger approves, then you’re good to go.
On the guest blogger side of the equation, however, there is a cost involved. You have to buy “coins” ahead of time. They work out to $1 each or you can buy a batch of 100 for the slightly discounted price of $90. Each time you upload an article to the site, it will cost you one coin. And this does not guarantee that a blog owner will come along and ask to publish it.
The Forum Community
In addition to the main marketplace where the articles are made available for blog owners to publish, Guest Crew also has a set of forums where members can freely interact with one another.
There is a main section for general chat and for talking about business, as well as sections to ask for a free push on social media or to ask for some cross promotion opportunities. There is also a buy/sell forum where you can buy and sell content, buy and sell websites, buy and sell services and so on.
The forum is far from the main focus of Guest Crew, but it is there as an added bonus for active members.
Browsing the Article Gallery
The real meat and potatoes of Guest Crew is located in the Articles Gallery. To access this, you sign into your account, hover your mouse over the “Articles” link near the top of the page and choose Articles Gallery. I would have liked to see a more prominent link to this, perhaps as one of the main navigational tabs instead.
Once inside the article gallery, you can sift through the different categories of articles, like sports, food, green living, business and education, lifestyle or technology. All the articles are listed here, along with some basic information about each piece. You can see the title, the total number of words, the user rating, and the tags.
Naturally, the full article is not publicly posted here; it would be too easy for someone to scrape it and spin it if that were the case. You do get a brief description though, as well as a short excerpt to give a sense of voice and writing style. On the flip side, if you would like to request a specific article, you can do that through the Article Requests Gallery instead.
As mentioned, if you are the guest blogger, then it costs you one “coin” for each article you upload, bearing in mind that the coins you purchase are non-refundable. They can be donated to other members though.
The $500 Cash Prize Contest
To help grow the user base, for both site owners and guest bloggers, Guest Crew has put together a $500 cash prize contest. You have to enter before the end of July and then you have until the 15th of August to promote your posts. The winner is not being chosen randomly.
Instead, what they’re asking you to do is to write a post on your own blog to promote the contest, join Guest Crew, get active on the forum, and promote your post across social media channels and wherever else. The judge, Brian Belfitt from Blog Engage, will award points based on how you do and that’s how he’ll choose the winner.
You can enter the contest and find full details on how to enter via the official contest thread in the Guest Crew forums.