If you want guest bloggers guide them to you. Create a page with directions for guest bloggers. Tell them what you expect, what you want from them and what you will give them in return for the posts you review and accept. My best suggestion is to write out a list of ideas and standards for each of the three points. Then take a look at other sites that accept a lot of guest blog posts, see what they have written for guest bloggers. Use these ideas, adapt them to your own niche and your feelings about content.
Start with what they will get from you. Will you give them an author box which lets them write up a short bio and type in links for their own sites (how many links?). How many links can be included in the post itself. If you are looking for a long post you might give them more links, less links for a short post.
Then tell them what you expect from a guest post. How many words, what sort of content you want for your blog and your readers. Go into detail, give them a good idea of what you want so they can send you a post likely to be accepted by you. Also, when someone asks why their post was not accepted this is going to be your guide to how their content didn’t meet your needs. Add a list of post ideas. These could be things you would write yourself if you had time for the research or more expertise in the niche.
Last of all, the standards you have for the construction of a post. This is basically where you feel a real post with good content begins and a sploggy/ spam or paid content type of post ends. You have to draw your own lines on this. What works for you? What do you feel comfortable posting? How long should the post be? How focused on your niche of blog topic should it be?
The idea for this post came from reading 7 Tips to Attract Guest Bloggers to Your Site at The Blog Herald. I haven’t written my page for guest bloggers yet. Partially because I still don’t want to attract many of them. I still want to be the one who writes my own content here. But, the odd guest post adds flavour. So, I will write a guide soon. It is an easier way to refer prospective guest bloggers to your ‘rules’ versus typing them over and over again in individual emails when someone asks about writing a guest post for you.