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Manta’s Expert Contributor Guidelines

How to submit your column to Manta’s Experts section and share your advice with small business owners

Thank you for your interest in joining us as a Manta contributor. Manta’s Experts section showcases industry experts’ knowledge and advice on the topics that affect small business owners every day.

Content Submission Guidelines

 Experts articles should be informative and useful, and serve an educational purpose for Manta’s audience of small business owners. Keep your writing simple and your ideas clear. Your contribution should be easily digestible for a new business owner yet interesting for an individual with more experience.

When providing a submission, we prefer that you email us with a Word document, as it helps with tracking editing changes and formatting during the editorial process. We do accept Google docs, but please ensure that we have editing privileges. If you send your post in a Google doc, please also make sure you attach all images to the email as well.

We plan our content three to six weeks in advance. If your post is accepted, it is possible that it may not be published for up to a month, though posts are almost always published within a couple weeks. We always strive to let you know your posting date, the link, and any changes to the posting date.

Our Audience

Manta content visitors are the owners of very small businesses. They typically have five employees or fewer; frequently they are one-person shops. They are located in suburban or rural areas, and they tend to be service providers (not retailers or restaurateurs). Common industries include plumbing, HVAC, electric, handyman repair and other home services; taxi and trucking; medical, dental and laboratories; and legal.

Length

We don’t have specific post length limits, but we do recommend that your article be at least 500 words in length.  Long-form articles—those over 2,000 words—are read more, shared more, and drive more engagement—meaning your content is read by more people.

Editing

All posts will undergo copyediting. The goal of our editorial process is to maintain your voice yet ensure readability of the article. With that in mind, we may ask you to rewrite portions of the article that require extensive edits. Manta retains the right to edit, modify and adapt your content as we see fit. In most cases, we will ask you to review substantial changes before publishing.

Citations

If you cite any data, quote any sources or cite third-party content you must hyperlink to the source and provide proper attribution. We owe it to our readers to ensure that all data is correct and cited from a reputable source

Your Information

At the end of all guest posts, we include a short bio with the author’s headshot. If you wish to include one, please submit a headshot (as a jpeg or png) and a bio of 75 words or fewer with your article. Your bio can include up to two links to outside content (including a link to your main website or anchor text link to other content), but we reserve the right to omit links if they are overly promotional or irrelevant.

Images

We will handle the sourcing of the main image for your article. However, if you wish to include other images in your article, please submit them in separate email attachment in either a jpeg or png format. These images must have the proper copyright for sharing; you must either own them and give us permission to publish them, or provide the link to the creative commons source. We reserve the right not to publish images or meta data if they do not meet our criteria.

Promoting Products or Services

Manta’s focus is on the education and growth of our readers. It is not a space to promote a product or service. It is a place to showcase your knowledge and gain trust with small business owners. We always allow a link to your website within your biography so readers can learn more about you and your company if they are interested. Contextual hyperlinks are accepted so long as they aid in the comprehension of the article. We reserve the right to edit articles, including removing links, if we feel it is too promotional.

Previously Published Content

 We do not accept content that has been previously published. For SEO purposes, duplicate content can potentially have damaging effects on both domains in which it is shared. If you have a previously published piece of content that you would like to rework to be mostly original, submit a link to the published piece as well as an outline detailing the updates.

Promotion

After your article is published to Manta we will contact you with a link to the page for you to promote. We strongly encourage you to share your contribution with your social followers and include a link to your Manta Experts column on your website or blog. We will also promote your content through our social channels.

Best Practices

Want to really cook with gas? Keep these tips in mind to write content that ranks higher in search engines and is subsequently read and shared more.

  • Take a stand: As an expert, readers are looking to you to give them definitive answers. Sharing strong opinions in your article leads to greater consumption and is shared more, especially with controversial or newsworthy topics.
  • Back it up: Original research lends credibility to your take on a topic. Make sure you use evidence to convince your audience of your argument.
  • Leave no stone left unturned: Long-form content is now king. While it may seem daunting at first, articles longer than 2,000 words drive far more engagement. But don’t pad out the length with fluff; use that space to fully flesh out your idea.
  • Connect the dots: Linking to outside content vastly improves the SEO value, especially if those links are to sites with a strong domain authority. Just make sure that the link is contextual and provides value to the article.

If you have an article ready for submission, please email Manta’s content director for review. We will reach out to you shortly after to let you know if your post has been accepted. Thank you for your interest, we look forward to working with you.