We sit alone, typing into our computers, filling up our blogs with things that we find interesting. But blogging doesn't have to be a solo sport. There are many kindred spirits out there, if you just reach out and connect!
Join a network
One quick way to meet a bunch of bloggers is to join a blogging network. The newest one that comes to mind is the Better Blogger Network, but there are others as well. Some are for bloggers of a certain location, others are just more general. (For example, one that I'm a part of is for people living here in the Pacific Northwest). Some networks are virtual, while others attempt to meet in person once in awhile. Introvert that I am, I haven't actually attended any get-togethers yet, but I like the idea of it.
How do you find these networks? For the ones I've joined, I've sort of just stumbled across them, word-of-mouth style. Some bloggers will have buttons in their sidebar advertising what network they're a part of (a common one I see a lot is Blog Her). Other times, if you watch for Blogger Meet-Up posts on your favorite blogs, they'll mention a website or online group that they've organized the event though. If you qualify to join the group (because you live in their area, etc), go ahead and join!
Guest post on other blogsI'm going to talk more about guest posting next week, but I just wanted to mention it here as a great way to interact with other bloggers. By taking the time to coordinate a post with someone else - one that will fit their blog nicely - you're learning more about them and they're more likely to remember you in the future!
Leave interesting commentsREAD other blogs and leave interesting comments! This is a great way to get to know another blogger, because leaving an interesting comment often results in an email conversation!
Also, and this really shouldn't have to be said, but please be genuine in your comments. Don't just comment with the intention of stirring up drama or to get attention. Don't comment merely to draw people back to your blog or to get followers. Seriously the best way a comment on someone else's blog can actually help you is if you're genuinely interested in what they're saying; sincerity shines through every time.
Please, oh please, do not be a No-Reply Blogger!My commenting tip brings up a VERY IMPORTANT POINT that for some reason a lot of blog commenters totally miss. Make sure that you're not showing up as a "email@example.com" commenter. That drives me absolutely bleeping crazy, and I know it does for a lot of other bloggers too.
Go into your Blogger profile and make sure the "Show my email address" box is checked.
(GO! Right now! I'll wait.)
Why? you ask, is this so important?
Because unless that box is checked, I literally have no way to respond directly to your comment. Which makes me feel like a bad, horrible blogger for ignoring you. Don't make me feel like a bad, horrible blogger, please!
Promote other bloggers without expecting anything in return.I am always so flattered when I run across a blog or Twitter account that is promoting me without my asking them to (by sponsoring them, etc). If they genuinely just like my wit and charm enough to promote it... Wow!
Now consider how you could help someone else to feel that way. Make a post shouting out your favorite blogs. Re-tweet a link or photo that a blogger you admire has tweeted (so long as you genuinely liked the link or photo). Be careful that you don't come across as a creepy cyberstalker, but an occasional shout-out is generally well received.
Join together for writing a blog series.Sometimes if you're lucky, a friendship will develop naturally with another blogger that will lead to you (or them) wanting to join forces to co-host a blog series. This is totally not something you should go into a blog-friendship expecting to get, but it can happen if you and they just click well enough. You have probably seen bloggers who do this (and I am happy to say that I'll soon be doing this as well!), and believe me, this is not something can be forced. As you genuinely create blog friendships, this is just one type of working relationship that can develop.
And with that...Here's a shout-out to some of my blog-friends. Because they're awesome!
This concludes week six of the Build Your Blog! series. Next week we'll talk about blog hops, giveaways, guest posts, and promotions! If you haven't already, don't forget to subscribe to this blog so you know when the next edition of the blog series is ready!
Questions or comments about this week's topic? Leave them below & I will try to answer them all in a follow-up post later this summer!
Grab a button and spread the word!