Though there is a part of me that wishes I could just sit back and watch the subscriber count go up on my blog, the truth is I need to put in some work to help it along.
Yes, writing helps. No content, nothing to follow. No blog posts, no blog. Simple. But there is more to growth and getting connected than writing great posts.
How do I get people to read my blog? How do I share my mission statement with the world so they can help me share it and be affected by it? How do I take part in a community so I don’t feel isolated and alone? How do I fellowship with this darn computer screen that seems one-sided?
Not just any networking. Good networking. Lots of people try it. Many fail. Why? One big word: etiquette (or lack there of).
Just like any business, ministry, or family, there are rules of engagement. These rules aren’t explicitly written out, but they are implied. You may not know them as a newbie, but you will quickly learn over time what “bugs” other bloggers. Tip: You don’t want to “bug” other bloggers. This will slow your growth and hinder your momentum. So keep that in mind when networking. Here are a few ways to network and a tip or two on how to “network correctly”:
Linkup – Don’t just link and run. And always link back to the host! They are allowing you to link back to your site. They are providing free marketing for you. All they ask in return? Link back. Give credit where it is due. Ok? In general, linkups are an invaluable way to spread the word about your blog especially specific posts!
Comment on other blogs – Let them know you read their post! This is so encouraging. And it creates community by starting a conversation (so long as you…(see next point). Side note for blogger and wordpress.com folks: make sure your blog is open to comments from name/url folks. If you have a blogger blog and I have to create a google/blogger account to post, not gonna happen. Sometimes wordpress.com also forces me to login with my wordpress.com account. I like to have “Nikki @ Christian Mommy Blogger” show up beside my comment, and I am sure most everyone else does too. You are probably missing out on a ton of comments! Try to change your settings or try using Disqus (or a compatible commenting software).
Reply to comments on your blog – Respond when others comment on your blog! If someone takes the time to comment and you don’t respond, the effort to create community has fallen flat. Please don’t compromise community for growth. What I mean by this is if you spend all your time reaching out for more exposure and forgetting to treasure the community you are already building, you will lose depth and then, what is the point of growing? Does it matter how many people you are reaching if you are ignoring the one’s you already have?
Link to other blogs within a post on your blog – They know when you do because they get a trackback when you link to a specific post on their blog. This is an example of giving more than you receive. You are creating exposure for another blogger. They should say thank you (leave a comment perhaps) and maybe even share your post on their Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest! Bonus: Thank someone when you notice they have linked to your post. This is great for SEO and exposure. So say thank you. They just may do it again!
Add buttons to your side bar or create a “blog roll” – Words can’t describe how great it feels to go visit a blog and see that our CMB 125×125 button is on their sidebar for blogs they love. Really? That is so cool! Now others have seen our site and it lets us know that they care about what we have to say. See? Encouraging! I will likely follow by RSS going forward so I am able to encourage them even a fraction of how they encouraged us! (ahem, excuse me….look over there to your right, in the sidebar. Yes, right there. Nifty little button. Grab the code, share the love, if you are so inclined. Thanks :))
Facebook! & Tweet!– I would have put this higher on the list but I am frustrated with Facebook right now. It appears as though they are trying to force companies (aka, your blog page) into paying for promotion. Not. Gonna. Happen. I will ride the Pinterest train all the way to a big happy blog before I allow a company to force me into paying. Facebook, if you are reading this (first of all, cool, thanks for reading a Christian mommy blog) why are my FB followers not allowed to just SEE the content? If you sign up to follow CMB, then you should be able to see CMB, amen? I digress. With Facebook and Twitter, tagging others is awesome. So if you like a post I wrote, you share it. But make sure you tag me (the blog writer) when sharing. This way it alerts me and I can say thank you. I can leave a comment. You can comment back. And so on. There we go creating community again! If this happens on Twitter you will very likely get retweeted which means your twitter name is introduced to all of my followers! Exposure!
Pin! – Pinterest is quickly becoming the highest referrer for our blog (besides Google). A post can very quickly go “viral” by simply having a great pinnable pic/graphic. Check out our post on how to add a “pin it button” to all your images to make it easier for your readers! So best way to network with Pinterest? Pin a person’s post if you like it and it fits one of your Pinterest boards. This is giving a really awesome blogger some really awesome exposure. Hint hint, consider pinning the graphic that says “The Do’s and Don’ts…” so others can find this post. But only, I mean ONLY if it would benefit your pinterest family!
Respond to emails – Keep it real Sister. I know a *big* blogger who is “too” busy to respond to emails. In my opinion, that is a problem. You see, we are bloggers – not web masters behind a large storefront. Why am I telling you this? I wrote multiple times, never heard back and ended up unfollowing her. I am probably not the only one who has left (and this blogger is not the only one who doesn’t get back to her readers). I understand missing the occasional email. I understand not responding to the emails that don’t necessarily merit a response (a compliment, question that is clearly on a FAQ page, etc) but never emailing anyone back? Please don’t. I know another big blogger who always emails back, responds to comments, and comments on others’ blogs. She does this because it is important to her. It is a priority to first meet the needs of those she has before reaching out to new people. I like here philosophy – it makes “cents“. Cough.
Give to others more than you receive – In general, across the board, give more. Expect nothing in return and you will be greatly surprised when you get retweeted, tagged on Facebook, linked to and pinned. But the more you do it, the more exposure you are giving yourself. You may not always get the recognition you desire, but you are noticed. And that is a big part of networking.
So what is your biggest networking pet peeve?
——–Now…LET’S LINK UP————-
Welcome to our 9th week of fellowship! We don’t know about you all, but we are loving this time to find new blogs, explore some fabulous writing and encourage one another! Thanks for all who participate!
Now let’s linkup!
Is this your first time linking up with us? Check out some special requests, the nitty gritty, and our button. You can also catch up with past editions.
We aren’t ones for a lot of rules around here. That just gives more room for frustration when people break them We do have one request: no food posts. That is right. No recipes or anything focusing on food. We have decided there are more than enough link-ups with a focus on food. Let’s save this space for anything and everything else.
Use this linkup as a chance to promote your blog and allow more people to read your story. While we totally get it, and we couldn’t agree more (we love linking up too!), we do ask that you don’t just drop and go! Take a moment, look around, be still, and fellowship! We have found so many great blogs (and the women behind them) when we have taken a moment to fellowship with others.
So join us every week for a Fellowship Fridays link-up right here at Christian Mommy Blogger!
Without further ado, link up below! Please be kind and link back to our site, Christian Mommy Blogger, or simply grab one of our buttons from the sidebar and share at the bottom of your post (use the code and it will automatically embed a link so people can find us).
This post was happily shared with Faith Filled Fridays and Amy’s Finer Things, Weekend Whatever, Time-Warp Wife, Tackle It Tuesday, Our Simple Country Life, Delightful Order, Deep Roots at Home and Thrive at Home, Monday Musings, A Holy Experience, Miscellany Monday, Making Your Home Sing, Domestically Divine, On Your Heart Tuesday, Growing Home Blog, Titus 2sdays, MercyInk