Friday, June 27, 2014

Starting a Blog! Part 4: Tips for Networking

Hey guys! 
So I originally planned for the Starting a Blog series to be 3 posts, but I've been thinking about it over and over and I've decided to maybe extend it by 2 or 3 more posts because the response has been amazing and I feel like I haven't covered everything. This post will be my tips for networking because networking is super important in blogging, especially if you want to make it a career. Even if you don't, I think that these networking tips will help you make blogger buddies and make blogging a more social thing. If you've missed out on my past 3 posts, you can see the one about monetizing here, the one all about that "first post" here, and the one about actually starting a blog here. Okay! So let's get started!

 1) Don't Spam People... Ever... It ain't cute...
Personally, I know that some people have gotten really successful from spamming people, but it's not something that I would ever recommend or do. The way that I see it is that you want you're blog or youtube channel to become successful, but by spamming successful youtubers, you're trying to feed on their success, which is really annoying for the person and could also hurt you. Think about it... the person you're spamming could become a colleague in the future and you don't want to hurt the slight chance that it could happen. 
2) Comment (thoughtfully) As Much As Possible
If you're a new blogger, the hands down easiest way to make friends is to comment. I'm pretty sure that's the way that I met Natalie (I'm going to link their blogs on their names, so click it!), Cali, Hope, and Rebe. The trick to this, though, is commenting thoughtfully. This means writing something short about you're thoughts on the post, complimenting the blogger for something (the pictures, the look...) or even offering an alternate viewpoint (nicely). I sometimes get "Great post! -name (blog url)", which is great and I totally appreciate, don't get me wrong, but I love comments that make me think and smile a lot more and I'm more likely to click on that blogger's URL than someone who writes generic comments. 

3) Always include your URL in your comments
This is you're lifeline. There is literally no point in trying to network through commenting if you're not going to leave them your url. A big pet peeve of mine is when people format their url's wrong. If the comments are on disqus, type out the url as it is in your browser, but if the comments are the ones that come standard on blogger, use HTML coding to make it clickable. I found an article that is super helpful on this, so I'll link it here!

4) Start Networking!
Follow bloggers on twitter and facebook and google plus and bloglovin and wherever you can! I think that twitter is my main source of communication with my blogger buddies, so that's what I would recommend. You should try to network with bloggers who are in similar stages as you (so if you're new, look for newbies) because they're the most open to collaborations and making friends. Always remember reciprocity and try to help them out as much as possible! Like with my blogger buddies, Cali and Hope include me in their #FF on twitter sometimes and I include them (when I remember to actually do a #FF tweet) and all of them leave me really sweet comments and I try to comment on all of their posts as well! Put a little effort and it'll start to come easy!

5) Just because it's online doesn't mean it isn't real
Always treat people the way that you want to be treated because bloggers tend to be really close and you don't want to jeopardize your blog by badmouthing bloggers or criticizing blogs or anything like that. Also make sure to phrase your comments in a nice way if you're trying to offer constructive criticism. Just make sure that you put your best foot forward at all times. 

6) Lastly, use those connections!
Whatever your reasons are for networking, make sure you take full advantage of it! Use your new friends for advice or for talking about blogger struggles or for collabs! Have fun with your new blogger network! 

Okay so this post is already insanely long, so thanks so much for getting to this point! I'm just going to add in a few things that I thought are worth saying, but maybe not worth having their own bullet points. First, challenges are great for getting some traffic, but (at least for me) I haven't really made many friends or contacts out of them. I still recommend doing them, but just be aware of that. Also, blogger chats on twitter are great! I totally recommend joining if you have some free time, but be aware of the times that they're on because depending on where you live it might not be feasible. Well I'm going to end it here because this post is soooo long, but if you've gotten this far, can you leave me a comment (with your blog url)? Because I'm curious to see who makes it to the end :D

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