Networking can be daunting for bloggers because it takes time, energy, and an amount of extroversion at a time when you need those things to create content.
Reasons To Bloggers Networking
We all know that writing is one of the most lonely professions in the world. Although blogging may not seem as lonely at first glance – you engage with your readers on a daily basis – there’s a high chance you work alone.
As a writer, you often live inside your head. Your audience will only ever see your end result: a blog post or social media post. They won’t see the process of you thinking up your idea, killing your darlings or debating whether to write a certain article. You often make those decisions by yourself or run them by your spouse or best friend.
While this is a valid approach, someone who is not ‘in the business’, can only help to a certain extent. While it’s often worth it to discuss certain ideas with your personal network, you’ll probably only ever touch the surface.
You might, for example, contemplate archiving your entire Instagram profile to start with a clean slate. Your best friend thinks you’re stupid, while you see bloggers around you do this and grow their following rapidly over the course of several months. And you might be left wondering if you’re cut out for this thing called ‘becoming an influencer’. If you’re at this point, you need a network of people who are like-minded.
Bloggers Networking Recommendations
Truth be told, we’re in it for us. This means that every one you’ll meet is in it to gain something for themselves. This could be knowledge, reputation, information, cash, products or something else.
Knowing this, you’ll understand you can’t just go to someone you don’t know and ask them for that piece of information you want. You might not get an answer or, in the unlikely chance you do get one, it probably is an evasive one. You need to adopt an open-source kind of mentality while networking. This means that you’ll share your knowledge with the world and eventually will receive information in return.
I’ll take myself as an example. Although I knew quite a few bloggers online, my network didn’t really grow until I went to a Dutch blog conference last June, to speak about SEO. I told the crowd that I was going to share my secrets with them, and told them, honestly, how weird it felt to do that because I might very well kill my own blog this way.
Strangely, or perhaps not so strange at all, the opposite happened. My blog took off and with it, my network expanded tremendously. People knew where to find me, how to find me, and, also, that I was willing to help look into issues or questions.
I answered each question I got because I love helping out. Did I request favors for each question I answered? No. Was I offered help in return for answering questions or solving issues? You bet! Often, I told people not to worry about it, that I loved to help and that I’d be sure to let them know if they could help me out. And I took people up on their offer, twice now. One of them even got me an invite for a press event of the Walt Disney Company – I mean, it’s Disney!
Best Places for Bloggers Networking
You might feel very willing to network with your fellow blog colleagues out there, but where to find them? If you’ve been on your own for a very long time, it can be tricky to get started. Don’t worry; there are various places where you can network as a blogger, both offline and online.
Online bloggers networking
As your blog lives online, the easiest way to create a network is online as well. There are a lot of Facebook groups for bloggers in all sorts of niches and all kinds of languages. Created by bloggers. Try to find the groups where you can help other bloggers. I, myself, am in various groups, where I answer questions about the Yoast SEO plugins, SEO in general, WordPress or technical questions, as these are things I can help others with. In return, people help me when I have questions about Pinterest, Instagram or about certain press events that I’d like to attend.
Offline networking is even more important than building a network online. While online it’s perhaps easier to mingle in discussions on forums. Facebook, or in Twitter conversations, the deeper and longer-lasting connections will often start offline. Have you considered going to a local WordPress meetup, a WordCamp or a blog event in your city or country? These can be quite valuable – trust me, this is where the good stuff happens!
These connections can turn out to be far stronger than you might expect. For example, I’m part of a group of writers who live all over the world and originally connected through the comments on each other’s blogs. Now, we help each other out online and sometimes in person. With career advice and creative support, and we’ve also helped each other through life events like kids’ illnesses, going back to school, and making major moves. These connections run far deeper than pixels on a screen, but they only could have been built online.