How to Network with Other Bloggers – 5 Techniques
I would argue that one of the most important things to do when you start a food blog is to begin networking. I alluded this already in my post about the first five things you need to do when you start a blog, and I think it is worth spending a little more time on.
And it just so happens that networking is also one of most fun and rewarding parts of food blogging. (Networking with brands and publications is another topic for another day — today we’re just covering networking with other bloggers.)
It might seem kind of obvious to some of you, but I can’t tell you how many emails and messages I’ve gotten related to networking and making friends with other bloggers.
I’m breaking it down into 5 easy tips. You can handle this – you only have five things to do. And in reality it boils down to two things: Be yourself, and treat others how you would want to be treated. (Which, as a side note, should probably be how you approach life in general but I’m doling out food blogging advice, not life advice.)
1. Social Media:
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and yes, even Google+. Comment on Facebook posts, comment on Instagram photos, RT and respond to tweets, and do whatever the heck you’re supposed to do on Google+. Which I guess is sharing, commenting, and +1ing. Interact in a genuine way. Get to know people. Find out what’s going on in their lives and not just their blogs. In a non-creepy way, please.
2. Facebook Groups:
This might be the most effective way to network with other bloggers. It’s typically a forum that isn’t visible to the public, so it’s a chance to ask questions and get support from other bloggers.
You might be wondering how you find these groups. It’s pretty simple – use the search bar at the top of Facebook. Search whatever you’re interested in (“Food Blogging” is likely a good place to start). Read the descriptions and see if they are what you are looking for. If they are closed groups request to join. Then you’ll have to try it out and see if it’s a fit for you. They might not all be groups that you want to be a part of. And hey — if you don’t like any of them, you can always start your own group!
3. Comment on Blogs:
I’ll just admit right away that this isn’t my strong suit lately. Ben’s job is insanely busy (he’s gone from 6am until 9pm at least three nights a week lately) and I have two toddlers. Most days something has to give and usually commenting on blogs falls by the wayside.
However, it’s important to show other bloggers that you support them. Because when they see you support them, they’ll support you. Plus, it’s encouraging to them…and it’s always nice to encourage people. Also — most blogs allow you to link to your blog when you’re commenting (your name will show up as a link). This might get some of their readers to also come over and check out your blog — especially if you leave an interesting comment that adds something to the conversation.
I haven’t been to a whole lot of conferences because of the kids (for the first 3 years of my blog, I was either pregnant or breastfeeding). And now of course, it’s hard to work in conferences around Ben’s schedule. BUT it is a great way to actually meet people face-to-face, give hugs (I’m a hugger), and get to know people better. It’s always better when you can look someone in the eyes while you chat with them.
5. Sharing Content:
This is related to social media, but it’s important enough to get #5 on my list all by itself. By sharing content, you not only provide your readers with interesting (and/or delicious) stuff to look at, but you also are basically waving and saying hello to other bloggers. Make sure to tag them on their content so they see you’re loving it and sharing it. You can share content on most any social platform but I love Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and of course Pinterest. Make sure that you’re not copying and pasting recipes in their entirety onto your social media share. You won’t make friends that way.
Did I miss anything? What would you add to this list?
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