Blogging can be a lonely business, you need solitude to write after all, so it’s really helpful if you know people are going to read what you’ve written afterwards. Even better when it leads to comments and conversations!
The people most likely to leave comments on your blog post are other bloggers, but how do you meet them?
You could wait for them to find your blog and you might get lucky, but even if you do it will take a long time! I recommend being proactive!
Bloggers hang out on a huge variety of social media platforms, you’ll find a lot of them on twitter and Facebook of course but you’ll also find them on YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Google+.
Deciding Which Bloggers to Follow
Before you start building your personal blogging community think about who you want in it.
As you know I blog about social media so of course I read and share a lot blogs on this subject. It keeps me fresh and up to date and also helps me raise awareness of my capabilities within my peer group.
To be truly recognised as an expert in your field it does help if others in your field have at least heard of you! Even better if you have a relationship of mutual admiration and co-operation. And of course those in your industry may have a different area of specialisation so may refer clients to you.
But why limit yourself to that?!
After all those that also blog on that subject as you aren’t likely to ever become your customers themselves!
So it’s also worth reading and commenting on other blogs. For example I also read, comment on and share blogs by copywriters, SEO specialists and offline networking experts in particular. These people complement my work so having them as part of my community helps me enormously. Particularly as this also increases the chances of becoming a guest blogger for them and therefore reaching their audience directly!
However I also read, comment on and share blogs by accountants, business experts, VA’s,
These bloggers all provide information that is likely to be useful to my customers (and to me!)
Also as we are a little further apart in business alignment these people are more likely to be my potential clients!
I have one more circle, even further away from my own business that I like to read. I read these less often and purely for pleasure but I will comment and share too. These are blogs about food, travel, art, literature etc. For me these are hobby blogs and I enjoy reading them and sharing them, after all none of us are completely one dimensional and it is fine to share more than one side to yourself through social media! Also the people that write these blogs are often my customers too, and reading their blogs helps me understand them better which means I can serve them better.
Finding bloggers on Twitter
Apart from keeping a beady eye open to see which of your connections is already sharing relevant blogs, you can also easily search tweets to find more bloggers. Simply type the subject of the blogs you want to find (in my case that could be ‘Facebook blog’ or ‘LinkedIn blog’ for example) into the search bar, scroll through the tweets it comes up with and start reading those that piqué your interest. If it is well written and you’d be happy to share it with your followers then do so. Don’t forget to follow the person on twitter and send them a message letting them know you enjoyed their blog!
It’s also a good idea to create a twitter list you can read regularly with all your favourite bloggers in so you can easily keep up to date with their offerings.
Finding bloggers on LinkedIn
There is an app you can add to your LinkedIn profile that automatically pulls in and displays your latest blog post on your profile. However it also shows you the recent blogs shared by your contacts, provided they have this app too! Well worth checking out and adding as often it’s better to strengthen a relationship with someone you are already connected than to begin a relationship with a stranger.
Those that blog will often post their latest blog post as a discussion in a group. This can be a great way to find niche bloggers! Start by joining groups that are either specifically for your industry or more general business groups. LinkedIn isn’t such a great place for finding beauty or lifestyle bloggers however!
Finding bloggers on Facebook
Like LinkedIn being a member of a group can really help you find other bloggers, make sure you visit regularly and read what other group members are posting. Again these can be groups centred tightly around your niche, for example I belong to a group called Pinterest for Business, or be more general, I belong to many business groups that include the types of businesses I listed above.
There don’t seem to be an awful lot of groups specifically for other bloggers to meet but a couple of good ones are The Guest Bloggers and The Blog and Comment Exchange.If you do join these groups make sure you know the etiquette and abide by it, you want to build mutually beneficial relationships not offend people after all!
It’s also worth adding the networked blogs app to your Facebook profile. This app works as a blog directory, you can add your blog to it for free and use it to automatically publish new blog posts to your Facebook profile status, Facebook page and twitter account.
But it also allows you to find and follow your facebook friends blogs as well as others by topic. So you can strengthen your current relationships as well as find new friends!
Finding Bloggers on Google+
You can do this pretty much the same way as you do on twitter, there aren’t as many people on Google+ now so you might not get the same quantity of results but as most Google+’ers are early adopters and tech savvy this can be a really useful place to find high quality blogs.
Finding Bloggers on YouTube
Ah YouTube, the home of vloggers! But of course a lot of these people write blogs as well as record vlogs … And who knows when you might start to branch out into video too and need a few vlogging buddies for advice and encouragement!
Using the search bar here is a great way to get started, and as a lot of vloggers know people watch how-to videos try typing that in, so if you are wanting to connect with tax advisors type in ‘how to claim car expenses’ or something along those lines as an alternative search.
Once you have found some vloggers you like you can subscribe to their videos on YouTube and you can also follow the links back to their website and see how else you can connect with them.
Finding Bloggers on Pinterest
Surprised? Thought Pinterest was just full of women pinning their ideal wedding dress? (Even though they’ve been married 20 years already!)
Well, a lot of the things people pin come from blogs, and as Pinterest also serves as a bookmark people generally pin content that they want to re-visit. Clicking on the pin will lead you back to the original source, the blog or website the image was pinned from.
As with all social sites, Pinterest is what you make it! So type the topic you are interested in into the search bar to find the things you want to pin. What I like about Pinterests search is that it gives you 3 options on each search, Pins, Boards and People.
Generally I would recommend looking at the boards or the people that come up first, if someone has started a board on that topic then they are likely to keep adding to it meaning you have more opportunities to find good blogs.
Of course Pinterest is a fantastic place to find lifestyle and consumer bloggers, but business bloggers are there too!
Other places to find bloggers
The following places offer you ways of finding blogs you might like but sometimes the social side isn’t so strong. So whenever you find a blogger you enjoy leave them a comment and connect with them elsewhere. If you regularly comment on and share their stuff they will notice you!
StumbleUpon is a web browsing site that has been around for years, read more about it here.
ScoopIt started life as a content curation tool, when you find really great articles relating to a topic you can gather them together in ScoopIt both for your own bookmarking purposes and to share with others in a coherent fashion.
But, it’s also becoming a place to find good bloggers! In some cases these bloggers are scoopers and you can follow their topics, in some cases they are not on scoopit but their work has been scooped!
Zite is a smartphone app that finds blogs for you to read on the topics you choose.
I recently wrote an article on social blog directories, have a read as it has some great places to meet other bloggers!
Over to you – do you blog? Where have you found blogging buddies? Comment below and you never know – it could be the start of a beautiful friendship!