The Secret to Growing Your Blog Following and the Pitfall You Must Avoid

Looking to grow your blog following? You might be surprised that the best way to gain a following is to focus on other people’s blogs.

Outreach is key to having a blog that actually works for your business, yet it’s the one element many professionals ignore. And it’s contrary to most competitive thinking because it involves spending time away from your blog.

Done correctly, however, reaching out to other bloggers in your field will actually create more business opportunities, increase traffic to your own blog, and enhance your business brand more than any other tactic you could employ.

Here’s how:

Reaching Out On Social MediaIn taking this one step, you will be setting yourself apart from the majority of business professionals who skip implementing this important element in their blogging plan.

What do I mean by blog outreach? I’m talking about strategically participating in the blogosphere with the goal of boosting your visibility, driving traffic to your blog and enhancing your credibility.

It’s not just about spreading your own message, although that’s important. Outreach is about building community and personal relationships among your peers, your colleagues who are also writing blogs, and the people in the blogosphere who are reading blogs in your industry. And yes, some of those people may be considered competitors.

Don’t be afraid of your competitors; you can learn from them and connecting with them may present new opportunities for your business.

Find Blogs in Your Niche

Where do you start? First, you need to find a few blogs in your industry that you enjoy and will consistently read. Choose blogs that will give you content ideas along with the relationships you’re seeking. Blogs can be found in practically every professional and business niche, and a quick visit to a few websites can help you find them.

Technorati is the web’s largest blog search directory and is a good place to start. Be warned, this site can be overwhelming the first time you visit. You can search for blogs or blog posts by keywords in your field. I recommend you set up an account and make sure your own blog is listed so it can be found by others.

Technorati

Use Technorati to find blogs and blog posts relevant to your niche.

Another site is Google Blogsearch. Like any Google search engine, it’s going to return a list of links based on your keywords, only this time the links will be sites for blogs and specific blog posts.

Use Subject-specific Directories

My current favorite for finding the best of the best in subject-specific blogs is Guy Kawasaki’s Alltop.com. It’s a curated site, which means blogs must be approved in order to be included. You can create your own collection of blogs to watch and read. Here’s an example of my Alltop list of business blogs.

TIP: Make sure you submit your blog for inclusion on Alltop.com!

There are more than 200 blog directories, some of which are subject-specific and others are general. Blog directories come and go, and each has its own list of criteria for which blogs it includes. You want more blog directories? A comprehensive list of blog directories is posted here.

Engage in Smart Commenting, Building Relationships

In all likelihood, you will find many blogs in your niche that have similar audiences. What do you do when you find one of these good blogs?

Start engaging! Read and comment on posts that interest you. Smart bloggers allow comments, although sometimes they are moderated to keep out the spammers. Always include your name, blog URL, your email address and your thoughtful, useful comment.

The guidelines for commenting are simple: use common sense and respect. There are no rules, but being courteous will help you establish positive relationships within the blogosphere. When you comment on a blog, follow the same etiquette that you’d follow in conversation at a cocktail party.

In other words, you’re not going to approach somebody at a cocktail party and say, “Hi, my name is Joe and you should buy my widget.” You would be a little more subtle. Listen and add to the conversation in a meaningful way. Talk with and get to know the other person first. Start establishing a relationship.

Share Expertise, Not Marketing Offers

Using blogs to promote your business requires you to act like a professional when commenting. And etiquette dictates that you don’t promote your business on another person’s blog. Instead, share your expertise.

You can demonstrate your expertise in many ways. Add something the author may have overlooked. Add historical context or suggest a book in which the ideas are discussed. Add your perspective, experience and opinion.

Be polite and add something new to the conversation. Writing “Nice post, I agree” is not adding to the conversation.

If you think this all sounds very basic, please just bear with me. Every business owner has a different level of familiarity with the online world, particularly the world of blogging. I see these mistakes every day in comments on my blog as well as on those I read.

So what does this all mean?

Resulting Visibility = Opportunity

By engaging with other bloggers (in other words, your colleagues), you are making yourself known (visible) and laying the groundwork for creating opportunities to partner with them.

Often you need to actively reach out and build relationships with the people you want to work with. Start slowly and see how your relationship unfolds. When you find a good match, you’ll know.

Keep in mind that opportunities can show up in many forms: new leads, new clients, more traffic, and media attention. A pithy comment on a colleague’s blog may attract the attention of a journalist doing research on the subject.

Blog outreach is an important part of effective business blogging. The more you’re connecting outward, the more you’re going to be drawing traffic and opportunities inward. It doesn’t require a lot of your time… 20 minutes a couple of times a week to read and comment on relevant blogs can pay off big in the long run.

Action Challenge: Since I know from experience with my clients that most business bloggers don’t comment very much on other blogs, I challenge you to find three blogs in your industry that are publishing top-notch content and subscribe to get their blog updates. Read and comment on the blogs two to three times a week for the next month. Let me know what shows up for you in the way of new connections, traffic and opportunities!

Have you tried any of these approaches? What are your thoughts?  Please comment in the field below.

Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dip108/ / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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About the Author, Denise Wakeman

Denise Wakeman is an Online Marketing Advisor and Founder of The Blog Squad. You can learn more about business blogging on Build a Better Blog. Other posts by »




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  • http://NaomiTrower.com Naomi Trower

    Hi Denise, Thanks for the challenge! :) I love getting ideas from my Alltop page http://my.alltop.com/NaomiTrower. The area that I need to grow more is finding more specific blogs in my niche. I comment and find fellow business bloggers but I need to take the next step and find more in my specific niche. I’m aware of a few similar niche blogs but at times I feel like the other blog owner will feel like I’m only commenting to draw their potential clients to my site. I don’t want them to feel that way. Any thoughts on this?

  • http://NaomiTrower.com Naomi Trower

    Hi Denise, Thanks for the challenge! :) I love getting ideas from my Alltop page http://my.alltop.com/NaomiTrower. The area that I need to grow more is finding more specific blogs in my niche. I comment and find fellow business bloggers but I need to take the next step and find more in my specific niche. I’m aware of a few similar niche blogs but at times I feel like the other blog owner will feel like I’m only commenting to draw their potential clients to my site. I don’t want them to feel that way. Any thoughts on this?

  • http://www.webuildyourblog.com/ Andrew Rondeau

    Must admit I have been putting more effort in my blog relationships recently. I held my very first contest a few weeks ago and I was amazed by the number of blogging friends who wanted to sponsor a prize. I know it’s a bit of advertising for them but still, it was a great way to start some new relationships.

    Andrew

  • http://www.webuildyourblog.com/ Andrew Rondeau

    Must admit I have been putting more effort in my blog relationships recently. I held my very first contest a few weeks ago and I was amazed by the number of blogging friends who wanted to sponsor a prize. I know it’s a bit of advertising for them but still, it was a great way to start some new relationships.

    Andrew

  • http://www.webuildyourblog.com/ Andrew Rondeau

    Must admit I have been putting more effort in my blog relationships recently. I held my very first contest a few weeks ago and I was amazed by the number of blogging friends who wanted to sponsor a prize. I know it’s a bit of advertising for them but still, it was a great way to start some new relationships.

    Andrew

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Naomi, curious to know what makes you think that other blog owners would think you’re drawing people away? May be all in your head! :-)

    When you add value with your comments, not only does that reflect well on the author’s blog, but others will naturally want to check out your blog. I’m not recommending that you say: go to my blog to get more information. I’m advocating to add value and people will naturally follow.

    As an example, I have an opportunity here. Coincidentally, yesterday I posted a video on Build a Better Blog about an easy way to find specific niche blogs. If I post a link to that blog post will it be helpful or a sly attempt to take readers away from Social Media Examiner? My intent is not to siphon off readers, but to add value. Personally, I think it would be helpful, but I’ll wait for your reply before I post the link!

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Andrew, contests are great way to build relationships and blog traffic. Nice! In my opinion, it helps everyone to expose readers to more resources and bloggers. You’re seen as a generous resource and that goes a long way in building credibility and trust and raving fans. Blog on!

  • Anonymous

    I think my favorite comment was “Be polite and add something new to the conversation. Writing “Nice post, I agree” is not adding to the conversation.”

    I do enjoy it when a friend says.. something even small. But I learn a lot more about improving my blog (http://genewashere.com/) when someone tells me what they found interesting or shares a link to something that expands on the point I’m making.

    I’m lucky to be friends with some great bloggers and I agree that we can do a lot to support each other.

    Great post!

  • Anonymous

    I think my favorite comment was “Be polite and add something new to the conversation. Writing “Nice post, I agree” is not adding to the conversation.”

    I do enjoy it when a friend says.. something even small. But I learn a lot more about improving my blog (http://genewashere.com/) when someone tells me what they found interesting or shares a link to something that expands on the point I’m making.

    I’m lucky to be friends with some great bloggers and I agree that we can do a lot to support each other.

    Great post!

  • http://www.sdicorp.com/Resources/Blog/articleType/AuthorView/authorID/24/lkunz.aspx Larry Kunz

    Denise, I agree with you about commenting on other blogs. Why, look — I’m doing it now. :-)

    Here’s another tactic: If I really like a blog post, I’ll go onto Twitter and tweet something like “great blog post by @so-and-so about such-and-such” with a link. It’s a way to pay a compliment to a fellow professional, more so than just retweeting (although sometimes I do that too). What do you think? Is that a way to help build my following? Value-neutral? Or possibly negative, in the sense that it could be seen as a gratuitous gesture?

  • http://www.sdicorp.com/Resources/Blog/articleType/AuthorView/authorID/24/lkunz.aspx Larry Kunz

    Denise, I agree with you about commenting on other blogs. Why, look — I’m doing it now. :-)

    Here’s another tactic: If I really like a blog post, I’ll go onto Twitter and tweet something like “great blog post by @so-and-so about such-and-such” with a link. It’s a way to pay a compliment to a fellow professional, more so than just retweeting (although sometimes I do that too). What do you think? Is that a way to help build my following? Value-neutral? Or possibly negative, in the sense that it could be seen as a gratuitous gesture?

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Naomi, I think that veteran bloggers aren’t (or shouldn’t be) afraid of this for a couple of reasons.

    First, there’s plenty of mindshare to go around. I read at least a dozen different blogs, and discovering a good new one through an insightful comment doesn’t mean I’m suddenly going to abandon Copyblogger or Problogger in favor of a new one. If as a reader I forget about the original blog I was on that quickly, I probably wasn’t a very engaged visitor to begin with.

    More importantly, though, I think bloggers like having insightful commenters on their blogs because it makes them look good. If smart people are hanging out and commenting at your blog, it must mean you’re pretty smart too, right? Plus it makes your blog seem like a good place to hang out if you want to hear from smart people besides just the main author.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Naomi, I think that veteran bloggers aren’t (or shouldn’t be) afraid of this for a couple of reasons.

    First, there’s plenty of mindshare to go around. I read at least a dozen different blogs, and discovering a good new one through an insightful comment doesn’t mean I’m suddenly going to abandon Copyblogger or Problogger in favor of a new one. If as a reader I forget about the original blog I was on that quickly, I probably wasn’t a very engaged visitor to begin with.

    More importantly, though, I think bloggers like having insightful commenters on their blogs because it makes them look good. If smart people are hanging out and commenting at your blog, it must mean you’re pretty smart too, right? Plus it makes your blog seem like a good place to hang out if you want to hear from smart people besides just the main author.

  • http://NaomiTrower.com Naomi Trower

    I understand what you are saying. My ultimate goal really is to add value so I think it really is all in my head. :) I’m shaking myself now to get it out of there. Hee! Hee!

  • http://NaomiTrower.com Naomi Trower

    I understand what you are saying. My ultimate goal really is to add value so I think it really is all in my head. :) I’m shaking myself now to get it out of there. Hee! Hee!

  • http://NaomiTrower.com Naomi Trower

    I understand what you are saying. My ultimate goal really is to add value so I think it really is all in my head. :) I’m shaking myself now to get it out of there. Hee! Hee!

  • http://NaomiTrower.com Naomi Trower

    Thanks Beau for giving me a few other perspectives! I appreciate that and will work on focusing my thoughts in this way.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Larry, I think however you compliment bloggers is a good thing and adds to your credibility and increases your visibility as well. That, in the long run builds your following. I tweet and share blog posts all the time so my followers/readers can get the best info there is on any given subject. People will follow those who help them. Thanks for you comment!

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Larry, I think however you compliment bloggers is a good thing and adds to your credibility and increases your visibility as well. That, in the long run builds your following. I tweet and share blog posts all the time so my followers/readers can get the best info there is on any given subject. People will follow those who help them. Thanks for you comment!

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Larry, I think however you compliment bloggers is a good thing and adds to your credibility and increases your visibility as well. That, in the long run builds your following. I tweet and share blog posts all the time so my followers/readers can get the best info there is on any given subject. People will follow those who help them. Thanks for you comment!

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Andrew,

    Did you promote your contest on any contest-listing websites? I’m always trying to find good ways to promote contests, since my wife and brother regularly run good ones on their blogs.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Andrew,

    Did you promote your contest on any contest-listing websites? I’m always trying to find good ways to promote contests, since my wife and brother regularly run good ones on their blogs.

  • http://www.olindaservices.com Lisa Olinda

    I learn so much from the blogs that I read. Many times it triggers a question for me that I may blog about at a future time. I believe that when you leave comments it builds the community. It is like standing in a room full of people and enjoying the ambiance of the crowd but you are more fully engaged and have a better time when you have a meaningful conversation about something. That is the party or meeting that you remember.

  • http://www.olindaservices.com Lisa Olinda

    I learn so much from the blogs that I read. Many times it triggers a question for me that I may blog about at a future time. I believe that when you leave comments it builds the community. It is like standing in a room full of people and enjoying the ambiance of the crowd but you are more fully engaged and have a better time when you have a meaningful conversation about something. That is the party or meeting that you remember.

  • Michael Fraietta

    Hello Denise,

    I’d like hear your (or anyone reading) opinion on leaving a signature in comments. I typically leave my name, position and Twitter handle when commenting on something industry-related. When it’s not industry related, I’m thinking I should include name, personal blog link and Twitter handle. Do you find the former to be a bit tacky as I am plugging the company a bit? Or, should I include all the above in all comments? Maybe have a few signatures and use them appropriately according to the nature of the post?
    Thanks in advance.

    Michael Fraietta
    @MichaelFraietta

  • Michael Fraietta

    Hello Denise,

    I’d like hear your (or anyone reading) opinion on leaving a signature in comments. I typically leave my name, position and Twitter handle when commenting on something industry-related. When it’s not industry related, I’m thinking I should include name, personal blog link and Twitter handle. Do you find the former to be a bit tacky as I am plugging the company a bit? Or, should I include all the above in all comments? Maybe have a few signatures and use them appropriately according to the nature of the post?
    Thanks in advance.

    Michael Fraietta
    @MichaelFraietta

  • Michael Fraietta

    Hello Denise,

    I’d like hear your (or anyone reading) opinion on leaving a signature in comments. I typically leave my name, position and Twitter handle when commenting on something industry-related. When it’s not industry related, I’m thinking I should include name, personal blog link and Twitter handle. Do you find the former to be a bit tacky as I am plugging the company a bit? Or, should I include all the above in all comments? Maybe have a few signatures and use them appropriately according to the nature of the post?
    Thanks in advance.

    Michael Fraietta
    @MichaelFraietta

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Comments have led to amazing results for both my business and personal blogs. One tip I have: find blogs that DON’T get much traffic and comment on them just as often as the biggies in your space. While the traffic yours will receive in raw hits won’t be impressive, the fewer comments on a post, the more each counts–and by extension, the more each reader or blogger will pay attention to what you have to say. Traffic, too, will be more qualified.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Comments have led to amazing results for both my business and personal blogs. One tip I have: find blogs that DON’T get much traffic and comment on them just as often as the biggies in your space. While the traffic yours will receive in raw hits won’t be impressive, the fewer comments on a post, the more each counts–and by extension, the more each reader or blogger will pay attention to what you have to say. Traffic, too, will be more qualified.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Comments have led to amazing results for both my business and personal blogs. One tip I have: find blogs that DON’T get much traffic and comment on them just as often as the biggies in your space. While the traffic yours will receive in raw hits won’t be impressive, the fewer comments on a post, the more each counts–and by extension, the more each reader or blogger will pay attention to what you have to say. Traffic, too, will be more qualified.

  • http://www.cfpinsurance.net/ Cathie Brower

    The more I begin to utilize social media, the more I find! Thanks for adding insight to blogging! I recently launched my website and I am trying to utilize the social media sites to market myself. There are so many social media sites , it is almost overwhelming. How does one select which ones to use?

  • http://www.cfpinsurance.net/ Cathie Brower

    The more I begin to utilize social media, the more I find! Thanks for adding insight to blogging! I recently launched my website and I am trying to utilize the social media sites to market myself. There are so many social media sites , it is almost overwhelming. How does one select which ones to use?

  • http://www.cfpinsurance.net/ Cathie Brower

    The more I begin to utilize social media, the more I find! Thanks for adding insight to blogging! I recently launched my website and I am trying to utilize the social media sites to market myself. There are so many social media sites , it is almost overwhelming. How does one select which ones to use?

  • Anonymous

    I do not mind the advertising part of comments on blogs – if I am looking for a product I sometimes find better deals in the comments than in the blog- it also lets me know who is active in particular niche areas – in a way I do not mind the ‘nice post’ either – it serves a purpose – lets people know that others are reading (and not everyone has time to create an earth shattering response) – its also encouraging for the blogger – short comments are welcome on my blog

  • Anonymous

    I do not mind the advertising part of comments on blogs – if I am looking for a product I sometimes find better deals in the comments than in the blog- it also lets me know who is active in particular niche areas – in a way I do not mind the ‘nice post’ either – it serves a purpose – lets people know that others are reading (and not everyone has time to create an earth shattering response) – its also encouraging for the blogger – short comments are welcome on my blog

  • Anonymous

    I do not mind the advertising part of comments on blogs – if I am looking for a product I sometimes find better deals in the comments than in the blog- it also lets me know who is active in particular niche areas – in a way I do not mind the ‘nice post’ either – it serves a purpose – lets people know that others are reading (and not everyone has time to create an earth shattering response) – its also encouraging for the blogger – short comments are welcome on my blog

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Hey Beau – I was not aware there were contest listing sites… Can you provide some samples here?

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Hey Beau – I was not aware there were contest listing sites… Can you provide some samples here?

  • http://www.robertpickstone.com Robert Pickstone

    I completely agree. Chris Brogan and Darren Rowse (problogger) have echoed some similer thoughts. Here is a great video by Mr Problogger himself http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXCmyTh66Uw

    Having just started a new blog myself I am going to try and spend a lot of my time visiting other authors work, commenting, gaining ideas and building relationships.

    Rather than just sitting at a computer trying to pull readers in, I am going to try and reach out.

    Nice read and I will be back on here shortly, I’m sure.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Here is that video

    httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXCmyTh66Uw

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Here is that video

    httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXCmyTh66Uw

  • http://www.DesignSuccessU.com/ Gail Doby

    Those are great suggestions, and sometimes, repeating what seems obvious is helpful for those who are new. The architecture and design industry is still dipping its toe into websites, and few have blogs. I’ll be sure to send them to this link.

  • http://www.DesignSuccessU.com/ Gail Doby

    Those are great suggestions, and sometimes, repeating what seems obvious is helpful for those who are new. The architecture and design industry is still dipping its toe into websites, and few have blogs. I’ll be sure to send them to this link.

  • http://www.DesignSuccessU.com/ Gail Doby

    Those are great suggestions, and sometimes, repeating what seems obvious is helpful for those who are new. The architecture and design industry is still dipping its toe into websites, and few have blogs. I’ll be sure to send them to this link.

  • http://ukcopywriting.com/ Martin

    Spot on. Thank you for the insight Denise and thank you for the resources (Alltop etc) heads up.

    I’m new to this blogging thing so any decent advice is much appreciated. Time and/or inclination willing please so feel free to take a look at my efforts at ukcopywriting.com I’m always happy to recieve any input or constructive criticism (yeah I know a photocopy of a Low set list was a pretty tight quiz prize :-). Other people might find the post on how to source images for blogs more useful.

    Jolly good

  • http://ukcopywriting.com/ Martin

    Spot on. Thank you for the insight Denise and thank you for the resources (Alltop etc) heads up.

    I’m new to this blogging thing so any decent advice is much appreciated. Time and/or inclination willing please so feel free to take a look at my efforts at ukcopywriting.com I’m always happy to recieve any input or constructive criticism (yeah I know a photocopy of a Low set list was a pretty tight quiz prize :-). Other people might find the post on how to source images for blogs more useful.

    Jolly good

  • http://www.ExpandTheBrand.net Tia Dobi

    Hi Michael,Ye-essss…I was thinking of Signatures too reading this post (and Denise does include it).Because I am not blogging on my personal blog at this time (I’m a ghostblogger and quite busy with those right now…and love applying what I learn to my clients’ efforts) by proxy, I can’t include a blog link.I usually include my signature sign off “Peace and Profits” as well as a USP and my Twitter link.As far as “plugging” well, what I can say for sure is I’ve had people repsond to me direct by email telling me they read my comment on such and such a blog and they’d like to have a conversation relating to business.Not a bad thing. :-DOf course I hope to be providing benefit in my blog comments.Trust this helps.Peace and profits,Tia D.Hypnotic copywriting and niche marketing that sells morehttp://www.twitter.com/tiadobi

  • http://www.ExpandTheBrand.net Tia Dobi

    Hi Michael,Ye-essss…I was thinking of Signatures too reading this post (and Denise does include it).Because I am not blogging on my personal blog at this time (I’m a ghostblogger and quite busy with those right now…and love applying what I learn to my clients’ efforts) by proxy, I can’t include a blog link.I usually include my signature sign off “Peace and Profits” as well as a USP and my Twitter link.As far as “plugging” well, what I can say for sure is I’ve had people repsond to me direct by email telling me they read my comment on such and such a blog and they’d like to have a conversation relating to business.Not a bad thing. :-DOf course I hope to be providing benefit in my blog comments.Trust this helps.Peace and profits,Tia D.Hypnotic copywriting and niche marketing that sells morehttp://www.twitter.com/tiadobi

  • http://my168project.co Matches Malone

    This seems so obvious, however, as you state, not too many people do it. Makes no sense.

  • http://my168project.co Matches Malone

    This seems so obvious, however, as you state, not too many people do it. Makes no sense.

  • http://www.jeremiahwean.com Jeremiah M. Wean

    I continue to get excellent info out of this site. I had just been using google blog search, I’ll have to try technorait. I subscibe to front page of technorati and find some excellent stuff that way.

    Naomi – you could also try comment on complimentary industry. IE – Loan Officer comment on a real Estate blog.

  • http://www.jeremiahwean.com Jeremiah M. Wean

    I continue to get excellent info out of this site. I had just been using google blog search, I’ll have to try technorait. I subscibe to front page of technorati and find some excellent stuff that way.

    Naomi – you could also try comment on complimentary industry. IE – Loan Officer comment on a real Estate blog.

  • http://www.jeremiahwean.com Jeremiah M. Wean

    I continue to get excellent info out of this site. I had just been using google blog search, I’ll have to try technorait. I subscibe to front page of technorati and find some excellent stuff that way.

    Naomi – you could also try comment on complimentary industry. IE – Loan Officer comment on a real Estate blog.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Sure- a couple I can think of off the top of my head that I’ve used in the past are http://www.online-sweepstakes.com and http://www.contestblogger.com. My wife has also used contestgirl.com in the past with a bit of success, though obviously that one’s geared towards females.

    I know we’ve tried others, but those are the main ones that have brought in some traffic. Hope that helps!

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Sure- a couple I can think of off the top of my head that I’ve used in the past are http://www.online-sweepstakes.com and http://www.contestblogger.com. My wife has also used contestgirl.com in the past with a bit of success, though obviously that one’s geared towards females.

    I know we’ve tried others, but those are the main ones that have brought in some traffic. Hope that helps!

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Sure- a couple I can think of off the top of my head that I’ve used in the past are http://www.online-sweepstakes.com and http://www.contestblogger.com. My wife has also used contestgirl.com in the past with a bit of success, though obviously that one’s geared towards females.

    I know we’ve tried others, but those are the main ones that have brought in some traffic. Hope that helps!

  • http://www.tkmvirtualservices.com/ Anita

    This is an excellent idea! I have already been linking several Virtual Assistant’s blogs to mine. This way I can give my ‘take on the subject” and they get more visibility for their blog site, also. It’s such a joy to read your information!

  • http://www.tkmvirtualservices.com/ Anita

    This is an excellent idea! I have already been linking several Virtual Assistant’s blogs to mine. This way I can give my ‘take on the subject” and they get more visibility for their blog site, also. It’s such a joy to read your information!

  • http://www.tkmvirtualservices.com/ Anita

    This is an excellent idea! I have already been linking several Virtual Assistant’s blogs to mine. This way I can give my ‘take on the subject” and they get more visibility for their blog site, also. It’s such a joy to read your information!

  • http://www.sugarpineralty.com/ Mike C

    Thx 4 this, Denise. You’re right. It’s so easy to forget about participation on other blogs versus everything else one does as a blogger. I will try hard to put your advice into practice. Thx again. @blogboy2 (I saw this post on twitter via @MariSmith.)

  • http://www.sugarpineralty.com/ Mike C

    Thx 4 this, Denise. You’re right. It’s so easy to forget about participation on other blogs versus everything else one does as a blogger. I will try hard to put your advice into practice. Thx again. @blogboy2 (I saw this post on twitter via @MariSmith.)

  • http://www.sugarpineralty.com/ Mike C

    Thx 4 this, Denise. You’re right. It’s so easy to forget about participation on other blogs versus everything else one does as a blogger. I will try hard to put your advice into practice. Thx again. @blogboy2 (I saw this post on twitter via @MariSmith.)

  • http://twitter.com/vernongirl Courtenay Pitcher

    Great article. I’ve also found that I’ve been able to make connections, for my blog, with people through Twitter. Some of these contacts have turned into interview subjects leading to great material for my VernonGirl.com blog. Since these contacts are using social media themselves, the stories are more relevant and timely.

  • http://twitter.com/vernongirl Courtenay Pitcher

    Great article. I’ve also found that I’ve been able to make connections, for my blog, with people through Twitter. Some of these contacts have turned into interview subjects leading to great material for my VernonGirl.com blog. Since these contacts are using social media themselves, the stories are more relevant and timely.

  • http://twitter.com/vernongirl Courtenay Pitcher

    Great article. I’ve also found that I’ve been able to make connections, for my blog, with people through Twitter. Some of these contacts have turned into interview subjects leading to great material for my VernonGirl.com blog. Since these contacts are using social media themselves, the stories are more relevant and timely.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Jeremiah – REALLY appreciate your comment “I continue to get excellent info out of this site.” We eat that stuff up over here :) – Mike

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Jeremiah – REALLY appreciate your comment “I continue to get excellent info out of this site.” We eat that stuff up over here :) – Mike

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Jeremiah – REALLY appreciate your comment “I continue to get excellent info out of this site.” We eat that stuff up over here :) – Mike

  • http://www.mymarrakesh.com/ Maryam in Marrakech

    Honestly, I do very little blog outread. I don’t have the time. The fact is that I know plenty of blog commenters that literally spend hours commenting on other blogs rather than spending the time working on ensuring that their own blog content — both writing and images — are original and fresh. You might attract others by commenting on their blogs, but you will never keep them as readers unless you can rise to the top in terms of your own blog content.

  • http://www.mymarrakesh.com/ Maryam in Marrakech

    Honestly, I do very little blog outread. I don’t have the time. The fact is that I know plenty of blog commenters that literally spend hours commenting on other blogs rather than spending the time working on ensuring that their own blog content — both writing and images — are original and fresh. You might attract others by commenting on their blogs, but you will never keep them as readers unless you can rise to the top in terms of your own blog content.

  • http://www.mymarrakesh.com/ Maryam in Marrakech

    Honestly, I do very little blog outread. I don’t have the time. The fact is that I know plenty of blog commenters that literally spend hours commenting on other blogs rather than spending the time working on ensuring that their own blog content — both writing and images — are original and fresh. You might attract others by commenting on their blogs, but you will never keep them as readers unless you can rise to the top in terms of your own blog content.

  • http://twitter.com/MeredithMBell Meredith Bell

    Thanks for the excellent points you’ve made in this blog post, Denise. I’ve recently been making comments on others’ blogs, and it definitely takes the relationships with these other bloggers to another level. I haven’t used the resources you mentioned but plan to. My strategy to date has been to read blogs of people I closely follow on Twitter (or blogs they recommend), and I’ve found rich sources of material to comment on. It’s helped me in composing my own blog posts as I craft comments that will add value to the conversation.

  • http://twitter.com/MeredithMBell Meredith Bell

    Thanks for the excellent points you’ve made in this blog post, Denise. I’ve recently been making comments on others’ blogs, and it definitely takes the relationships with these other bloggers to another level. I haven’t used the resources you mentioned but plan to. My strategy to date has been to read blogs of people I closely follow on Twitter (or blogs they recommend), and I’ve found rich sources of material to comment on. It’s helped me in composing my own blog posts as I craft comments that will add value to the conversation.

  • http://twitter.com/MeredithMBell Meredith Bell

    Thanks for the excellent points you’ve made in this blog post, Denise. I’ve recently been making comments on others’ blogs, and it definitely takes the relationships with these other bloggers to another level. I haven’t used the resources you mentioned but plan to. My strategy to date has been to read blogs of people I closely follow on Twitter (or blogs they recommend), and I’ve found rich sources of material to comment on. It’s helped me in composing my own blog posts as I craft comments that will add value to the conversation.

  • http://CindyRatzlaff.com Cindy Ratzlaff

    Thanks Denise. I got several great ideas from your blog post and from the comments. Who knew there were contest promotion sites? Just today I ran across http://Examiner.com, a site where you can register to make blog posts in your area of expertise and they’ll broadcast them to your local area. At least that’s what it seems to say on the site. You submit writing samples and then can become the Examiner.com blogger on Philadelphia Social Media or Milwaukee Social Media Marketing. Wanted to pass that resource on as it seems to be a way to broadcast your blog to a new arena.

  • http://CindyRatzlaff.com Cindy Ratzlaff

    Thanks Denise. I got several great ideas from your blog post and from the comments. Who knew there were contest promotion sites? Just today I ran across http://Examiner.com, a site where you can register to make blog posts in your area of expertise and they’ll broadcast them to your local area. At least that’s what it seems to say on the site. You submit writing samples and then can become the Examiner.com blogger on Philadelphia Social Media or Milwaukee Social Media Marketing. Wanted to pass that resource on as it seems to be a way to broadcast your blog to a new arena.

  • http://CindyRatzlaff.com Cindy Ratzlaff

    Thanks Denise. I got several great ideas from your blog post and from the comments. Who knew there were contest promotion sites? Just today I ran across http://Examiner.com, a site where you can register to make blog posts in your area of expertise and they’ll broadcast them to your local area. At least that’s what it seems to say on the site. You submit writing samples and then can become the Examiner.com blogger on Philadelphia Social Media or Milwaukee Social Media Marketing. Wanted to pass that resource on as it seems to be a way to broadcast your blog to a new arena.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Great point, Ian. I find on posts on big blogs with hundreds of comments, I may stop reading after the first few dozen and can miss some great insights. The same definitely isn’t true when there are only 5 comments on a post.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Great point, Ian. I find on posts on big blogs with hundreds of comments, I may stop reading after the first few dozen and can miss some great insights. The same definitely isn’t true when there are only 5 comments on a post.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Great point, Ian. I find on posts on big blogs with hundreds of comments, I may stop reading after the first few dozen and can miss some great insights. The same definitely isn’t true when there are only 5 comments on a post.

  • http://www.facebook.com/catskill Rich Gately

    Hi Denise. What a great post, I will have to admit I am a little weak in the commenting on other blogs department. Sometimes it feels as though I’m tip toeing through someone elses living room when I am on a “competitors” blog or website. Like Naomi commented, it is probably all in my head so I am going to shake myself too! Also, I have gleaned alot of info just from the comments posted here. Being a newbie to the blogosphere I am learning everyday, and this is just such an occasion. I will be sure to return on a regular basis to see what is going on and hopefully post some more comments along the way. Peace and Prosperity to all this holiday season. RG

  • http://www.facebook.com/catskill Rich Gately

    Hi Denise. What a great post, I will have to admit I am a little weak in the commenting on other blogs department. Sometimes it feels as though I’m tip toeing through someone elses living room when I am on a “competitors” blog or website. Like Naomi commented, it is probably all in my head so I am going to shake myself too! Also, I have gleaned alot of info just from the comments posted here. Being a newbie to the blogosphere I am learning everyday, and this is just such an occasion. I will be sure to return on a regular basis to see what is going on and hopefully post some more comments along the way. Peace and Prosperity to all this holiday season. RG

  • http://www.facebook.com/catskill Rich Gately

    Hi Denise. What a great post, I will have to admit I am a little weak in the commenting on other blogs department. Sometimes it feels as though I’m tip toeing through someone elses living room when I am on a “competitors” blog or website. Like Naomi commented, it is probably all in my head so I am going to shake myself too! Also, I have gleaned alot of info just from the comments posted here. Being a newbie to the blogosphere I am learning everyday, and this is just such an occasion. I will be sure to return on a regular basis to see what is going on and hopefully post some more comments along the way. Peace and Prosperity to all this holiday season. RG

  • Pat Wallace

    Thanks, Denise, for such valuable information. I will be starting my copywriting business in Spring 2010. I love the idea of community-building business relationships. And I feel grateful for the mentoring you and your business colleagues have been providing me via the Web. This outflow of generosity and reciprocity began with Peter Bowerman, and it just keeps growing exponentially. I am learning from the best in the business, and I feel blessed! Have a wonderful holiday.

  • Pat Wallace

    Thanks, Denise, for such valuable information. I will be starting my copywriting business in Spring 2010. I love the idea of community-building business relationships. And I feel grateful for the mentoring you and your business colleagues have been providing me via the Web. This outflow of generosity and reciprocity began with Peter Bowerman, and it just keeps growing exponentially. I am learning from the best in the business, and I feel blessed! Have a wonderful holiday.

  • Pat Wallace

    Thanks, Denise, for such valuable information. I will be starting my copywriting business in Spring 2010. I love the idea of community-building business relationships. And I feel grateful for the mentoring you and your business colleagues have been providing me via the Web. This outflow of generosity and reciprocity began with Peter Bowerman, and it just keeps growing exponentially. I am learning from the best in the business, and I feel blessed! Have a wonderful holiday.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Rich,

    It might make things easier if you don’t view other bloggers in your space as “competitors.” I think of competitors as companies who are competing for the same single sale, like a customer who wants to buy a single TV. Basically, a zero-sum game: one company wins, one loses.

    However, the thing I’ve come to realize is that buyers or visitors in a certain area aren’t only going to buy one product to the exclusion of all others. For example, many interested people will buy multiple guides to growing their business online, or multiple books on cooking or gardening, or whatever the topic is. You and other people in your space can both win.

    If you can say something nice about your “competitor’s” thoughts and add your own, you may both end up increasing your value in the potential customer’s eyes, making you both more able to engage with them and sell something to them, if that’s what you’re after. Everybody wins, and you’re likely to get reciprocation from that (non)competitor in the future.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Rich,

    It might make things easier if you don’t view other bloggers in your space as “competitors.” I think of competitors as companies who are competing for the same single sale, like a customer who wants to buy a single TV. Basically, a zero-sum game: one company wins, one loses.

    However, the thing I’ve come to realize is that buyers or visitors in a certain area aren’t only going to buy one product to the exclusion of all others. For example, many interested people will buy multiple guides to growing their business online, or multiple books on cooking or gardening, or whatever the topic is. You and other people in your space can both win.

    If you can say something nice about your “competitor’s” thoughts and add your own, you may both end up increasing your value in the potential customer’s eyes, making you both more able to engage with them and sell something to them, if that’s what you’re after. Everybody wins, and you’re likely to get reciprocation from that (non)competitor in the future.

  • http://beaublackwell.com Beau Blackwell

    Rich,

    It might make things easier if you don’t view other bloggers in your space as “competitors.” I think of competitors as companies who are competing for the same single sale, like a customer who wants to buy a single TV. Basically, a zero-sum game: one company wins, one loses.

    However, the thing I’ve come to realize is that buyers or visitors in a certain area aren’t only going to buy one product to the exclusion of all others. For example, many interested people will buy multiple guides to growing their business online, or multiple books on cooking or gardening, or whatever the topic is. You and other people in your space can both win.

    If you can say something nice about your “competitor’s” thoughts and add your own, you may both end up increasing your value in the potential customer’s eyes, making you both more able to engage with them and sell something to them, if that’s what you’re after. Everybody wins, and you’re likely to get reciprocation from that (non)competitor in the future.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Hey Cindy – You may want to looking into that a bit (do some Google searches) to see if it is worth it for you BEFORE you get involved.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Hey Cindy – You may want to looking into that a bit (do some Google searches) to see if it is worth it for you BEFORE you get involved.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com Michael A. Stelzner

    Hey Cindy – You may want to looking into that a bit (do some Google searches) to see if it is worth it for you BEFORE you get involved.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Typically, it’s not good blog etiquette to promote yourself on someone else’s blog. When you post a comment, there’s a field for your URL and that is generally sufficient. If someone likes what you have to say, they’ll click on your name.

    That being said, there are no rules. You’ve got to do what’s right for you. I do not put promotional links in the blog comments I make. If I do share it a link it is to add value to the discussion. I don’t have a problem with including a twitter handle, but when someone blatantly promotes on my blog, I remove the link or the comment.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Typically, it’s not good blog etiquette to promote yourself on someone else’s blog. When you post a comment, there’s a field for your URL and that is generally sufficient. If someone likes what you have to say, they’ll click on your name.

    That being said, there are no rules. You’ve got to do what’s right for you. I do not put promotional links in the blog comments I make. If I do share it a link it is to add value to the discussion. I don’t have a problem with including a twitter handle, but when someone blatantly promotes on my blog, I remove the link or the comment.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Typically, it’s not good blog etiquette to promote yourself on someone else’s blog. When you post a comment, there’s a field for your URL and that is generally sufficient. If someone likes what you have to say, they’ll click on your name.

    That being said, there are no rules. You’ve got to do what’s right for you. I do not put promotional links in the blog comments I make. If I do share it a link it is to add value to the discussion. I don’t have a problem with including a twitter handle, but when someone blatantly promotes on my blog, I remove the link or the comment.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Great tip, Ian. Like Beau, I don’t generally ready through 100s of comments so it pays to be one of the first on a high traffic blog and to comment on low traffic blogs.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Great tip, Ian. Like Beau, I don’t generally ready through 100s of comments so it pays to be one of the first on a high traffic blog and to comment on low traffic blogs.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Great tip, Ian. Like Beau, I don’t generally ready through 100s of comments so it pays to be one of the first on a high traffic blog and to comment on low traffic blogs.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    You’re right, Maryam, I think it goes without saying that one’s own blog needs to be top notch too or no one will care. Blog outreach is simply one of many ways to attract new readers and boost your online visibility.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    You’re right, Maryam, I think it goes without saying that one’s own blog needs to be top notch too or no one will care. Blog outreach is simply one of many ways to attract new readers and boost your online visibility.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    You’re right, Maryam, I think it goes without saying that one’s own blog needs to be top notch too or no one will care. Blog outreach is simply one of many ways to attract new readers and boost your online visibility.

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Great tip, Cindy! Thanks for sharing it. Will definitely check out Examiner.com

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Great tip, Cindy! Thanks for sharing it. Will definitely check out Examiner.com

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Great tip, Cindy! Thanks for sharing it. Will definitely check out Examiner.com

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Welcome to the blogosphere! There’s always something new to learn and I’ve also received a lot of value from the comments here. Blog on!

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Welcome to the blogosphere! There’s always something new to learn and I’ve also received a lot of value from the comments here. Blog on!

  • http://www.denisewakeman.com DeniseWakeman

    Welcome to the blogosphere! There’s always something new to learn and I’ve also received a lot of value from the comments here. Blog on!

  • http://www.VickieSmith.com Vickie Smith-Siculiano, PMP

    Denise,

    A fantastic, easy-to-digest point you make for those who think that having a blog is the be all end all – just posting content, even though it is KING, is not enough – you have to be social, too, and get to know others in your industry and see how they have been successful. We’re all learning from each other – that’s the great thing. I subscribe to my favorite blogs in the area of social media marketing, and always make sure to align myself with their brand – in a SMART way. Then, you get to post your inbound link, in case others might want to check out your social media marketing blog, too. hmm… http://www.saywowmarketing.com :)

  • http://www.VickieSmith.com Vickie Smith-Siculiano, PMP

    Denise,

    A fantastic, easy-to-digest point you make for those who think that having a blog is the be all end all – just posting content, even though it is KING, is not enough – you have to be social, too, and get to know others in your industry and see how they have been successful. We’re all learning from each other – that’s the great thing. I subscribe to my favorite blogs in the area of social media marketing, and always make sure to align myself with their brand – in a SMART way. Then, you get to post your inbound link, in case others might want to check out your social media marketing blog, too. hmm… http://www.saywowmarketing.com :)

  • http://www.VickieSmith.com Vickie Smith-Siculiano, PMP

    Denise,

    A fantastic, easy-to-digest point you make for those who think that having a blog is the be all end all – just posting content, even though it is KING, is not enough – you have to be social, too, and get to know others in your industry and see how they have been successful. We’re all learning from each other – that’s the great thing. I subscribe to my favorite blogs in the area of social media marketing, and always make sure to align myself with their brand – in a SMART way. Then, you get to post your inbound link, in case others might want to check out your social media marketing blog, too. hmm… http://www.saywowmarketing.com :)

  • Michael Fraietta

    Thank you for the response Denise.

  • Michael Fraietta

    Thank you for the response Denise.

  • Michael Fraietta

    Thank you for the response Denise.

  • http://www.thetrainingfactor.com/ Jonathan Saar

    I have tried to do this as a regular practice just out of sheer appreciation for content that was written. I never really gave it much thought as to how it would trackback to my blog. I appreciate your direction on this. I am fairly new to blogging so it will be interesting to see what the future will bring.

  • http://www.thetrainingfactor.com/ Jonathan Saar

    I have tried to do this as a regular practice just out of sheer appreciation for content that was written. I never really gave it much thought as to how it would trackback to my blog. I appreciate your direction on this. I am fairly new to blogging so it will be interesting to see what the future will bring.

  • http://www.thetrainingfactor.com/ Jonathan Saar

    I have tried to do this as a regular practice just out of sheer appreciation for content that was written. I never really gave it much thought as to how it would trackback to my blog. I appreciate your direction on this. I am fairly new to blogging so it will be interesting to see what the future will bring.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Thank you, Beau. You’ll see that I practice what I preach once you approve my comment on your blog. Cheers.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Thank you, Beau. You’ll see that I practice what I preach once you approve my comment on your blog. Cheers.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Thank you, Beau. You’ll see that I practice what I preach once you approve my comment on your blog. Cheers.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Yep! A blog comment of mine once set in play a page rank 5 blogger writing a post entirely about how marketers need to be active in new media–just like Ian Greenleigh. It was flattering and thrilling, to say the least.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Yep! A blog comment of mine once set in play a page rank 5 blogger writing a post entirely about how marketers need to be active in new media–just like Ian Greenleigh. It was flattering and thrilling, to say the least.

  • http://bazaarvoice.com/blog Ian Greenleigh

    Yep! A blog comment of mine once set in play a page rank 5 blogger writing a post entirely about how marketers need to be active in new media–just like Ian Greenleigh. It was flattering and thrilling, to say the least.

  • http://www.webuildyourblog.com/ Andrew Rondeau

    Beau,

    I didn’t promote on any contest-listing websites – just via my blogging relationships and a few forums. I will next time – thanks.

    Andrew

  • http://www.webuildyourblog.com/ Andrew Rondeau

    Beau,

    I didn’t promote on any contest-listing websites – just via my blogging relationships and a few forums. I will next time – thanks.

    Andrew

  • http://www.integralwebsolutions.co.za/Blog.aspx Robert Bravery

    A fantastic post and set of things to do. One thing that I try to impress on other bloggers is this idea of reaching out and helping others. I an a big fan of promoting other bloggers, commenting on their blogs. Not just useless comments, but valuable relevant comments that add value.

    Making connections, building a community around your blog is vital. Admitted, it does take time and huge amounts of effort. But I believe it is worth it. After all, isn’t blogging part of the Social Media out burst.

    If it is social, then lets be social.

    Maybe we should say this to ourselves every time we come across a blog; “Hello my name is Robert [Your Name], how can I help you today and make your blog better?”

  • http://www.integralwebsolutions.co.za/Blog.aspx Robert Bravery

    A fantastic post and set of things to do. One thing that I try to impress on other bloggers is this idea of reaching out and helping others. I an a big fan of promoting other bloggers, commenting on their blogs. Not just useless comments, but valuable relevant comments that add value.

    Making connections, building a community around your blog is vital. Admitted, it does take time and huge amounts of effort. But I believe it is worth it. After all, isn’t blogging part of the Social Media out burst.

    If it is social, then lets be social.

    Maybe we should say this to ourselves every time we come across a blog; “Hello my name is Robert [Your Name], how can I help you today and make your blog better?”

  • http://www.integralwebsolutions.co.za/Blog.aspx Robert Bravery

    A fantastic post and set of things to do. One thing that I try to impress on other bloggers is this idea of reaching out and helping others. I an a big fan of promoting other bloggers, commenting on their blogs. Not just useless comments, but valuable relevant comments that add value.

    Making connections, building a community around your blog is vital. Admitted, it does take time and huge amounts of effort. But I believe it is worth it. After all, isn’t blogging part of the Social Media out burst.

    If it is social, then lets be social.

    Maybe we should say this to ourselves every time we come across a blog; “Hello my name is Robert [Your Name], how can I help you today and make your blog better?”

  • http://www.dawnperucca.com Dawn Perucca

    Thanks for explaining this information so well. I think it is very difficult for the people who are just beginning to learn how to be successful on the net, understand what they should spend their time concentrating on, (writing articles, learning how to set-up a better blog, learing how to set-up a better website, posting more videos, spending more time on twitter or facebook, getting listed in blog directories or website directories), building relationships with other bloggers, etc.. When someone doesn’t have a lot of time to spend on this stuff, they need to know which activities they should be spending most of their web time on.

  • http://www.dawnperucca.com Dawn Perucca

    Thanks for explaining this information so well. I think it is very difficult for the people who are just beginning to learn how to be successful on the net, understand what they should spend their time concentrating on, (writing articles, learning how to set-up a better blog, learing how to set-up a better website, posting more videos, spending more time on twitter or facebook, getting listed in blog directories or website directories), building relationships with other bloggers, etc.. When someone doesn’t have a lot of time to spend on this stuff, they need to know which activities they should be spending most of their web time on.

  • http://www.dawnperucca.com Dawn Perucca

    Thanks for explaining this information so well. I think it is very difficult for the people who are just beginning to learn how to be successful on the net, understand what they should spend their time concentrating on, (writing articles, learning how to set-up a better blog, learing how to set-up a better website, posting more videos, spending more time on twitter or facebook, getting listed in blog directories or website directories), building relationships with other bloggers, etc.. When someone doesn’t have a lot of time to spend on this stuff, they need to know which activities they should be spending most of their web time on.

  • http://CindyRatzlaff.com Cindy Ratzlaff

    Very good advice Michael. We should always make sure we don’t attach our brands (ourselves) to anything until we’re sure it’s on the up and up.

  • http://CindyRatzlaff.com Cindy Ratzlaff

    Very good advice Michael. We should always make sure we don’t attach our brands (ourselves) to anything until we’re sure it’s on the up and up.

  • http://CindyRatzlaff.com Cindy Ratzlaff

    Very good advice Michael. We should always make sure we don’t attach our brands (ourselves) to anything until we’re sure it’s on the up and up.

  • http://www.adminconcepts.net/ Francesca

    I’m always amazed at the amount of wealth that you can gather by reading the comments on someone’s blog. The knowledge and information sharing and an opportunity to join in is unlimited.

    I’ve recently started researching opportunities to promote oneself through social media sites and through blogging. Although I don’t currently have a blog of my own I do comment on other blog sites and have found just doing that alone has increased visitors to my Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin sites.

  • http://www.adminconcepts.net/ Francesca

    I’m always amazed at the amount of wealth that you can gather by reading the comments on someone’s blog. The knowledge and information sharing and an opportunity to join in is unlimited.

    I’ve recently started researching opportunities to promote oneself through social media sites and through blogging. Although I don’t currently have a blog of my own I do comment on other blog sites and have found just doing that alone has increased visitors to my Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin sites.

  • http://www.adminconcepts.net/ Francesca

    I’m always amazed at the amount of wealth that you can gather by reading the comments on someone’s blog. The knowledge and information sharing and an opportunity to join in is unlimited.

    I’ve recently started researching opportunities to promote oneself through social media sites and through blogging. Although I don’t currently have a blog of my own I do comment on other blog sites and have found just doing that alone has increased visitors to my Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin sites.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for your insightful information. It’s very simple really. I work as a web designer and now I want to get involved in Social Media and blogging and it seems that there is a lot of competition in terms of relevant content and expertise that it all seems very overwhelming. But I usually get too ahead of myself so I’ll take your advice and I’ll let you know how it goes in 3 months time.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for your insightful information. It’s very simple really. I work as a web designer and now I want to get involved in Social Media and blogging and it seems that there is a lot of competition in terms of relevant content and expertise that it all seems very overwhelming. But I usually get too ahead of myself so I’ll take your advice and I’ll let you know how it goes in 3 months time.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for your insightful information. It’s very simple really. I work as a web designer and now I want to get involved in Social Media and blogging and it seems that there is a lot of competition in terms of relevant content and expertise that it all seems very overwhelming. But I usually get too ahead of myself so I’ll take your advice and I’ll let you know how it goes in 3 months time.

  • Anonymous

    Very thoughtful and Informative article!

    it’s all about; visibility, transparency, relevance, etc

  • Anonymous

    Very thoughtful and Informative article!

    it’s all about; visibility, transparency, relevance, etc

  • Anonymous

    Very thoughtful and Informative article!

    it’s all about; visibility, transparency, relevance, etc

  • http://TinaCollen.com TinaCollen

    I’m sitting here on a blustery, snowy day in Boulder Colorado, being a recent arrival to the world of blog, just feeling good that there is such good-will and support in this corner of the universe.

  • http://TinaCollen.com TinaCollen

    I’m sitting here on a blustery, snowy day in Boulder Colorado, being a recent arrival to the world of blog, just feeling good that there is such good-will and support in this corner of the universe.

  • http://www.gennextmedia.com/chris-marentis Chris Marentis

    The key to me is to make this manageable. Start with five of six blogs that you can focus on and then move on as you get comfortable. Great post and advice.

  • http://www.gennextmedia.com/chris-marentis Chris Marentis

    The key to me is to make this manageable. Start with five of six blogs that you can focus on and then move on as you get comfortable. Great post and advice.

  • http://www.gennextmedia.com/chris-marentis Chris Marentis

    The key to me is to make this manageable. Start with five of six blogs that you can focus on and then move on as you get comfortable. Great post and advice.

  • http://www.ivanwalsh.com Ivan Walsh, Media Writer

    Could I add that supporting lesser known blogs may also be more productive. Everyone wants to be 1st on chrisbrogan.com or whatever. he’s great. but look at other smaller blogs and shine on them a while!

    Regards,

    Ivan

  • http://www.ivanwalsh.com Ivan Walsh, Media Writer

    Could I add that supporting lesser known blogs may also be more productive. Everyone wants to be 1st on chrisbrogan.com or whatever. he’s great. but look at other smaller blogs and shine on them a while!

    Regards,

    Ivan

  • http://www.ivanwalsh.com Ivan Walsh, Media Writer

    Could I add that supporting lesser known blogs may also be more productive. Everyone wants to be 1st on chrisbrogan.com or whatever. he’s great. but look at other smaller blogs and shine on them a while!

    Regards,

    Ivan

  • http://www.workingnaked.net/ Lisa Kanarek

    Excellent suggestions. I especially like the one about sharing expertise, not marketing offers.

  • http://www.workingnaked.net/ Lisa Kanarek

    Excellent suggestions. I especially like the one about sharing expertise, not marketing offers.

  • http://www.workingnaked.net/ Lisa Kanarek

    Excellent suggestions. I especially like the one about sharing expertise, not marketing offers.

  • http://twitter.com/williamsjohn John Andrew Williams

    I think this should be required reading for middle and high school students. The blog world is a whole new world, and it’s becoming part of a skill set to be successful.

  • http://twitter.com/williamsjohn John Andrew Williams

    I think this should be required reading for middle and high school students. The blog world is a whole new world, and it’s becoming part of a skill set to be successful.

  • http://twitter.com/williamsjohn John Andrew Williams

    I think this should be required reading for middle and high school students. The blog world is a whole new world, and it’s becoming part of a skill set to be successful.

  • http://twitter.com/OnecoachVentura Steven Borowski

    A lot of our small business clients still do not think they need to be in social media nor understand sometimes how to get started so this is great stuff for me to share with them. I have just started blogging and it is exciting to know if you are consistent and persistent in offering something of value, the results will come. I have learned it is a process vs an event. Thanks for a great site.

  • http://twitter.com/OnecoachVentura Steven Borowski

    A lot of our small business clients still do not think they need to be in social media nor understand sometimes how to get started so this is great stuff for me to share with them. I have just started blogging and it is exciting to know if you are consistent and persistent in offering something of value, the results will come. I have learned it is a process vs an event. Thanks for a great site.

  • http://twitter.com/OnecoachVentura Steven Borowski

    A lot of our small business clients still do not think they need to be in social media nor understand sometimes how to get started so this is great stuff for me to share with them. I have just started blogging and it is exciting to know if you are consistent and persistent in offering something of value, the results will come. I have learned it is a process vs an event. Thanks for a great site.

  • http://www.bizbuzzmedia.blogspot.com/ Pierre Rattini

    Very Good advise!
    Question: Do you have a feel for what blog format is more popular and why. WordPress, Blogger etc.
    Thought: I am finding that using polls allows business owners to get answers to their questions and they find it easier to start with that then just posting dialogue. What’s your opinion?

  • lamapper

    A great blog post and a great message. Ironic the pop up and marketing border about the “FREE Twitter Marketing Video Tutorial” popping up all over the site and the “PEEL THIS PAGE” Flash nonsense that does not work for users like me that surf with Linux + “Flash disabled” on purpose.

    (As for Flash, I have another computer that I can wipe (Linux not Windows, you can not wipe clean Windows anymore) clean and reinstall when the Flash “not-so-secret-or-special-flash-cookie-crap slows down my web browsing. I have had to reinstall that net book twice over the last three months alone. Amazing how much faster it is after the reinstall. But I digress.

    Its a shame that, at least for me, your blog’s message, which appears to be an excellent one, is ruined by the pop up box + bottom border + hootsuite top border. Three things, each of which individually would make me churn away from you, but together simply blows me away…, pages, blogs that throw pop-ups at me. Ugh, I absolutely hate them. If this is a condition of you getting free access for your blog, I would find a better solution. You can count that most will just churn away from your blog and never bother to leave you a message as I am doing here. Do you have access to the log files related to your blog so that you can determine how engaged your users are? This could provide some insight as well.

    About the pop up: While most X “Close” buttons do just that, early on in my Internet and web experience I encountered a pop up box/window with an “X ~ Close Button” that had I pressed it, would have downloaded a .EXE file on my computer. Fortunately for me, back then (and now), I check to see what is in my action area on my browser before I click on anything, noticed the .EXE and avoided the potential harm related to the .EXE file that the website was trying to get me to download. Never went back to it either. It was one of those “free” hosts that offer free storage and bandwidth for the right to run banner ads and/or pop up adds on a person’s blog or website.

    Today, Dec 2009, with all the scripting that a site can throw at you to change what you are actually clicking, after you click and before the action happens (Action X I hate), you just never know what you are going to get. Sure it might be innocent, but then again it might not. The fact is you can not count on what you read in the action area anymore either.

    Rather than take a chance and engage, many of us just go away never to come back.

    In reality, the information is available somewhere else. Same is true with Flash only sites, gone in less than a second.

    Maybe the pop up box and “PEEL THIS PAGE” is part of hootsuite perhaps not. Does not really matter as I find such widgets so offensive that I take my eyeballs (and business) elsewhere. As for hootsuite, digg and other “frame forced sites” many cable providers throttle a users service. In fact 100% of Cable providers throttle back service to their customers. As soon as that “Speed Test” finishes, you see it if you have the right software that shows you your bandwidth in real time, 24 X 7. Shame really as I would love what digg and hootsuite bring to the table if not for the cable company throttling my service.

    The point is that we web surfers do not care why or who is putting that junk up, we just won’t come back, at least not on purpose. How many people left Yahoo when tinker bell flew across the screen killing their bandwidth and slowing down their browsing so much to make it extremely painful to even go to Yahoo?

    Ironic when one of your paragraphs had the heading, “Share expertise, not marketing offers”, granted you were talking about leaving comments, though it did make me think that you might be unaware of the marketing blitz being applied to your own blog. It was a Marketing Blitz in a useless attempt to get me to provide my information for the “FREE Twitter Marketing” guide from “Social Media Examiner”, they are plastering their crude all around your blog post, ugh, yuck.

    If you were not aware of it, you are now. If you are aware of it, I would suggest that there are more effective ways of marketing that will not driver potential customers away from your blog / website. Might be a good idea to move to a hosting service that is less intrusive with their marketing.

    Remember most people are not going to say anything to you, they are just going to go away and never come back to your blog!

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/ Michael A. Stelzner

    Hi lamapper,

    Thanks for your comment. You should know that they only show up one time, not “all over the site.”

    And this is a free site that does not accept any advertising. And if you look around you’ll see we have no problem with user engagement.

    And while the little box popping up once in a while might bug you, it has helped us double the number of daily subscribers to our site. Why? Because it’s a really good offer and people constantly send me messages thanking me for the free tutorial.

    And yes I closely track our logs and folks are very sticky on the site and very engaged.

    Again, thanks for your comment.

  • http://jaxseoworks.com Ken Harper II

    OK. I started blogging, sharing articles that I would be helpful to others.
    Now I can better appreciate the value of leaving constructive comments for other blogs, giving and sharing thought and not just making a quick Howdy! comment with your e-mail address and website, in hopes of generating more interest in your own work.
    This is about sharing and helping others, and I like it better. Thank you.

  • http://www.sibelhodge.com/ Sibel Hodge

    Being new to blogging, this is very informative. It’s hard to have the time to read other peoples blogs while writing your own and doing your day job. If only there were more hours in the day! But in todays social media world I’m learning all about the need to tweet, blog, facebook, etc. Reading other peoples blogs etc does give you a tremendous amount of ideas for your own. I am a fiction novelist and feature writer, but my blogs will mainly be about lifestyle isses, health & fitness, home & garden etc, so does the fact that my blogs aren’t actually about “writing & books” mean that I won’t get a good following, or does it work the other way? Do people who blog about a variety of issues get more followers?

  • techxact

    this is actually a great post
    now i have got an idea how to manage with blogs and were to find the blogs related to my industry

  • thinkvaulter

    This coincides with some thoughts I presented as a guest blogger. Guest posts are another good relationship building technique. If you wish, you can see one of my guest posts – http://www.hartmaninventoryblog.com/2010/01/wha

  • juliastewart

    These points are right on, Denise! I love the Alltop suggestion. I find Blog Catalogue sends a lot of traffic to my blog.

  • http://canmoneyonlinesolveit.com/blog Pat Brosnan

    Thank you Michael for the amount of info that you provide first class

  • http://twitter.com/ChrisVanBuren ChrisVanBuren

    Just want to say the I have found many of your blog post extremely valuable and have help me a lot in building my Internet business. Following some of your tips I have been able to meet and interact with some wonderful like minded entrepreneurs. At the end of the day it’s all about building relationship.

  • http://twitter.com/themerrybird themerrybird

    Great article! I look forward to implementing some strategies offered here- can you offer tips to/about :
    http://www.the-merry-bird.blogspot.com
    http://www.wordpress.com/themerrybird
    thanks for your thoughts!

  • http://www.joinourloop.blogspot.com/ Loop Editor

    I think the rules of commenting are different for various types of blogs. My blog is mostly directed at cancer patients, so I am just fine with,”Nice post, I agree.”

    If that’s what someone feels up to writing, I am glad they had the time and energy to let us know they are out there and connect.

    While I don’t mind people posting links in the comments, it’s not my preference. I frequently have guest bloggers, and I would actually prefer they write a short guest post if they have important information.
    On blogger, you can’t directly link from the comments anyway. If you could, I would feel differently.

  • http://bodymagicbody.blogspot.com/ Yvonne

    Wow!! I think that I have finally found the reason why my many blogs have not grown very much considered that I’ve had a couple for over a year and a half!! I recently created a blog for my business as an Ardyss International distributor. My desire is to see people healthy so that can have a wonderful quality of life and be around to fulfill their dreams and be with their families a lot longer!

    I am definitely still a Newbie in the blogging arena and this information has truly opened my mind to another realm that I never thought about. I am definitely taking the challenge TODAY!! I will be consistent with it and committed to it I will share my results with you, Lori. Thanks for sharing such valuable information!!

  • http://twitter.com/b_reilly brian

    Consistency has been my formula for success when it comes to blog commenting. Thanks!

  • http://www.sherrycordova.com/blog Sherry

    Thank you for listing the blog catalogs and pointing out that there are subject specific directories. I will now take a little time out each week from writing posts to list my blog in some of the directories.

  • http://www.seotrainingalliance.com Justin | SEO Training Alliance

    Solid advice, and I must say you have a beautifully designed blog. I’ll be back for more social media tips for sure.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/ Michael A. Stelzner

    Thanks Justin!

  • http://www.gucciwebbag.com gucci web

    There is a discussion on a blog or forum about creative and interesting uses of yoga balls that you never have seen before. You could possibly take these uses into consideration in next marketing campaign. It might also be useful to drop a few creative uses that you have seen that would be new to the audience.

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  • Mark Schwartzfarb

    One tip that I would give about how to get more blog followers is to get as many link backs as you can.  Link backs are just incoming links to your website.  Try to get more high PR links  because their Page Rank juice will flow to your and make your PageRank greater.   My blog, http://www.sweepstakesmania.com has a Page Rank of 3, and if you look on Alexa, I have 193 incoming links.  Many of these links are from PR 4 and higher websites.  Try to get PR 4 and higher links.  That’s when the juice’ll really start flowing to your site.

  • Vanessa

    I just signed up to technorati and alltop to register my blog with them. Didn’t even know sites like that existed so thanks for the tip. I want to really up the number of people subscribing to my blog. I used to have google friends connect but to be honest the number was so low I removed it from my blog page. I now have a rss subscription feed. But how do I know who is subscribing? If I look at my stats in google reader it still says subscriptions 24. That’s not a great number for people to be seeing. One thing I am trying taking your advice on ‘share expertise’ (started today) is to post craft tutorials. Already, having pinned it on pinterest I have a dozen repins and twice the amount of traffic to my site. Any advice welcome.

    Thanks
    Vanessa
    http://six0sixdesign.blogspot.com/

  • http://www.thesmallbusinessideassite.com/ Dave MacKayu

    Mark

    Thanks for the tip regarding links

    daveM

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