When I started to take blogging seriously earlier this year, I quickly realized that blogging is more about the community than about me or about the blog itself. What’s enriching about blogging are the relationships you build with the people who are interested in your content, and the basis of increasing traffic is building that community. One of the best ways to start is by connecting with other bloggers through commenting tribes.
In the video below, Heather Stephens, the founder and leader of one of the blogging communities described in the article below, explains how her community and tribe started, and what they’re all about:
There are three blogging communities have been particularly instrumental in my blogging experience and my blog’s growth and development:
- The Bloggers Helping Bloggers Group on LinkedIn
- The Blogging Mastermind Comment Tribe on Facebook
- The CleverMarketer.com Mastermind Community
If you’re ready to put in the time and effort to growing your blog, this group’s for you! It’s headed by the lovely Sherryl Perry at Keep Up with the Web, an online resource for small business owners and entrepreneurs who are interested in creating an effective online presence. “This group was formed as a support system for bloggers,” Sherryl relates. “The true value is not just in the posts that you see in the discussion area. It goes deeper into the friendships and relationships that develop outside of the group.”
Start by sending in a request, expressing your interest to join the LinkedIn group. Once inside, you’ll see that Sherryl manages two main discussions that last for two-week durations. In one discussion, members share links to informative posts that may benefit the community of bloggers. In the second, members share links to their latest posts and exchange comments on each others’ blogs. “Most of the members of our group are serious bloggers who truly want to support each other,” Sherryl explains. “Our common goals include helping each other increase traffic to our blogs while sharing ideas and information that will help us to achieve our individual goals.”
When exchanging comments, value is priority. Sherryl is clear: “What we do not do is blindly comment on each others’ blogs. Those of us who actively participate read each other’s blogs and comment as a way of bringing value to that person’s blog.” Both Sherryl and I can attest that the comments left by bloggers from this group have made our blogs better.
Facebook continues to be one of the major social media platforms for blog promotion, so what better place to join a community of bloggers. The helpful and caring mompreneur, Dani Nir-McGrath, created and manages this comment tribe with now over 300 members. “As a home business owner and blogger, I found that getting traffic to my blog was essential,” she explains. “I set out to create a community where bloggers could build relationships with other bloggers both new and seasoned, provide valuable information and boost their traffic, comments and blog syndication.”
Once accepted into the group, there are only two guidelines: you need to share your latest posts at least twice weekly and you need to comment on two other blogs from that week every time you post. People often share your posts throughout social media as well. “It’s a thriving group with a strong following and daily activity!” Dani is proud to say. Everyone is supportive — you can even ask questions of the group related to blogging and receive some valuable feedback in return. Dani is an especially great resource as an expert not only on blogging, but also home business, social media and networking.
Work-at-home mom, Heather Stephens of Clever Marketer has been in internet marketing since 2005 but didn’t start seriously blogging until 2010. As she tried different strategies to increase blog traffic, she soon joined a private commenting tribe and saw its effectiveness in increasing traffic after only the first commenting round. “Because these bloggers were in the same niche I was in, the traffic they brought to me through the comments I left on their blog and through the tribe sharing my links through social media was a perfect match for my content,” Heather explains.
“I was also seeing a huge increasing in visits to my blog because they were commenting on my blog posts daily and encouraging me to post 3 times a week! And even better, this traffic was converting into subscribers on my list. The tribe members were so generous. They were freely sharing secrets to their success with me…things like which plugins to use, how to optimize my posts for the search engines, and resources and services that could help me in my business that I never would have found otherwise.”
After a couple of months in the tribe, Heather noticed that the group was “unable to grow and still support each other using the Facebook group platform without having people fall through the cracks.” She ended up taking a leadership role and moved the tribe over to a forum on her blog. In the forum, 10 members at a time share their latest post in a blog commenting campaign and you’re responsible for commenting on every post in your campaign, which also means that your post will receive nine comments from the others in your campaign. “I believe the success of the community is due 100% to the commitment of the members,” she states. “The members of our community are so awesome at supporting and helping each other. I know several joint venture relationships have been formed as well as countless friendships and business relationships.” And it’s Heather who makes sure that everyone’s on board and playing by the rules, even offering training resources and additional support to her community.
What has been your experience with blogging communities? Do you have any favorites?