What has surprised me most about blogging is the real, solid friendships I have made.
Connecting with other bloggers is really rewarding and everyone can benefit from a mutually supportive relationship.
I think that is the beauty of social media. You can find a great connection with someone that could live thousands of miles away.
I developed a great friendship with Devan from Accustomed Chaos. We have a lot in common; both have little kids, our husbands work a ton of overtime and we spend most dinners eating alone.
We always joke that we wish we lived closer, so we could have weekly dinner dates. Unfortunately, we live far from one another but I am hoping one day I get the chance to meet her!
Here are a few tips that have helped me establish the blogging relationships I have today:
1. Find your niche
Look for bloggers that write about similar topics. Read their About page to get to know them better, sign up for the RSS feed so that you don’t miss a post, visit regularly and comment, comment, comment!
2. Follow Their Social Networks
After you follow them through Google Connect or through their RSS feed, make sure to follow them on twitter, like their fan page, join their community and their LinkedIn networks.
Again make sure to interact with them by commenting or starting small conversations.
3. Reach Out
If you find a blog that you absolutely love – reach out to them. Ask them if they would be open to exchanging guest posts or maybe work on a project with you.
Both were a lot of fun and I loved getting to know Mary and Lori on a more personal level.
3. Give Back
Add them to your blog roll, link back to them in one of your articles and retweet their posts. This is a great way to show your support and who doesn’t love a little recognition!
Be attentive to what your blogging friends are saying. Are they working on a new project? Do they need advice? Are they going through a difficult situation?
Giving feedback, support or a little encouragement goes a long way.
5. Connect Offline
Depending on how far you live from your blogging friends, it may be feasible to set up a lunch or dinner date with them. If not, find out if they will be attending a nearby event or conference and plan to meet up then.
I originally met Erica from Mommy’s Still Fabulous at Bloggy Bootcamp in Baltimore. After we got talking, we realized we only lived 20 minutes from each other! We now talk regularly, plan occasional lunch dates and are getting ready to start a new project together!
I believe establishing true friendships in the blogging world is really important in succeeding as a blogger.
Now its your turn. Have you developed any real friendships through blogging? Do you have any tips on how to reach out to other bloggers and start a connection?