Tonight’s #blogchat topic was using other blogs to build your brand and blog presence! I’ve been doing a lot of noodling over guest blogging and community blogging lately – especially given the last few weeks’ worth of twitter chats – so this discussion was exceptionally apropos of that.
Let’s dive in!
Tonight’s chat was co-hosted by Geoff Living. Geoff is an author – whose second edition of Now Is Gone is coming out in 2011 – and an accomplished blogger, among other things.
The first half of the night was focused on a blogger finding opportunity in other blogs than their own, and how we can use guest activity to grow our own home bases.
This link from @LorneDaniel started the night off well – Guest Blogging Benefits and Best Practices (PR20/20)
Geoff used some pretty esoteric examples of guest blogging – for example, he’s a CNN iReport writer, which is interesting. Usually when we think of guest posting, we think of writing for other blogs in our verticals, not for big businesses like CNN.
@MackCollier asked: Why guest post?
Geoff’s responses had to do with promoting nonprofit work, avoiding placing yourself at odds with partners, and needing to establish thought leadership in a hurry. This last piece seems like another esoteric secret, but think about it; if I write primarily about building communities (which will become a major focus of my writing in the coming months), and you write about business development… If we write for each other’s blogs, we can establish a link between the subjects, and make it a no-brainer for our readers to trust the both of us with each others’ subjects.
My question was: Which comes first, asking a guest to post on your blog, or posting on someone else’s?
@MidnightMogul answered – to paraphrase – build a win-win either way, consider whether you need more content or more exposure. We need to learn to avoid the no-give situation as thoroughly as we avoid the no-win situation.
@BillBoorman shared a note about fitting in without blending in, which is a real clincher for guest writing of any kind.
@GeoffLiving shared a tip that many big blogs are built on expert guest content mixed in with regular reporters. (here)
Important question from Mack – does the audience of the blog you want to guest for expand your own audience? Sadly, I missed a lot of the answers to this.
Apparently, 40-50% of Geoff’s pitched stories go to virtual press on other blogs having been sent for review – better than book publishing, worse than we’d have expected.
A note from a few participants; Building relationships through comments is best for individual bloggers – less so for community blogs like Mashable. Comment relationships carry great influence, but little mass credibility.
Another note from many people; Making it known you’re looking for guest bloggers – or are willing to guest blog – is a good way to get out there, better than a direct pitch.
Splitting the difference between writing for yourself and writing for others – @BillBoorman says write for yourself, which is a good ideal as well.
In the second half,Geoff talked about his personal blog and how it has affected his business.
I brought out the #ReadItAll Week challenge – Justin Kownacki didn’t guest post on each others’ blogs, per se, but it was cross-blog promotion none the less, and has been working out well so far. The challenge itself starts tomorrow – so we’ll have that as a case study in the future as well. Here’s my Read It All post, and Justin’s pre-challenge primer.
Of course, @JustinKownacki himself appeared immediately, and made a note that if we’re not blogging about a subject (especially on non-personal blogs) we’re all just sharing miscellanea. If we’re guest-blogging miscellaneously, it gets even muddier, which is a bad thing.
Oh yeah. Provenance and content – again. Sigh.
Rehash and regurgitation isn’t the SEO killer. Verbatim replication withpout the benefit of provenance is. Sheesh! One of these days I’ll be writing a streak on SEO for bloggers, and trust me, provenance will be a big deal in that series. Content strategy will NOT be.
My how we hate the ubiquitous. @BLOGBlokeTips brought up the perspective that ubiquity of our content can be beneficial – which is true. However, be aware; ubiquity lends itself to exhaustion better than scarcity.
Did I miss anything? I’m being silly – I missed things. Share what’s missing, by all means. We’re all ears!
Participants’ List from @KevinLyons – TweepML List of #blogchat Participants for July 18th 2010
Transcript: What the Hashtag Transcript for #blogchat
Image by oddsock.