Networking for Bloggers: 8 Keys to Making Yourself More Valuable to Others

For bloggers and website owners building a strong network is crucial. In order to be a great networker, you need to make yourself valuable for others. Fortunately, there are many ways to do so, even if you are brand new to blogging and internet marketing.

8 Keys to Making Yourself Valuable:

Know Your Role

Know what you have to offer, and how you can help others. Try to look at yourself from the perspective of others. What would they want from you? Go a step further and think about what you have to offer that others may not even know about. Focus on fulfilling your role, and doing what you do to the best of your ability.

Look for Opportunities

Networking opportunities are everywhere. Don’t wait for a specific networking event or situation to start building relationships. Keep your eyes open and be ready to realize when there is a potential connection to someone else.

Make Yourself Accessible

If others want to contact you they should be able to do so, and they shouldn’t be intimidated. Just like you should be looking for opportunities, other people are doing the same, and if they see an opportunity to work with you or just get to know you, they need to be able to reach you.


Be Willing to Help

Networking is a two-way street. To get the most out of it, you will have to put in the most that you are able. Being friendly and willing to help is probably the best thing you can do for making friends and having others ready to help you when you need it.

Follow Up

In order to build strong relationships you’ll have to follow up on the contacts that you make and looks for ways to improve the connection. Meeting new people is great, but you’ll also have to work to make those contacts something more valuable.

Be Assertive

Networking requires people to take some action. Don’t just sit back and wait for others to come to you. Make an effort to meet others and be willing to pursue new opportunities.

Keep an Open Mind

You will most likely be building a network without knowing specifically how it will benefit you. I think that is normal. When opportunities do arise, keep an open mind to the thoughts and suggestions of others.

Keep Growing

Always be expanding and strengthening your network. Never sit still and assume that you have all of the friends and contacts that you need.

As a Blogger, What Do You Have to Offer?

Links

Links are very valuable to other bloggers and website owners. Most bloggers tend to link to those that are already a part of their network, or to those that they would like to have as part of their network.

Your Social Media Profile and Votes

Many bloggers and website owners use social media to promote their sites. If you have built a strong profile on a social media site you may be able to submit something for a friend and send them some traffic. You don’t have to be a “power user” to help someone else. Simply voting can help too.

Comments

Every blogger wants and appreciates comments from readers. You can help out those in your network by reading and leaving your feedback. This is especially valuable if you are doing so for a blogger that doesn’t normally receive a lot of comments.

Refer Readers

Because you have your own audience of blog readers, you have the ability and the opportunity to refer your readers to another blog. You can do so by writing a review of their blog or just by mentioning them in a post.

Offer the Opportunity for Guest Posting

Some bloggers in your network may appreciate the opportunity to write for your blog. Not every blog publishes guest posts, but it can be a good experience for everyone if done correctly.

Be Willing to Write for Another Blog

Just the opposite of the previous point, other bloggers may be interested in publishing one of your posts on their blog. If you have solid writing abilities or if you are well-known and respected, a guest post may bring a good bit of new readers to their blog.

Your Advice

If you have experience or knowledge that someone else doesn’t have, your advice can be invaluable. An example that I’ve written about before was when David Peralty helped me with some database security issues. He had more knowledge on the subject than me and he was willing to help. We’ve all got some type of knowledge that we can share with others.

What Are Your Thoughts?

In what ways to you try to build your network? Are there particular methods that have worked well for you?

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18 Responses

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  • Wayne Liew, December 26, 2007

    Networking, either with readers and also bloggers in the same niche will have a lot of benefits such as inspiration of what to blog and a steady readership.

    Taking the extra time to be more valuable (follow the steps listed in your article) will be well worth it when people start to turn to you for assistance, opinions and guidance. This shows that you are slowly turning into an influential figure in your niche.

    One thing for bloggers to remember is that you can’t be a lone ranger in the blogosphere. If you are alone, you will also be visiting your own blog, alone.

  • Vandelay Design, December 26, 2007

    Hi Wayne,
    Thanks for your feedback. I agree with you “lone ranger” point. That’s one of the things I didn’t really understand when I started blogging.

  • Michael Martine, December 26, 2007

    Steven, I have to say that the more I read your posts here, the more I enjoy your writing, and I think it’s great that you have skills in both design and writing.

    One thing that has worked well for me has been fairly prolific commenting where I can bring something of value to the conversation, combined with email, and Skype or Google Talk. I really enjoy the email and chats immensely. Everything changes when you start focusing on just giving to others.

  • Vandelay Design, December 26, 2007

    Very good points Michael. I know this is true for you because you always leave real value in your comments. I don’t remember seeing short “nice post” comments from you. I don’t have anything against short comments, but more detailed ones like yours certainly stand out and bring added value to a post. Thanks for your feedback.

  • turtie, December 27, 2007

    I’ve always thought that its always in your best interest to help others. Reciprocation is one of the keys to success in blogging. But I think its also important to recognize where to draw the line. You don’t want to waste all your time helping others and networking, as there are many other things you need to consider. Sometimes, it can be difficult to say “no”, but being able to do so is important or else you won’t have any time for yourself!

    Great post with great tips.

  • Justin Dupre, December 27, 2007

    This reminds me a lot of a post I did. I think bloggers really need to show respect to each other. It shouldn’t be our goal to compete against each other, but rather to work together to help one another. Anyways, here is the link on what I was saying: http://www.moneyandblog.com/2007/12/look-and-listen-being-good-listener.html .

    In the 3 weeks I’ve been running my blog, I feel like I’ve accomplished a lot. I’ve already got a guest post on a 5/10 page ranked blog, and I’ve opened up several opportunities to network with other bloggers.

    The best way to do this networking is find all the blogs in your niche, comment, comment, refer to a similar blog you have posted, email the blogger, and keep looking for new opportunities. I’ve found signing up for blog contests helps a lot. If you win one, you usually get a bit of traffic to your blog.

    Justin Dupre

  • Vandelay Design, December 27, 2007

    Turtie,
    You have a good point. There is a time for these types of activities, but there is still a need to be productive and get things accomplished. In general I wanted this article to touch on some ways to make yourself more valuable. Hopefully that means creating better results with the same amount of effort in networking.

    Justin,
    Thanks for your feedback. I agree with your comments. Blogging is unlike most other things in that other bloggers really are not competition. In a way we all compete for readers, but not really. There’s much more potential if we are able to work together for teh benefit of everyone.

  • Daniel Gaitan, December 28, 2007

    Networking is important in any type of business. In my profession which is real estate, networking is a daily activity. The more you network, the more business or traffic you receive. I know how to network in person, but online is a whole new chapter. Another great post Vandelay.

  • Vandelay Design, December 28, 2007

    Daniel,
    Thanks for your comment. You’re right, it really applies to most professions.

  • Joshua Clanton, December 30, 2007

    I’ve learned the power of networking quite a bit over the past couple of months, especially in relation to getting my own blog off the ground.

  • Vandelay Design, December 30, 2007

    Hi Joshua,
    Thanks for leaving your feedback. Yes, networking will have a huge impact on a new blog. Good luck.

  • Sam MacDonald, January 1, 2008

    The advice you provided is great. And works not only for blogging but any venture you pursue in life. Networking is very important for establishing yourself and letting people know what you can provide for them.

    Although it does take a great deal of effort to get established and to get noticed. Once the networking is started though it becomes much easier to network with other people like minded people.

  • Vandelay Design, January 1, 2008

    Hi Sam,
    Thanks for stopping by and leaving your feedback. I agree, it does become much easier once it becomes a habit.

  • Yang, February 26, 2008

    I’d also add another key: Patience.

    Everything takes time and effort to achieve, even if you are a hard-working genius, it needs time for the public to recognize you and reward you both in reputation and in money.

    Never give up on what you do, and do what you love.

  • yours is a wonderful site with valuable information the only humble comment i want to make is i am a new bee to the entire world of online market and money making i find your page very useful for some one like us, if you could go some step deep in explaining some of the technical terms used,with a small brief taking into account person like me it will much much helpful for us to learn things for example i could not understand what is out bound and in bound links first of all, will you ?

  • Vandelay Design, September 25, 2008

    Outbound links are links from your site going out to other websites. Inbound links are when other websites link to you.

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