February 15, 2017

Why + How to Build an Online Community (Collab Post!)

Today's post is a collab with Aly, the blogger behind Welcome to Aly's World. We decided to write complimentary posts on the topic of "community," hers with more of a college focus, and mine with more of an online/blogging focus. Read Aly's post about building your social circle in college here!


http://www.lifeshuffled.com/2017/02/why-how-to-build-online-community.html

Blogging and networking are about connecting with a community of like-minded people who inspire you, and vice versa, so I try to remind myself of that (especially when doing a social media cleanse), and you should, too. With that said, here are the dos and don'ts, the hows and the whys, of building an online community.

Why you should build an online community...



+ Your community can help you.

Who are the people you turn to when you need advice or assistance with your blog or creative biz? Knowing who this select group is can help you now and in the future. If you build a relationship with someone and come to trust them and their content/reputation, you're likely to turn to them first when you're looking to purchase a service or course. 

Brand trust works both ways. 


If that relationship is two-way, your group will turn to you for the same things you turn to them for.



+ You're one step closer to your "blogging squad."

Your blogging squad (or online squad) are the creatives who consistently read and share your content and engage with you on social media. Organically building a solid community is the way to your squad.


...and how to build one.


+ If you gain something from someone's content, let them know!

Leave a thoughtful comment (that shows you actually read the post) or even send an email giving in-depth feedback on a recent post or telling a blogger how much you enjoy reading their content. If you can make someone's day better and make them feel that the content that they're sharing is truly helpful and applicable, why not?

+ Answer questions.

You know the drill— you pose a question on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram and hope that someone will reply. If you want people to answer your questions, answer their questions; hopefully, it will start to be reciprocal. That said, don't answer a question just to answer it. If you don't have anything to contribute, why bother responding? But, if you have a solution to a problem that someone has posted to a Facebook group, give it. If you have a recommendation for a Tweep (Twitter peep), share it.

+ Be authentic.

Be genuine in whatever you do. Don't promote (and certainly don't write) content that doesn't resonate with you, don't be a serial emoji-commenter, and please— don't pay for followers.

+ Reach out to another blogger about an interview or to collab.

I'm talking about the importance of a collab post in a collab post, so you know that this strategy has to have something to do with building an online community. Featuring other bloggers on your site can be a great community-building strategy for several reasons.

  • You'll get to connect on a more personal level with whomever you're interviewing. 
  • You'll get double promo because both you and the other blogger will be sharing your link.
  • The other blogger's followers might discover and love what you do and voilà— more online friends!

+ Join Facebook groups.

I just joined a bunch of Facebook groups. I wasn't sure if they were for me, especially because I created a Facebook profile for the sole purpose of creating an Instagram business account, but a fellow creative gave me a list of groups to look into. And I see why everyone recommends doing it. It's a cool way to connect with other bloggers and creatives in a setting that isn't promotion-focused.

2 comments

  1. I totally agree with you! Building a community is such an important part of blogging. It makes the whole thing a lot less lonely. Your tips are definitely helpful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad you found the post helpful, Amelie! The way I see it is: without a community, who do you have to engage with or learn from?

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