~ By Jennifer Chait
“7 b5’ers in a room – all on laptops – all in skype chat room – who said geeks have no social skills :-)”
Above is my fave tweet of the day yesterday via problogger. I never save tweets, but this one cracked me up, and goes along with today’s topic, so I thought I’d share.
A long time ago on a post here, I noted, “Why you need blogging friends is a fairly in-depth topic that deserves its own post” and then proceeded to never discuss it again. Well, it’s been a long week, and I don’t know about you, but I could use a warm and fuzzy post. That said; let’s address the issue, because really, what’s more warm and fuzzy than blogging pals? Not much; I adore all my blogging friends, and consider the social aspects of blogging among the top three reasons I blog.
If your aim is to be a problogger, there’s a lot you can do to increase your chances of success, but one of the best ways is to have lots of nice blogging friends. Paying attention to content, readers, and stats will get you far, but paying attention to friends can be the bonus that pushes your blogging career into overtime.
Why bother with blogging friends? There are many benefits, but the following are among the top for me.
No one understands you as well as another blogger: I know about one person in my real-live life (i.e. outside the web) who actually gets blogging. If I didn’t have blogging friends to vent with, celebrate successes with, and discuss blog issues with I’d slowly go totally crazy. Everyone needs to discuss their work, everyone needs advice at some point and in this business, the best people to do this with are other bloggers.
You’ll get more work: Having good blog friends is a one-way ticket to finding blogging work. The more friends you have the better. With friends, finding work becomes easier. You’ll know about jobs ahead of time, you’ll understand what a specific editor is looking for, and you’ll really know which jobs to avoid.
Detour: This might be a good time to point out that by friend, I mean “real friend” or even “a nice person.” Being a fake blogging pal won’t help you much. It’ll work against you. Bloggers I know, love to recommend a friend for a gig, but they’re also keen on recommending against a jerk blogger for a gig.
You get sick day help: The downside of blogging is that there are no sick days and no vacation days. Get yourself some blogging pals though, and you might get to take a day off, or even a full vacation. The best way to be a good blog friend in this respect is to take people up on guest post offers. I’ve guest posted for a lot of people, and if I’m sick, or something pops up, there are people I know I could ask for help.
You might find some good long-term partnerships (and more work): I recently landed a new gig when a blogging friend decided to take on a co-blogger. That was cool. I didn’t have to apply; it was like job candy falling in my lap. I’ve also got a few other potentially successful projects in the works with other blogging pals.
Your friends will rally around you: In the blogging world it can be frustrating to deal with lame flamers in your comments. Blog friends won’t let you go it alone. Not that it always helps to silence the meanest voices, but it’s way better than going it alone.
Your overall workload lessens: Many friends send me topic ideas and news clips for this one blog I write. So many people send me ideas in fact, that I barely have to work at that blog (lazy me huh). I do, by the way send other bloggers topic ideas – I’m not that lazy.
Friendly competition: I’m happy when my blog pals do well, make bank, or win an award. It also makes me a wee bit competitive – in a good way. Your friends and their successes in the blog world can drive you to be the best blogger you can be.
By the way; being an overly social girl, I tend to count candidates for blogging friends among other bloggers, blog readers, and blog editors or owners, but how to make blog friends is another topic altogether. Although, since I spaced last week’s guest post here at FWJ completely – (what’s up with that?) I may be back later with some info about how to actually find these blogging pals I speak of.
What are the major benefits for you when it comes to having blog pals?