Blogging Basics – Does Social Media Help?
Last year, it was estimated that there was 31 million bloggers in just the United States.
Writing a quality article means a blogger will spend their time not only writing, but researching, finding photos and editing a post before hitting the publish button. The question then becomes is it enough to stop working on an article after you publish it?
Social media can help build a community.
Every day in the world, someone begins blogging and someone quits blogging. The difference between beginning a blog and quitting a blog is learning about the ongoing relationship of adaptability and community.
A beginning blogger will complete an article, publish it and wait for readers to visit. They will check the sites stats throughout the day. They get excited “if” one person finds their post.
They can keep up this same routine for weeks without understanding why they have no visitors on their site. A blogger will have to learn that blogging is more than writing, it is also about interacting within your community or niche.
Adaptability and community
Human nature tells us we have to adapt to our surroundings. In blogging, adapting means that it is okay to try new things, but you also have to know when things are not working. When you write a blog, you have to learn to adapt to the community you want to know about.
Community building is one of the most essential steps a blogger does. A community should encompass other websites, readers and potential future readers. One of the quickest ways to start building a community around your site is through social media.
Many people say that social media is king. I think blogging and social media are complementary towards each other, and neither one is dominant.
1.) Social media allows blogs to be shared easily.
2.) Blogs offer social media greater value and depth. We might get bored if we only shared our mothers Facebook status through social media.
When you are working on community building, do not be afraid of stepping outside of your comfort zone. Many people find the different social medias intimidating. Truthfully, you have a lot to gain by using social media when building and learning about a community.
More About Social Media
There are many forms of social media that bloggers can work in building relationships within their niche. Three of my favorite social platforms are Facebook, Google + and Twitter.
1.) Twitter – Twitter is one of my favorite social media tools. It allows users to send and receive text-based messages of 140 characters. Twitter gives you the ability to share other bloggers articles. You can begin to build a community by responding to the tweets others make by retweeting them, commenting on them and visiting their blogs.
If you want to understand your niche better, a good option is joining a twitter chat. The chats or conversations all use a preset hashtag word (e.g. #dadchat) in every tweet to let others know they are participating in a conversation.
Twitter chats communicate in real-time. It allows people to ask questions and begin to understand one another. It is even possible to find some new followers because of these chats. If you want to learn more about twitter chats Carolyn Nicander Mohr, from The Wonder of Tech wrote an excellent article entitled Twitter Chats – Get Together With Tweets.
2.) Facebook – If you enjoy being creative on your blog then Facebook is something you might like. Facebook gives bloggers the opportunity to set-up a page specifically for their blog. Facebook gives a writer the freedom to post short messages, ideas or questions.
You can share things with your readers that they might like from other blogs as well as things you find online. The more engaged you are on Facebook with the readers, the more likely they will respond to your Facebook blogs fan page (and potentially your website).
3.) Google Plus – I have heard people say that no one ever would want to use Google Plus but if you are a blogger it is something you undoubtedly need. A Google Plus account lets a user create circles and join hang-outs with other people in their niche (both extremely helpful on building a community). It also is helpful in showing ownership of a particular article.
If you have noticed in Google search results, some of the results include a photo next to it or Google Authorship. It is a way to confirm that you are the author of that particular article. The only way you can use Google Authorship on your blog is to have a Google Plus personal account. It allows a Google Plus account to link with the content that you create on your blog giving you ownership over your work.
I can not tell you that you have to build a community around your blog. However, it is the community that can tell you when something is not working. They are the ones that can answer questions and help build a better blog. If you are writing a blog for your family, do not adapt, they are your only readers. If you want to realize your potential in blogging be willing to adapt and be part of the blogging community through social media.
How do you feel about community building? Do you think social media and blogging are interconnected? Do you use social media to enhance your blogging? If so, what is your favorite platform?
Read my last Blogging Basics post here Blogging Basics – Am I A Writer?
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