This weekend, Gary and I met up with Abby and her husband Justin (if you don’t already follow Abby, you should!). We planned to meet for lunch at noon and ended up going over to their apartment and hanging out until 9:30 p.m. We got so carried away chatting about all things blogging, Indy living, and plans for the future. It reminded me of how I felt when we moved to Indianapolis last year – I never thought that I’d meet someone who just understood on every level the passion I had for blogging. It got me thinking about how Abby and I first met and how I’m sure there are so many of you out there who blog and just want a blogger friend, someone to relate to. Today, I wanted to share with you ways you can connect with bloggers near you!
The Value of Having a Blogger Friend
Before I tell you ways you can meet local bloggers, I thought I should first explain the value I’ve found in having a blogger friend.
When I first met Abby, it was an instant feeling of community. We talked for a few hours about the funny emails we’ve received, the hard work that goes into running a blog, and more. We instantly clicked. Our first coffee shop meeting was about 3 to 4 hours long! I finally felt like someone understood the highs and lows that come along with blogging. For me, the value of having a blogger friend is community. Knowing that Abby had been through similar situations and that we both shared the same passion gave me a community to turn to.
5 Ways to Connect with Bloggers Near You
01. Instagram – As a blogger, Instagram is one of the most important social media tools you can use! It’s not only awesome for highlighting your own content – it’s a perfect channel to utilize in connecting with other bloggers in your city. When looking for bloggers, I suggest to simply use Instagram’s search bar in conjunction with your city’s hashtag. For example, I would search #indyblogger because I live in Indianapolis! I think a great way to start is by leaving thoughtful, genuine comments and even sending a DM to the blogger! If you think your audiences are similar, maybe you could propose a collaboration or a giveaway.
02. Facebook groups – One of the most helpful ways I’ve found to finding bloggers in my area is through a local Facebook group! Through the Facebook group, I’ve been able to go to local blogger events and meet other bloggers in Indy. Because the events are in group settings, there’s no pressure and usually, everyone is looking for someone to talk to. Again, I suggest using Facebook’s search bar with your city’s search terms (ex. “Indianapolis bloggers” or “Indy bloggers”).
03. Google – Another easy way to find other bloggers is purely searching for them on Google! Most bloggers will put their location in their meta title or description, so when you search for bloggers in a certain area on Google, their blogs will pop up. This is a super easy way to find bloggers in a specific place like your city or state.
04. Twitter – A lot of bloggers hang out on Twitter and respond quickly to messages, which means it’s a great place to start the networking process! In my experience, finding bloggers on Twitter is a little bit more difficult than other social media platforms, but it’s still doable! It’s funny that in my situation, Abby and I actually met on Twitter! I don’t remember how exactly we found each other, but we now have an offline relationship because of that initial interaction through this platform. There are a few ways to find other bloggers on Twitter, including searching your area name + “bloggers,” looking through small business’s account feeds (they sometimes work with local bloggers), and searching local hashtags.
05. Email – The easiest way to connect with bloggers is to email them! Most bloggers have their email readily available on their website, so finding their contact information should be fairly easy. I love what Abby did when she reached out to me – she just sent me an email formally introducing herself, proposed a collaboration, and laid out what her ideas were! Though connecting through social media is definitely the least intimating route, you may get lost in the mix because of all the other comments and messages bloggers receive. In contrast, email is a direct line of contact to the blogger, making it one of the most effective methods to establishing a connection.
The Do’s and Don’t’s of Connecting With Other Bloggers
Do: be kind, compliment, encourage, leave genuine, thoughtful comments, and follow those you would like to connect with.
Don’t: connect with others just for personal gain, follow just to get a follow, or assume you know everything about a blogger based on their blog.
Tips to Encourage Community on Your Blog
If you’re not sure about directly reaching out to another blogger, you can always try encouraging community on your blog! Here are a few ways to do that:
01. Share your real life. A huge topic online right now is being real and showing others that your life isn’t perfect, though your blog and Instagram profile may be. I think it’s important to incorporate real struggles or personal stories into your content. It could be as simple as showing your messy office or telling a story of something funny that happened. Maybe it’s talking about a funny blog-related email you received that reveals that blogging isn’t this perfect industry. People relate to real.
02. Ask a question at the bottom of each blog post. When trying to build a community on your blog, make sure to pose a question at the bottom of each blog post. This makes commenting easy for others because they have a question to use as the basis for their comment. This is a great way to encourage community because if you’re opening up about something, there’s a big chance that someone else will relate and respond.
How do you meet bloggers online? If you’ve made a blogger friend, how’d you meet? If you haven’t made a blogger friend yet, what’s stopping you from reaching out?
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