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How Blogging Communities Build Site Traffic

How Blogging Communities Build Site TrafficIt’s good to know how blogging communities build site traffic whether you are just starting your blog, or you’ve been blogging like a pro.

That’s because the blogging communities not only build site traffic for you, but they also attract the very best quality visitors.

I’ve been blogging quite a while now, and I do get a lot of site traffic to donnamerrilltribe.com.

That’s not because I’m an SEO wiz, or because I paid some overpriced company to build site traffic for me.

It’s not because I’ve budgeted a lot of advertising dollars for Facebook, and it’s not because I have some fancy re-targeting campaigns set up.

There’s nothing wrong with those approaches, but it’s not the first approach I’d recommend to bloggers looking for the best quality site traffic.

I think the place to begin building site traffic is within blog communities.

What Are Blogging Communities?

People often think that you need to join some official blogging communities in order to get attention to their blogs.

That’s a good idea, and there are many such communities, sometimes called blogging tribes or co-operatives.

What’s great about blogging communities is that they give you a chance to connect with other bloggers who are also looking to build site traffic.

Because everyone has the same goal in mind, they are all committed to sharing with you, as you do with them.

A typical blogging community sets guidelines for all members to encourage reciprocity.

If you visit the blogs of 5 other people in your community, they should visit yours in turn. Engagement is a key element of this reciprocity.

The vast majority of people who visit your blog will never stop to engage with you.

In other words, they will read your article and then click away rather than leave a comment with their thoughts on the topic.

When fellow members of blogging communities visit, though, they should leave you a thoughtful comment.

You will then do the same when you visit their blogs.

Build Your Own Blogging Communities?

One of the drawbacks of being involved in such communities is that their members usually come from a wide diversity of interests and niches.

Let’s say you have a blog about computer software and technology.  Then you find yourself in a position of having to share your content with another blogger whose content is all about health and nutrition. Of course, you need to reciprocate by commenting on their articles. But they are written for an audience within a totally different niche than yours.

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This is a very common situation, and on that you’re likely to encounter in any blogging community.

It’s a good idea, therefore, to build you own blogging communities.

All I mean by that is to seek out other bloggers in your niche.

You don’t have to be in a formal blogging community with them, but if you just start making a practice of visiting their blogs regularly, and leaving a comment… they are very likely to come to your blog and reciprocate.

They are not obligated to, as they might be by the formal rules found in blogging communities.

But if they are serious bloggers, and they are looking to build site traffic just like you are, then there is a good chance they will do it, anyway.

Make a list of good blogs you can visit within your niche.

This list is, in effect, you own blogging community.

You can choose which bloggers to follow, according to several criteria:

  • Do they blog within your niche?
  • Do they have a well designed, easy to navigate blog?
  • Do they share good quality content?
  • Do they blog consistently, and often enough to keep pace with your own requirements?
  • Do they reciprocate, meaning do they visit and comment on your blog posts, as you do on theirs?
  • Do they get enough traffic and engagement?
  • Does your blog get some decent exposure as a result of your commenting on their blog?

These are basic criteria that most bloggers should consider, but you can develop your own specific requirements, too.

Where To Find Bloggers To Follow?

If you have no idea of what blogs to follow, you could spend some time doing Google searches for topics within your niche.

Just add “+ blog” to your search. So, if your niche is computer software, you might try searching for “computer software + blogs.”

It shouldn’t take too long to find some good blogs to visit.

You’ll probably find some very high authority blogs when you do this.

It’s a good idea to visit these blogs and leave comments.

High authority bloggers aren’t likely to reciprocate by visiting your blog and leaving a comment. But you will start becoming a familiar face in their comment section, and you’ll start recognizing other regular commenters.

Look them up. They may become good people to add to your blogging communities.

You can also find bloggers by putting your niche keywords in Google Alerts.

So, for instance, you could create an “alert” for “computer software blogs.”

This will help you monitor the web for blogs that are in your niche. Check your inbox each day for your “alerts” to see what bloggers are doing in your niche.

You’ll find many good blogger to follow using this method.

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I find that new bloggers think it’s a big job to find bloggers to connect with in this way, but I can tell you from experience… just open the door a crack and you’ll soon be flooded with more good blogging connections than you can imagine.

It’s like a snowball.

You go to somebody’s blog and leave a comment.

Then you check out other bloggers in the comment thread.

Chances are, the blogger from the blog you visit, and others on the comment thread, will follow you back to your blog.

So it’s not just that you give leave one comment, and hope for one in return. You could leave a single comment on somebody’s blog and get 5 people coming to your blog to see what you’re all about. Or 10 people.

The longer you’re active in your blogging communities, the more steam you’ll pick up.

Your bigger problem should soon become, not how to find bloggers, but how to choose which ones to include in your circle, your own little blogging community.

How Blogging Communities Build Site Traffic

Besides the sharing of visits and comments, you can use your blogging communities to build site traffic in many other ways.

Social Shares. When you make the rounds of those in your blogging community, make sure to share good articles on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn… whatever social media sites you use.

People will see your social shares and start sharing your posts, too.

This can drive a lot of traffic to your blog.

Guest Posting.

Connect with some of your new friends in your blogging communities. Ask them to do a guest post on your blog, or offer to do one on theirs. You could do a guest post “swap.” Do a guest post for someone in June, and then host their guest post in September.

This way, you’ll build site traffic from your blogging buddies. They’ll be happy to help because they’ll benefit in the same way by exposing their blog to your followers.

Roundups.

This has become very popular in blogging circles. I’m not crazy about it, but it is good for new bloggers looking to build site traffic. You simply write a blog post featuring other bloggers in your circle of bloggers.

You could tell your readers “here’s 5 blogs I love to follow” with outbound links to their blogs and a summary of what their blog is about.

You could also base your roundup on other bloggers’ expertise. So, you could tell your readers “here’s what 5 of my favorite bloggers do to find great content.” Ask your featured bloggers to write you a paragraph or two about how they find great content, copy and paste their response into your blog, and you have what’s often called an “expert roundup.”

The idea behind roundups is that all the people you feature or ask to contribute, will share your blog on their social media sites. This drives new traffic to your blog.

I say I’m not crazy about this method because I see too many people doing it, and doing it too often.

To be effective, I think you should only do a roundup post occasionally.

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There are other ways that blogging communities can be used to get traffic to your blog.

Do you build your own blogging communities?

Do you join formal blogging communities? … or both?

I’d be interested in hearing of your experience, and ways that you use blogging communities to build site traffic.

-Donna

Donna Merrill
Donna is a well known blogger and creator of "Blogging Magic" - an intensive guide to blogging. "Blogging Magic" is for beginners who are trying to figure out how to bring their blogs to life with tons of visits, comments and social media interaction. It's even for advanced bloggers looking to reach new levels of authority and engagement with their audience.

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56 Responses to How Blogging Communities Build Site Traffic

  1. Renard Moreau
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2016 at 5:04 pm #

    [ Smiles ] Donna, this is a very insightful post on building one’s very own blogging community.

    In my case, I have used Triberr and Twitter successful for this purpose.

    Commenting on other people’s blog posts do help to a certain degree.

    Also, do have yourself a wonderful week and promise me that you would keep up the good job!
    Renard Moreau recently posted..“Rock This Place” Is A Hot Bass House Track!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 20, 2016 at 6:25 pm #

      Hi Renard,

      Triberr’s a great place start building a community along with Twitter. I like those kinds of blogging communities, and I’ve always been involved in them .

      In addition, though, I like to put out feelers to people I’m not so directly involved in, but who are also in my niche.

      This way, I’m always getting new people to follow me.

      You’ve just got to find those people, and start commenting on their blogs.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  2. Brenda P
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2016 at 5:45 pm #

    Hey Donna!

    This is a wonderful post. I love reading about building Communities and joining Communities. Communities can definitely help send traffic to your site. You can form valuable friendships. And you can find freelance work or hire someone yourself. I think Communities are up and coming and would recommend to everyone.

    Thanks for writing about building traffic, Donna. I know we can all use a bit more on our sites. Hope you’re feeling well!

    B
    Brenda P recently posted..Top 5 Reasons I Would Love to Be A Man #NSFWMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 20, 2016 at 6:32 pm #

      Hi Brenda,

      People get so twisted with a million ideas for getting traffic to their blogs.

      The funny thing is, getting involved with other people on their blogs is actually the best way to start getting people interested in yours.

      Just keeping it simple… 🙂

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  3. Marquita Herald
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2016 at 6:16 pm #

    I like the idea of building our own blogging community. I previously belonged to a couple of organized communities, but they were different than the example you gave because most of the members were involved in either teaching people how to build online businesses or network marketing. Both great niches, and I learned a lot from my participation, but very different audiences from my own personal development niche. So now I belong to a less formal group of bloggers in complimentary niches and do a lot of my own thing all of which has turned out to be surprisingly effective. Thanks for the tips and inspiration, as others have said, we can always use more traffic!

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 20, 2016 at 9:30 pm #

      Hi Marquita,

      I love your story of how you built your own blogging community.

      That’s exactly what we need to do in order to get on board with our crowd. When you join a generic blogging group, as your case shows, you will probably be connecting with a lot of people who are not in your niche, and therefor, not really connections you need most.

      I’ve made friends with people blogging in niches that have nothing to do with mine, and I love that about blogging. But for the most part, you need to run in the circles where your target audience is.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  4. Lillian De Jesus
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2016 at 8:37 pm #

    Hey there Donna,

    Building a blog community in the same niche is a terrific idea! I know using Buzzsumo you can find people with the same interests by searching niche subjects. I’ve used a few times and it is quite interesting to see what articles become popular too.

    I hope you are feeling well! I’m praying for you and for a speedy recovery.

    Take care,
    Lillian

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 20, 2016 at 9:46 pm #

      Hi Lillian,

      First of all, thanks so much for your prayers. I’m recovering now, but it’s slow and miserable. Yickkk

      Anyway, I’ve never used Buzzsumo but I know of it. I think it would work good, but you can do it without any tools also, using the methods I talked about in the article.

      Either way, what’s most important is to get your community organized so you can be a regular contributor. That a great method to get folks coming your way.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  5. Dana
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2016 at 9:41 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    You know, it’s funny…

    I write about healthy living and personal development. While I visit some of the other blogs within my niche, (I like Marquita’s and Sylviane’s blogs for example) I’ve found I’m most attracted to the ones I want to learn something from.

    I visit blogs about blogging and writing because that’s what I personally want to learn. I get a lot out of reading your content and visiting Adrienne’s and Don’s blogs because you all discuss what I need to know in regard to how I can share my message with others successfully. I just wanted to mention that.

    I know you aren’t a fan of roundup posts and I can see why you feel that way because I also see a lot of them.
    I like them though because I think they’re an excellent way to share bite-sized nuggets of wisdom from a variety of different people with different perspectives.

    You mentioned guest posting too.

    One of my first guest posts was for a blog that was about blogging/writing. It challenged me to create a post that could harmonize along with this theme, but I added my own message to it and gave it a spin that made it believable.

    I really enjoyed the experience because it forced me to use my imagination and be creative – and exposed my work to a new audience.

    Inspiring post Donna 🙂
    Dana recently posted..Emotional Maturity – Letting Go and Saying GoodbyeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 22, 2016 at 9:49 pm #

      Hi Dana,

      You seem to have been implementing a lot of various strategies and doing a pretty good job at it. Many things work, some better than others. Also, some thing work better for some people more than it might for somebody else.

      The key is for each of us to be aware of the options and figure out which ones are best for our personality, skill set and niche.

      I have said that I’m not a big fan of roundup posts, for instance, yet I’ve done them myself from time to time. And I know some bloggers who do them really, really well.

      Anything works if we do it really well, and if we remember the first rule… every blog post we write is to improve the lives of our readers. We can solve their problems, answer their questions, even entertain them… but they must find some value in our article, for some reason.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  6. Rachel
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 1:15 am #

    Hey Donna,

    This is my focus at the moment and for the rest of my life I suppose. Building a community. I put a lot of time and effort into this area. The rewards have been astounding. The connections to some great minds lifts me. Gets me so excited.

    Guest posting. I have only done two and enjoyed the process. But it certainly has a different feel to it than writing on my own blog. There is a lot more pressure and I feel like I have handed in my exam paper and I am waiting to be graded. But what I have learnt certainly outweighs any stress.

    I won’t share anything I have not read or commented on. SI find some of the social platforms like Triberr a bit overwhelming, or I have not found my own style just yet.

    What a fine post you have written. I have taken a few search tips away from this post. Thank you.

    Rachel.

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 22, 2016 at 11:42 pm #

      Hi Rachel,

      Glad to see you so involved in building your community. It’s really the foundation of a strong blogging business. So you’re heading in the right direction and I’m are sure you’ll be reaping ever more astounding rewards as time goes on.

      Guest posting is a challenge, like you’ve mentioned, but it’s a really great way to build your community and site traffic. Of course, like with anything, the better your guest, the more effective it will be in attracting new readers. So, it always gets down to delivering your best quality, and making an all our effort.

      Keep up the good work, girl 🙂

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  7. Enstine Muki
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 1:56 am #

    Hey Donna,
    Happy New Year 😉
    I have been here since the first of January a couple of times but I think this is my first comment this year 😉 This year will be more beautiful so I pray we don’t stop giving.

    Now, you’ve giving some result-driven tips in this post. I have been been active on a few niche oriented blogging communities and the result is just what you explain – traffic and engagement.

    However, some folks think the way to get results is just posting your articles to these platforms and then leave. It won’t work that way.

    For the most part, you have to comment, vote, like and follow to get some reciprocity. The more active you are on them, the more results you get.

    I recommend focusing on a few and dominating them than joining a multitude and not being able to keep up with the requirements.

    Excellent post for newbies to start and grow within a short time. I hope more of these articles are coming up this 2016 😉
    Enstine Muki recently posted..Temok Review ~ Premium Webhosting Starting $2.99/moMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 5:04 am #

      Hi Enstine,

      Happy New Year to you, too.

      Yes, my friend, blogging communities bring traffic and engagement. That pretty much says it all, doesn’t it? And that’s pretty much all that blogging is, when you think of it.

      As you point out, the more active you are in doing this, the more effective it will be.

      I like you advice to focus on a core group of blogs and “dominating them” so you really gain some recognition in key places, rather than trying to reach everyone all the time. That can only spread you thin.

      So nice to have you here, my friend.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  8. Harleena Singh
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 3:15 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Wonderful post indeed 🙂

    You are SO right about all that you mentioned as these are the apt ways to build your own little blogging community the best way.

    I know I started off on a blank page, when I started blogging five years ago as I came from a totally non-blogging background, so knew no blogger. But because of the multi-niche blog I had, I was interacting and connecting with a lot of bloggers in no time, and yes, reciprocation is the only thing that really works in the Blogosphere. Several comments and shares, and the awesome connections that were made are somethings I treasure. So many of them are good blogging friend’s now, as it’s been an association of so many years now.

    Yes, even the blogging communities help, though few of them really have the interaction one looks for. But you can connect with a lot of other bloggers and visit each others blogs. Our little community, the ABC, is different there, as it’s small, but people are self-driven to join, interact, and just build it up from there. So, yes, it does help if you can have the best of both worlds.

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week ahead, and get well soon 🙂
    Harleena Singh recently posted..What Stops You From Self Publishing a Book on AmazonMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 5:36 am #

      Hi Harleena,

      I know you’ve been involved in blogging communities for a long time, now, and your feedback is very welcome here, my dear friend.

      Yes, it is a job to go from the “blank page” you start off with in your blogging business, to building up the large followings we now enjoy. But it doesn’t just happen by itself.

      You need to actively seek out those you want in your community, and work closely with them on a steady basis. Joining good communities is something to do at the same time. When you work at this consistently, it makes all the difference in the world as you and I both know very well 🙂
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  9. Moumita Ghosh
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 3:54 am #

    Hello Donna,

    Blogging communities is an effective way to bring more traffic for a blog. Blogging commenting, Social Media sharing, Interviewing these are my preferred way to create blogging communities. I am planning to post a round up article on my blog. Your article is really awesome. It will be helpful to every blogger.

    Thanks & regards,

    Moumita Ghosh
    Moumita Ghosh recently posted..Top Black Hat SEO Techniques Those Should Be AvoidedMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 11:13 am #

      Hi Moumita,

      Interviewing is a good way to build community, and I’m glad yo mentioned it here.

      When you interview somebody, and post that interview on your blog, it’s similar to getting that person to do a guest post for you. It’s a nice technique, too, for people who have large followings and wouldn’t probably take the time to write a guest post for you, but are happy to do a short interview that you can spin into an article.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  10. Atish Ranjan January 18, 2016 at 4:14 am #

    Donna,

    I liked the idea of building our very own blogging community to exchange traffic, social sharing, votes, etc. naturally. Finding like-minded bloggers is not tough job rather it is easy and interesting to find out new blogs and bloggers. One of the strategies I implement to find out is that I visit your blog regularly, and see so many bloggers comment on each of your blog post. Now, I can click their names to visit their blog, and the ones who are into my niche, I will read and comment.

    This is very simple way to find out more targeted bloggers, and the way you said for searching in Google is another good way too.

    Nice post, Donna.
    Atish Ranjan recently posted..25 Best Free Movie Streaming Sites To Watch MoviesMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 11:16 am #

      HI Atish,

      I like your explanation of how commenting can be used to build a community.

      It’s about drilling deep into each comment thread you come to and finding just those folks that you’d like to include in your community. Then tap into them and do it consistently.

      Thanks for sharing that, my friend.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  11. Don Purdum
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 10:05 am #

    Hi Donna,

    When I first started my blog at Unveil the Web back in May 2014 I decided the only strategy I was serious about was becoming a part of a blog community and building my own blog community.

    The results were nothing short of FANTASTIC!!!

    I grew quickly because I engaged with so many other tremendous bloggers. It wasn’t about necessarily finding influencers at the time; but it was about connecting with people who’s blogs earned comments because they were networkers and networkers just get things done!!!!

    I don’t know why I didn’t think about using Google search in the way you recommended to find other blogs, but it is very timely today as my blog article is specifically targeted at consultants and coaches. Finding those blogs will be fast with your recommendation.

    I hope you have a great week Donna and get to feeling better very soon! You’re in my thoughts and prayers.

    ~ Don Purdum
    Don Purdum recently posted..Two Guaranteed Ways Consultants and Coaches Can Thrive in a Volatile EconomyMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 11:30 am #

      Hi Don,

      Thanks for your kind words, thoughts and prayers. I’m moving slowly these days, but still moving 🙂

      Your story is a great testimonial for the concept of building your own blog communities. As you point out, once you get started, things can happen very fast. Then you need to lock into a consistent pattern of reciprocating to those in your community while you also develop new content.

      And, yes, using the Google search method is especially useful when you start defining more and more targeted niches to narrow in on. It saves a lot of “shoe leather” haha

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  12. Ikechi
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 12:55 pm #

    Hi Donna

    I do like this topic.

    Blogging Communities are a great way to get traffic but as you brilliantly highlighted, it is joining the right ones where your niche is that make it effective or else it could turn out to be a drag.

    Love the tips that you shared. One thing about blogging communities is that, these platforms are meant for relationship building and not spamming.

    I joined a couple but ended up being with ABC which has a lot of awesome members.

    Guest posting is also a great way to build traffic. You have shared top notch tips that will definitely make any blogger grow an awesome community.

    Thanks for sharing. Take Care

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 3:11 pm #

      Hi Ikechi,

      There’s nothing wrong with connecting with people in other niches, but it really only makes sense to develop a community among people interested in the same things.

      That includes, of course, people in niches that overlap with yours.

      Once you’ve got your community to work with, through guest posting, commenting and all that… you have to build those relationships you’re talking about.

      -Donna


      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  13. James McAllister
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 8:32 pm #

    Hi Donna!

    I have tried the lone wolf approach. Not only is a sad and lonely road, but it requires far more work for the same rewards.

    I have always believed leveraging other people’s marketing efforts to draw people to their own site is one of the quickest ways to skyrocket yourself. Not only do both people win, but you get to have a lot more fun doing it. I don’t spend time thinking about my Facebook ad campaigns. I do think about the people I connect with in the various blogging communities I’m part of. I can hardly consider this work. Blog commenting is relaxing and it’s fun for me, and I get to learn a lot in the process because I’m reading so much fantastic content.

    I mean I remember when you invited me to guest post here on your blog. To this day I’m still connecting with new people who tell me they remember the most I wrote here. That credibility passes through and no doubt there are many indirect benefits to connecting with influencers.

    I realize now that only a fool would intentionally avoid all the benefits blogging communities have to offer. There really aren’t any excuses – the benefits are incredible.
    James McAllister recently posted..You Wouldn’t Believe How Blogging Has Transformed My LifeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 3:28 pm #

      Hi James,

      No reason to be a lone wolf, as you say. Of course, a lot of people join communities but don’t really benefit as much as they might. That’s usually because they often fail to broaden their audience by building their own communities in addition to those they join.

      Yes, influencers are important to align with, but also, other people simply active in your niche. They’re all part of the crowd that will give juice and conversation to your blog… what they call “social proof.”

      Social proof, of course, is what ultimately develops your personal brand.

      That ends up being THE big benefit to blogging, at the end of the day, no matter what niche you’re in,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  14. Mark
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 9:39 pm #

    Thanks for sharing pros & cons of such a powerful strategy Donna!

    Had it not originally been for you sharing the effective way to
    blog comment, my traffic would still be incredibly low!

    And I couldn’t agree more, that asap, you should start building your
    customized blogging community.

    Because as you mentioned, when you join a more formalized
    blogging community, you really have no control over who,
    you’ll be in the community with.

    But it’s still a good launching pad strategy, for newbie bloggers, to help them get
    their feet wet and to see how the process can and should work.

    Thanks for sharing, another exceptional post!
    Mark recently posted..How A Really Simple Marketing Twist Helps Savvy Small Business Owners Pocket 25% More Gross Profit!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 6:26 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      You’ve summarized this perfectly!

      I like the phrase “customized blogging community” (I’ll probably start using it, ha ha). It describes the process exactly. You build a blogging community specifically customized to what kind of audience you want, what kind of bloggers you want to buddy up with, what kind of influencers you want to connect to.

      That’s it. That’s your “customized blogging community” and it changes all the time as you bring new folks in or drop old ones out.

      As great a strategy as that is (and it is)… you’re right to note that for beginners, it’s best to join a formal blogging community until they know what they’re doing, or even who their real target audience is.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  15. upasna
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2016 at 10:02 pm #

    Hey Donna

    I am a newbie in blogging world and following almost all the tips you suggested for new bloggers.

    Joining blogging communities is something I am enjoying. It’s good to see people noticing your work and reciprocating.

    But I had a doubt in the back of mind – Will this method get me somewhere or not.

    Now, after reading your article I am confident.
    Thanks for boosting me up. I just have to be patient.

    Keep inspiring. 🙂

  16. Corina Ramos
    Twitter:
    January 19, 2016 at 12:07 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I hope you’re feeling better today. I really enjoyed reading this post. Building traffic and growing our blog can’t be done alone, which is why we should make it a goal to build a community or become part of one.

    The reasons you laid out are great ways to do just that. Although I do connect with bloggers in my niche, I also have a list of bloggers I learn from, like you, for example. 🙂

    I’ve been fortunate to connect with bloggers who reciprocate when I visit their blog but there are still some who do not. I’m hoping when I share this they’ll read it and realize what they’ve been missing.

    Thank you for always sharing valuable information with us!

    Take care,

    Cori
    Corina Ramos recently posted..It’s A New Year: Is It Time to Make New Friends?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 7:36 pm #

      Hi Cori,

      Thanks for the well wishes. I’m hanging on, by a thread, haha

      I hope to be back into full form soon…

      Nobody gets ahead alone. We’re all in this business to help each other out, or else we’re just missing out on the action altogether.

      Seems like you’re doing things as they should be done, and of course most important… you’re giving high quality content to your readers and improving their lives with it. That’s critical.

      As for people who don’t reciprocate when you open engagement with them, I don’t usually keep after those folks for more than once or twice, I’ll just let them go off on their own, where they seem to prefer to be anyway. You can’t build a community with everyone, only those that want to be part of it!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  17. Adrienne
    Twitter:
    January 19, 2016 at 6:11 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    Well you know this is a topic after my own heart. Something I build my course around because we both know just how powerful this can be.

    I also suggest everyone building their own but we all have to start someone so your advice is spot on. What I love about meeting other bloggers and getting to know them is the things we learn, the friendships that are formed and then the recommendations that can come along as well.

    I remember when I was just getting started in this area and although I was really nervous it’s the best thing I’ve ever done. Gosh, if anyone is eager to get started I do hope they read this post and take your advice. They’ll go very far and will build up some excellent traffic in no time at all.

    Wishing you well my dear and thank you for this topic. Off to share of course.

    ~Adrienne
    Adrienne recently posted..5 Reasons Your Blog Will Fail This YearMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 23, 2016 at 8:46 pm #

      Hi Adrienne,

      Community building is absolutely the best way to get traffic to your site, short term if you’re new, or long term for the pros.

      You’ve been doing this a long time and you’re a great example of how it happens.

      It’s frustrating when I work with people who have spent so much time and money with paid ads, buying links, high cost SEO services or “managers” even… none of that will get you anywhere if you don’t have real people engaging with you.

      Blogging is very personal, and very community oriented. Everyone who makes a business of it, like you, my friend… learns how to work with others. Hey, like you said… a lot of them even become your friends over time 🙂 What fun!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  18. Chery Schmidt
    Twitter:
    January 20, 2016 at 10:25 am #

    Good Morning Donna, I have been part of a few different blogging communities and do love them. As a matter of fact this is how we met as well as so many others.

    So not only do we get traffic to our blogs we also get to meet so many wonderful people from all over the world.

    I think this is the biggest bonus for me LOL

    Thanks for sharing and I do hope you are back up to par soon.
    Chery :))

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 24, 2016 at 3:32 pm #

      Hi Chery,

      Blogging communities are very effective, but yea… they’re lots of fun too 🙂

      You do meet so many interesting people from every part of the world, it really is a big bonus.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  19. Sylviane Nuccio
    Twitter:
    January 20, 2016 at 10:58 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Yes, the risks of visiting blogs outside of our niche is that it’s going to bring bloggers who are not interested in what we share, but also when our target market is not bloggers, such as in my case, bloggers who come to my blog are great for giving me comments and traffic, but usually not my potential clients.

    In a case like me, my potential clients are more people who read blogs in my niche than they are bloggers themselves, so I feel that’s a bit more complicated.

    You have made some great points here, and I feel that guest blogging in blogs of your niche is one of the best ways to bring you the right traffic to your blog.

    Hope you feeling much better. Nice to see you blogging.

    ~Sylviane
    Sylviane Nuccio recently posted..Why Your Broad Blog Posts Make You Lose Clients And MoneyMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 24, 2016 at 3:39 pm #

      Hi Sylviane,

      I do agree that guest posting within your niche is one of the better ways to direct some new traffic back to your blog.

      It’s always a balancing act between building an audience in your niche versus a broader readership. I think it’s all good. For different reasons, maybe, but it’s all good. Casual readers will build your visibility as they share and engage, while more targeted visitors are, of course, your primary prospects for doing business with you.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  20. Ryan Biddulph
    Twitter:
    January 21, 2016 at 10:55 am #

    Donna I have been there with communities well outside of my niche.

    Not a good thing.

    Also, having to share content – as a requirement – that is not too great, to remain a member of a group, is another no-no. So starting your own crew just makes sense. Your niche, your rules and you can make it exclusive to folks who put out really solid stuff on a regular basis. It’s why I created a Blogging from Paradise tribe on Triberr; only the good stuff there, only the good stuff 😉

    Thanks for the helpful share Donna. Hope you’re feeling better!

    Ryan
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted..Don’t Be a Need Demon: 7 Tips to Become a Supremely Confident BloggerMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 24, 2016 at 4:36 pm #

      Hi Ryan,

      You share a good case study that shows why it’s so important to step forward and start building your own blogging communities, even if you’re in one or two formal ones.

      I appreciate you taking a moment to share this with us. BTW, yes, Triberr is a place where you can actually build your own custom tribe within the system they’ve set up. Good to mention.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  21. Sue Bride
    Twitter:
    January 22, 2016 at 11:06 am #

    Hi Donna
    I prefer small communities where you can get to know people better. I know that sometimes members’ blog topics don’t match my own but that doesn’t mean they’re not interesting all the same. Sometimes it’s good to read something different – especially non work related because I do so much of that.

    I’ve given Triberr a go but it seems too anonymous to me. However Ryan’s idea of joining in a community or starting your own community on there is a different matter.

    I too don’t mind round up posts when they’re done well. They can contain a wealth of information.
    Sue Bride recently posted..Free Floral Images for Picture QuotesMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 24, 2016 at 4:46 pm #

      Hi Sue,

      You make some good points here.

      Again, about Triberr… you can build your own tribe within the bigger community, so that’s a nice idea.

      Roundups, too, you’re right… they can be very effective if they’re done right.

      But, of course, that’s the bottom line to everything you do, really… excellent quality will bring you the results you want.

      Getting traffic is great, but make sure they’re going to be happy when they get to you 🙂

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Who Doesn’t Want Recurring Income?My Profile

  22. Kathryn Maclean
    Twitter:
    January 23, 2016 at 4:15 pm #

    Hi Donna, Happy to see your article posted today. Hope you are on the mend now.

    I liked that you mentioned that blogging communities give you a chance to connect with other bloggers who are also looking to build site traffic. Everyone has the same goal in mind, they are all committed to sharing with you, as you do with them. That is all great.

    However I did like what you said about building your own blogging community for your own niche. This only makes sense, to develop a community among people interested in the same things. I am going to start building my customized blogging community with the directions you have listed. This will also be my target market for customers. Thank you so much for these ideas. I don’t know why I didn’t think of them myself. Going to start building my list of like minded women bloggers today. Hope you feel better soon, my friend.

    !
    Kathryn Maclean recently posted..Do You have Lady Balls?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 26, 2016 at 12:12 am #

      Hi Kathryn,

      I’m getting along slowly, thanks. But getting along for sure 🙂

      It’s funny how many times we read something or hear something and think “why didn’t I ever think of that?”

      I’ve done that and I feel like it’s impossible I had to hear it from someone else.. haha

      That’s why we keep telling people the same kinds of things over and over again. Sometimes you hear something said a million times, then one day… someone says it a tiny bit differently and there’s that “AHA”.

      So funny. But I’m glad you’ll be starting to set up your customized blogging communities. It really should move things forward for you.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Add Recurring Income To Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  23. Sherman Smith January 25, 2016 at 11:40 am #

    Hey Donna,

    Im very familiar with blogging communities and I started back in the days of Facebook blogging tribes. This was my first great start in driving traffic.

    But overall, the one activity that got me over the hump was visiting blogs within my niche and leaving comments. You’ll attractive a lot of supportive bloggers that you can learn a lot from. I definitely have learned a lot from you and have gotten a lot of support from you. It always makes a win/win.

    Roundup posts are great and I do agree that you should do them occasionally. The expert roundup post I did last summer did get me 300 shares within two days. This shows the power behind doing these types of posts.

    Thanks Donna for sharing and have a great rest of the week!
    Sherman Smith recently posted..Commit, Connect, Convert (3 Tricks To Becoming An Online Heavyweight)My Profile

  24. Donna Merrill
    Twitter:
    January 26, 2016 at 12:43 am #

    Hi Sherman,

    I so appreciate your insight here.

    You’ve got a great blog and have done a wonderful job building a community around it, and finding multiple methods for getting steady site traffic.

    I know we both value engagement so much, and we can never overlook that when talk about “traffic.”

    Really, numbers are numbers, but people are people and that means engagement. People engage. Numbers don’t.

    Have a great week my friend.

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted..Add Recurring Income To Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  25. Chris DeeWaard
    Twitter:
    January 26, 2016 at 4:08 pm #

    Hi Donna.

    Another great post. I agree that the best way to build that community
    is to go to other people’s blogs regularly and let them know you exist
    by commenting and adding value to the conversation.

    I’ve recent;y joined a bunch of blogging groups on Facebook. I’ve gotten a couple
    comments as a result of something I posted. The problem I’ve already discovered
    is my niche is the IM niche and, though my information may be of help to anyone
    trying to promote their blogs and bring traffic back to them, I find a lot of them that have nothing I can relate to, therefore, I can’t leave a comment with any value to their post.

    Just within the last week, I had someone comment on my post about the email I received.
    I went to her site and found out that it’s about parenting, army lifestyle, teaching, photography and, to be honest, I couldn’t find a post with a title that interested me. I’m single with no kids, non-military, not a school teacher, and haven’t used a real camera (not counting my iPhone) in years. I feel bad that I couldn’t return the favor by leaving a comment.

    Like you said, best just to visit the blogs of those in the same or related niche and
    learn from them, as well as leave valuable input, if possible.

    Hope your recovery is coming along without a hitch.

    Have a great week…….Chris
    Chris DeeWaard recently posted..Walk The Walk! Don’t Talk The Talk!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 29, 2016 at 11:09 pm #

      Hi Chris,

      I understand what you mean. Sometimes it is difficult to leave a comment on someone’s blog when you cannot relate to. But think of this. you are an IM person and this woman has a totally different lifestyle than you. But IF she is looking to make money online, she will need YOU.

      There is a fine line, I know, but as you posture yourself on what you do and leave an honest message on that blog, she may return to yours. Then she may want to start engaging with your blog. As she learns who you are and what you do, she just might need some help from you.

      I myself go to many blogs that I may not completely “connect” to but during some time, again…as long as they are looking to make money online..then I have a client because of that know like an trust issue.

      Just a thought, not to change your mind.

      -Donna

  26. Kim Willis
    Twitter:
    January 27, 2016 at 10:11 am #

    Hi Donna

    I’m a bit late getting to this post, but better late than never, eh?

    This is a wonderful topic. And what a refreshing change from the boring jargon-filled SEO traffic strategies we read about elsewhere.

    For sure bloggers can generate traffic by plugging into blogging communities. But more than this – when visitors see engagement happening on their blog they can’t help but be impressed. It’s the difference between having a dead blog and a living blog, something you wrote about previously.

    Gosh, I only started my new blog in August, and by the end of the month, I had plenty of engagement plus some handy traffic besides.

    So this stuff does work. I hope newbies are encouraged to jump in and get started on their own blog community campaigns. When so many of the internet marketing strategies taught by the gurus do not work (for the average person) here is a dead simple way to put a blog on the fast track.

    Thanks, Donna – you’ve made my day!

    Kim
    Kim Willis recently posted..If I Had My Time Over Again As a BloggerMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 29, 2016 at 11:39 pm #

      Hi Kim,

      Communities are wonderful but you brought out one of the most important point a blogger can do. And that is to engage! Indeed when visitors see action on your blog, they do get impressed and are more likely to leave comments.

      Yes this stuff does work and I cannot stress it enough. I know the “gurus” have “the answer” but sometimes I like to check out the guru and see what goes on on their blog. To my disappointment, there isn’t much engagement. Furthermore, I do know some that just do guest posting. Hmmmmm

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Add Recurring Income To Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  27. Peter Beckenham
    Twitter:
    January 27, 2016 at 10:37 am #

    Hello Donna,

    As a relatively new blogger I have discovered that by visiting with great bloggers like you, learning from their posts and leaving the best value comment I can, my blog community is starting to bloom.

    Each week I visit 15- 20 top bloggers and apart from commenting and sharing on social media, there are also opportunities to connect with leading bloggers in ways I never dreamed possible.

    This is not a chore for me – its all part of my learning and growing process and actually I love commenting and adding whatever value I can.

    I did try Tribber but unfortunately I must have gone about it all the wrong way as I never got asnything going on that site. Will try again now after visiting your post today.

    What amazes me is the generosity displayed by many leading bloggers to relative new comers like me. It makes building your own community that much more fun and enjoyable when you have support from top bloggers.

    I hope you have a full and speedy recovery Donna – said my prayers for you.

    Best wishes from a remote Thai village blogger

    Peter
    Peter Beckenham recently posted..Why Haven’t You Got Started With Your Blog?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      January 29, 2016 at 11:43 pm #

      Hi Peter,

      You don’t seem to be a new blogger to me. You are genuine, share great content and always engage. That’s the “trick” It is so darn simple isn’t it. Some may be put off because it does take work and time, but as long as we are enjoying it, it is a heck of a lot of fun.

      For me, the best thing is that I can meet people all over the globe..how great is that? I think back to the “old days” before the internet and I could never fathom how wonderful it would be to be able to make friends with people in so many cultures. I still marvel at it.

      Thank you so much;…feeling better!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Add Recurring Income To Your Online BusinessMy Profile

  28. Dr. Diana Hardy
    Twitter:
    January 31, 2016 at 2:24 pm #

    Hello Donna,

    After reading your above post I feel that I did not waste my time. Because I gained a useful information from your blog post. Blogging communities can help us to generate a good traffic for our blog. I have joined so many blogging communities on Facebook under my niche. When I publish new blog post then I use to share the link on that communities.

    Also I have met so many fellow bloggers. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    ~Dr. Diana

  29. Deepak Gera
    Twitter:
    February 4, 2016 at 4:42 am #

    It’s true and make sense to me. And even for every new blogger this is the big question “How to get good audiences”. By creating communities & getting involved in meaningful discussions make your way to success.

    Initially I was thinking that I am following big names just to make my self successful, somewhere i was feeling that this may not be right. Big names made their way on their own and now I am trying to use their names to go ahead. But now I think that it is a must step to get involved with them. This is not to make myself successful, This is something to learn from them, To get more expertise over the area where they do have.

    It’s a long long journey for me. Everyday making my way with one more step.

    Thanks for sharing this great post.

  30. David February 11, 2016 at 4:16 am #

    HI Donna

    I just loved reading your articles. 😀

    The best thing which I really like about your articles is, you covers each and every thing in your articles which makes your article more helpful.

    I have seen people love to read those articles more which are easy to understand and can help a lot. And you always write such kind of articles.

    I would definitely follow what you said here and will try to put more efforts on my blog so that I can also improve my site traffic. 😀

    Either way, Thanks for this wonderful article.

  31. Julian
    Twitter:
    February 13, 2016 at 9:36 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    Great post. Great advice on building communities and making connections.

    I’ve actually been doing something like what you said…

    Basically making connections, relationships, friends etc, by helping out (like commenting and sharing).

    It’s working out pretty good.

    I’ve connected with several bloggers. Had some of them comment and share my stuff. I’ve even landed a few guest posts. 🙂

    Anyway, I truly enjoyed the post. Made me feel like I’m doing something right. 😀 Plus I learned some things.

    Thank you.

    Cheers,
    Julian

  32. Lesly Federici
    Twitter:
    February 14, 2016 at 6:44 pm #

    Hey Donna,
    Well we go far back with blogging communities. Back in 2005 I think Gavin Mountford started one called TSA (Tribe Syndication Association) and later Networking superstars.. right? And here we are in PAC (Power Affiliate Club), Communities do many, many things.. build instant connections, nurture “know, like, trust” with others and so much more ..PAC will be 2 years old in MAY!
    Lesly Federici recently posted..Joe Pulizzi Here’s Why Readers Should CareMy Profile

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