Unlike a lot of you out there, I don’t hang out with other bloggers. I don’t go to the conventions, I’m not on Darren Rowse’s Christmas card list. Not because I choose not to, but because I don’t really know any other bloggers.
In fact, I didn’t know who Darren Rowse was until a couple of weeks ago. Wouldn’t know him if he delivered a pizza to my door in the next ten minutes.
Oh, I remember now, he’s the guy who was too busy to answer an email query I sent him a couple of months ago on the advice of my blogging mentor. Who doesn’t know him either.
And because of that, I often feel very alone with the blank page.
It’s Not Who You Know, And It May Not Be What You Know
Sure, I have a few blogging acquaintances online, and I’m glad to have them in my virtual circle because they say nice things about my blog on theirs.
And that’s actually a good thing. Because that which doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. And not knowing what I’m doing online, technically-speaking, is absolutely killing me.
Not finding a clear solution online is even worse. Because what is posted and positioned as solutions reads, to someone like me, as inaccessible techno-babble.
All of this makes me stronger (remember, it’s killing me) because there’s only one thing I do know how to do well, and that’s write. Write my lonely non-technical ass off, every post, every day.
Nobody knows it all. And if they do, chances are they won’t return your emails, either. We are left to make our own way.
If I’ve learned one thing – after six months that about sums it up – it’s that we must cling to that which got us into this in the first place. Because if you don’t have a wheelhouse, a claim to some expertise, then you’re left to build your blog through commiseration and community, which is like inviting a neighbor to your party instead of the local movie star in town to see his Mother.
Or, becoming that star in your own right. But that’s tricky, and it easily backfires.
How To Intimidate Your Reader Into Oblivion…Or Just Plain Piss Them Off
I try to read all the blogs I can, and to be honest I don’t make it past first base in a lot of them. Got one from a Big Famous Blogger the other day, and he was advocating some technical stuff like installing a custom post plug-in template, requiring PHP and HTML proficiency, and… well, here’s part of what he said:
What I did was take my single.php file in my theme and create a copy of it. At the top, I put in the necessary PHP comment to mark the template as such. I named the template single-971.php because “971″ is the ID # in the database of one of my money posts. I then made those changes to that template that I wanted to do for the post.
Frankly this just pisses me off, because I don’t have a clue what any of that means. PHP sounds like an airborne contaminant to me. So I didn’t finish the read, and while he may be making orders of magnitude more money than me, and is almost certainly orders of magnitude smarter than I’ll ever be (though I doubt he’ll ever publish a novel, if you get my drift), not a dime of it will come from me.
If singing to the choir is your thing, have at it
The bigger game, though, is singing to the congregation.
There’s a case to be made for dumbing it down sometimes. Now, if you happen to understand what that guy was talking about – and given this venue, I’m betting that more of you do than don’t – try this on for size and see how it feels. Because what you are about to read comes from a professional fiction writer and teacher – that’s me – and I wouldn’t in a million years put it into a blog intended to be of value to aspiring writers. Yet it’s the literary equivalent of the above sample:
To optimize the character arc in the second quartile narrative subsequent to and in context to the foreshadowed inciting incident, the sub-text must reflect the hero’s inner journey as it relates to the limited visibility of the antagonistic pressure driving him deeper into the netherworld of Campbell’s darkest mythic journey.
I read the techno-babble equivalent of that every day online. Even here.
My point, in case it’s eluding you as much as it is me: the full breadth of understanding will come. Do what you do, writing about what you know, and most of all, make it accessible and valuable to those who seek to know it, too.
But while you’re at it, don’t engage in the self-service of simply making yourself sound smart – another Big Name Blogger who has never published a novel in his life recently graced us with his personal “recommendations on how to write a novel,” thank you very much – at the expense of reader interest, and thus, in an ironic twist, your own credibility.
We all have to be better than that. By assuring ourselves, and our readers, that we’re not better than anybody else. That perspective imbues the distribution of content with a gift-like nuance, one that human beings instinctively recognize and respond to.
Cling to that. And watch who comes to the party then.
3 Tips for Bonding with Blogging Influencers
Forget traditional influencer marketing. We want to go deeper.
Bloggers teach influencer marketing from a less genuine space sometimes. Imagine learning how to try to get someone to do something for you. Manipulation marketing. Fear-based marketing. Problems arise; spam folders become your landing spot. I observe a decent percentage of influencer marketing emails in my spam folder because fear-pitches get labeled as spam and become spam, 100% of the time.
What is the solution? Learn how to bond with blogging influencers.
I remember people who befriend me. I admire people who endorse me or promote me. I appreciate people who buy my course or eBooks. I love people who generously help me for months. Guess what? Bonding with established bloggers influences the influencers. I do stuff for dear blogging friends I do not do for anybody else. If a friend sends me a guest post and their writing is tight, I place it. Even if said post spans 1000 words or more – my minimum count is 600 – I place it without hesitating. Friends found my heart. Friends influenced me through kindness and generosity. I am largely putty in their blogging hands.
Instead of trying to manipulate a successful stranger, bond with a friend. Change your approach to influencer marketing. Make friends. Help without asking. In time, blogging bonds form organically. If you practice writing, the world becomes your oyster because influencers take you to new levels of success, without you even asking.
Follow these tips to bond with influencers.
1: Buy a Resource
The best way to bond with an influencer is to get inside their heads.
Influential bloggers had to influence influential bloggers on the way up to become influential. Invest in a resource like my influential blogger eBook to learn how influencers do it. Speak their language. Connect. Take their viewpoint. Learn how to be influential yourself.
When you discover how to be influential through my resource you in essence, learn how to influence, influencers, by bonding with these pros.
2: Spend a Few Months Giving Not Asking
Bloggers I remember, then befriend, spend at least a few months giving and not asking. Someone buys my course, publishes 10 comments on my blog, and retweets my posts 10 or 20 times during a 3 month period. These people pop up on my radar screen because they gave and asked for nothing. Bonds form. Friendships develop.
Retweet fellow bloggers. Help them. Feature fellow bloggers. Open your blog to guest posting. Guest post on other blogs. Comment genuinely on blogs. Buy products.
Ask for nothing, for at least 3-4 months. Allow friendships to form organically. Blogging friends help each other because blogging friends trust each other. Influential bloggers fall into this helping lot too, as you generously serve them, ask for nothing and polish your writing skills. I gained more endorsements from pros by being generous than through any other method. Help influential bloggers. Ask for nothing. Influential bloggers help you without you asking for a darn thing.
3: Never Rush the Process
Some blogger friend requested me on Facebook a few moments ago. I scanned my messages to see his business pitch in the “other” folder. He simply rushed the process of pitching an established blogger. I appreciate the friend request but pitching your business before generously helping me ensures I ignore all future messages. He rushed the process so I let him go.
Perhaps he smartens up and begins helping me generously without asking for anything. After a few months of helping me and asking for nothing, we bond. We become friends. From there, the opportunities are limitless. Even if I do not use his service, if he has skills and a reputable business model I can share his services with my readers.
Good things take some time. Never rush the bonding process.
Allow bonds to form organically to do influencer marketing right.
How Do Blogging and Fitness Relate?
I spend 3 hours daily honing my mental and physical fitness.
In truth, you can and will succeed online following simple fundamentals from a generous, detached energy. No need to be fit to go full time blogging. But if you feel bad because your body feels bad and your mind fears losing it all, have you succeeded? I do not believe so.
I wrote an eBook sharing my daily regimen to explain what many of you readers want to know: how do I do it all? I am no blogging god. I am just human. But I write and connect quite a bit. People wish to know how I wrote 100 plus eBooks in addition to all the other stuff I do while circling the globe. Well, blogging and fitness are 2 peas in a pod for me. Both play a big role if you desiring leveling up and feeling good predominantly as you enjoy the ride.
Blogging and Fitness
Let’s say you wake up on a Monday morning as a full time employee who blogs part time. Feeling terrible and dreading work, why write and publish a post? Too busy. Do it later. Put off the post until tonight. But you feel too tired that night. Repeat this cycle for 3 months. 90 days passed. Still no blog post. Why? You filled your mind with fear and pain. Manifesting as blogging loss, backburnering the post for 3 months indicates fear in mind. Why fear? 100% of the time, fear dominates minds of people who spend zero time on mental fitness, never meditating or doing deep yin yoga or observing their thoughts and feelings. Most of the time, these same folks dominated by their own fears never commit seriously to being physically fit through exercising.
Feel good by caring for your mind and body. Vibe higher than fears crippling most bloggers. Imagine the above scenario with one difference: you devote 1-2 hours daily exercising and raising your energy via mindset training. Devote 30 minutes to power walking and 30 minutes to deep yin yoga. On waking that Monday morning, either a blog post idea finds you and you write the post, or after a few uncomfortable moments and feelings, the idea flows to you and you write the post.
I cannot explain this process logically because it flows 100% emotionally, feelings-wise. Visualize yourself in moments you feel really good. All seems possible. Ideas flow to you. Opportunities flow to you. Why? Feeling good magnetizes you to freeing, success-promoting ideas. Being fit mentally and physically is the easiest way to feel good most of the time. Plus in those moments you feel bad mentally and physically, you face, feel and release the bad feelings, quickly, because you feel mentally and physically fit, predominantly.
Being fit naturally alerts you to the success-promoting idea of gratitude. Gratitude builds blogging success because seeing every penny of income, every blog comment and all interest in your blogging courses feels awesome to you. Feeling awesome inspires you to blog for years generously. Blogging generously for years makes you successful.
Corey at the Good Oil Marketing retweeted my blogging course recently. I feel grateful he spread the word for me considering he is a successful, high level marketer. I feel these feelings and build on my success because I feel grateful. I feel grateful because I trained my mind and body to feel good, through being fit daily, in order to tune into appreciation easily.
Be a successful blogger by being mentally and physically fit.
Why Doing this Works Better than Asking for Business Referrals
After I released my flagship eBook – How to Retire to a Life of Island Hopping through Smart Blogging – I noticed something neat. My sales increased 12 fold the day I published a guest post for a highly successful blogger.
Seeing this spike clued me in to the quickest, easiest way to increase business: help people for free. Being generous improves skills, increases exposure and expands your business. Greater traffic and profits follow generous bloggers because helping people for free helps you be skilled and see, two qualities in every prospering blogger who reaps sweet blogging profits.
A large set of bloggers goes in another direction. Some ask for business referrals from trusted blogging buddies to drum up business. Feel free to take this route but know referral fishing is an ineffective way to drive profits because of two clear reasons:
- referral-seeking seems to be time-wasting
- referral-seeking rarely inspires trusted bloggers to take clear, business-building action, for you
I know 20 plus web developers. A few trusted blogging web developer buddies have reached out to me, seeking referrals. Two issues arise:
- the referral seeker has no idea if I know bloggers needing web development; non-targeted campaign
- I already know 20 plus developers, trusted buddies all, so I could never choose one to refer to someone if 20 seem qualified
Top Bloggers Become Ruthlessly Effective with their Time
Versus seeking referral business by asking blogging buddies if they know someone requiring your service, spend 20 minutes to write and publish a quality guest post for a blogger in your business niche. Instead of pitching 1 human, show off your web development skills for free, via a guest post, for 1,000 people. Do you see what I mean? Leverage. Do not ask for business. Serve for business. Although time needs pass and generosity needs inclusion in blogging business-building, helping for free is the quickest, simplest way to increase blogging business because you reach large, targeted audiences of clients with your attention and energy versus asking 1 person for business in non-targeted, ineffective fashion.
12 Times Daily Sales
I recall the day vividly, 5 years ago. I created and launched Blogging From Paradise. Before writing 100 plus eBooks, I wrote one. I did drive some sales through my blog but guest posting woke me up; why not leverage my presence and grow business by helping people for free, via different platforms? Eye-opener for me. Instead of asking, I gave. How easy? Giving freely is the easiest way to get freely. I observed a 12 times daily sales eBook increase for good reason that day: helping people generously through sites other than your blog is a simple way to grow your blogging business.
The simplest, direct, effective way to grow your business is to help people for free. Asking for referrals leads to a client or customer here and there, but full time bloggers are not in the “here and there” business as far as growing your venture. Pro bloggers drive steady profits through their blog by being generous on their blog and on other platforms.
Be helpful for free. Publish posts. Submit guest posts. Run a podcast. Broadcast live on Facebook. Help people for free to help people for pay. Versus untargeted referral-seeking, this is the effective way to grow your blogging business from a generous, genuine energy.
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