In the past month or so, I've linked to five new (or at least new to me) association blogs, yet not one of them has linked back. And only my friend Wes at Effective Database Management has bothered to acknowledge my link in a comment here at the Certified Association Executive blog. Here's a bonus link for Wes.
What's the deal? I will give the benefit of the doubt to latest entrants to the association blogging world. The culture of online community is neither straightforward nor obvious, especially to a new resident. Still, you must familiarize yourself with the customs of the blogosphere to keep my attention, and I would venture to guess, the attention of others. Research shows that bloggers trust other bloggers. That's true to a point, but in my mind, bloggers who don't follow the customs are not truly bloggers at all, and are therefore less credible than those who don't blog.
Here's a quick primer on the culture of the blogging community: If you're not already aware of it, let me introduce you to the concept of blog karma. Read this post to start, then, here are seven simple things you must do as a new blogger to get good blog karma:
- Read other people's blogs. This sounds so freakin' obvious, but I have a hunch that at least one new association blogger is not really reading other association blogs.
- Comment on other people's blogs. Need an ulterior motive? This is quite possibly the best way to drive traffic to your blog.
- Subscribe to a comprehensive Google Alert for your blog's URL (enter your Search Terms syntax like this: link:http://caeexam.blogspot.com). This way you'll know if someone links to you. When you get the alert, acknowledge the link via a comment to the referring blog. Double karma points for posting a link back to the referring blog in the body of a new post.
- Link out to other blogs. Write about what other people are writing about. Engage in the conversation. The currency of the blogosphere is the hyperlink, so spread the wealth! Links are easy to give, but harder to get. Also, unless you're an A-List blogger, reading a blog that only references the author's own ideas, concepts or opinions is about as interesting as the person who can't stop talking about themselves.
- Blog using your real name, or make it easy to find out your real name if you want to blog under a cutesy pseudonym.
- Publish a full RSS feed. You will be tempted to publish a partial feed in order to increase page views. Don't do it. I covered this a little over a year ago.
There must be other things that will help you assimilate into the blogging culture. I invite comments from established and new bloggers alike on other tactics that helped them get plugged in. Or, to get all meta on you, link to this post on your own blog with your thoughts.Tagged: Association Management Associations blog karma blogging tips CAE Certified Association Executive