Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I feel like I just went to a really GREAT party!

Networking in the blog-o-sphere is very tricky. Finding good, solid followers that actually engage with you is also very difficult. Finding a blog to follow is even harder.

I was lucky enough to make some good "blog friends" early on, and after a little tour of their piece of internet real estate, I discovered networks to join.

These networks like: Lady Blogger's Society, SITS, Mama's Nestwork, BlogHer and SheWrites are excellent ways to break into the whole "network" of fellow writers. It is truly a very strong community. It is a completely different subculture.

These little network groups provide opportunities from time to time to openly meet other writers and even publicly discuss the content of the blog. It is a good day when people choose to review your posts, and in turn, you get a few new readers. However, more often than not, I think many people with really good blogs get looked over.

You guys know I have been vehemently against Blog Hops since my FIRST one. I followed a "Friday Flip Off" blog hop, and was a little confused on how they work. So I linked up, then was getting ready to write a post and was immediately called out by one of the participants for not doing it right. That rubbed me the wrong way.

Later I joined another one, I liked the theme - it was about "Living Green." I linked up, then headed back to my blog to figure out what to write about. No sooner do I figure it out, I noticed I had a new comment. The organizer of that Blog Hop basically said she would pull my entry because I did not have a "Green" post. Seriously people? This is a networking opportunity.

Long story short - my favorite networking opportunity was the Lady Blogger Tea Party. For whatever reason, there is only one or so a month now, and that happens to be one of the ones that is a WONDERFUL strong resource for excellent networking, however - you really have to work at it to meet new people and find excellent blogs to follow. You see, I don't do it so much for the "followers" as I like to find amazing things to read!!

Yesterday, I bit the bullet and joined up with another Blog Hop. I was really wanting to find some new blogs to follow. I love to start my morning off with a cup of coffee and reading what others write.

I was leery, but I did it. To my regulars - folks, I feel like I attended a progressive dinner party, and several of the guests stopped by Destination: Unknown for a quick cup of coffee. Excellent! The "guests" did not just post - "I am following you, follow me back." It was more like actual answers, and when I checked out their blogs - there was good stuff.

In my little "circle of regulars" we are a fairly tight knit group and our circle has enclosed with each other supporting the other. My friends, I am proud to say - I made 8 new connections yesterday and I welcome each of you with open arms!

No, I have never claimed to be the best writer. Sorry, I am not a mommy blog. No, I don't have all the answers for weight loss, budget tips, nor do I claim to be an expert in blogging (so don't expect any professional tips or meme ideas.) But I do like to express myself, share my life and just have a good time with this.

With that - I welcome all of you, and feel like I just left a really GREAT party! Cheesy, right? ;-)


Anonymous said...

I am so glad you had such an awesome experience at the blog hop you participated in. I have been looking for a good one as well. One where like you mentioned they don't just post I'm following you from...but where they actually respond to your post. It is quite difficult to network here in blog land...

Mary Ann said...

Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment. I wholeheartedly agree with your philosophy about blogs and blog hops. Hope you have a wonderful week.

Doris said...

This is a great post. Makes me feel much better after my little rant yesterday on my own blog! lol And the Meet Me on Monday hop is a cool one - I also like the Bloggers over 40 thing...finally a place to fit in! ;-)

The Bipolar Diva said...

Very well said! Some of those blog hop rules are ridiculous!

Robin said...

The blog hops can be tough. I always appreciate a comment that indicates someone has read my blog as opposed to the standard: I'm following you. Follow me back. That bugs me. I will follow their blog if it appeals to me, but when they post like that it leads me to believe that they aren't following my blog b/c they LIKE it, they are just playing a numbers game. I am not about numbers. I am about connections, as you said. It can be tough. So happy for you that you made 8 good connections!!!

Leanne said...

Wow .... fanTastic! I've done the hop thing once or twice ... and I don't think it brought me any new followers, but it wasn't all that bad. Maybe I'll hop along with you next time ... I'll bring dessert! (I miss the Lady Bloggers Teas ... wonder what happened with that.)


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