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Is Collaboration the Key to Blogging Success?

This guest post is by Onibalusi from YoungPrePro.com.

I was looking up to the skies a few days ago and what I saw made me see how organized even animals can be. I saw around 50 birds flying from one tree to another and by the time they returned, each had a stick in its mouth—they were working on building a house.

This taught me a very important lesson about blogging, and made me realize that every single thing around us can teach us to be a better blogger.

If those birds could work in groups just to be able to build their house, then what about us bloggers? Why can’t we effectively use the power of collaboration to build our blogs?

The truth is that the number of new bloggers trying to build a successful blog single-handedly nowadays is stunning. We know that there are over 152 million blogs in the blogosphere, but we just can’t figure out how many are successes—as far as we’re concerned, the majority of blogs online are failures.

How do we then stand out as bloggers? What can we do to boost our blogs’ success rates, and differentiate our blogs from the 152 million other blogs in the blogosphere? The truth is we’ve heard the answer to this puzzle a gazillion times, but we’ve really never considered it to be that important.

The key is collaboration.

The importance of collaboration

You’ve probably heard that you should collaborate to build a successful blog at least once, but why on earth should you even try that? After all, you can claim all the credit for building a great blog alone!

Build a successful blog with super-human power

That power could be speed, strength, or everything else that’s involved. If you take a look at the case of the 50 birds I was talking about, you’ll notice how easily these birds can build whatever house they want to build in a much shorter period of time than if the work was done only by one of them.

It might be difficult for you to kickstart your blog, but the strength, cooperation, and wisdom of 50 additional bloggers can’t be compared. I know it is almost impossible to get that many bloggers to support you, especially if you’re very new. But the truth is that you don’t need 50 bloggers to support you to build a successful blog—three bloggers working with you towards the success of your blog will make a whole lot of difference.

Increase your reputation overnight

A lot of people will have told you it takes a lifetime to build a reputation, but do you know you can build a great reputation in a matter of years with the right tactics?

By associating with the right groups of bloggers at the right time, you can easily build a successful blog without moving an inch. Sometimes, all you need is just the endorsement of a highly successful blogger in your niche. Even if you don’t get the endorsement of an A-list blogger, getting the endorsement of two or three bloggers who are at the same level as you will make a whole lot of difference.

Social proof

The funny thing about getting people to endorse you is that you don’t need hundred people to endorse you before you succeed. You only need one or two targeted people.

We human beings are made in such a way that we are easily influenced by things and people around us, and you can use this to your advantage. If you can get the support and endorsement of two to three other bloggers in your niche, you can easily use that as social proof to get more bloggers to endorse you, and that endorsement from those two bloggers might mean the difference between readers thinking you’re cool, or that you don’t know what you’re talking

Ways to collaborate with other bloggers to achieve success

When people hear about collaborating with other bloggers in their niche, the first thing they try to do is send an email to a few bloggers asking them to be friends or asking the blogger to set up a regular link exchange campaign with them. If that’s what you’re about to do, then you might as well forget it. Below are a few ways you can collaborate with other bloggers in your niche.

Be there for them

We bloggers are one of the smartest people (okay, I’m a blogger and I’m baised—but my point is we also have common sense), so we take notice when people do something for us.

If you tell me to link to you today, and you tell me to tweet your post tomorrow, and you tell me to review your product next week, but I haven’t seen you share my posts or do me any favor in the past two months, do you think I will do that for you? The next thing I will tell you is, “No thanks, that’s a great offer but I don’t think it will work with my audience”—even if it will. But when you’re “always” spreading the word about me and telling people how awesome I am, even if I have a million followers and you only have one, I will be happy to spread the word to my followers about you.

Appreciate their work

When was the last time you sent an email to a blogger thanking them for their blog post? Just try to do it once or twice and you will notice that you will be able to get the attention of that favorite blogger of yours.

We bloggers love it if people say good things about us. We love to be appreciated, and some of us even love to be flattered. Giving us what we want will only put you on our radars.

I’m not trying to say that you should email a blogger and start telling him or her that they’re your god—that will only raise an extra flag and put you on the “beware-of list” for that blogger. The best thing to do is to send a simple and polite email, perhaps highlighting interesting points in one of their articles so as to show the blogger that you really read their posts.

Even though there are media like Twitter and Facebook, I still think the best medium to use for this kind of contact is email. I know that Twitter might be the easiest way to get in touch with your favorite blogger, but that is also its weakness. A lot of people use it, but very few people use email to send heartfelt thank you messages to bloggers (or at least, few compared to Twitter). The end result is that it might take sometime for the blogger to get to your email, but since you don’t really need a reply, it’s okay. And it’s enough to get the blogger to notice you.

Beware of this!

Those birds were helping each other.

We must do the same as a blogger.

You won’t go far by trying to exploit your fellow bloggers for attention, or links, or anything else, so don’t even try to go that route. It might work in the beginning, but it will end up biting you.

The best way to succeed in your endeavors as a blogger is doing everything you’re doing genuinely. When you focus your efforts not only on contributing value to your readers, but also to your fellow bloggers, you will end up getting great results for it.

Onibalusi Bamidele is the founder of YoungPrePro.com, a blog where he teaches people how to write for traffic and money. Get his free 7 series eCourse on How to Build a Successful Online Writing Business

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Comments

  1. patrick says:

    Great advice Onibalusi.

    Working together is one of the most important factors in becoming successful in the blogosphere.

    Most successful bloggers will tell you how immensely important it is to gaining an audience and authority in your niche.

    Keep up the great work.

    By the way I love the story about the birds working together.

    • Hi Patrick,

      I’m glad you loved the story!

      Since I was really inspired by the actions of the birds and stories connect with people I decided to show people how important collaboration is in this article.

      Working together can be a great way to boost your success rate without having to stress yourself – there is great power in working together!

      • Adarsh says:

        Great article Oni.

        Working together is great. What’s more important is finding the right person to work with

    • Kevin Cross says:

      This was a great post and very informative. I am not exactly sure if I am a blogger, short story writer or just a wanna-be but I would appreciate some advice on my writing. You can take a look at: http://kevinc9998.hubpages.com/ I would appreciate any advice you may have. Thanks, Kevin

  2. Ayodeji says:

    Very useful tips you have here, Oni.
    When you tell people how you love what they’ve done – especially in secret, it will reach their heart and they will be willing to repay you in a similar way. Twitter is also a very good way to show gratifications in a blogger’s work but not as effective as email. Thanks for the great post.

    • Hi Bro,

      You’re right about that. Appreciating people’s work could make a huge difference in them noticing you or not.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the post!

  3. The timing of this post is perfect! I am rebranding my travel site THIS WEEK, it will be nwtripfinder.com. One of the new features I am most excited about is that I am axing the lifeless blog roll and instead will be integrating deeper links to specific posts from my favorite bloggers in my field, integrating the links into my own content based on relevancy. All of the content stays on their site. Yes, I will be sending traffic away (in a new window, of course) but I think that if it is good for my readers, it is ultimately good for my website. I have not seen this done before. Check out my site next week and tell me what you think – I’d love to hear it!

  4. Ruth Schwenk says:

    I would have to TOTALLY agree with this! My new site that just launched today is the perfect example of this. http://www.thebettermom.com I was not a part of the blogging world until this site.

  5. keith says:

    Thanks for the great article, a successful blog challenges people to think and act accordingly yet sometimes we the bloggers forget about the tips that we see everyday. Great information and thanks for blogging.

  6. Yes! Collaborate in the (Online) Kitchen! I just wrapped up a really fun project with 9 other bloggers…it was my take on the Blog Carnival idea (see http://thewordchef.com/blog-carnivals) and we all felt like the experience was valuable — not to our blogs, but to our networking relationships and learning! I’ll be repeating this online project again each month, adding new bloggers (as appropriate). And can’t wait to see what life-long relationships I build in the process.

    A colleague of mine is collaborating with the whole world for her 50th birthday — with the audacious goal to raise $50K in 50 days (http://indiegogo.com/50-for-50). She’s only seeing success because others (especially the donors!) have been brought on board to help. Collaborating online is the ONLY way to go!

  7. Thanks for speaking the truth. I was watching an old documentary last night called triumph of the nerds. It’s about how the people who developed the PC and the software actually did it. Steve Wozniak, Apple’s founder, recalls how there was a get-together once a week of all the geeks who’d share what they did over the past week.

    One person would get up and say, “Hey guys, remember you had this problem last week? Well I solved it. This is how.” He explains how this sharing and collaboration allowed the computer industry to explode in the amount of time it did. So quickly.

    It was tru then and it is true today. Collaboration is king.

    • I think that’s a perfect way to sum it up. When people get together to brainstorm ideas and also make themselves accountable to each other then there’s hardly a limit to what they can achieve.

  8. Yingjie says:

    Thank you for your post.
    I plan to collaborate with others. Because we can do things in our specialty.
    I just invite them to work with me. That means I am at the start of collaboration.
    I don’t know which kind of difficulties I might face. But I will write them in my blog: patient2earn.com
    Your post confirms me that I should collaborate with others :D

  9. Collaboration is the key to success in not only the social media world, but the world in general. Everything is so globalized now, you have to have the skills and enthusiasm to working with others. Ultimately its in all our best interest. I just think its taken social media and things like blogging to make this age old truism unavoidably obvious. Thanks for the post!

  10. I like the metaphor using the birds example. I came to the belief months ago that in order for my blog to succeed I need to help another blog succeed.

  11. Dave Baldwin says:

    Absolutely, collaboration is key to blogging success. I just got started with a new Facebook group for exactly that purpose.

  12. Collaboration is a wonderful idea, but it takes time. It’s not something that can easily happen. You have to look for the right bloggers/blogs, build a relationship with them, etc…

    This is a lot of work, while you don’t know if you’ll have the reciprocity you expect.

    • Hi Christina,

      I think you got the idea. Collaboration works, but it takes time and that is what distinguishes those who will succeed from those who will fail.

  13. Don Platon says:

    Very well done post, Onibalusi! IMHO this is one of the best posts I’ve read this year. I think we all need to realize that interacting with websites and blogs by commenting, Liking, Tweeting, +1′s etc are a way to thank people for their work. I’d say every client I’ve met that is struggling to have a website bring in new business has overlooked the central message of your post. Maybe it is as simple as give-to-get. We should all just attend blog Love marathons and give each other a boost.

    • Hi Don,

      Saying this is one of the best posts you read this year means a lot to me. Thanks!

      You’re right about learning to work together – things will start to get better once we can learn to utilize the help freely available to us from others.

  14. Laadi Datta says:

    Thanks for the great article, Your Tips are very useful.

  15. Amen to that. I have often seen that watching the world around us – be it plants or animals – can teach us a lot of things. All life is interconnected, so it makes perfect sense. You couldn’t have put it better.

    • You’re totally right about that. We can learn from everything around us, whether it is a living or non living thing and it would be very easy for us to achieve more results if we start paying more attention.

  16. Joe says:

    I have read your post and you have hit the nail at the head. One cannot underestimate the power of collaboration as it has proven to be a secret for blog success and popularity.

  17. sokun says:

    I think this is one of my weaknesses.

  18. Richard Ng says:

    Hi Onibalusi,

    Great sharing. A blogger myself (with little success so far though), I do agree with you points 101%! Just thinking out loud, any specific blogs for newbie bloggers to start the collaboration?

    Cheers!

    • Hi Richard,

      I think it isn’t about where you are now but where you’re planning to be. If you follow the above article and do your best you will be successful in no time.

  19. Henry Louis says:

    Hello Oni,

    I do not think Collaboration idea would be appreciated in the blogosphere. The bloggers want to be successful on their own. The thing that I find to be difficult is the bloggers helping each other which will not go down well with the bloggers!

  20. Hi Oni,

    More spot on advice here.

    We become successful bloggers by nurturing a strong, positive network of bloggers around us. By leaving value packed comments and sharing other blogger’s material we can expand our presence rapidly.

    No need to sit in front of FB and Twitter all day. Simply share your fellow blogger’s content and many will do the same for you, putting your work in front of many more eyeballs.

    The more you give, the more people will gravitate toward you.

    Thanks for sharing your insight Oni.

    RB

    • Hi Ryan,

      You’re absolutely right about that.

      We need to create a network of others, with mutual goals and we can easily leverage their help to build a successful blog.

  21. Joseph says:

    Great Post Oni,
    collaboration is a good thing but it is very difficult to find someone you can work with…
    Lol.

  22. interesting post with some good points. reg your comment about failures and success, these terms are relative. i wouldn’t necessarily say a blog making $200 a month in passive income is a failure – just depends on what the author’s goals and objectives are. maybe they just want to recoup the operating cost of the blog. there are many more successes than what we think, know of or hear about. same thing with entrepreneurship – not everyone can build a microsoft, but a small business generating 30-40k a year might be a big success for someone depending on where they came from originally.

    • You’re right about that Sunil!

      The success of a blog can only be defined by the goals of the blogger and what he/she plans to achieve with his/her blog.

  23. Interesting that you bring up birds as an analogy. I have been watching birds for a while now myself and I have also noticed their collaborative nature. They’re also a bit whacky but a whole lot of fun to watch!

    Thanks for the insightful post!

  24. Onibalusi,
    Well highlighted points. Collaborate works ever. Certainly. Problogger site itself simple example. Addressing right people and keep well communicated with business ethics, become vital for continued relationship. The birds story is good one. Thanks for sharing – Manickam

  25. Great job Onibalusi!

    You’re making quite the guest posting rounds lately. ;)

    Theresa

  26. Funny how I just left you a comment about Stumbling on to your posts on your site Oni, and here I am now on ProBlogger lol

    As for the collabos being the key to blogging success, I think it really is the key to success in any business even offline, whether it be for association or the networking aspect of collaborations, it really works.

    • Hi Jamie,

      Aha. You’re right about that…lol.

      Collaboration truly works in any field. Some people are already very successful, all you need to do is collaborate and associate with them and your career will automatically get a lifting.

  27. That’s a great analogy. Plus it did for me that most articles don’t – got me thinking ;) Thanks man

    • Hi Aman,

      I’m really glad you loved the article and gained from it.

      I’m a great lover of your writing, especially because of how you use stories :)

  28. James Greg says:

    This reminds me of the story we read in school “Unity is strength”. The idea is true in all aspects, although successful bloggers like Darren may not need this strategy as they’ve already accomplished it, but beginners in this field are, most likely to ask for help. Collaboration is really what can make them overcome hurdles and this might also increase their ranking and might emerge better as a team. This idea needs consideration sincerely.

    • Hi James,

      That’s true. Darren has already built a great blog. He already has a base, but the tip in this article will help new bloggers skyrocket their blogs to fame almost overnight.

  29. ken says:

    to be a success blogger, we can not just depend on by ourselves, sometimes we need help from other blogger to achieve the goal

  30. Thanks for the post.I just shared it on my FB wall at Sigrid Maria Rogowski and on Twitter at sigridmaria.
    Have a great day.

  31. Jason Braud says:

    Awesome post Onibalusi! Look forward to your next guest post.

    Jason