Be social – blog smart

Steve Matthews of Stem is one of the leading thinkers when it comes to web marketing for lawyers. He has this to say about how to “be social” with blogs:

For me, the social side of blogging involves a number of tactics, things like:

  • blogroll links to your peers;
  • not just writing your own thoughts, but engaging in blog-to-blog discussions;
  • commenting on other blogs;
  • email discussions beyond the blog;
  • giving your fellow blogger a ‘hat tip’ when you cite their work; and every once in a while,
  • just saying thank-you.

Seems obvious, doesn’t it? But too many bloggers do just write their own thoughts. Many do also comment on others’ blogs, but few give much thought to the other points. And we now have the competition of Facebook, to which many have diverted their time. I don’t see much useful business networking or exchanges of views going on there – it’s just gathering around the water cooler.

4 thoughts on “Be social – blog smart

  1. I completely agree on the ‘social side’ of blogging. In my opinion, it makes for a better blog as well as a more interesting environment.

    I think the regulars of the small UK blawg world are pretty social in this sense. Apart from cross blog discussions, which are not very frequent, all the rest of these identifiers are regularly in play, it seems to me. Not only does it build a sense of community, but also traffic. (And sometimes interesting off blog collaborations and mutual aid.)

    But, in a cross blawg kind of way, this post chimed with something I was thinking about recently, which may or may not result in a post soon. I promise a link and hat tip…

  2. I would agree. UK law blogs have done a great job on the social side of things.

    I’d give a lot of credit to early adopters like Nick and Scott Vine for setting a great example and regularly welcoming of new bloggers with open arms.

  3. Nick, I agree with the Steve’s top-tips. Thanks for alerting me to them.

    I have to add, though, that Facebook is more powerful than you seem to be giving it credit for. I reached your blog from my profile, for example, using the Blog Friends application. There are some interesting groups on Facebook in particular that seem to be coming to life, albeit gradually and in fits and starts. And the apparent silence on the groups belies the fact that FB home page acts like an uber-RSS, so apparently inactive people are still seeing the behaviour and comments of their “friends” in a kind of living record. Maybe they’re just gob-smacked for the moment, but at least the barrier to suddenly springing into life is lower there than if they had to create their own blog or track down email addresses etc.

    Best wishes to all

  4. Simon
    Perhaps I am too sceptical. I don’t doubt the power of FB. x million people can’t be wrong! But I won’t use it as my point of entry at present as it doesn’t deliver what I want. There is a huge amount of clutter and superficial chat, so I’m treating it as an entertaining diversion. And I have this gut feeling I don’t want to put my life in FB’s hands.

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