Since one of my most popular series here is for beginners (How to Start a Blog), I thought it would be appropriate to also talk about some ways new bloggers can start building traffic more quickly.
One of the best ways to get more traffic to your blog is to build up your blogging network. When I was in my first year of blogging, I was desperate to make blogging friends. I tried making friends on Twitter, but I struggled for a while. But I kept at it and at some point, I finally cracked it (more on meeting people on Twitter here). Later that year I started paying more attention to Facebook groups and even started one of my own.
The point is you can connect with other bloggers if you’re patient and diligent. It takes time to build and nurture relationships with others and gain peoples’ trust.
Today we’ll focus on how to use Facebook groups to connect with other bloggers and in turn, get more traffic coming back to your blog. Then I’ll also share with you some of my favorite ones, including a few that cater to specific topics within blogging.
How to Get Traffic to Your Blog with Facebook Groups
Two of my most successful strategies in growing my own network in the past year has been to join strategic Facebook groups and Twitter chats. These are both great ways to meet other bloggers and make new friends, especially if you’re an introvert!
Facebook Groups Rules of Etiquette
Facebook groups are amazing places to meet other bloggers because they are usually safe places for people to ask questions, get feedback, share wins and make friends.
But before you go joining a whole bunch of groups, here are five quick rules of etiquette for you to follow to get the most out of your experience:
1. Read the rules first
Every group has different rules. Some groups are made just for promoting your posts and products, while others strictly forbid self-promotion unless it’s on a designated thread. The last thing you want is to be kicked out of a group for excessive rule-breaking, so read the rules!
You may also need to join someone’s email list in order to be accepted to the group. If that’s the case, do it!
Tip: It can be difficult to remember which groups have which rules and following them is your responsibility so it will behoove you to take a quick glance at the rules of a group before you post something promotional just to be sure.
2. Don’t join just to promote yourself
Don’t join groups solely for the purpose of promoting your blog posts or products. Join because you’re there to make connections.
Almost every group has members that only show up to promote their own stuff and never stick around to offer help or support to others. Don’t be that blogger. People see right through this. Be the one that stands out by being as helpful as you can!
That brings me to my next point…
3. Be helpful
Do join groups that can help you grow as a blogger and also join groups that are centered around your topic of expertise. If your expertise is parenting, then join parenting groups where you can help those asking questions about parenting. These are your people in your target audience!
Tip: It’s almost always acceptable to share a link to a post you’ve written that helps to answer someone’s question or solve a problem as long as it’s in a reply comment to the question and not in its own wall post.
4. Be nice
No one likes a jerk or someone who answers questions with snarky comments. Remember that everyone is at a different level and has a different background of experience when it comes to blogging. Sometimes people just need to be pointed in the right direction, especially when they’re new and overwhelmed.
Tip: Put yourself in their shoes. We all started at the beginning once upon a time.
5. Stay Focused
Don’t join too many groups. You can only effectively participate in a handful of groups on a regular basis. Join a few to check them out, but drop out of the ones that aren’t serving you. This will keep you focused on participating more regularly in a few groups and makes it easier for you to get to know people better.
Ok so let’s get on with the list of my faves eh?
My Favorite Facebook Groups for Women Bloggers
Blog + Biz BFFs
Owner: Melyssa Griffin of The Nectar Collective
With different themed threads each day, Melissa keeps the conversation flowing and the knowledge dropping in this fun-filled group.
Click here to join.
The Badass Solopreneur Society
Owner: Dre Beltrami of The Branded Solopreneur
Dre keeps the vibe light and fun in this group for solopreneurs where everyone helps each other out with their branding issues and questions. Dre also has daily participation threads to keep things lively.
Click here to join.
For Love + Money
Owner: Caitlin Bacher
This group is a great place to learn about blogging as a business as well as how to use Instagram for marketing. The wall is very busy with Q+A’s and everyone is super helpful here.
Click here to join.
Owner: Kirsten Thompson
This group is for those who want to start a blog but are overwhelmed by tech talk and are looking for inexpensive ways to run a blog.
Owner: Regina Anaejionu
Regina started this group as a place to discuss her free #GoIndependent online conference last year but it continues to be a great community for new and seasoned bloggers to discuss their businesses.
The Blog Loft
Owner: Margo Snyder
Looking for guest posters? The Blog Loft is the place to find them. You’re allowed to share giveaways here as well as post your blog posts to the daily promo thread.
Click here to join (at bottom of page).
My Favorite Facebook Groups on Specific Blogging Topics
For Creative Professionals:
The Creative’s Corner
Owner: Julie Harris of Julie Harris Design
Julie’s done a great job of cultivating a small and dedicated group of designers and entrepreneurs who help each other out with client work as well as their own branding and business-building.
Click here to join.
Periscope with Purpose
Owner: Melissa A. Culbertson
If you’re looking to scope more and gain a bigger audience on Periscope, this is the group for you. Each Sunday Melissa posts a weekly prompt for you to run with. Members support each other by following each other on Periscope.
And last but not least…
For DIY Blog Designers!
Blog Beautiful is THE community for the DIY blog designer, new or experienced. We’re all interested in learning how to create our own designs and we learn by practicing and asking for feedback. Whether you’re working on your color scheme or figuring out some CSS issues, this is the place for you to get your blog looking gorgeous!
Click here to join.
What To Do Once You’ve Joined a Facebook Group
Try a few of these groups out and see if the topics fit your needs. Then read the group rules in the description (usually in the right sidebar) and join. You may need to subscribe to a list in order to be admitted to the group.
After you’ve been accepted, jump right in! Take a moment to introduce yourself to the community. Let everyone know what your expertise is in (don’t be shy!), share your URL and pose a question to the group.
Search the group for questions that you may be able to help answer and make yourself useful right away. Once you start participating on a regular basis and being as helpful as you can, people will begin to recognize you as a go-to person for certain needs.
Most of all, have fun and make friends!
What’s your experience with Facebook groups? Have you found any you love that aren’t on this list? Have you gained anything by being a part of one? Share with us in the comments now.
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