5 Things a Blog Network Can Do for You
"I would love to hear some thoughts on using a blog network . . . I always feel like I'm not quite sure what to do with, say, HighCallingBlogs."
Last week, someone left this comment. And I thought, why sure, I'd be happy to talk about a blog network. I can't speak for ALL blog networks, but I can definitely explain why someone might want to consider joining HighCallingBlogs.
So here are 5 things I think a blog network can do for you:
1. The blogosphere is huge. Joining a network is one way to find a community. At HighCallingBlogs, we share around themes of work, culture, family and faith. It's a thoughtful, friendly, funny, sometimes artistic place that inspires and encourages us in our daily work lives— from the nursery to the boardroom.
2. A blog network differs from following particular bloggers, because it provides a "third place" where everyone can show up and chat. Or not. If you're a small blogger, this has the advantage of helping you find audience. If you're a big blogger, it gives you a way to interact with people without having to be obliged to interact all the time, the way you might feel you need to at your personal blog.
3. A blog network might feature your writing or art. At HighCallingBlogs, we actively seek out excellence in writing and art from our members. When we find it, we might "feature" this work in a post on our site. Or we might just link out to it. We don't accept submissions, but rather we listen to the community— members can recommend a great post to us (not their OWN, btw,) and we'll give a hat-tip link if we feature the recommended post.
4. Unlike an on-line magazine, a blog network is outwardly focused. We facilitate book clubs (and link to your book club posts), we host a variety of writing projects that promise to link to you, we pay attention by visiting your blogs as much as possible, we cultivate a relationship with you through other avenues like Twitter and Facebook; in other words, we don't just expect you to show up and read our stuff. Think of us more like a community that promotes you than a magazine on a shelf (we also encourage our members to promote each other).
5. A blog network is a potential place to change the world. This past Christmas, for instance, one of our bloggers got an idea called the $10 Challenge. A friendly Managing Editor (aw, shucks :) saw his post and asked one of our Content Editors to write about it and challenge the whole community to join. What started as an idea on one blogger's smaller platform became an idea that, from our larger platform, spread even further to change lives (if only a little bit) this Christmas.
In the end, a blog network does more than help you. It can become a place of community and change. Would you like to join us? We'll be waiting with a hot cup of cyber-tea.
(Note: some of you sweetly display our badge but haven't had the chance to formally join, because we only reopened to new members last week. Feel free to stop in, click the "Join" tab and become an official part of our community!)
Children on the Beach photo, by L.L. Barkat.