A blog is an awesome networking tool. Beside multiple obvious benefits (interacting with your audience, content link building, etc), there are a few more creative ways to build links with your blog.
A blog carnival is a regular topical event connecting multiple blogging based on a chosen theme. A blog carnival often includes a number of participants (most of them get credits i form of links and new niche connections):
- the blog carnival organizer: if you are an established voice in your niche, you can organize your own blog carnival and get plenty of awareness;
- blog host – the one who publishes the link collection (posts chosen to take part in the carnival) on his own blog and also generates multiple links from the thankful participants;
- bloggers: those who write posts on the carnival topic and submit them for inclusion (and get links at least from the blog host site).
Some actionable tips?
- Blogcarnival.com updates you of most recent and popular carnivals to consider. It will show you the date, the topic and the host of each carnival. You can also submit your carnival there if you choose to start your own.
- Blog carnivals (when managed properly, not just for the sake of links) can bring very solid links. Instapundit is known to link to most blog carnivals and send high quality traffic. Also, pitching powerful bloggers with a well-laid message on your upcoming carnival (its uniqueness and purpose) can result in great link and new solid connections.
- Carnivals are better to start on Monday. And make sure to post best posts on that day: the way you start will influence the whole carnival success.
- Make sure to read through these awesome findings of a great blogger who once hosted a blog carnival.
Group writing projects
A group writing project is usually a post competition on a set topic. Participants host their posts on their own blogs (often with the note on the writing project with the link) and submit them for the inclusion. A group writing projectis usually maintained by:
- the organizer (who also hosts the project): this is the one who brainstorms the idea, promotes the project, creates the rules; receives and reviews the submissions, counts votes, etc;
- bloggers who write, host and submit articles (complying with the project rules);
- the sponsors: the guys who give away the prizes (that’s by the way a great way for non-bloggers, for example, eCommerce sites, generate great links from highly established blogs and also earn trust of their audience);
- voters. Voting method can vary; the organizer can choose to evaluate and rate based on the public comments, private forms, diggs, etc.
Put this into practice:
- start with participating: this will give you an inside scope how to turn your own group writing project into the real buzz;
- keep track of recent hottest projects (either watch or participate or even sponsor): GroupWritingProjects.com does a very good job on updating its readers of most recent and upcoming projects around the web.
- try participating in not-so-tightly-relevant projects: look outside your niche and build relations in neighboring niches.
A blog in itself is your most powerful link building tool. There is no need to limit yourself to only the above two most popular networking methods. You can create your own. Remember SEJ guest blogging competition for example? With you and your blog your imagination is your only limit!