8 Ways for Bloggers to Collaborate (and Why They Should)
Want to know something that took me two years to realize was a thing that happened in life?
Stop looking at me like that – I KNOW. But once something clicked in my head [finally] and I emailed Georgie that one time introducing myself and started chatting in this little Facebook group called BGB that housed five other bloggers, things changed. Before then, I knew nobody in that world, and was on a blogging island all on my own.
Since that day in May 2015, I’ve swapped guest posts, done collaborative listicles, partnered on giveaways, and oh yeah I’m in a business partnership with another blogger (Georgie, duh). Beyond the chance to be exposed to a number of different audiences, these collaborations have meant so much in the realm of professional and personal growth, inspiration, learning, teaching, and connecting.
Business collaborations are important because:
They teach you about your own skills.
Working with other bloggers has clarified, to me, what I am bringing to the table. Collaboration forces you to verbalize what your strengths are, which many of us don’t really put an emphasis on when we’re riding solo. It extracts your positives and allows you to seek help for your negatives. Seeing someone else struggle with something, and realizing that you are able to step in and expel your skills, while they do the same for the areas you are lacking in, is a valuable thing that we don’t experience on our own. When you’re in your own world, you tend to have a blurred line between what you’re good at and what areas you need help in, or what areas you should/shouldn’t focus on.
They hold you accountable.
You’re more likely to exercise if your friend is waiting on you, right? You’re much less likely to cancel on that group fitness date because you don’t want to let your friend down. Same goes for collaborations. Often times our editorial calendars aren’t strictly enforced in our own process. We’ve created them, we’ve handwritten them into our planners, typed them up into a spreadsheet, but sometimes life happens, you know? Collaborations give you a hard deadline, a group date you can’t miss.
They allow you to learn what you otherwise wouldn’t.
Exactly what you’re probably thinking: you’ll learn from your peers. They know things that you don’t, and you know things that they don’t. We all have different experiences and perspectives, no matter how alike you think you are for being in the same industry. Brainstorming with others will result in a learning experience that you wouldn’t have otherwise had. I know from experience has a remote employee – whenever I have meetings with my co-workers, I feel much more productive and fulfilled than when I spend the day in my own head.
Now that we’ve gone over the why, let’s get into the how.
Ways to Collaborate with Other Bloggers
Loop Instagram Giveaway
For those who don’t know what a loop giveaway is: a loop giveaway is an Instagram giveaway that a crew of two or more accounts host together. To enter the giveaway, normal procedure requires followers to like one photo, tap the photo to find out where to go next, go to that person, follow/like, and so on, until they are back to where they started. *NOTE: I do not recommend doing a loop giveaway with more than three people. Nobody wants to do the work of following 10 people just to enter a giveaway.
I have engaged in a loop giveaway at one instance (celebrating my two-year blogiversary). Emily and Georgie were kind enough to host it with me, and I saw a lot of engagement! Beyond that, it was fun to host with two blog buds.
Swap Guest Posts
This is probably the most common of collaborations. Swapping guests posts means that you share a guest post on your friends blog, while your friend shares one on yours. This is a great way to be exposed to a new audience and potentially gain some new readers. Additionally, it’s a nice change up for your readers to hear from someone new and to gain a new perspective/story.
Here is an example of a guest post swap that Georgie and I have done:
You know those recipe round-ups you’re constantly seeing on websites like Greatist and Buzzfeed? Those are listicles. Here is a more formal definition: “an article on the Internet presented in the form of a numbered or bullet-pointed list”.
A great way to collaborate is to gather a group of 3-5 bloggers, choose a theme, create recipes around that theme, and share a listicle on each blogger’s site, linking to each other’s websites.
Are you coming out with, or have already published an eBook (paid)? Do you have a bloggin’ bud that also has an eBook with a similar topic? We believe it’s a great idea to go for a 2-for-1 deal: sell each eBook in a package for a more expensive price, but a great deal nonetheless. They don’t need to be similar in that they, for example, are two eBooks on breakfast recipes, but we recommend they both be similar in that they are both about food, or blogging, or exercise.
Host a Challenge
Get together with a buddy or more and create a month-long social media challenge based on what you and your friends write about. For instance: if you write about healthy eating, as your friends do, as well, share a 30-day challenge related to healthy eating habits.
Host a Workshop
Got a local blogging buddy? Host a workshop together! Contact a local coffee shop or restaurant you love, pitch your idea, and coordinate how it could work to their benefit, as well. Invite local bloggers or foodies, depending on what your purpose is, and share your expertise! It could be a social media workshop, a cooking workshop, or just a networking event.
Instagram Post Exchange
This collaboration is the easiest to carry out. Simply reach out to a fellow blogger and coordinate a post exchange for Instagram. This means that each of you choose a photo on the other person’s feed to share on your own account, detailing in the caption why you love following that person and what you enjoy about their offering.
Interview Each Other
Similar to swapping guest posts, interviewing each other is a great way to get in front of a new audience, and simultaneously give your own audience exposure to a new perspective and voice. We each have something special to offer, so sharing someone else’s story with your audience gives them another chance to relate to someone, while allowing your blog buddy’s audience to relate to you.
Building a business is certainly not something that you can do on your own. I realized this after a year and a half of thinking I could – it’s simply impossible. Not only is it important to surround yourself with support, and not be afraid to ask for help, but collaborating with others is an imperative piece to the puzzle, whatever it may be. With all of this said, we’ve got a little challenge for you:
Choose one of these collaborations. Take a pen right now and add a deadline to your calendar for three weeks from this day.
We look forward to seeing your collaborations!