How-To Be A Collaborative Blogger

Reflecting on the whole How-To build a Facebook profile issue and also about my engagement here on I came to the clue that being a friendly guy helps to build your personal network.

Nothing new you say?

I am pretty sure that you read a lot of different sources and I am also pretty sure that you never blog about 95% to 99% of the things you are reading about. I propose that if you share a little bit you will get back something.

Create a list of bloggers and send them found ‘items’ by mail.

It is the same thinking pattern like with the old gatekeeper media but with a back channel. You know that ‘this is something the newspaper should know about’ thing. Do the same for bloggers.

Lets talk about collaboration.

Collaboration is a key factor for your network reputation

A little definition which comes in two flavors:

  1. To work together, especially in a joint intellectual effort.
  2. To cooperate reasonably, as with an enemy occupation force in one’s country.

Source: “Collaboration.” The American Heritageยฎ Dictionary of the English Language

Both definitions are helpful even if the 2nd one sounds negative but you only have to replace “enemy occupation force” with “your niche occupation force” and then you have the old link building scheme ๐Ÿ™‚

Are you reading in subject niches about which you don’t blog?

How big would be the effort to send hints and tips to bloggers from whom you know that they are writing about that stuff? You don’t have to blog it 1st and then ask for a backlink. Just a plain simple email with a good subject and a short body is all it needs to gain reputation.

To do

Make a list of bloggers for certain subjects and if you stumble over an interesting item send a short summary and a link to one (!) of these bloggers. It is up to you if you prefer to network with the big guys or if build your reputation in the long tail.

Items can be: Articles, book titles, movies, travel destinations, a photo, a sng, … you name it.

As it is so easy to be too offensive I think a mistake list is important.

Do Not make these five mistakes

  • Don’t use the subject line ‘Hi’ or ‘This could be interesting for you’. Be collaborative and have a good title which tells the whole story.
  • Don’t be talkative. Who, when, where, what should be enough.
  • Don’t mention the 50 websites you have. One specific website is all it needs for a backlink. If you cover related subjects one deep link is better than a homepage.
  • Don’t make it a press release. Send the tip to one blogger and not to a whole group of people.
  • Don’t ask! Follow the blog instead. One of the most annoying things are people who send me a sample and ask several times if I will write about it. And don’t even think about a phone call!


  • My recommended feed reader BlogBridge has the beautiful possibility to memorize one email address for every feed. If I am reading a good article I send a personal two line compliment.
  • Every other famous blogger has written something about the ‘How-To get my attention’ subject.

Related Links, tips and hints are welcome in the comments.

10 thoughts on “How-To Be A Collaborative Blogger

  1. You are both welcome to make fun of me. Always! As long as you write such nice things about my articles. I don’t want to know how long it took for Ahmed to find the right words to elaborate on my ‘helping style’ ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Thanks Ahmed and Ryan for your wise words

    As I am writing articles now on a daily basis since ~3 years I think by now practice pays off (literally . It is a funny mixture coming from a really long history of captioning photos, doing journalistic research, doing interviews, writing IT documentations and huge loads of bug reporting. Yes, you read it right, bug reporting and feature requests automatically train that ‘How did I do it step by step’ style of writing.

    And I was suspicious about the “best post I’ve read this month” part as it the 2nd of November only ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Ahmed’s right. Specific, simple, actionable steps “to-do” turn out to be the best advice.

  4. Because instead of telling us what to do, you showed us how to do it. That IMO is the most important thing to do in helping people – show them (and make it simple and step-by-step so that they can follow).

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