Online Networking & How to Woo Your Crew

Evangelists. Ambassadors. Friends. Fans. Maybe you call them your posse, your crew or your team. Whatever you refer to your network as, if you’re not conversing online, nay – if you’re not blogging – you’re missing the boat!

There are tons of great articles out there about how to use a blog to gain cred as an “expert”, build a network and create exposure for your brand. The angle I’m fascinated with today is building relationships that support you, help grow your business, and stretch your thinking as an entrepreneur.

Take my new friend Phil Gerbyshak, over at Make it Great! I’ve seen Phil all over the blogosphere and recently came across him again when I landed upon the mother load of all blogrolls at Converstations.com. (Talk about hitting the jackpot! I could end this article with this list alone.) There are enough juicy links in here to feed your surfing fantasies for days. Go have a peek.

But back to me and Phil. I left him a comment on his Make it Great blog. The very next day I find a personal e-mail from him in my in-box. He thanked me for my comment and said he may use it in a future post of his. So just by leaving Phil a (genuine) comment on his blog, adding to a dialogue that was already flowing quite well before a little ol’ me came along, I opened up the lines of communication between me and Phil. Now if you don’t know anything about Phil, take it from me, this guy’s dialed in. He’s got his finger on the pulse of all things leadership, business, relationship marketing, networking and just plain loving life. Phil just gets it. Who knows what connections I’ll make because of “hanging out” with Phil online.

Liz at b5media’s Successful Blog is another blogger that rocks this relationship-networking thing and has it down to a science. She shares a story about her father who was a pub keeper. She relates her father’s desire to keep the conversation going – his desire to meet people and open up a dialogue about life – to her success as a blogger. It’s essentially the same thing. Her post 7 Great Ways to Connect with Other Bloggers While You’re Out Reading Blogs is food for thought. My favorite part of the list is:

“Relationships are about people. We write from one side of the computer. We feel alone talking to one other on the end of a long optic fiber, but we’re not. Our bodies are in the privacy of where we choose to be, but our words are in the openness of cyberspace.

People — some not even born yet — will read what we write. We can’t ever forget them. People who read us learn things, and get to know us. Sometimes they comment and a conversation starts. Next thing you know there’s a relationship happening. Some of those people become colleagues and friends for life. I know. I’ve already met some and plan to meet more.”

Christina Kerley, of CK Blog shares some insights in Give a Girl 5 Minutes and 2 Cents? She asks readers,

“What is the single greatest point of value you receive from blogging? New business? New friends? Newfound smarts?
Fortune, fame or creative freedom?”

Her post spurred a barrage of comments and responses including, more connection, broadening community, gaining knowledge and exposure. One visitor said,

“I think it has to be the collection of intellectual capital that I have accumulated over time and it almost happened without me noticing. This includes the posts, the incoming links, the comments, the ideas, and the evolution of my thinking. Everything else comes from that.”

Visitor Jordan shared, “I like the satisfaction of knowing that it’s all worth it. My readership continues to climb, and I learn just as much as I educate.”

Stuart Henshall of Unbound Spiral shares this on the topic:
“Nothing I’m doing today or have done for the last four years would have been possible without my blog.”

He was inspired by Robert Paterson’s discussion where he shares:

“Something weird and wonderful is going on in the background of the debate about the meaning of blogging. Yes it is an important feature of a new type of journalism. Yes it will change marketing and product development. As interesting to me as these major trends is how blogging is also creating new kinds of trusting relationships. It is enabling an entirely new way to make friends – from the inside out.

No longer are we reliant on face-to-face and local space to guide our relationships. This is surely a revolution. To all those that don’t know – the success rate of “knowing” whom you can trust as a product of blogging is far higher than the traditional. I am not alone in finding that I can work with people that I have never met…”

Why am I sharing ALL of this with you? Because there is SO much value in planting little seeds each week. Over time those seeds will germinate and many will bloom into beautiful friendships, business relationships, and potential partnerships.

Recently I met Jeff, who found me through my ezinearticles.com articles; where he then went to my blog and sent me an e-mail through the link there. He approached me about an opportunity for me to write a chapter in an anthology of personal development writing. Since then (just a week ago) he has also approached me about co-authoring another book that he’s working on. Without online networking, I never would have been “out there” for Jeff to stumble upon me.

About a month ago, I applied to write for a blogging community. Through reading my application letter and checking out my blog posts, the president of this company personally e-mailed me to say that along with wanting me to write for a blog with his company, he also would be happy to introduce me to some book agents.

Ummm, excuse me? Did I hear this guy correctly? Wait…it get’s better. He then followed up by sending me copy of one of his book proposals so that I could use it as a guide when putting mine together to prepare for said meeting that he could arrange!

Seriously, this is the kind of stuff that has been happening in the short 6-8 months since I’ve been blogging. And there are several other blogging-ships I’m nurturing that hold great potential opportunity for me in the future. People who know people, who know people that can lead me in any direction I choose. It’s that whole 6 degrees of separation thing.

It’s ALL about the relationship building. Woo your cyber friends just as you would work the room at a networking event (without the annoying “getting to know you” ice breakers and funky cheese and fruit platters). The blogosphere is a fairly safe and fun environment. The benefits you’ll reap by wooing, charming, dancing with and high fiving your blogging buddies are priceless.

I know, I’m well on my way to getting published and all I had to do was be more interested in other people than I am with myself. Ask questions. Be curious. Find out how YOU can help someone else. You never know what rewards you’ll reap!

Blog & brand boldly,
Kammie K.

kammiek

Kammie Kobyleski has been having coaching conversations her whole life. After working in corporate communications, marketing, training & development, and higher education, Kammie made the shift into life & career coaching and consulting. Her life’s mission is helping people fall in love with life. The integration of mind, body, spirit and personal empowerment are Kammie’s passionate focus. For free resources, articles and information visit http://www.passionmeetspurpose.com or for a complimentary 30 minute call, e-mail [email protected]

Comments

  1. Kammie K,
    what do I say first? Thank you! Whew! So many nice words!

    Okay, now about Phil, Isn’t he the best, most authentic, grandest good guy? He’s a people magnet. You can’t help, but want to hang with him. You sure profiled him perfectly.

    It’s your writing too! Wow what a voice you have. I’m well on my way to getting published. Yeah, I agree. You put words together wonderfully — they make sense and are fun to read. Can’t beat that it’s hard to find.

    Thanks for all of those.
    Liz

  2. Liz!!

    You just proved my case for me…I haven’t even posted on YOUR blog yet, and here you are leaving me some kudos.

    People are gonna think I planned this, but honestly – I couldn’t have scripted it any better!!

    You are a wealth of knowledge and I thank YOU for putting yourself out there so generously and so authentically as well. For a newbie at this, I have gained such insight into HOW to use this technolgy to create the same kind (if not stronger) relationships that I always have in person (or by phone).

    Thanks for leading with integrity and walking your talk Liz! Look forward to many more conversations at YOUR cyber pub. (Your regulars better look out…soon I’ll need a barstool with my name on it!)

    Kammie K.

  3. Come on over. No one’s jealous where we hang out and everyone’s nice.

  4. Awesome post Kammie. One of the things I’m discovering about the blogging community is the true sense of kinship that abounds. One of my readers and a fellow blogger emailed me to “meet her neighbor.” I like the analogy of a big neighborhood. I think it fits well.

    Thanks for the great read.

  5. Hey Tony~

    Thanks for being a good neighbor and stopping by to say hello.

    I dig this neighborhood a lot. Sometimes I call it a virtual sandbox or playground. Whatever you call it, it’s good fun and a great way to grow your community of fans and friends!

    See you round the monkey bars soon…
    Kam

  6. Hey don’t forget the slides, when you wax ’em they go really fast!! vroom vroom

  7. Yaro: Thanks for referencing my post to which I had so many interesting responses–and what a terrific way to find out about your fabulous blog, too!

    I’ve only been blogging for 6 months and I’m amazed at how many advancing people I’ve met and the lessons they have so generously imparted to me in so short a timeframe. Not only is it the best way to brand one’s company or self, it’s tremendously enjoyable to meet such an eclectic range of smart, passionate people.

    Yep, I’m hooked :-).

    Do make sure and weigh in on my question at that post, I’m looking to do some interesting things with the results and would love your “voice in”.

    Great “meeting” you and again, great post.

  8. Hey CK…

    Yaro didn’t actually write this post.

    I did!! Kammie K. here…I left a note for Troy over at Orbit, as he thought it was Yaro too!! I know it’s kinda confusing over here till we change the format and you all can “see ” that there are actually several of us writing here.

    But THANK you for stopping by and leaving a comment. Again reinforcing the whole article and the point of expanding our network and community, thus deepening our circles of influence!

    I’ll be sure and leave a comment on that post on your blog too.

    Kammie K.

  9. Hey Kammie K.: I’m so sorry, confused was I. I need to thank YOU for this great post. Indeed connecting with fellow marketers and markets is the #1 value I find through blogging (but there are many other points of value, too).

    Keep the great posts coming. Glad I know of your blog…what a treat to have many writers contributing good posts.

  10. No problem on the case of mistaken identity!

    The reason I mention it, is that it’s hard to develop relationships if we think we’re talking to someone else. Just want to make sure you’ll recognize me when I top by and wave hello at your place!

    I still am fascinated with communications and how even with all this technology, it still comes down to the who, what, where, when, why and how…funny, huh?

    Anyway, yes connection and creating relationships is the key…
    Kam

  11. Thanks Phil…

    I love hanging with the geeky crowd. Geek is the new cool…thanks for mixin’ and minglin’!

    Kam

  12. Hey Mike~

    Thank YOU for that great blogroll…I’ll certainly find lots of juicy stuff to write about using the resources you’ve pulled together in one place. I LOVE it!

    And I dig “Stay contagious”…I’m gonna borrow that for sure…

    Kam

  13. Hey Kam!
    How fun to see some familiar faces over here! You are so right about the power of relationship building with blogging! Phil and Liz are 2 of the most connected and great people I have found. I feel fortunate to have connected with them. I can’t wait to see you over at Liz’s place!

    I am so excited to hear about the opportunities that are coming your way… I can’t wait to read your book! Your writing is so fabulous!

  14. Kirsten,

    Funny…it’s like that whole 6 degrees of seperation thing huh? I saw Troy’s stuff on your site, then he linked about this post, and then there’s Phil and Liz and too many other cool cats hanging around.

    Good to see you here too. Thanks for the kind words about my ranting and raving, the feedback helps to know what works for different people.

    Waving at you from the center of the blogosphere,
    Kam

  15. Phil Gerbyshak says:

    Excellent article Kam. You have put together quite nicely how we can all be relationship geeks. It’s work, but it’s SO worth it!

    And the link love is *always* appreciated!

  16. Mike Sansone says:

    Hiya Kammie! Thanks for digging around the gold mine. There’s still more to add – like this one AND Passion and Purpose (how have I been so blind to miss that!) Stay contagious, Mike

  17. Thanks for the link and the comments. You close with a great point.

    “all I had to do was be more interested in other people than I am with myself. Ask questions. Be curious.”

    Cheers

  18. Phil Gerbyshak says:

    Cool peeps hanging out here. Looks like a great place Yaro built, and that Kam is now happily habitating. I’ll be sticking around here with all the relationship geeks and other cool cats.

    Contagious is the best way to describe Mike Sansone. And Liz, Kirsten, Troy, and the rest of the party can’t be far behind!

  19. Phil…yes this is quite the gathering place for SBB’ers to hang. Yaro knew who his target market was…kind of like “if you build it they will come”, and they have!

    Stuart~ you are welcome for the links…thank YOU for getting my mind buzzing about this conversation. I can definitley see how blogging HAS such a profound impact on what happens with the growth of our businesses.

    Thanks for contributing to the conversation,
    kam

  20. I can attest to the fact that when promoting online programs,
    the only signups I ever got were when I called and spoke with people.
    Actual networking.

    People do not respond to ads. Even websites and blogs require some human interaton. The internet is so full of everything, people are blind to them, and ignore them.

    And, I appreciate you sharing your ideas.

    SadieJane
    Online Business Opportunities
    Online Business Opportunities Blog
    SadiesInfo.com

  21. Linda Pepin says:

    thanks for the encouraging posts about blogging. I just started a Healthy Coffee biz and was looking for ways to meet new people and share my biz. A blog sounds like a good thing. Can you tell me where I can go to get a free blog that is user friendly as I am very new to all this. Thanks so much.
    Linda

  22. Rather resourceful and well written out… Kam seems to have a thorough idea of how SEO revolutionizes our e-presence.