Though I rarely dive into blogger-specific topics (besides monthly updates and goal check-ins during my monthly round-ups), I feel as though there’s one topic that deserves my attention. Social media, I’m looking at you.
Since starting my blog last year, I have realized that the best way to build, reach, and engage with a diverse audience is by using social media. I have various platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and a rarely-used Pinterest account (it’s just hard to keep up with, and so easy to fall behind).
By the way, here are the details for those accounts. #ShamelessPlug
Here’s my guide to navigating social media as a blogger, and my hot-takes.
Twitter is Key
Overall, the platform that I have had the most success with has hands-down been Twitter. Though it seemed a little intimidating to crack into blogger niches at first, it has become a very useful tool for connecting with other bloggers.
Note: other bloggers are probably going to be your biggest audience. They get it. They want to read other people’s stuff, and most importantly, they’re not afraid to engage. Nearly 99% of all my likes and comments are from other bloggers. People I know in real life probably don’t have Word Press accounts, and aren’t usually compelled to do more than like a Facebook post. Bloggers are the best at letting you know how they feel about your work.
Get Jiggy with Blogger Share Groups
Here’s how you use Twitter to your advantage: blogger share groups. There are a ton of Twitter accounts that exist purely to connect bloggers with each other. I’m talking about pages with names like “The Blog List,” “The Clique – Bloggers RT,” “Blogging Babes RT,“ etc. There are literally so many out there that I never know what they’re actually called, and can hardly keep them straight.
They serve an excellent purpose, though. These accounts post daily or weekly chains, where you get to post your recent link or social media handles, and other bloggers do the same. You go back and forth with the replies, reading other bloggers’ stuff, and hoping that they return the favor.
Pro-tip: my key to success is always replying to tweets with my own link. Here’s an example of what I say: “Great post! I liked and left a comment. 🙂 Here’s my latest as well: (link to my content). This holds them accountable, and also makes the process easy for them, rather than having them dig through my profile to find a link.
Twitter is also a great place to meet other bloggers and develop relationships. When I first started, I never thought that I would get there. Bloggers already seemed to have their niches and it felt like an uphill battle to get myself known in the community.
My best advice is to interject your work as often as possible. Follow bloggers. Reply to chains. And reply to tweets. If someone wants to read new blogs, reply with your link. Join someone’s thread and have a conversation.
Most of all? Be supportive. Comment with kindness on blogs, regularly. Share people’s blogs on Twitter and tag them. Retweet their shares. Do this, and make it known that you support them and enjoy what they have to say. This is how you build a virtual relationship. It’s part of what makes blogging so great, at least to me.
Shout out to my blog buddy Bill, who was the first connection I made. John Rieber is a great blogger, plus a loyal reader and commenter. Jenny is a pro at blogging and I love reading her work. Read their stuff!
Instagram Can be Fun, Maybe
To me, Instagram is hit or miss. I created a Sunshine with Savannah account in hopes to build an audience and challenge my creativity. I try to create content that relates to my writing, and draw fellow users to click on the link in my bio. I don’t think that happens very often, though.
It’s kind of a labor of love. I find that authentic bloggers—not influencers or fashion ‘bloggers’—have a harder time building a following, especially if they are niche-less, like me.
Instead, I mostly do it for me. I like to be creative and challenge myself—with photography, captions, editing, making fun stories. I try to have fun with the Gram, without buying too much into it.
I’ve made some connections with some wonderful accounts (some of my faves are Jeri from Normal Girl Chronicles, Rosie of rosieculture.com, / @ rosieculture, and Ha of She Who Works). I’ve slowly but surely worked my way up to 815 followers, though it’s definitely taken a large chunk of time.
Pro-tip: find fellow bloggers, and support the hell out of them. I like to spend a chunk of time every day liking and commenting on posts. If nothing else, it just might make someone else’s day a little better.
Facebook is for Family
My Facebook page is filled with interactions mostly with people I know in real life. Family, friends, acquaintances, former teachers, colleagues. I created a page, then invited almost my entire friends list to like it. About 15% of them did.
Sometimes my links stir up traffic, but not usually a ton of engagement. I’ve noticed that pretty pictures travel farther than other types of media.
Pro-tip: use the publishing feature to plan out your posts ahead of time. I schedule content ahead of time for almost every post, and that alleviates a lot of time and pressure.
On that note, feel free to give me a follow! 😉
Pinterest…You Tell Me
Though I have a Pinterest account, it definitely requires a lot of upkeep. My key takeaways are to look into Tailwind, Tribes, and various online courses to learn more. (Someday I’ll devote more time to this and hop back on the wagon, but that is not today.)
Pro-tip: when you make shareable content, make sure you have a Pinterest-friendly graphic. For example, my monthly roundup posts always have a vertical graphic that would look great on someone’s Pinterest board, saved for later. I use Canva to design these.
If you have any pinning tips for me, feel free to share.
Blogger Social Media Guide
So there it is: my insider tips for bloggers trying to navigate the basic social media sites to grow their audience and further engage with readers.
Please let me know if you have any further insights. Thanks for reading!