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Overheard on #Blogchat: The Next Level (@tc_geeks)

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Do you participate in #blogchat? Every week, this weekly discussion on Twitter focuses on a specific topic and bloggers everywhere are invited to join in. Because I often have more to say than what will fit in 140 characters, every Sunday night (or Monday morning), I post about some of the most interesting #blogchat tweets. Join the conversation by commenting below.

(Still confused? Read more about #blogchat here.)

This week’s theme: taking your blog to the next level

This week’s #blogchat theme was an interesting one, since “taking your blog to the next level” can mean different things to different people. For some, it means more traffic. For others, it means more subscribers. For others still, it means more money. But whatever your goals, one chatter tonight hit the nail on the head:

tc_geeks: How to take your blog to the next level????? Start coming to #blogchat for starters 😉

Some shameless #blogchat promotion? Perhaps, but also a good lesson. Sometimes, we get so wrapped up in our own blogs that we forget about the rest of the community out there. As a professional blogger, you essentially have two communities:

  1. The community of bloggers, like you’ll find at #blogchat, who can help you learn more about making your blog better
  2. The community of readers, who are highly interested in your nice and want to connect with you outside of just commenting on your blog posts

Spending too much time inside your own blog closes you off to both of these communities, which is definitely a bad thing.

First, if you ignore the blogging community, its hard to grow as a blogger. Sure, you can stumble into building an awesome blog, but bloggers of all experience levels with really awesome ideas are out there…and they want to help you. #Blogchat is a prime example of that. No one pays anyone to show up or answer questions. We just all do – and we all learn something in the process. It’s a beautiful thing. If you’re ignoring that community, it will be infinitely harder to take your blog to the next level.

But secondly, what you can take away from tc_geeks’ tweet is that you need to connect with your community outside of your blog. Find Twitter chats where they participate. Find them on Facebook. Find them on forums. Find them so you can connect and be “one of the people.” On your blog, you’re an expert. Outside of that, you may still be an expert, but you’re also a member of the community. Step down from your blogging throne and understand your readers by being one of them.

One of the best decisions I’ve made as a blogger was to start participating in #blogchat. It helps me learn about blogging, and my target audience (at least here at BlogWorld) happens to be bloggers, so I’m killing two birds with one stone. Sometimes, getting away from your blog is the very best thing you can do to improve your content and create a better community.

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