Want Blog Traffic? Then Collaborate on the Content

By: Marilyn L. Davis

 

Collaboration – It Just Makes Sense

 

“Early on in my professional career, I realized that you can’t develop all the competencies you need fast enough on your own. Furthermore, if you don’t collaborate, your ideas will be limited to your own abilities. As a result, you will not be able to serve your clientele and thus can’t achieve the anticipated impact.” ― Vishwas Chavan, Vishwasutras: Universal Principles for Living: Inspired by Real-Life Experiences

 

When It’s Solitary Writing

 

Most bloggers share what’s important to them, how they view life, write about their area of expertise, and use language that is particular to them. Their website evolves, but it’s still singular to their viewpoints. And that’s fine, after all, a personal blog is, well, personal. The writer has the option to write about whatever they like, and not necessarily worry about reader’s opinions on the topic.

Eventually, if the writing is sound, they will attract an audience. Granted, that’s not always the case, but for the most part, writers tell their truth as they see it and that’s what a reader gets – that singular writer’s truth.

Want Blog Traffic? Then Collaborate on the Content marilyn l davis two drops of ink

However, I hear from too many other bloggers on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter that they know they’ve published a piece that they didn’t think was stellar. Most of the time, publishing like this is simply to satisfy the idea that each of us should produce a minimum of three posts per week, or two a day, or one every four days, depending on which internet writing expert you follow. 

While I admire many of the writers mentioned in the post, I question whether or not, a team effort isn’t a better idea for us at Two Drops of Ink.

 

Alone I Can’t, Together, We Can

 

Most of the writers on Two Drops of Ink have other jobs. And while we may take our writing posts seriously, we have to divide our time between posts and jobs that pay our bills.

Those separate responsibilities often create conflict. We feel torn because each of us has a responsibility to our readers to give them interesting, engaging, and informative posts, and individually, we can’t do that daily.

When we looked at collaboration, it simply made sense. Plus, it satisfied our philosophy of providing a platform for new and seasoned writers. Click To Tweet

By creating an award-winning site, we knew we could attract diversified writers, poets, and essayists. We’re glad many of them have become Monthly Contributors, to expose their writing, but on a self-serving note, it takes the pressure off me to produce.

When we collaborate with guest contributors, everybody wins. I know that reads cliché, but it sums up our philosophy.

 

How Can You Find Writers to Collaborate?

 

If you’re writing a blog by yourself, do you sometimes wish you had other competent writers helping you?

My question then is what’s stopping you from asking others to do a guest post?

 

Want Blog Traffic? Then Collaborate on the Content marilyn l davis two drops of ink

Have you thought about asking another blogger in your field about a post exchange? About three years ago, I was approached by Craig Stratton on Linkedin. He asked me how I started my other blog, From Addict 2 Advocate. He was thinking about starting a blog and wanted some advice.

I asked him if he wanted to dive into the deep end of the pond or get his feet wet first. He understood my southern analogy and started writing guest posts for the site. Now, he writes for my blog and has started his own, C.W. Stratton.

We support each other’s efforts and don’t feel competitive. We’re both genuinely excited to let people know that recovery is possible and writing from our different perspectives means that we will reach diverse populations who can relate to one of us more than the other.

Some people think it’s risky to promote other writers and jealously guard against any mention of other people. What a shame. Promoting other writers gains you benefits, too. 

 

Support, Encourage and Promote One Another

 

The reality is that when everyone is making an effort to produce quality posts, no one feels embarrassed to promote one another.

When a writer isn’t concerned about who the messenger is but is focused on solid writing about any topic, collaborative writing works. 

When there's a collaborative effort, one person is highlighted one day, and the next, it's another member. Ultimately, it's the site that gets exposure for both of the writers. Click To Tweet

What invariably happens is that people are at the site and may be attracted by another title. If you look at WordPress statistics, you can see where you had “X” number of visitors. You can also see how many views you had that day. When your views exceed visitors, that means that people read more than one post.

Some days, I don’t have a new post, but every day I have views. I’m grateful that one of my co-writers initially drew the readers to the site that day, but that one of my titles caught the reader’s attention, and that something I wrote attracted them as well.

 

Find Another Writer – Today

 

Want Blog Traffic? Then Collaborate on the Content marilyn l davis two drops of ink

It’s not complicated. Some individuals share your opinions, interest you, or you admire. Reach out to them. You have nothing to lose in this gesture. Find Facebook or LinkedIn groups that you’re interested in, and create a call to action for others in the group to submit a guest post. You might be surprised at the positive response.

From Facebook and LinkedIn groups that I belong to, Two Drops of Ink benefited by publishing posts from Noelle Sterne, Peter B. Giblett, Michelle Gunnin, Christine Tabaka, Shahnaz Radjy, Anwer Ghani, Christopher Fox, Alex Wolfe, Whitney McKendree Moore, and others.

Their posts did well.  We gave them exposure and drove traffic to their websites listed in their bios or generated the potential for sales of their books.

We, in turn, offered our readers yet another perspective on writing and in many cases, it would not have been a viewpoint that Scott I had thought of, so it was educational for us as well. Click To Tweet

 

You Double the Rewards When You Collaborate

 

When readers know that they will be exposed to various viewpoints, they are more likely to visit a site. When you break down your statistics, you can see where your audience comes from and what they are reading. I often write about memoirs, from various perspectives on the craft. But I’ve also created a couple of memoir pieces as well.

All of those posts do well. We thought about our readers liking these and decided to create a call to action specific to memoir to entice other writers to submit. The responses were outstanding – and our readers thought so too, judging by the number of views.

Probably in gambling terms, this is doubling down, knowing that a particular topic garners hits, we then maximized on the efforts by creating an opportunity for others to write about the topic. Click To Tweet

We know what our readers like, and we make an effort to give them those kinds of posts, regardless of who wrote it.

 

Make Room in Your Niche

 

Should I get jealous of another writer who does well writing about memoir? Only if I’m foolish, and I try not to be that.  If you’re afraid that someone will write a “better” post than you did about your topic, consider this:

“A knotty puzzle may hold a scientist up for a century, when it may be that a colleague has the solution already and is not even aware of the puzzle that it might solve.” ― Isaac Asimov, The Robots of Dawn

 

Where Would We Be without Collaboration?

 

Want Blog Traffic? Then Collaborate on the Content marilyn l davis two drops of ink

Think about these for a minute:

  • Would we be visitors to the moon without collaboration?
  • Would we learn new truths without collaboration?
  • Could we change any social injustice without collaboration?

Most certainly not, so if people collaborate in science, education, and social change, it works at Two Drops of Ink.

In the spirit of collaboration, I’ll extend it to another perspective on the topic: 

“I’m a proponent of collaboration. It’s not because working together feels good. If it felt good and the results were mediocre, then collaboration wouldn’t be worth the effort. Collaboration is valuable because it helps us transcend our individual limits and create something greater than ourselves.” ― Bob Sullo

Still uncertain about the benefits of dividing the writing or a guest post?

Then think about sending us a submission and see what kind of traffic you get to your site, your books, or on social media.  You know I’ll be appreciative of your efforts.

Two Drops of Ink: The Literary Home for Collaborative Writing

 

 

 

16 comments

  1. Nice post Marilyn! I think as a writing/blogging community we need more articles like this. I find that collaborating can take some of the control freak-ism out of my writing endeavors and free me up to grow in the wider community of artists around me.

    • Hi, Donnie. Control is an illusion; collaboration is a better reality. She smiles. Community support and feedback feel better than going it completely alone any day. Thanks for commenting.

    • I appreciate your concerns, especially if you’ve had an unfortunate experience elsewhere. I understand once bitten, twice shy. However, not knowing what the experience was, it’s difficult to comment specifically on the issue. What I can guarantee from a published guest post with Two Drops of Ink is that all of the team will promote it on various social media platforms, and provide links back to your own site or other publications.

      We committed to creating a collaborative writing site and that takes cooperation and respect for other writers, our readers and ourselves. We’ve done that by writing posts that people like yourself read and comment on, and then we’ve nurtured relationships with our guest writers. As I said in the post, we recently added Michelle to our team, so I’d encourage you to give us an opportunity to show that we are genuine and not part of the crowd.

  2. I believe we need each others help. By following, sharing and like others work, we can contribute to our own success. I shall contemplate hosting a guest post. Many thanks for your wisdom.

  3. Marilyn, I have always felt that collaboration is the way to go when trying to build success. Two heads are better than one…and all that. I am happy to be a part of the team here and share the load. 🙂

    • Hi, Michelle. I’ve said it in other comments, but I’m thrilled that you are a member of the team. I look forward to your next post.

    • Hi, Richard. So glad you commented. I know you have created exceptionally good blogs, and you seem to be able to fulfill that balancing act required to be the sole writer. Alas, I have not reached that point in my development. She smiles. However, I’m writing with people I respect here at Two Drops of Ink and on From Addict 2 Advocate, so it’s all good.

      Good to see you!

  4. Hi, John, thank you for commenting. Scott and I made our decision to publish new writers because we both believe that there is a lot of talent that never gets a chance to be read. I laughed once and told him that I feel like a “proud Mama” when someone I’ve brought to the site gets a lot of hits – like you.

    You are a wonderful storyteller, John. While I know your posts are memoirs and true, you still impart the “what happens next” curiosity in readers, myself included,and that’s a hallmark of a good storyteller.

    Again, thanks for being such a loyal follower as well as contributor to the site, but more than that, thank you for becoming a friend.

    .

  5. Well said, Marilyn!
    Because of this site and the team at two drops of ink. I have learned so much. While I am still working on my website, you can be sure I will add all of you and your blog links to help drive traffic to them. I, like all of you, have a job to pay my bills to. So I can understand the pressures you all feel (I’m glad you admitted all of you work because I thought all of you never rested or slept). The biggest reason why I come here to learn and engage is that of the honest sincerity I get from here and the kindness of your time to help without payment of any sort. Because of that, my goal is to help you all succeed over myself. For me, that is a win-win! I know what I do is small compared to what others may contribute, but eventually my little-attained goals add up to the greater whole to help others. The team spirit all of you represent is felt by me and I am sure by others. So I thank all of you for your hard work!

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