Where To Find Good Bloggers?
A few months back we wrote about what to look for when hiring bloggers and how to be a top blogger, but an interesting question came up over at Digital Point in regards to where’s the best place to look for bloggers.
The truth is that bloggers are everywhere. People are using the Web to voice their opinions and spark conversation all over the darn place. But obviously not all bloggers are created equal and some are most definitely more qualified and skilled than others. So where do you look?
Job Boards: The great thing about blogging finally earning some street cred is that there are now real job boards where you can go hunt for the blogging-skilled. Problogger.net is among the most popular and can help you find bloggers interested in writing about tomatoes, cats, fitness, running, search engine optimization, and just about anything else you can imagine. Ghostblogging.net and the blogging job lens at Squidoo are good places to look, as well.
But you don’t have to stick to blog-specific job boards. There are writing jobs to be found on Craigslist, as well on through job search engines like Careerbuilder, Monster and Indeed.com and niche boards like Search Engine Watch.
On the Web: I’m not encouraging you to go and poach other people’s bloggers (poaching bad!), but you’re on the Web, right? You know the subject of your site, take a look at the bloggers already established and talk them. Perhaps they’d be interested in working with you or maybe they just have connections that you don’t have. Just because they’re working for someone else doesn’t mean they won’t know someone who’d be a great fit for you. In fact, it’s very likely that they do.
The blogging community is considerably tight knit. That’s what happens when you all enjoy doing something that other people roll their eyes at and discount. Don’t underestimate the power of networking and sharing connections. And public shunning.
College Campuses: I happen to know from experience that Journalism majors make really great bloggers. I also happen to know they work for cheap. Consider cruising the local college campuses (but not in the creepy way) and advertise that you’re looking for bloggers. As long as you stay away from the I Don’t Get Up Til 4pm crowd, college kids are notoriously ambitious and looking to prove themselves. The free form of blogging and aspect of self expression is also something that appeals to them, especially if they feel passionate about your brand. Put up postings outside the Writing department, get professors to announce, publicize it in the college newspaper/TV station, etc.
Then look outside the Writing department. We’ll be honest. Being a good writer helps, but being passionate about your subject helps more. If you’re a sports blog, advertise your opportunity near areas where jocks congregate (the bleachers? Under a table where they’re passed out?), if you’re a mechanics blog, advertise in their neck of the woods.
Postings on Social Networks: Bloggers are social creatures, or at least on the Web. They’re probably hanging out in blogging forums like High Authority, as well as on Twitter, MySpace, Facebook, and God knows where else. Create a bulletin or a note and get the word out that you’re looking for someone to contribute to your blog. If you’re on StumbleUpon, find the biggest participators in your niche and see if they have a blog. If they don’t, maybe they’d like to write for yours. If they do, maybe they still would. One of the benefits of find a blogger through social media is that you know they already have a built-in network of supports ready to help them promote their fresh content. My guess is it’ll come in handy in the future. Don’t forget to target niche social networks, as well.
Guest Bloggers: This is also a great way to find bloggers to help you get out fresh content. Sometimes you don’t need someone full-time. If you can share the load between yourself a series of guest bloggers, it may be all you need to get off the ground and get people talking about you.
Once you find that initial person, you’ll want to run them through our hiring bloggers checklist to make sure they have all the right qualifications. Don’t waste your time with a sucky blogger. You can usually tell pretty quick if someone has the blogging goods or not. Right, Susan? [My suggestion is that once you have your blogger, you chain her to the desk. It works for us! –Susan] [itches open sores left by arm restraints]