Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A mousetrap of the writerly variety

Photo courtesy of
Bing images
For those who have been blogging for a while, you're probably familiar with the concept of guest posting.  That's when another blogger invites you to write a blog article that will be featured on their blog.  It gives you more exposure to a completely different demographic (depending on the focus of that other blog); you meet new people and if you're lucky, people will enjoy your guest post enough to investigate your blog and you'll grow your readership.


I don't do a lot of guest blogging, and the main reason is a simple one - lack of time.  I am a freelance writer, editor and blogger, and also a social media management consultant.  The fact that writing is both my avocation and my vocation means that I write a good 90% of the business week for myself and my blog at Healing Morning, and for clients.  Whatever time is left over, I'm attending networking functions and meeting new people in order to source new contracts.  Blogging on a personal level tends to get shifted to the side burner as a result.  If you're a blogger, then you know one of the Cardinal Rules of Blogging is reciprocation.  Given that I stay so busy, it isn't often that I have time for the guest blogging process.  Occasionally, a blogging friend will invite me to do a guest post, and I do my best to accept the offer if it fits the general tone and theme of what I do at Healing Morning. 

Anna L. Walls, of Anna's Obsession blog, recently asked me to do a guest post.  So, here I am, ruminating on writerly things.  I've written my whole life, and began to work in a freelance aspect with writing and editing about 18 - 20 years ago.  I've had endless ups and downs, hot moments and long dry spells, as I worked to create a niche for myself.  Recently, within the past 2-3 years, social media has afforded me an ancillary option to add to my bag of tricks as a writer, and as a result, my business is growing and thriving.

What the heck is a social media manager or consultant?  It's someone like me who has strong writing and editing skills, who is also social media savvy and capable of taking on the social media management needs for various clients.  This can translate to ghost writing blogs, to ghost writing newspaper articles, to doing research, to writing all manner of reports, to creating ad copy, to technical writing, and finally, to writing and scheduling daily/weekly social media wall posts for clients who are too busy to do it for themselves. 

This sounds easy, yes?  Like something you could dive into without a second thought and have immediate, over the top success.  I wish that were true!  The reality is that although social media is, indeed, increasing on an exponential manner on a worldwide basis, most business owners are still a bit vague about how social media can benefit their profit margin.  Marketing is everything to every business, and many business owners haven't quite warmed up to the concept that social media is the strongest marketing tool available these days.  At least this is true of the area where I'm located - the southeastern region is historically a bit slower to embrace new marketing concepts and trends.  As a result, a great deal of my own marketing of these services is being an educator and teaching people about the value of social media.

I'm happy to say that there is increasing awareness and appreciation for social media consulting in my geographical location.  I'm meeting more and more business owners who are waking up to the fact that they're overlooking a very hot, not to mention FREE, marketing tool.  I am hopeful that within the next 6 months, I'll have enough business in my pipeline that I'll have to hire additional help.  I'm well on the way to making that dream a reality, so in my own small part of the world, I am seeing a slight improvement in the economy.  In addition to that slight economical improvement, I recognize that I've done a lot of the groundwork and created that ideal valuable niche for myself.  Most networking group meetings I attend, I find that I am the unique person in attendance, offering a service that no one else does in my local area.  We all recognize the logic behind coming up with that next fresh, unique idea, and for me, freelance writing, editing, blogging and social media consulting is proving to be my version of the "better mousetrap".  My mousetrap is of the writerly variety.

I am also another blogger who has aspirations and intentions of becoming a published author in both fiction and non-fiction genres.  While I work to make that dream a reality, the freelance writing side of things is what pays the bills for me.  I feel that I am fortunate to be one of those people who is being paid to do what I love.  I also am happy that I can see strong signs of this foundation leading to bigger and better experiences.  My mousetrap of the writerly variety is proving to be a pretty handy and clever creation.

I hope many of you will take a moment to click over to Anna's Obsession and check her blog out.  Here is the backlink for this guest post: http://annalwalls.blogspot.com/2011/04/blog-title-mousetrap-of-writerly.html.

*Disclaimer:  No mice were harmed in the writing of this article.*

18 comments:

  1. Love this post! It pretty much summed up my world right now. I've been guest posting a lot lately which is nice since it's getting my name out there. I love what I do too--I get to write for a living, every day. And I get to meet people like you--thanks for the post...as usual, it is enlightening as it is helpful!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Excellent post and ideas!!! Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Debbie, thanks for stopping by to visit and leave another great comment! I'm so happy for you that you're finding similar success as a writer; I can't imagine doing anything else, as it brings me such satisfaction. :)

    Mari, thank you for visiting as well. I'm glad that this post had some valuable information for you. Depending on the feedback I receive, I may begin writing this type of post more often. It never hurts to keep things mixed up and fresh!

    Namaste' to you both,

    Dawn

    ReplyDelete
  4. Dawn, I too have been asked to do guest blogging. Corinne’s invitation was a blessing because it was a real challenge to limit my post to 250 words :) Plus she gave me a topic. First writing assignment I’ve had in a long, long time… Then someone else after her invited me, but gave carte blanche, which, ironically, leaves me a little more blank-minded since it’s so wide open. But, I know where you’re coming from; blogging seems to take an inordinate amount of time, especially since it is reciprocal. Anyway, all the best with your writing career… sounds like it’s paying off.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks so much, Debra! I'm particular about the guest blogging invitations I accept, because of the time commitment for the most part. I always see it as a high form of compliment when the invitation is extended, even if I'm not able to accept every one that comes my way. At this point in my current schedule it comes down to working smart, if that makes sense. I have to save a bit of energy for myself at the end of the day. Anna's invitation fit what's going on in my life in an ideal manner, so I was really enjoyed the experience. My hat is off to you for being open to your own new experiences - it definitely hones those writing skills! Thank you, as always, for your kind words & your visit to my world. :)

    Namaste',
    Dawn

    ReplyDelete
  6. My dream is for my writing to replace my day job. You've inspired me. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  7. I have done numerous guest posts, but more because it is not something that I can post on my own blog.
    Great post with great ideas Dawn:)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Leah, my advice is to pursue your dream! I won't lie to you and say it will be easy, but if you feel a love for writing and feel you can build a career around it, I will always encourage that dream. :)

    Mary, glad you enjoyed this post! I mentioned earlier that it was a fun departure from the general tone of Healing Morning. That can sometimes freshen up the old inspiration factory in the brain. :)

    ~ Dawn

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thanks for this insight in to your life, Dawn. You're certainly someone I look up to as a thought leader. Yes, blogging is a lot about reciprocation and that's a lesson I'm learning. Take care, Dawn.

    ReplyDelete
  10. "Thought leader"...Corinne, I LOVE that, and thank you for the very kind compliment. :) I wax and wane on building my own readership regarding doing a lot of posting on various blogging groups and discussion boards, but when I do put effort into, it pays off. (That may be the next topic for this new series.) It's good to hear that everyone is enjoying this post; whenever possible, I like to pay forward all the help I received when I started blogging.

    Namaste',
    Dawn

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh wow, so many comments, I'm humbled. I just dropped by to let you know that I've posted. I think I'll go back and see if I can figure out how to embed the picture.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Anna, embedding the photo is pretty easy. I can walk you through it if you haven't already figured it out. Zipping over to your blog to grab the backlink!

    ~ Dawn

    ReplyDelete
  13. I didn't realize you posted it here too, Dawn! I left a comment over there.

    However, I forgot to talk about guest posting! I've done three, and unfortunately none of them drove any traffic to my blog. Yet I'm still happy to do them. I like being outside my normal "zone."

    Though I completely understand the time aspect (or lack thereof) in not doing them.

    Great stuff yet again!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Yep, Dave, when I do a guest post, I always post here as well so that I can link back to the other page. Doing it that way, in theory, drives traffic to both blogs. I'm not sure if that works in reality, but it's the format that I stick to. Now I'll have to zip over to Anna's Obsession to read your post there also. :)

    Thanks for visiting BOTH posts and commenting!

    ~ Dawn

    ReplyDelete
  15. When I guest-post, I do a post on my blog, but just talking about it.

    Who's to say which is more valid? It's not like I've received a lot of traffic on mine from doing guest posts, so next time maybe I'll do it your way. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Dave, I figure that if you post it on your own blog and back link to the one where the guest post "lives", it gives two-way traffic. Again, this is just my theory. I don't have any way of tracking it to see if it helps or even makes a difference, but it's the method I've adopted. I admire the bloggers who make guest posting a regular habit, because it does take more time and thought to step outside your own habits and adapt to another format. It's fun to do occasionally. :)

    ~ Dawnie

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hi Dawn,

    Guest posting is the next thing I have in mind. You are right it definitely supports SEO efforts for page ranking and backlinking. Nice topics you have here.

    Shirley Bongbong

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hey Shirley! Thanks for taking time to visit. Yep, doing guest post writing is another way to increase and optimize SEO for your blog. If you Google your blog's title, it will give you a whole history of the places you've backlinked, commented and posted via your URL, so there's definite value in using guest posting as a tool to increase awareness and drive traffic to your blog page.

    Thanks for the great comment! I'm looking forward to going back to your blog for more interesting reading. :)

    Namaste',
    Dawn

    ReplyDelete

ShareThis