I’ve been sharing my tips for hobby bloggers posts for a good number of months now and I’m absolutely thrilled with how these posts have done with my readers. But all good things must come to an end and I feel like I’ve come to a natural end of this series now – at least for the meantime!
For my final post in this series, I want to talk about audience and community. A hugely important element of blogging for any blogger really. These were originally two different ideas but as they’re a similar theme, I decided to be lazy and lump them together in the same post.
But before we jump in, if you’ve missed any of the previous posts in this series, you can catch up on them here:
- 6 Things That Actually Matter As a Hobby Blogger
- How To Establish Your Voice As a Hobby Blogger
- 7 Tips On Managing Your Mindset As a Hobby Blogger
- Time Management Tips For Hobby Bloggers
- Blogging For Fun: The Lost Art
So audience and community can certainly go hand in hand but they definitely have different elements to them and different things you can do to improve and get the most out of both.
Community relates to the outside world of blogging and other bloggers in your niche whereas audience relates to your own readers and community. You can both have your own community as well as being involved in the wider community too.
We’re going to take a look at these in two separate chunks, so this might be quite a chonker of a post, so grab a cuppa and get settled in!
Getting involved in the community
Actively getting involved in the community can be important for any blogger. But particularly for new bloggers or hobby bloggers, this can be an amazing way to meet new people, make friends, chat with like-minded individuals and ultimately, grow your blog!
When I started blogging back in 2013, I was a book blogger and the community aspect of my blogging journey during this time was one of the most important things to me.
I met SO MANY online friends who loved books. We would talk daily and made our own Facebook group to chat. There were new book bloggers joining the community all the time and I remember they were all welcomed with open arms.
This community aspect was amazing and if you can find your people and be active within the community then you’ll have a much better blogging experience as a whole! Some basic ways to get involved and be present within the community are:
Actually taking the time to chat to people: It’s very easy to just use Twitter and Instagram to promote your own content and whilst that’s obviously important, it’s called “social” media for a reason.
Get involved in comment swaps: I’ve found SO MANY incredible bloggers through comment swaps, which have quickly become some of my favourites within the community. I love swaps because they’re a great way to stay involved, stay up to date with your faves as well as a great tool for promoting your content.
Join Facebook groups: There are tons of different Facebook groups for different types of things within the blogging community. Some bloggers will have built communities themselves and these are often great ones to join because there’s less people and more interaction. One of my favourites is The Manifestation Collective Facebook group!
Read other blogs: And don’t just read them, actually engage with them! Share on social media, leave a heartfelt comment, recommend to someone you think might find their content interesting!
Consider swapping guest posts with other bloggers: This is a great way to not only help boost your DA score but also get involved in the blogging community. Guest posts won’t be for everyone but I’ve really loved hosting posts from other bloggers recently!
Building your audience and own community
Now onto the part about engaging with your own audience and growing your own community. This might seem quite daunting, especially for new bloggers but it can be taken in small steps. It’s important to note that each step has amazing benefits too!
You need to spend time getting involved in the wider blogging community for sure. But the main bulk of the work will lie with building your own audience and engaging with those people that have decided they want to follow you and support your work.
If you’re struggling to grow your blog following, you can grab my eBook for just £2.50, where I share all my tips on how I’ve built my blog subscribers to over 13,000 (at the time of writing). Grab the eBook here!
But regardless of whether you have 10 followers of 10,000 followers, knowing how to engage with them and built that community feel is really important. Some simple (but effective) ways you can do that are:
Encourage communication on blog content: This is a super easy way to get more blog comments and also connect with your audience. By finishing a blog post by asking a question can encourage response and will allow you to build up connections with your audience.
Ask your readers and audience what they want: This is a fantastic way to really cater to your readers. Although you might be a hobby blogger who perhaps talks about a range of different topic, your audience might find particular value in your content around a certain subject; such as food and recipes or wellness.
Once you know this, you can really start to cater towards what people what to see from you and your audience will grow and so will your community! You can get these answers by doing a bit of research yourself into your best performing content, running a survey for your existing readers, running polls on social media and more!
Consider building a Facebook group: Running a Facebook group is quite a bit of work, especially, as our next point indicates consistency is key. So if you go down this route, you’re going to want to make sure that you can keep up to date with your group and are active in it every day.
Consistency is king: In most things regarding blogging, consistency is SUPER important. Even as a hobby blogger, it’s important when it comes to growing your audience and gaining that community status, so your audience knows what to expect from you!
Offer incentives and freebies: I’ve recently built my freebie library which has been a great way to build a bigger community over on my mailing list. If this is something you’re interested in doing, then check out this post on How To Create A Freebie Library!
So that’s it folks! The end of my tips for hobby bloggers series. I really hope you enjoyed these posts and regardless of where you are in your blogging journey, found some value in them! Although I had moved away from blogging tips quite a bit, sharing this advice felt really aligned to me as I felt like there was a gap in advice for those that blog as a hobby.
Thank you so much for your time getting all this together for us! This is really great information and I love the way you explain things!
Awh I’m so glad you found it helpful!
Thanks for sharing your series of these posts, I have found the community really helpful esp when it comes to certain posts and themes that I want to write about, but sometimes the community can be a lot of people that don’t always do the same as you, so you have to be carefully 🙂
For me helpful. But the Facebook Groups making me a real head ache now a days. It’s difficult to maintain and going away from the niche most of the times.
Love this post! Audience and community are really important for bloggers in general but especially for hobby bloggers as it allows us to talk about our hobby and it’s kinks with others. Having a group chat is also awesome to ask feedback and have general conversation. I’m still figuring out how to build my own community with the audience but it’s on my mind!
Thank you 🙂 Totally agree. I think you’re well on your way to building that audience and community!
Your blog is beneficial. I have learned more information. Thank you
You’re welcome 🙂
Community is so important! I remember when we used to have lots of blogger chats, I miss i to be honest!
Love, Amie ❤
The Curvaceous Vegan
Awh yeah I miss blogger chats in the good old days!
Community is one of the best things about content creation for sure! Thanks for sharing this advice :- )
Great advice, Jen. As someone who has sort of slipped into hobby blogging/not making as much from her blog as she used to, it’s still a challenge to keep up with it all.
Oh for sure it is a challenge for everyone!
As always, thanks Jenny! Love the tip to add a question at the end🌺
Thank you 🙂 x
Wonderful tips and a great wrap-up of your series on Hobby Bloggers! Wishing you a very good weekend…:)
Thank you very much Linda!
This is great advice for hobby bloggers! It’s so important to be consistent and check in with your followers and audience! x
Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk
It sure is!
These are some great ideas Jenny! I’ve been a hobby blogger for over six years and love connecting with other bloggers. Always nice when someone takes the time to read and leaves a lovely comment on my blog. x
Zoey | http://www.zoeyolivia.com
Definitely! 🙂 x
so many amazing tips in this as usual. I always tell my clients that consistency is key but it can be really hard as a hobby blogger when you’re also holding down a full time job etc.
Oh definitely. Time management is so important in that respect!
I deffo need to be more social, but I’m always scared hahah! Same as guest posts, I know I need to try and put myself out there more. I think recently you’ve really helped me to want to take that step! So thank you!!!
Ah girl put yourself out there! I’d always be happy to feature a guest post from you 🙂
I loved reading your hobby bloggers tips posts because, even though we’d want for our blog to be more than a hobby, you can still learn so much from these! As you said, in the last 10 months of blogging we have been meeting so many lovely people we have gotten to call friends, and that community feeling is such a rewarding aspect as you grow and learn!
Thank you! Glad you’ve enjoyed the series.
I love this post, and these are great tips for those looking to use their blog as a hobby 🙂 thank you for sharing, making sure you build that community is so important when you’re wanting to enjoy your blog and build connections x
Thank you 🙂 Building those connections is so important!
I’ve really enjoyed this series and it’s great for hobby bloggers to be recognised. It makes a nice change from all the selling and marketing type posts. I love Twitter and Instagram for interaction. It’s great to be part of the community.
Thank you, so glad you’ve enjoyed it 🙂 x
Hi Jenny. Thank you so much for doing this series of posts. It is very helpful for those of us that do this blogging thing for fun, not profit. If you were to rank the various social media platforms, which would you say was the most valuable to hobby bloggers? I love Twitter and have ‘met’ lots of great people there but Pinterest and Instagram don;t really do it for me …
You’re welcome so glad you enjoyed it! Twitter is definitely the best for the social aspect. Pinterest isn’t social at all. It’s not actually a social media platform, it’s a search engine. Great for traffic but not connection. Instagram is a bit hit or miss depending on the person and your content. I love it as I love the visual aspect of it though!
As I started blog post recently, I find these tips valuable for me. Working on to keep consistency of posting blog and engagement with other bloggers and this really helping me not just for reaching audience but for improving my writing too. Thankyou for the tips!
Glad you found these helpful!