How Can we Bring the J-blogging Community Together?
This post has received a lot of great comments, so don’t forget to check that section when you’re done reading. Also check out this post on JapanSoc!
Tonight at eduFire there’ll be a conference for us J-bloggers hosted by Koichi from Tofugu.com. As I probably won’t be able to use video/audio this time around, I thought I should give you my thoughts on the matter in this blog post.
As of now, there are hundreds of J-bloggers out there sharing their thoughts on Japan related things on their (usually) personal blogs. This is a good thing, however, it can also be quite troublesome. We’re currently working very hard on building up a big network, and we have Twitter, JapanSoc, Otaku.fm and other social networking sites to help us doing it. However, there are still many of us who’s not quite there yet.
We need to start collaborating more, and how should we do that? – Well, I have a few thoughts on that.
- Guest blogging
If you’re a blogger yourself, you’re probably a bit of an information junkie, and you’ve probably seen that in other niches, guest blogging is a very common thing. I think that Japan as a blogging niche is very much ready for this, and actually it should already be a common sight, but it’s not. Guest blogging is great for both you and the blog’s author(s), if you write a post for another blog you’ll reach another audience and that will get you new, and potentially loyal visitors to your own blog. By doing this you’ll also help the network grow, in amount of users, and at the same time made it smaller, meaning that you’ve come closer to that great feeling of living in a small town where everyone knows each other.
- Team blogging
This is also something that isn’t very common in our niche. Team blogging itself doesn’t really bring the community together very much, but it does bring blog authors together and lets them have a closer relationship. It also lets bloggers contribute more, because most of us probably don’t run more than one personal blog (unless you’re blogging in more than one language).
- Affiliate marketing
There’s really not a lot of affiliate marketing going on in our niche. Many of us use J-list, YesAsia and other sites to earn ourselves some swag. But what would be a good thing is having that relationship with other bloggers. Sure that doesn’t earn you money, unless you’re actually selling something, but you’ll get new visitors and again we’re creating that small town feeling. I would happily put another blogger’s banner up in my sidebar instead of some ads from time to time, the ads can always be temporarily taken down or moved.
I could continue writing on this, but I feel like it’s getting too long, so I’ll continue on this at another time. But before I go I’d like to throw a question at you. Fans of Japan are split in two parts, those who blog or just love reading blogs, and those who take part in communities and forums. I myself is coming from the world of forums, and it really is a different world. Many of those who come from forums and the like are completely unaware of us bloggers, and that is what I want to change. But the question is, how are we going to attract them to become readers (and even bloggers) and make them a part our network, which I would call the mainstream of the Japan fandom.
I’m interested in hearing your thoughts on this, and hopefully we’ll find a solution for it!