Today’s guest post is presented by Mary Lauren, author of the blog My 3 Little Birds. She’s sharing some insight today that is perfect blog fodder. Until I began working as a social media consultant, I didn’t realize the magnitude of the millions of other blogs out there that went beyond the scope of your average “Mommy Blog.” Apparently, Mary Lauren knows this as well and shares some sage advice:
I had no idea how loaded these words were when I started my own blog.
Sure, I’m a mom, and a blogger, so I’m a Mom Blogger. But starting out, it wasn’t that simple. I’d come to learn that some bloggers have a real and legitimate issue with being put into that category. If you’re like me, the Mom Blogger label doesn’t bother you at all. I’m happy to be a part of this sisterhood, and if you’re inclined to put us all into one group, then so be it.
This isn’t a post about bloggy politics, or the pros and cons of being labeled a Mom Blogger.
The issue I’m addressing on Theta Mom® today is our tendency of limiting our networks to those that are similar to our own blogs. Since we’re all part of the Theta Mom Community, I think it’s a safe bet that most of us are moms who blog. And how many who are pigeon-holed into the “Mom Blogger” category are guilty of networking exclusively with Mom Blogs, perhaps even without realizing it?
This isn’t unique to the blogosphere. We do it in our everyday lives, too. How many times have you been in a new situation, such as a new job, and gravitated toward others who you saw as being similar to yourself? We do this for good reason; we’re more likely to have things in common with those who, well, we have things in common with. But the blogosphere is so diverse and varied and I think we’re doing ourselves a disservice by not thinking outside the Mommy Blogger box.
I’m not saying that valuable relationships can’t be made among other bloggers who are also moms. But I’m encouraging you – particularly those of you who are new at blogging or who want to expand your network to consider a few things:
1. Take a look at the other bloggers in your tribe (and by this I mean the blogs you read and comment on regularly, connect with on Twitter and Facebook and turn to with questions or advice, and who do all of those things in return). How diverse is this group? How did you come to find each other?
2. In addition to great places like Theta Mom®, network in places that aren’t exclusive to “Mom Bloggers.” My blog has an emphasis on writing, so I joined an online writer’s workshop and found some great bloggers that way, many of whom aren’t moms. Are you a photographer? Do you blog about home improvement, food, or have some other niche? Focus on the niche instead of the label…and you may be surprised at the networking relationships that develop.
3. Why not actively support some different types of blogs yourself? I’ve heard from several bloggers who are outside of the moms-who-blog group that it can be hard to break into the closely-knit circle of moms. I’m sure they’re not being snubbed intentionally, but let’s support bloggers who may be feeling alienated.
One of the great surprises when I took a leap of faith and started my blog was the community I’d come to be part of. For me, my tribe looks a little different than what I would have expected. Call it a dysfunctional family if you like…but one thing’s certain; if I had limited my clan to only so-called Mommy Bloggers I’d be the one who was missing out.
Whether you consider yourself a “Mom Blogger” or a “Blogger Who Happens to be a Mom” I think that you, too, could benefit from thinking about how to add to your network.
What are your thoughts? Have you considered stepping out of the “Mommy Blogger” box?
If YOU would like to guest post at Theta Mom® I am currently accepting submissions. Full details can be found on the Network page.