How to Find a Great Co-Blogger

Discussion Post Stars

Why You Might Want a Co-Blogger

I’ve been speculating for a while that the future of book blogging may be co-blogging. As “successful” book bloggers are expected to take on increasing responsibilities, from keeping up with bookish news to taking their own photos to running multiple social media accounts, I think bloggers who want to try to make it “big” in our corner of the Internet may find themselves wanting co-bloggers to keep up with the tasks.

Many of us are reluctant to take on co-bloggers, either due to a simple desire to maintain independence in blogging or due to hearing horror stories of other people’s co-bloggers that didn’t quite work out.  (Pages Unbound actually had two former co-bloggers who just disappeared without a word. One never even posted anything beyond her introduction post.)

However, it is possible to find a co-blogger who will work with you, not against you (or just not work at all).  So if you’re ready to take the plunge and want to set up an application for a co-blogger, there are just a few things you need to ask applicants to make sure you’ll be on the same page as co-bloggers..

What Do You Need in a Co-Blogger?

The first thing you need to determine is exactly what you want a co-blogger to do.  Think of this as an official job opening.  The position should have a job description that that tells applicants what type of experience you want your co-blogger to have already and what duties you expect them to perform.  Don’t just ask someone to “join your blog” without telling them what you mean by that or without knowing yourself what you mean by the request.  Are you going to be equal partners?  Or will you be still be “in charge” of the blog?  Are you asking the co-blogger simply to write content for the blog, or do you want them to help with other tasks?  Think about adding the four questions below to your co-blogger application process to make sure you get the co-blogger you want.

Update: If you are looking for a co-blogger, Stephanie from Rantings, Ravings, and Ramblings has put together an application to help match bloggers up! Check it out here!

Co-blogging (1)-min

Discussion Post: Everything There Is to Know about Co-Blogging (Sort of)

 

Discussion Post Stars

Krysta and I have been co-blogging since the beginning of Pages Unbound in 2011.  I wanted to start a book blog and invited her to join me.  I’m not sure it ever occurred to me she could have said no.  I have no idea if I would have started out on my own.  Long story short: she said yes.

And I think we’ve had one of the best co-blogging relationships since then.  We have similar visions and haven’t been in any power struggles—yet.  (She may not know about my plans to take over the blog with pictures of adorable cacti.)  We generally trust each other and don’t usually get into the nitty gritty of asking each other if we can do things.  If she wants to plan a Jane Austen event or start a new feature about desserts in books, she goes for it.  I may have entirely changed the graphics for the blog a few times and alerted her after the fact….  I don’t think this is the way co-blogging works for everyone, but it works for us, and I wouldn’t want it any other way!

Benefits of Co-Blogging

  • You always have someone to bounce ideas off of.
  • Someone will always pick up the slack if one of you is having a blogging slump.
  • Your blog has a variety of voices.
  • The workload is not as intense.
  • You know at least one other person is reading your posts—which can be pretty motivating.

Disadvantages of Co-Blogging

  • You might have conflicting visions for the direction of the blog.
  • You might think you’re pulling more weight than the other person.
  • You might not know how to confront your co-blogger if you’re uncomfortable with his or her behavior.

Tips for Co-Blogging

  • Have a schedule.  Make sure you know who is supposed to post what when.  (I post reviews Mondays.  Krysta posts reviews Thursdays.  We used to alternate Saturdays until I became a slacker and Krysta started doing them all.)
  • Be clear about how serious you are about the schedule.  Does everyone have to post a review once a week?  Is it a big deal if you miss two weeks in a row?
  • Figure out who is in charge of social media.  Will you have one blog Twitter account?  Will you have separate accounts?  What should be posted on shared accounts and who should post it?
  • If there is money being spent on the blog (design, giveaways, hosting, etc.), decide who is going to pay how much and when, and get the details in writing.
  • Have fun!

Have you ever had a co-blogger?  Have you ever considered having one?  What are your co-blogging tips?