Reciprocation – The ABC of Blogging Relationships

by Sourav on September 8, 2010 · 50 comments

building relationships with reciprocation

A few days ago, Evelyn wrote a post here about building relationships with fellow bloggers.  The best thing that I liked about that post is the “Golden Rule” and the “Side Note” that she had mention. And I am going to extend that part today.

Whatever be the case, one thing is for sure…you cannot be in the blogging world all alone. You need to build relationships…not one or two, but many…it doesn’t matter if it is small or big, but relationships are a MUST.

But how to build these relationships specially if someone is completely new and unknown in the community?  Take me as an example.  I had been blogging in a small community for about 2 years, and then suddenly I jumped into a bigger community. I was overwhelmed to see the big bloggers all around me. “Oh! How do I get their attention? How will I let them know that a new blogger has come?” were my questions.  But I had learnt one thing from the Entrecard community…”you drop and you will get a drop in return”. So I decided to rely on that – RECIPROCATION.

So what is reciprocation?

In simple words, it is “Give and Get”. I consider it to be the first stepping stones of building a blogging relationship. It’s simple. The first step is to get the attention of the other blogger…by retweeting his/her posts, commenting on his/her blog  etc. But as I said, this is only the first step. A one-way relationship has been created with the hope that it gets converted into a real relationship, i.e, a two-way relationship. If you go on sharing the other blogger’s posts and comment on his/her blog for a month or two, but you get nothing in return, there’s every chance that you will no longer visit that blog with that much of dedication.

So the real relationship is born only when it becomes a two-way traffic, when the other blogger starts to reciprocate your actions. Once this is done, become more active in commenting and sharing…and the other person is sure to return the favour (unless your content is totally crap, read how to come up with unique content ideas). Then slowly and gradually move on to the next stages like linking to each other’s post, guest posting and so on. And there you go, you have successfully build a blogging relationship.

Is It So Easy?

Well, it’s not that easy in reality though. Some relationships will fade off after a few weeks and some will turn sour. But if you were good enough in selecting the right person, then some simple retweets and comments will turn into a great relationship. And as the golden rule of Evelyn’s post – it’s YOU who have to take the initiative, and you have to be prepared to GIVE MORE than you receive. That’s what I did, and am doing, and I can clearly see the results of it.

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bbrian017 September 8, 2010 at 3:20 pm

Hey there Sourav, I think very few bloggers practice this model of behavior. Reciprocation only happens about 10 percent of the time during a full day of my life.

Even for example you can look at my twiter profile right now and out of all the retweets I did today I only have three people doing a retweet back.

I’m okay with this I’m just saying the world is not a fair place and if your in it for the Reciprocation man your in for a rude awakening LOL.

In this blogosphere it’s more like a give and take :) I feel like trying to change it and I’m continuing on my positive mission. I’m simply preaching the truth.
bbrian017´s last blog post ..Comment week @blogengage continues

Sourav September 8, 2010 at 4:32 pm

Hi Brian,
You are right that the world is not a fair place. Things might not happen as per your plan…people might betray/ignore and and do all harms.
But again you said that blogging is all about give and take. That is my main point here (though it might not work all the time). Now if this works continuously between two bloggers, then it will lead to a bond between them. Isn’t it true? I hope I am clear with this. :)
Sourav´s last blog post ..Add Style Box Without Using The Plugin

Ryan Biddulph September 8, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Hi Sourav,

You make a few great points with this article. It’s about giving before you get. Whatever you desire, helps others to obtain these goals: more traffic, comments, etc.

I’d add that it’s important to realize that everything is not a 1-to-1 deal. We are all connected and any kind act is prospered, if not by the person that you helped than by someone else. This is why I continue to RT and share people’s stuff if I like it, no matter if they do the same thing for me.

Thanks for sharing your insight.

Ryan Biddulph
Ryan Biddulph´s last blog post ..4 Oversights Which Prevent Readers from Seeing Your Blog

Sourav September 8, 2010 at 4:41 pm

Hi Ryan,
I agree with you that everything is not 1-to-1 deal. But again, you do get some return retweets and comments from others, specially from the same set of people (as I have said that this will not work all the time). So this is actually a boon that only some reciprocate and try to have a continuous relation with you. If everybody starts to do that, then it will become difficult to keep track of our blogging friends as there will be too many.
So isn’t it better to have a few people with whom you interact more than the others?

Ryan Biddulph September 8, 2010 at 7:28 pm

It definitely helps to network with a few select people Sourav. Develop this small network, form a strong a strong bond and you can have a few good friends who support each other consistently.

That being said, whenever you come across a new person’s work and it’s valuable RT it, and continue to RT it even if they don’t RT you back. Losing the 1 for 1 mindset helped me to become more successful because I learned that each helpful act is prospered, no matter if I was repaid from that person or someone else :)

Ryan Biddulph´s last blog post ..Your Thinking – The Spaces Are the Places to Be

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:21 am

Hmm. That’s correct. It’s not that if we help others, then we SHOULD be repaid for that. There’s no “should” here. We need to do this from our own, without any force. And it completely depends on the other person if he will repay us for our act or not. September 8, 2010 at 3:55 pm

Hi Sourav Das
Great post and relationship is very important not only with blogger but also with the readers of blogger.

Thanks For Sharing
-Abhishek´s last blog post ..Top 13 Blogger In The Niche Of Blogging TipsBlog Not Older Than 1 Year

Sourav September 8, 2010 at 4:50 pm

Hi Abhishek,
It’s definitely very important to have some kind of good relationship with other bloggers, the readers on your blog and also the readers on other blogs. The third point will help to add those readers to your blog’s reader base. And the best way to do that is to guest post on other blogs.

Prasenjit September 10, 2010 at 3:49 pm

Thats absolutely right Abhishek.
Prasenjit´s last blog post ..Does Time of Publishing Your Posts Really Matter

Tia Peterson September 8, 2010 at 4:10 pm

Hey Sourav,

If business bloggers could see the value in this, many of their blogs would flourish, as well. I have a corporate client and they learned early on the value of guest post swaps and reciprocation on Twitter, and commenting. It has paid off for them. As a result, they’ve received a fair amount of traffic coming from partners who support them. It works!

Tia Peterson´s last blog post ..Two Cents Tuesday- One Amazing Blogger Broke All the Rules

Sourav September 8, 2010 at 4:56 pm

Hey Tia,
You have shared a very good experience with us. I needed a solid example to back up my views, and you have provided me with one.
Even have gained a lot by reciprocation. I won’t deny the fact that there can be some small hiccups in this method, specially in the beginning, but those hiccups can be ignored once we start to get the results.

Steve September 8, 2010 at 5:58 pm

Reciprocation is a perfect example of good karmic balance. If you go around doing good things, it will come back to you. Most of the people who have done well are themselves “givers” so will be willing to help you out also.

While you may have to give a lot to get their notice, it will come, and when it does since their reach is much greater than yours is likely to be it will help a lot.

Of course when you get big too, there is a need to ‘pay it forward’ to those starting out. In many ways it is a really good system. Helping those that help others. You cannot say that about many things in life.
Steve´s last blog post ..Info Income Coaching Class Week 10

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 2:55 am

Hi Steve,
As i said, if we want to benefit from reciprocative acts, then we have to take the initiative first, and we need to choose the right kind of blogs and bloggers to do that.
You said that the reach of the other blogger is going to help me a lot. That is spot on. A good example that is coming to my mind is about Hesham of FamousBloggers. I try to retweet all of his posts, and sometimes when he returns the favor, I get a good amount of traffic from his retweet.
Sourav´s last blog post ..Whom Do You Write For

Imran Yousaf September 8, 2010 at 7:03 pm

Sourav, I read an article of famousblogger by Alex. Idea was Be everywhere. So, if someone is not just reciprocating, no problem because we are introducing ourselves in a new community. We are spreading our brand awareness/ voice to totally new people. It’s better to select good blogs, like this one and show your presence. I will work as dual edge sword, be anywhere+get reciprocation.
Good work, Sourav. Keep it up.
Imran Yousaf´s last blog post ..Survival Strategy in First Six Months of Blogging

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:02 am

Hi Imran,
O yes, that was a great article by Alex.
When we are new in a community, the best way to grow our brand awareness is to share and comment and try to show our face(I mean avatar) wherever possible (except the bad neighborhoods). We also need to have some killer content on our own blog….and patience is the key.

Gera September 8, 2010 at 8:38 pm

Sourav so true your article and few bloggers apply to this principle. I say always the same motto in relationships both persons must be comfortable and both win in the same that is called like you said: reciprocation. Keep up with your good work :)


Gera´s last blog post ..11 Mistakes and Ways Why Your Social Media Fails

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:46 pm

Thanks for the addition of this point Gera. I forgot to mention it in my post that it’s a win-win situation for both.

Murlu September 8, 2010 at 10:07 pm

It reminds me of the saying that the most powerful word in language is a persons name. You could be in a crowded room that’s loud as can be but if you were to hear your name you’d immediately perk up.

That’s much like with blogging – when someone links to you, you see a trackback and a mention – you immediately want to check it out and give a little back on a later post :)
Murlu´s last blog post ..A Sneaky Twitter Trick To Drive Traffic

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:10 am

Wow! Nice comparison Murlu. That’s absolutely true.
Whenever I get a link back, I try to link back to that blogger’s blog in my next post. When I get comments, I check out the commentator’s blog and see if I can add some value to his/her blog. The same goes for retweets/stumbles/diggs etc. Because if I don’t give back something, I feel that I have let that fellow blogger down.

Mark Bell September 8, 2010 at 10:54 pm

Hey Sourav,
Nice post you got here. I try to reciprocate when I blog. Particularly I pay attention to my commenters. I will make effort to get to their blog, and leave a useful comment. On another note, I try and read some articles on twitter and do some re-tweeting to build relationships. It’s little steps, but they always lead somewhere.
Mark Bell´s last blog post ..What can an NHL pre-season fixture teach bloggers

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:16 am

Hi Mark,
It’s the same with me here. I try to comment back and retweet a lot in order to help my fellow bloggers in whatever way I can. You are right that these small acts can lead to something fruitful if they are taken seriously and in the right manner.

Lye Kuek Hin September 9, 2010 at 1:29 am

Hi Sourav,

The world is indeed not a fair place but i am glad the people i met so far still reciprocate. I agree with you it’s all about give and take. Even if the other party do not reciprocate, i will still visit and leave comments if he has great content. Sometimes personality takes a part when building a relationship with the other bloggers. Keep on working and i am sure relationship will be build sooner or later.
Lye Kuek Hin´s last blog post ..8 simple ways to increase RSS subscribers

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:35 pm

Hi Lye,
There should not be any hard feelings. So I completely agree that even if the other party doesn’t reciprocate, we will still share useful things from the other party’s blog (well, I have written in the post that there’s every chance that you will not visit the other blog with that much of dedication…the word dedication is important).

Michael September 9, 2010 at 2:56 am

Hi Sourav

You are absolutely right about giving more and receiving less. I make a habit of trying to build community and give value. As Lye so elegantly put even if the other person doesn’t reciprocate I will still comment, retweet or acknowledge if I find their post helpful.

Thanks for sharing

Michael´s last blog post ..How To Turn Your Readers Into Buyers

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Hey Michael,
It’s always better to give more and receive less. Isn’t it? I personally follow this and it gives me a feeling of satisfaction. And that’s why whenever I receive something, I try to give something back too.

Daniel Snyder September 9, 2010 at 3:33 am

Here’s my simple comment: YOU GOT IT! :-)
Daniel Snyder´s last blog post ..Why would anyone want to hack my car

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:39 pm

Haha..that’s a nice one Daniel. Thanks for the support. :)

A. Tatum September 9, 2010 at 1:04 pm

Your right on the money. I have put in the time to do this, but never see anything in return. I think there is also a balance of the things you retweet. You don’t want to turn off your follower retweeting things they don’t care about.

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:42 pm

Hmmm. In the beginning it will be hard to get back anything. But once the thing starts to roll, you will feel the difference. I think if you get back 30-40% , then that is good enough.
About tweeting, we need to be careful about what we should tweet and what not.

Samuel September 9, 2010 at 1:25 pm

Great post bro! Yea i agree with Micheal, thats the fact. Thanks for sharing and keep the good work up.

Sourav September 9, 2010 at 3:48 pm

Hi Samuel,
Yes, it’s a good thing to share other’s articles even if they don’t return something back because they will surely notice that you are doing some good to them. So one day or the other, they will thank you for your act.
Sourav´s last blog post ..Whom Do You Write For

Dennis Edell September 10, 2010 at 1:23 am

“If you go on sharing the other blogger’s posts and comment on his/her blog for a month or two, but you get nothing in return, there’s every chance that you will no longer visit that blog with that much of dedication.”

I’m there now.

I never go into anything with expectations, and you shouldn’t, but hundreds of tweets and hundreds of comments…literally, I think it’s time to move on.

However, a month or two is a little short handed. That tells me the person was doing it JUST for the recips, which is wrong.
Dennis Edell @ Direct Sales Marketing´s last blog post ..SEO- Epic Fail – It’s Time to Outsource Interested

Sourav September 10, 2010 at 5:22 am

O yes, the time frame that I have mentioned is less, it’s my mistake. And you are right that we shouldn’t go into anything with expectations, because when the expectations are not met, it takes a wrong turn and may even harm us in some way or he other.
Sourav´s last blog post ..Whom Do You Write For

Prasenjit September 10, 2010 at 3:10 am

Hi Sourav,
This is one of the most important steps towards Pro Blogging I guess. Well written short & informative post.

Prasenjit´s last blog post ..Does Time of Publishing Your Posts Really Matter

Sourav September 10, 2010 at 5:30 am

Hi Prasenjit,
This can be a small step in building a great relation. Thanks for your comment.

Prasenjit September 10, 2010 at 8:31 am

The relation is already built.:)
I can see you active in my blog. Guys it is very important to build a relationship, really. Sourav, the great blogger is already active in my blog through this comments. It really makes me feel proud.

Prasenjit´s last blog post ..Does Time of Publishing Your Posts Really Matter

Daniel Sharkov September 10, 2010 at 8:39 am

Building relationships in the blogging world can prove a tedious task, but there’s no doubt that it is a must. Without those, establishing your blog and yourself as a blogger will not at all be possible. Although retweeting and commenting requires just several minutes of one’s time, it can be very beneficial in the long run. I am just starting to see the power of the two methods. Great article Sourav!
Daniel Sharkov´s last blog post ..Change Your Mindset if You Want to Make Money Online

Sourav September 17, 2010 at 4:28 am

Yeah! It’s very true that those small tasks like retweeting and commenting can build up to become something fruitful. Thanks for the support Daniel.
Sourav´s last blog post ..Make Your Blog Look Beautiful With ShortCode

Imran September 10, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Sourav you are on the correct point, I believe every blogger have to be serious about reciprocation.

Sathish September 11, 2010 at 6:14 pm

Hi Sourav, very well written bro. Building a relationship in blogging world is not a complex process. But you do need to take care of certain things to build that. You have mentioned those points clearly. Thanks for sharing.
Sathish @ TechieMania´s last blog post ..Manage Direct Advertisement Ad Zone with BuySellAds WordPress Plugin

Sourav September 17, 2010 at 4:30 am

Yes, building a relationship is not a complex and hard process, but it has be taken seriously so that nothing goes wrong after a few days or weeks.

Thiru September 14, 2010 at 10:11 am

Hi sourav, It is really so good to see your guest post here. Mutual understanding between two blogger will lead success in reciprocation.
Thiru´s last blog post ..When and How to make effective Press Release

Sourav September 17, 2010 at 4:36 am

Hey Thiru,
Thanks for the support. That’s a nice point you have mentioned – Mutual Understanding. I guess we as bloggers already know what the other blogger will want and expect. Don’t we?

web marketing services September 14, 2010 at 11:27 am

Well building relationship with other blogger sites or readers are verty important for blog traffic and it increase your site awareness and exposure among different people all over the world.

Sourav September 17, 2010 at 4:35 am

You are right. If we can keep some relations with other bloggers like commenting on their blogs, this will surely give us more exposure and then we can build relations with more and more….but bad neighborhood should be avoided.

Alan Mater September 16, 2010 at 3:46 pm

Excellent post, Sourav. I agree that it’s important for bloggers to network and build relationships with fellow bloggers. I do this through following other bloggers on Twitter, ReTweeting posts, commenting on blogs and replying to comments on my own blog, and guest posting on other blogs. As Ryan mentioned, I do this without expecting anything in return because that’s not why we should be helping others in the first place. I agree with his philosophy, “It’s about giving before you get.”
Alan Mater @ Work From Home´s last blog post ..Q&A- Getting Traffic to Your Website

Sourav September 17, 2010 at 4:32 am

That’s the point Alan. We should not expect much (or anything) in return as that will lead to a downfall if things do not go the way we want it to be.

Bryan September 20, 2010 at 2:24 pm

Sourav! I think I’ve find the right post about building relationships and recipocrating. I still consider myself a newbie blogger and I am trying to get attention from the bigger bloggers. I know that I’m commenting on their posts but I think I didn’t really pay much attention to retweeting their posts. Hmm, I’m also wondering what are the chances of people actually noticing your retweets and start noticing you?

How To Attract New Customers September 29, 2010 at 3:40 am

If there’s one thing I think people do wrong when they practice giving, is they give too little. They hold on to their money and let it trickle out when it comes to giving. And that’s why they aren’t receiving. You have to give, and give a lot, to be in the flow of life to receive.

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