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05.11.06


Business Ideas: Bloggers As Partners

By Wayne Hurlbert

Blogs are a powerful tool for initiating and developing interpersonal relationships. Most discussions of business blogs...

...revolve around building an ongoing discussion with current and potential customers and clients. Often forgotten are the relationships created with other bloggers.

As a blog owner builds up a reputation as an expert in the blog's main topic area, other bloggers start to take notice. In fact, that notice can often turn to admiration. It's very common for bloggers to form mutual admiration societies; each very impressed with the other's posts and ideas. Over time, e-mail, telephone, and in person meetings are the result of this cross reading of blogs. The next logical step is to start a new business together.

Business partnerships require an enormous amount of personal trust on the part of all concerned. Blogging paves the way for that sense of trust and personal knowledge to grow naturally. The time between first reading a blog and the formation of a shared company is much shorter than in non-blog introduction cases. Once again, the business or other form of blog began and nurtured a relationship. This time, instead of the conversation being between business and customer, the talks surround the formation of a new business venture.

All of the business talents necessary for creating and operating a succussful organization are found in the ranks of the blogging community. Everywhere that you turn, a knowledgeable blogger is writing with expert authority, in just the area required by a startup company. As you meet and talk with other bloggers, you will find many people who share your vision, and have personalities with whom you can work. Not every blogger is the ideal partner for everyone else, but there is certain to be some bloggers with whom you will share a special affinity.

Develop an action plan

As an action project, consider all of the potential business ideas that you can create. Write them down on paper. The act of putting pen to paper will almost always help to generate even more business venture ideas. Don't analyze them yet. Simply write everything down as it appears in your mind. There will be plenty of time for judging their individual merits later.

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The second part of your action plan involves other bloggers. Write down the names of every blogger with whom you have shared e-mails, telephone conversations, or live meetings. As with the business brainstorming, write down every name without judgement. Sorting out the potential business partners and associates can be done at a later time. Set the papers aside, and leave them alone for at least a day, while you think about other aspects of your life. Fortunately, for most of us, other activities always require immediate attention.

Later in the week, go over your business idea lists and remove the concepts that don't suit your personality or overall business goals. Next, go over the list of potential business partners, and remove the names of those people who may not be right for you right now. Note that a blogger who might not present a current opportunity for a shared venture might be ideal for a future possiblity of collaboration.

Start the plan in motion

Once your list of possible associates is narrowed down, write a very individual e-mail to the selected bloggers exploring the potential for a business arrangement. Make certain that each letter is individualized for each possible business associate. This is no place for the dreaded form letter. The recipient will probably discard that sort of query as spam. Your reputation as a professional person will also be severely marred. Always maintain a professional and businesslike approach. It will be rewarded.

As you would expect, not every blogger with whom you correspond will be receptive to your business proposals. It's not personal. The other blogger may simply not have the time or resources to pursue the opportunity at the moment. That doesn't mean that they won't reconsider your offers in the future.

After some time, and discussion, you are very likely to find a blogger who wishes to establish a startup company. Talk and meet with them and establish the business outline and possible plan. Bloggers are open and willing to talk about ideas. Before too long, a successful company will be born.

As always, the seed of the new tree was planted by means of a blog.


About the Author:
Wayne Hurlbert provides insigtful information about marketing, promotions, search engine optimization and public relations for websites and business blogs on the popular Blog Business World.

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