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Building Blogging Relationships – Positioning Yourself at the Watercooler

Posted By Darren Rowse 1st of June 2005 General 0 Comments

This is another post in the building blogging relationships series.

I remember reading two studies a number of years ago that taught me about the power of positioning in social networks when it comes to relationships.

One study did research into who the most well connected, social and relational people were on a floor of offices. The study found that people whose desks were close to highly trafficked areas in an office were those who were best connected with others on the floor. Generally these people were close to entrances, elevators, water coolers or recreational areas etc.

The second study did similar research into which household on streets were most connected in the neighborhood. Once again the research found that it was people who lived on the corners of two streets that disproportionately were more connected and relational than others in the street.

I’ve been pondering these two studies recently and wondering how they might give us some clues about being connected and relational bloggers. I’m not sure exactly where these ‘water cooler’, ‘street corner’ places are in the wider blogging community – but I suspect they exist and are emerging. I’d be very interested to get your opinions on where such places might actually be?

Perhaps some of these places might include:

– discussion forums – I know I’ve started some very interesting relationships with other bloggers through forums – they are a place where people actually come to learn, discuss, share etc

– other blogs – Some of my best blogging buddies were made as i read other blogs comments sections. Sometimes something someone says makes so much sense that it’s worth checking out there blog and getting in touch. I guess it’s some of the bigger blogs where you can make the most connections with others.

– group blogs – I’ve not really gotten to involved in these – but blogs like linkfilter and blog critics seem to be places where community can be built and bloggers get to know each other.

It strikes me that these sorts of places might help position you to be more visible as a blogger and lead you into some interesting communities where relationships with other bloggers might emerge. Where else would you suggest?

Read the rest of the building blogging relationships series.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. I can’t think of a thing to suggest. I think you hit the nail on the head. Reading other blogs and being active in forums is what I do, and it really works. The proof is not only in my personal stats, but the relationships I am building. It is great.

  2. I think that the key point of this study is that these person have a greater possibility to meet person and talk to them. Given this, I think that the cyberspace, the only way to archive this is by contacting people through services like the ones you mentioned.



  3. I think you might have alluded to this, but just taking it a step further … email, definitely.

    If I read a forum post, blog or even a comment and think, “hey, I like the way this person thinks, we should know each other” … I’ll drop them an email and introduce myself. Sometimes I feel a bit silly or shy doing this, but then I remember that I LOVE it when people contact me this way.

    Also, if people post their IM information in forums or blogs, I’ve been known to do the old, “You don’t know me but (insert flattering ice breaker here) …” and it has lead to some great connections as well.

  4. Hello Taughnee,

    Everytime I’m contacting someone that I know he probabably have nothing to do with me, I’m saying to myself:

    “Who Dare Win” — SAS Motto

    It’s exactly what the English and Allies done during the second world war and they won it.

    What is interesting is that 90% of the time, I have a great outcome by sending these emails.



  5. […] ionships – Email

    Taughnee left a simple but very helpful tip on my last post in the building […]

  6. I know this is an older post but I just found it recently, so I thought I’d add my suggestion of “the water cooler”.

    My “water cooler” is Twitter.com (@lbonline247)

    After all, that’s how I found this post (in a round about way)

    I love your blog.


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