A long time ago I wrote about how to pitch a story idea to a website/magazine. The most frequently asked questions I received after writing it were, "How do I build a relationship?" and "How do I get my foot in the door with an editor?"
Blissdom is coming up and there is much talk about relationships.
Bringing relationships to the next level.
Building relationships to further your career.
Creating relationships to move forward.
People tend to get confused about what it is to build a relationship. We get so focused on the people who can help us in some way we miss out on other truly amazing opportunities. Building a relationship isn't about stalking a magazine editor in hopes of eventually having your pitch accepted. It's simply about getting to know people–all people.
Let me give you some examples of how you never know where a relationship will bring you.
Years ago, before I worked online, I worked as Agent Support at a label company. A woman named Jen signed up to be an agent and her emails to me with questions about our program eventually turned into emails about our kids and what was going on in our lives. In one of the emails I had told her about an old (now defunct blog). I eventually left the company and Jen and I lost touch. Fast forward a few years and Jen joined twitter as LittleMissMocha. She tracked me down through my blog, followed me on Twitter and we started chatting again. It's now been over four years, and in her words–we have shared our lives, connected, laughed, shared jokes, promoted each other's writing and happenings. The connection was always genuine and based on common ground, overlapping lives, and many tweets.
When Jen first came online she wasn't even a writer–our friendship was based on simply being friends. But now because I know Jen and how talented she is, not mention, reliable, I have no problem recommending her for paid writing jobs. She has done the same for me.
I once wrote a blog post about how my youngest son attempted to put his finger up our cat's ass and tweeted it out on Twitter. Lisa apparently found it hysterically funny and immediately called her friend Sarah and told her to read it. Just like that I had two new followers. Lisa and I started to chat on twitter and eventually met in real life and became good friends. How she is on twitter is exactly how she is in real life–funny, witty, supportive, creative and the woman knows how to plan a party. That's why when Erica started looking for a party planning blogger I fought for Lisa. I knew she was the perfect person for the job and other moms would be able to relate to her because she was one of us.
I knew this because we had built a solid friendship.
Then Lisa introduced me to SarahGunnStyle. Sarah is fun, has a contagious laugh and is kick-ass talented when it comes to DIY projects and decor. And damn if I didn't want to snatch her up for YMC. So I approached Sarah and told her to write some articles for YMC and when they were a big hit (of course!), I went to Erica and told her she needed to give Sarah a blog, which she did because Erica is super smart and also because I am a force to be reckoned with when I want something. Sarah has since morphed this one opportunity into many. You can see her monthly on Cityline showcasing her amazing DIY projects and she's even designed a few rooms.
None of these relationships were about how to move forward in our writing/careers but our friendships have done just that.
When you go to Blissdom you absolultely want to introduce yourself to the people you admire or could possibly help you but don't discount the other people in the room.
I have learned through experience it's the people who I have created friendships with who have helped me the most. Open yourself up to all of the opportunities you'll have to meet new people this coming weekend. You never know where life will bring you.
For more articles, tips, and tricks to help you get organized and make the most of your blog and business visit our BlissDom Canada 2014: How Do You Find Your Bliss? page.
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