Let me start by saying I’m a huge fan of blog carnivals. They’re not without their drawbacks, of course, but the benefits entirely outweigh the investment of effort and time that you give them.
That’s why it shocks me that blog carnivals aren’t more popular. Yes, the first few times that you participate in them, it will take you a little extra time to get used to how they work. And new carnival networks can sometimes be more unreliable than you would like. But get connected with a solid group of bloggers in your field, and carnivals are excellent ways to:
- Increase your credibility
- Quickly gain profitable, regular readers of your partner blogs
- Get an immediate surge of traffic to blog entries
- Get a longer term improvement in search result rankings
Carnivals: What are They?
A blog carnival is an online event consisting of a group of bloggers writing about a specific subject. The articles produced (or linked to) during a carnival frequently end up looking like a magazine. The carnival has a theme, title, editors, writers, and consumers. Most carnivals are held on a regular basis with rotating hosts.
A carnival usually has an owner, who is the organizer of the overall carnival, deciding or collaborating on things like rules, frequency, editorial guidelines, how to blog in the carnival, and such. The owner also acts as the coordinator, determining the hosting schedule for the carnival.
Every carnival has one host, and the host’s blog is where all the blog posts for that specific carnival are held. In reply to the submission call, every blogger participating in the carnival submits their post to the host, where it is reviewed, edited, and published in the wild as one large post (link bait) or a series of smaller posts. Obviously, you should know how to create blog posts that are effective and compelling to get the maximum benefit.
Carnivals usually draw a lot of qualified traffic, so bloggers participating in the carnival get a powerful backlink from the host and the immediate traffic boost associated with the original readers. The carnival host gets links from each of the member bloggers who have teamed together to publicize the carnival, knowing that the better the carnival is, the better the links will be when it comes time for their turn to host.
Now that you know what a carnival is, we’ll discuss how you can get the most out of your carnival participation . . . in our next post!