Our membership roll is impressive. Not just in number (3162 at last count), but in breadth of topics, diversity of places we call home, and creativity when it comes to site titles. We thought it might be fun to offer a few random observations of our membership roll to help you get to know your fellow GeneaBloggerTRIBE members.
Creative Website Titles (or Names)
Finding a unique name for a family history site requires a little imagination. Quite a few site titles contain “Genealogy” (607), “Ancestry” or “Ancestors” (127), or “Family History” (74). With the easy and obvious in short supply, many of us grasped at the nearest family tree for help. Eighty-five of our members inserted the entire “Family Tree” in their titles. Others use “branches” (41) or “leaves” (22), and a whopping 127 site names incorporate “roots.” A mere seven sites contain “nuts.”
Some members went the philosophical route when coming up with a title, choosing names such as You Are Where You Came From , You Don’t Choose Your Family, Don’t Forget Where We Came From, and The Mix That Makes Me Up.
Other titles allude to something that might explain a sudden obsession with genealogy, such as All of a Sudden Part Jew, Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family, I Thought I Was a Smith, and Found At An Auction.
A few appear to vent frustration. Prime examples include Yet Another Jones, Intertwining Branches, It Just Never Came Up, and Like Herding Cats – A Family History Journal. Others, like Genealogy After Bedtime and Hopelessly Addicted to Genealogy might indicate research habits.
Many make pop-culture references: The Ancestor Files: The Truth Is Out There, Days of Our Lives, The Days of Their Lives , I Stalk Dead People, and I Talk to Dead People.
Unique and Diverse Topics
Judging from the diverse tags in our membership roll, GeneaBloggersTRIBE represents a wide variety of interests and expertise. For instance, the map below indicates the number of sites tagged with regional genealogy topics.
(Note: We didn’t map out tags of individual states in the USA, due to the time it would take to generate that. What’s reflected is the number of sites discussing New England (68) and African American (82) research.) Want to update your tags? Use our form.
How to Get to know other GeneaBloggersTRIBE Members
Jeff Goins advises writers that Finding Your Tribe May Be the Hardest Thing You Do. We’ve done the hard part—we’ve found each other. Now the question is how to make the most of our association.
Follow, Follow, Follow
Follow other blogs. You can do this through a new aggregator such as Feedly, use a RSS feed, or simply click on a site’s “Follow this blog via email” link.
Leave comments to on TRIBE member’s posts. This not only helps them generate meaningful conversations with their readers, but allows you to introduce yourself to those readers as well. Win-Win, right?
Follow other TRIBE members on social media. You can use the “follow me” links on their blogs or use GeneaBloggersTRIBE’s social media accounts to find fellow members. Used wisely and generously, this reciprocal following can increase your own social media influence.
The nice thing about blog, vlog, and podcast consumers is that they don’t select one single outlet to read, so we’re not in competition with each other. When you share others’ genealogy-related articles, you offer your followers content relevant to their interests. That makes them more apt to look to you for content, not less.
Make yourself Approachable
Personality Matters. In other words, showing your personality matters. Your fellow TRIBE members are readers, and readers respond better to people with whom they can imagine sitting down for coffee.
In her article, Giving Your Blog a Personality: How to Develop a Unique and Consistent Voice, Chandra Clark advises bloggers not to shy away from showing emotion:
Demonstrating excitement can attract readers to a topic they might not be interested in otherwise. If you find an aspect of your topic frustrating, don’t be afraid to voice your opinion; this can be a powerful way to influence the views of your followers and stir up conversations with those who disagree. Although some bloggers fear controversy, if you maintain a positive attitude and enforce a policy of mutual respect, taking a strong stance on a subject can help you gain the respect of both dedicated followers and new readers.
In addition to taking full advantage of the opportunity to engage with each other via social media and comment threads, make it easy for all your readers to respond to you. Leave a call to action (CTA) or ask an open-ended question at the end of your post. Examples: Have you encountered a similar record? How have you handled such-and-such a problem?
Ask another blogger for a quote on a topic you’re writing, vlogging, or podcasting about. Consider exchanging guest posts with someone whose expertise is different than your own.
We’d love to hear your ideas! How do you plan to make the most of your GeneaBloggersTRIBE membership? What would you advise others to do?
Contributed by Laura Hedgecock and Elizabeth O’Neal © 2017
[starbox id=Elizabeth ONeal]
I am hoping that more bloggers return to an active writing schedule, whether it be monthly, weekly, daily or somewhere in between. We can learn a lot from each other.