But it addresses how to engage others in the blogging community in hopes of growing blog readership. As with any promotion, there are rules and boundaries. Below are my thoughts on how to effectively engage in the blogworld's rules of engagement.
1. Guest posts are a good way to gain new exposure. What do you think is the appropriate way to go about securing a guest spot?
I would first seek out those blogs that are asking for guest spots and features and start there. If there is a blog that you really want to guest spot for and they are not asking for guest bloggers, I would spend a good deal of time (a few months) commenting and engaging that blogger through his/her blog as possible. I would also follow him/her via Twitter and/or FaceBook and engage them there as well. After that time, I would email the blogger directly and ask to be considered for a guest blogger spot. As a blogger I'm much more inclined to take seriously a fellow blogger whose name I recognize because I've interacted with them via blog, FB, or Twitter.
2. Leaving comments is essential to growing your blog. But how can you leave a comment without coming across as ‘Follow Me. Follow Me!’?
Make the comment genuine, significant and relevant to the blogspot. One word comments like "Nice!" just don't cut it in my opinion. I don't have an overwhelming number of comments, but the ones I do get are genuine and from readers that I engage with on and offline.
3. We’ve all gotten a mass email at one time or another asking for blog exposure, a link exchange, etc… But the mass emails don’t work. How do you make your email stand out from the crowd?
I wouldn't send a mass email, unless it was to a select group of bloggers that I already have a relationship with.
4. In interacting with other bloggers where do you draw the line between seeking support and begging for exposure?
I think the line is drawn at the frequency and tone of the emails. If they become "stalkerish" in nature, that is a turn off.
5. What’s one rule of engagement error you made and how have you remedied that?
The one thing that I struggle with is commenting on other blogs. I do not do it as often as I should. I have determined to spend at least 1 hour a day doing this. When I do this consistently I do notice more engagement on my blog. It is the basic "golden rule" in practice. It's important to acknowledge the time and effort of other bloggers, just like you would want them to acknowledge our efforts.