How to make a new professional connection by blogging

An incredible thing just happened: I got an email from my WordPress system telling me it just got a notification from someone else’s blogging system that someone has linked to a post on this blog! 🙂

Called a Track Back, these kinds of messages used to happen all the time. Now they are so noisy and spammy that almost no one uses them; and fewer people blog, it seems. But this is what blogging is made for: not just for blogging but for connecting.

The blogger in question is a professional development specialist named Kate Pinner. Kate puts up posts each weekend with a few curated links to things she found online that inspired learning on her part, she shares those links with her readers and then she offers some of her own perspective on what the links discuss.

She adds value to her readers’ time online by hand selecting good content and by adding good thinking, by weaving links together and adding context. She adds value to the lives of those of us she links to by distributing our content to a new audience and adding new thinking to the conversation.

I of course clicked through and read Kate’s post to see what she said about my post, but I also navigated around her site to learn about her. I liked what I saw and subscribed to her feed in Feedly so I can learn from her in the future.

Kate, if you’re reading this (and if the Track Back worked, you are) – I see you’re in the same city I am but work in a different industry. I like learning a lot too and would love to have coffee with you in the Little Bird office downtown sometime if you’re interested. (It’s a real pretty office.)

And that, my friends, is how it’s done. (Coffee an optional bonus.)

The software is made to make connection easy, we just have to add value and be interesting so that when we reach out and touch someone, we’re a blessing and not a spammy curse. You can do it on Twitter with @ replies, you can do it on Facebook or LinkedIn, but long form blogging makes it easier to bring your half of the magic. The social software brings half the magic, you have to bring the rest.

That’s how I quit my job and became a professional blogger, just doing that stuff above. That’s how I raised millions of dollars to build a company that makes discovery of experts and emerging content online easier. By blogging, thinking and linking.

It’s an incredible opportunity. Thank you Ev Williams. Thank you Matt Mullenweg. Thank you Dave Winer. Thank you everyone else who helped make this incredible technology for us to learn together through.

Thank you, internet! Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to see what other cool things I can find on Kate Pinner’s blog.