Tip #7: Ask for help if you need it. (And know where and how to ask.)
Really, this goes for everyone, not just newbie bloggers! There will come a time in your blogging life where you’ll need help with something, whether it’s an event you’re planning or how to fix your layout when it mysteriously breaks. Or maybe you just need to know how to email a publisher correctly, or how to respond to weird review requests! Not knowing how to do something isn’t at all shameful, despite what some people may think. The key is to know when to ask for help, how to ask for it, and where to ask.
When to ask
This is kind of self-explanatory? But: ask for help when whatever it is you need help with can’t be solved through some strategic Googling. If you find yourself entering increasingly weird combinations of keywords for hours on end just so you can figure out what a publisher’s email is, that’d be a good time to find someone to ask directly.
Where to ask
Usually I just ask my questions on whatever social media site is closer– usually Twitter. Twitter’s handy because so many people are on it at various times throughout the day, and so you’ll usually always get an answer reasonably quickly. Other places you could ask: the Book Blogs Ning site, Facebook, Goodreads, or even in a post on your own blog! Emailing other bloggers directly is good, too, especially if you’ve got a book blogging-related question. I actually LOVE it when people email me for help with blogging stuff, and I know lots of other bloggers like to help, too. That’s why so many of us have Formspring accounts, haha!
Though book bloggers are very smart people who know tons about stuff you might not expect them to know about, they probably don’t know everything. If you’ve got a question about a very specific, non-book blogging-related thing you might have more success asking it on a forum dedicated to the thing you’ve got a question about. For instance, if you can’t figure out how to change the background color on your blog’s layout, the developer’s forum might have an answer ready for you.
How to ask
Wherever and whoever you ask for help, the important thing to remember is to be polite. Say please and thank you and don’t demand an answer! And don’t ask for help over and over again, even if it’s a really important question, or you desperately need volunteers. If you don’t get an answer right away, or if no one volunteers to help, either wait a little bit and ask again or try asking in a different place.
So, in conclusion: don’t be shy! Ask questions, ask people for help, and ask in lots of different places.
When was the last time you asked for help? Did you get an answer? Would you do anything differently if you needed help now?