What is old is new again: Blog Carnivals for link building and SEO

Carnival of Cities blog carnival logoA long time ago (early 2006) I was a brand-new blogger just getting started growing the BootsnAll Family Travel blog.

There was a lot to learn about how to get traffic to a blog – or from a B2B perspective, how to build a blog that draws a crowd.  One suggestion on a favorite blog of mine (Free Money Finance, still going today) was to build inbound links and traffic by submitting posts to relevant blog carnivals.

A blog carnival is centered on a theme or topic; it’s hosted on one blog but usually rotates hosting duties, and it gathers posts on that topic into one blog post called a Carnival “edition.”  There’s a blog carnival site that helps to organize and standardize the submission process.

In February 2007, I was hired to run a weekly blog carnival for the now-defunct Home Turf Media – it was called the Carnival of Cities and featured blog posts submitted by lots of different blogs, all about any aspect of one, single city (or fair-sized town – we were pretty loose about that and still are.)

Through all the general Web upheaval, I kept up my involvement with the Carnival, and ended up as the owner/host of it.  Sometimes, continuing to take inputs and craft editions seemed kind of silly and outdated; so “old school,” right?

Enter the rise of Twitter and Facebook information sharing with their no follow links, and the increased challenges in building solid inbound links to one’s site for SEO (Search Engine Optimization.)  Suddenly, the chance to get legitimate, decent quality links from another blog, simply by participating in a blog carnival, doesn’t seem so old-fashioned any more.  One downside is that spammers have figured this out, too, so a lot of garbage submissions come in, but hosts are usually pretty ruthless about weeding it out or their Carnival dies.

Here is the latest Carnival of Cities edition, hosted on Absolutely The Hague! based in the Netherlands. Entries are sorted by continent and there’s a nice variety – that’s why we say that we “tour the world in one blog post.”

It so happens that this blog hosts the next Carnival of Cities; this week on Wednesday, October 20.  Given the focus on tourism and travel here, I would love to see more CVB, DMO and tourist board blogs participating.

The submission deadline is noon CST Tuesday, October 19, so get hopping and go here to submit your (one, non-spammy) recent blog post about any aspect of one, single city.

If it’s past the deadline, no worries….I’m also hosting the Carnival on November 3 on the Perceptive Travel blog. The November 17 edition will be hosted on Byteful Travel.

No one will read your blog unless they know about it, so think about submitting to mine or any other Carnival,  and also take a look at this Darren Rowse (ProBlogger) video titled, How I Use Social Media to Promote My Blogs.

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8 Responses to What is old is new again: Blog Carnivals for link building and SEO

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  4. Andy Hayes says:

    Hi Sheila,

    As there are typically quite a few links on a single page, your SEO returns are minimal.

    For those looking to build pagerank and compete on low difficulty keywords, it’s fine, but for high difficulty keywords, a blog carnival isn’t going to make much of a dent.

    That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t participate. Esp. this one – it’s a good one 😉

    -A-
    Andy Hayes´s last [post] ..Small Business Marketing Lessons from The Move From Hell

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