5 Official Secrets To Getting More Blog Comments
In assurance to makers, doers, and dreamers everywhere, they say “if you build it they will come.”
But I’m about 102% certain that whoever the heck “they” is never had a blog.
(Picture who you may at this point, but all I see in my head is a young, baseball-playing Kevin Costner.)
See, I don’t know about you, but I’ve built a large number of websites in my day.
…And only a handful came to most of them.
(Especially that fun — but ohhhmyugly — “I-am-so-darn-fed-up-with-Britney-Spears!” site I created as a 15 year old. Ha.)
Along the way I did learn what it takes to steadily attract website visitors and get noticed online, but getting blog traffic is — to continue our corny baseball + Costner theme we have going on here — like only getting to first base on the baseball diamond.
So what’s second base?
Getting engagement (otherwise affectionately known — probably only by me — as blog comment luv).
Before I “pitch” you the steps to get more blog comments (oh I crack myself up), let’s be clear: simply because you don’t have much engagement on your blog DOES NOT mean you can’t make money from it or that it’s one colossal failure.
You can monetize and sell successfully through your website as soon as you’ve started bringing in some visitors, and the fact you have little to no comments coming in right now doesn’t necessarily mean your blog is failing you.
HOWEVER, there are good, business-y reasons for wanting engagement on your blog, which I will explain to you later on in this post.
With that, let’s get to the 5 secrets to getting more blog comments!
1. ADD PERSONALITY
I’ve read about 131 blogging tutorials on “How To Move Your Blog From Blogger to WordPress.”
(I’ve never actually moved a blog from Blogger to WordPress, so I have NO clue as to why I’m reading these things. I blame it on internet rabbit holes.)
Do you know how many I remember?
Why is that?
One reason: they were dry, lackluster, “do this, do that, done” posts that had the personality of a Microsoft troubleshooting manual.
When I read posts like that, I just can’t get myself worked up to leave a comment because it feels like a real person isn’t even actually there.
But if someone had written a post like that while telling her story about how the first time she attempted it, everything went HORRIFICALLY wrong, she was locked out of her website for 3 weeks, and she had to eat 10 gallons of neapolitan ice cream to stay sane?
I would LOL.
I would follow her on all her social networks + maybe even sign up for her email list.
And then I’d leave an epic comment.
2. SPOIL YOUR READERS’ ROTTEN
The blogging world has become an enormous ocean of information; there are tips, tidbits, and how to’s adrift EVERYWHERE.
But I’ll tell you one thing that’s hard to find.
Info that gives a meaty, comprehensive amount of value at no additional cost.
It’s difficult to get people’s attention — or their gratitude — with another 400 word post that’s as shallow as the 50 they just zipped through before it.
People are not moved to action by mediocrity. They are moved by superiority.
Write something product-worthy (yes, something someone would be willing to pay real money to read + benefit from — even if it’s just $2) and I guarantee you: you WILL get comments.
50 No-Fluff, Content-Rich Blog Post Ideas by Elle & Company
3. TAKE A STAND (& STICK TO IT)
There’s something dreadful about reading a blog post that takes a position of mild controversy, but then the blogger gets to the end of the post and says something like:
“Errr, yeah…even though I made you believe I am in support of all the above, I’m really not that passionate about it. And actually, I could definitely agree with you if you held a radical opposing view. In fact, I’m just going to discount everything I said and take your side now, OK?”
I’m not exaggerating for humor’s sake. I swear. I’ve witnessed it more than 11.3 times, which makes it a real thing.
This milk & cookies, “let’s sing kumbaya and pretend this never happened” attitude is the most depressing thing you can do for your audience.
And for engagement.
You might get a person offended by your original stance who comments with a, “Right on! Thanks for agreeing with me in the end. I knew I was right.”
But the reaction from everybody else (who were cheering up and down on their couch cushions in paragraph 3) is going to be one of deflation.
What’s the point of commenting on something so timid? Wishy-washy, tepid views don’t inspire anybody.
4. GET IN YOUR OWN COMBOX
Have you ever gone to a party where the hostess was so consumed with her self-imposed, semi-neurotic tasks of making sure the fête went “just so” that you could never have a real conversation with her?
After fruitless attempts in trying, you’d just give up, right?
Blog comboxes are a lot like that.
When people get in there, they’re trying to make a connection with you.
If you never respond, two things happen:
1. Those commenters stop making the attempt.
2. Other readers who see that you never respond will figure it’s not even worth trying.
On the other hand, if you’re relatively active in your comment section:
1. Those commenters will be rewarded for their attempt, and be more inclined to do it again.
2. Other readers who see that you do respond will be eager to make the effort, knowing that you’re there, listening and engaged with your community.
The thing is, we’re not Kate Middletons or Taylor Swifts here.
People aren’t going to chase us down no matter what, just thrilled that they’re able to leave a few words for us in hopes we read them.
If we want more comments, we have to be a part of our own community — not above it.
5. MAKE THE ASK
When I help people upset about the fact that no one is commenting on their posts, this is the most frequent oversight I see:
They’re not asking for them.
I don’t mean that you should say, “Would you comment on my post now?”
That seldom works, as it sounds too pleading.
What I mean is that you need to give people a conversation starter.
You need to reach out and ask a question to draw people in.
Most posts I read cruise along, telling me great things, and then…shut the door. It’s over.
If just like that the article ends — what else am I supposed to do besides click the X on my browser tab and go on somewhere else?
But the posts I engage with? They nearly always end with a request for my specific input on a topic.
You HAVE to tell people what you want from them. If you want comments, tell them in detail what it is you want them to talk about!
TRY STARTING WITH:
“What do you do when…?”
“How do you handle….?”
“When did you last…?”
“Why do you….?”
“Who is your…?”
“Where have you…?”
NOW, WHY DO YOU WANT TO GET THESE COMMENTS ON YOUR BLOG?
Everyone wants more blog comments, but do we even know WHY?
When I was a beginning blogger, I sure didn’t. 🙂
I just knew that others had them, so I wanted them, too. (Oh! The peer pressure!)
Of course, that’s not a good reason to want comments.
Who really cares if others have comments? In that sense, they don’t matter. You can take ’em or leave ’em.
But as I grew older and wiser (I’m in my early 30s, I can say that), I discovered actual, bonafide reasons for encouraging engagement on a blog.
1. The engaged reader is FAR more likely than one who isn’t to help you promote your blog (that means tweet out your posts, Pin your images, and all that happy online stuff).
2. The engaged reader is also more likely than one who isn’t to hire your services or buy your products (or even just use your affiliate links).
3. Getting more comments on your blog is a social proof helper. In plain words, it tells people “hey, others like this person, too!” — which is a signal to them that they should be liking + following you, too.
So, all things considered, it is a SMART goal to try to build interaction on your blog.
And while there are some blogs that are successful without a lot of engagement in the combox, I have never — not even not once — seen someone who has thrived like crazy online yet struggled to get engagement going on SOMEWHERE.
(I prefer to see it strong on a blog because that is your home base. Social networks and the access you get to fans there can be unreliable; just look at what happened with Facebook fan pages.)
Now I’m turning it over to you guys. What have you done to help increase your blog comments? If you don’t get many blog comments, what tip in this post will you be trying?