The web has evolved from a place where people go to get information to a place where people not only go to get information but to get social as well.
The Comments Section
Every good blog has a comments section where readers can post their thoughts on the topic of post … and for good reason, too.
The comments section of a blog is one of the main features that differentiates the social web from traditional media, which is commonly referred to as one-way media.
Bloggers interested in building their profile as an artist or social following should consider visiting the blogs of others and posting engaging comments, as this type of interaction with other readers tends to carry more weight than sharing content socially. By posting genuine comments on other blog posts, you have the opportunity to building your own readership.
Here are just 7 ways you can attract readers back to your own blog by posting engaging comments.
1. Be The First to Comment
Bloggers that post comments in order to attract new readers know that one of the most important aspects of this method is to get there first.
With that said, however, it’s important to stress the importance of posting engaging comments that contribute to the discussion.
Don’t expect much from “nice post” comments … though this might sum up how you feel about the post, it doesn’t provide anything to the reader. It’s like attending an event followed by a Q&A … you don’t want to waste everyone’s time by standing up during the Q&A merely to say “nice show.”
It’s important to be first because the first comment is read by every reader that reaches the end of the post, which means you could be looking at some serious traffic increases to your own blog if you post the right comment.
2. Post A Comment That Stands Out
Of the tips I picked up from Darren at ProBlogger is to post comments that stand out from the rest of the comments. If all the comments posted are short, post a lengthy comment. Likewise, if all the comments are long, post a short comment.
The key here is to stand out without giving up the value of your comment.
Try not to write just for writing’s sake if you’re aiming to post a longer comment — people will se right through it and skim to the next comment. This shouldn’t be that difficult if you’re passionate about the topic of the post and niche.
3. Post Multiple Comments
Actually engaging with the conversation taking place in the comments is an important aspect many bloggers overlook.
While it may be easy to get there first or write comments that stand out in length, nothing beats actually engaging with the other readers. Follow up on your first comment, answer questions, lead the conversation if the blogger isn’t anywhere to be found … the idea here is to provide valuable, genuine comments again and again, thereby creating a presence in the comments section. Other readers will want to know who you are at some point if you continue sharing thought provoking comments.
4. Be The Last to Comment
I haven’t seen much discussion about this one … but I know for a fact it works, because as a reader, I always read the last few comments of longer comment threads before commenting.
Though the last comment won’t be seen by everyone that reaches the end of the post, it will be seen by anyone interested in posting their own comment. Because of it’s location at the bottom of the comment thread, it usually sits just above the actual comment box, so it’s hard to miss if you’re set on commenting.
5. Use the Name and URL Section Wisely
In addition to posting engaging comments, you should consider posting an interesting name in order to catch the attention of readers skimming the comments. This area is still very much open for experimentation — as long as you don’t use the area to post a spammy non-identity, such as a company name, you’re fine. That said, a combination of your name and company name is perfectly fine. For example, you’ll most likely see me posting as “Christopher // CreativeBlogger” revealing that my name is Christopher and that I have a blog called CreativeBlogger.
If you plan on doing this, remember to include the URL of the company name in the URL section, otherwise it’s just plain confusing.
Your name and URL sits just above your comment in most cases, so it’s the first (if not only) thing skimmers see. Again, there’s opportunity to stand out here as well.
What Do You Think?
Have you noticed anything that seemed to work best in terms of attracting readers in the comments sections of blogs?
What would you add as number 6?
cc image credit: Very Quiet