We have had the privilege to interview bloggers on our show who do a fantastic job at getting reader comments and interactions. Specifically, Anne Bogel of Modern Mrs. Darcy and Kristen of The Frugal Girl come to mind. These ladies excel at encouraging reader interaction, so how do they do it? These are my 5 tips to increase reader interaction on your blog.
There are a number of ways to be a consistent blogger. The first is to blog on a consistent schedule. You want your readers to look forward to the next post that they know will come out on schedule. The second way to be consistent is to be consistently you. Write as if you were having a conversation with a friend. If you are trying to write like you're someone else, the façade will be difficult to keep up. By being genuinely and consistently you, a level of trust is developed between you and your readers. The third way to be consistent is to reliably produce good quality material. Followers will keep coming back to quality work, but will quickly lose interest if the quality is not there. Increase comments by being consistent; consistently blogging, consistently you, and consistent quality.
#2 Honor your Reader
Your readers are your most important asset and they should be treated that way. Kristen of The Frugal Girl does a great job at this. She takes down ads if they are too annoying to her readers, and she is very careful to only recommend products she truly loves. In this way she is developing a deep level of trust between her and her readers. A follower who feels like they can trust the blogger is much more likely to comment. Another way to honor your reader and build trust is to reply and respond to as many comments and emails as possible. Readers will be ecstatic that you took the time to reply to their comment or respond to their email, which will only encourage them to comment and engage even more.
#3 Ask for Feedback or Help
Anne of Modern Mrs. Darcy does a great job of asking her readers for feedback at the end of each post. She says things like “What do you think about this? How do you handle that situation? Have you ever done this?” By just asking for feedback, you are much more likely to get that feedback from your readers. Asking readers for help and advice can also really get the ball rolling. In one particular post, Kristen asked for some help to find a good recipe for extra cabbage she had. Cabbage! And the response was huge. People love to provide help when they can. Ask for help and you will get floods of comments. Related to this, Kristen was getting inundated with reader questions emailed to her. She wanted her answers to benefit more than just one reader, so she turned reader questions into Q&A posts. Genius! After she answers the question, she asks other readers to weigh in on their answers too. By showcasing reader questions, she is showing that she truly values the questions and input of her readers.
#4 Be Interesting and Brave
The fact of the matter is, if you're not interesting, no one will read, and no one will comment. People want to hear about the part of you that makes you different from everyone else. Discuss things that truly matter to you. And if you're willing, be brave and share your opinion on a controversial or sensitive topic. Controversy always generates a lot of comments! Share your opinion in a conversational way, not like a lecture. Set a tone for kind discussion, and your readers will follow suit in their comments. Be prepared to listen to what your readers have to say on the topic too. Sensitive subjects don't have to be taboo, they can result in a lot of great discussion.
#5 Make a Spelling Mistake
This tip, that I got from a ProBlogger article, I think is hysterical! People love to correct your spelling mistakes! Can you spot the spelling mistake on this blog post? I'm sure I made a boar load of grammar errors too! Find them if you can!
So how about you? How do you think that Anne and Kristen get such great reader comments? What are things you do to increase comments on your site? We would love to hear from you!
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