July 5, 2013
Writing a blog sometimes feels like a labor of love, especially when you’re first starting out. You spend time thinking about topics, spend time creating content around your ideas, and then do all you can to attract visitors so they can interact on your blog
When they don’t, you might start to wonder if anyone is actually reading your blog at all, and, if they are, do they really care?
Reader interaction on your blog is both a confidence and sustainability booster. You want to feel your content is making a difference, and reader interaction can help you see you are.
Reader comments and interaction help add value to your site, and are desirable for a whole host of personal and technical reasons.
Here are seven ways to increase interaction on your blog:
- Start by raising your online visibility and increasing traffic to your site. Use all the promotional strategies you know to get more people viewing your content. Interaction will go up, to some degree, because you have more people visiting your site each day.
- Ask for comments and interaction. Yes, you can do this using the standard, “What do you think?” at the end of your post, though you are likely to get more interaction if you are more specific. Asking for specific advice, insight, or experience encourages comments. Most people find it easier to answer a specific question than a general one.
- Keep the conversation going. When someone has taken the time to comment on your blog post, be timely about responding to what the person has said. Just like in a face-to-face conversation, both sides need to participate to keep the dialogue coming. Responding in a timely fashion encourages your readers to comment more often.
- Be appropriately provocative. People are more likely to comment when a topic is provocative or controversial. The key here is to be appropriately controversial and to remain on brand. The other alternative is to post current breaking news or newsworthy items with a comment or opinion. Either will work to generate interaction.
- Make your site visually pleasing and easy to interact with. This goes back to some of the tips on accessibility I shared in a previous article and also suggests that the longer you can keep your visitors engaged on your site, the more likely they are to both interact with your site, and return in the future.
- Share about yourself. In this age of digital intimacy, people are still seeking person-to-person connection. The better your readers know you, the more they will like you, pay attention to you, and interact with you. Just like in real life.
- Praise and acknowledge others whenever you can. One of the fastest ways to increase engagement is by sharing good news about other people. Invite readers to share their recent wins. Showcase clients who’ve recently had successes. People respond positively to stories of inspiration, hope, motivation, and will often participate when asked to contribute congratulations or praise.
And there you have it. Seven ways to increase interaction on your blog. Use them well!
Dr. Rachna Jain is the author of Internet Marketing for the Rest of Us: Your In-Depth Guide to Profitable Popularity. She writes at ProfitablePopularity.com/blog.