April 22, 2015
Focusing on creating excellent blog content that can generate awesome engagement is a great idea. I always encourage it, and many business blogs are making sure to post excellent content for excellent engagement.
However, a major problem many blogs are facing is that they create content that drives engagement, yet over time, the engagement dwindles.
10 Ways to Interact With Your Readers and Get a Bigger, Better Blog Following
Just what’s happening? Is it your blog content or something else? The biggest problem is usually the fact that businesses aren’t interacting with their readers, and if readers don’t get interaction, they aren’t as likely to keep commenting. I am going to take a look at just how you can interact successfully with your clients through some great tips and steps.
1. Read Your Comments Regularly. If you want to make sure you are consistently interacting with your readers, the best way is to make sure you are reading your comments regularly. You can check your website daily, use comment tools like Disqus, or use comment moderation to make sure you see each and every comment, giving you the chance to respond. In fact, no matter what tool you use, comment moderation is something that you should use to make sure you don’t miss any comments and can also control what gets through to your website.
2. Respond to Comments Quickly and Ask Questions. By checking your comments daily, you will have the chance to respond to them quickly, instead of letting them sit there for awhile. The faster you are able to respond, the better it will look to your readers, which can be a great encouragement for them to comment more. When you respond, try to come up with something unique for your response outside of the usual, “Thank you” response. You can address what the reader says specifically and you can also ask him or her a question to further the discussion. If they don’t want to answer publicly, you can encourage them to email you. One question to ask is what type of blogs they’d like to see in the future and just what it is about the post they liked. This can help you develop more ideas for future posts, tweaking them to your visitors’ wants and needs.
3. Listen and Use Client Questions as Blog Topic Ideas. A great way to be successful by interacting with your readers is to listen to your clients and use their questions as blog topics. Readers like to know that they are being listened to and you can show this by not only responding to their comments but by also using one of the questions or suggestions as your next blog topic idea. You can ask your readers what they would like to see more of in your blog postings. In addition, when they comment on a blog, ask what in that topic area they would like to see more of. This could even provide you with the chance to research different aspects of your industry, becoming better informed as well.
4. When You Share Your Blog, Mention People and Ask Them to Share. Do you have some clients that interact more with you or that you follow on Twitter? Then take this as a chance to mention them when you share your blog, asking them to share it as well. Something you will see is that people do enjoy being addressed individually, feeling as if you are focusing predominately on them. Your tweets or other social media posts might come across as too standoffish, even if you believe you are talking directly to your clients. However, if you specifically mention a few, asking them to share, you will find that they are more receptive and willing.
5. Write Blog Posts on Trendy Topics to Create Discussions. You want to make sure that you are writing evergreen content to make sure many of your posts stay popular throughout the months and years. However, if you want more interaction on your blog, you will also need to write on trendy, or even controversial, topics to generate discussion. Always make sure that you write delicately if you do address a controversial topic to avoid people misunderstanding your post.
If you aren’t comfortable with writing on the latest controversial topic, then you can still write on something currently trending. For example, at the time of writing this blog, the Hugo Awards were experiencing a huge controversy regarding their awards. If you don’t want to write on what is referred to as “Puppy-gate” but want to write on the awards themselves, then do so. You are still writing on something trendy that is likely to drive interaction, but you aren’t focusing on the controversial aspect of it.
6. Ask Your Clients to Comment After They Read Your Post. If you are still looking to drive engagement on your blogs or social media posts, a great way to encourage it is to ask people to comment. Did you write a list? Ask people to comment with their favorite points. Did you write a post about a product, service, or news item? Ask people’s thoughts on it. Make sure you address the question as if you were directing it to the individual reading the post. This will help make it feel like it is directed at the person who reads it, making them more likely to comment. Once they’ve commented with their answers, always remember to respond and ask even more questions to develop a conversation and relationship with your readers. A great way to make sure you keep a conversation going is to ask open-ended questions, leading your customers to talk more and interact frequently.
7. Provide Value Not Only in Your Blog, But Also in Your Comments. Every aspect of content needs to have some sort of value that can be offered to your readers. You want to write blogs that provide value because your clients are likely to comment more if they learn or receive something by reading. In addition, when your clients comment, you need to make sure your comment provides excellent value as well. This can be by answering a question the client asks or asking them questions to further the discussion and learn more about what your clients want and need from your blog. Value is a great way to help you rank and will also help you keep your readers coming back and commenting.
8. Get Rid of Spam Comments or Use Comment Moderation. As I mentioned above, comment moderation is a great way to ensure you see every comment and respond to it. It also helps you to weed out spam comments. Comment spam is unfortunate for many reasons including making your blog look unprofessional to first time visitors or even your recurring readers. It also can make you ‘lose rank‘ with Google. You don’t want any comment spam and without a comment moderation system chances are you will get spammed.
9. Respond in an Easy-to-Understand Manner. Another way to help boost success when interacting with clients on your blog is to make sure you respond in an easy-to-understand manner. You already know that you need to make sure your blogs are easy for any reader to understand, but the same also goes for your comments. Keep the jargon out of your responses and talk to your clients in a manner they will understand. If you don’t, you might just see them leaving your site for a competitor that is more willing to talk without jargon. You don’t want to talk down to your clients, but you also want to make sure you aren’t confusing them.
10. Keep All Interactions Positive and Upbeat. An excellent way to make sure readers are willing to continue interacting with you on your blog is to keep everything positive and upbeat. People respond better to optimism and positivity, regardless of how much negativity you might see currently online. We all crave some measure of positivity, and readers will be more likely to talk with you if you keep things happy and nice. This is true whether clients are asking questions, saying they appreciate your company or even if they are disgruntled.
Talk the Talk and Interact With Clients!
Use these tips to make sure you are able to interact well with your clients. By interacting, you will see amazing success both in engagement on blogs and social media, as well as more revenue. You may even see a boost in traffic because happy customers will talk and tell their friends. If you are looking for excellent content that can start a great interaction chain before you respond to clients, then you are in the right place. Express Writers offers excellent blog content for all of our clients, giving you the chance to get interaction and boost traffic and revenue. Take a look at what we can do for you. Which of these suggestions do you plan on trying first?
Julia McCoy is a top 30 content marketer and has been named an industry thought leader by several publications. She enjoys making the gray areas of content marketing clear with practical training, teaching, and systems. Her career in content marketing was completely self-taught. In 2011, she dropped out of college to follow her passion in writing, and since then grew her content agency, Express Writers, to thousands of worldwide clients from scratch. Julia is the author of two bestselling books on content marketing and copywriting, and is the host of The Write Podcast. Julia writes as a columnist on leading publications and certifies content strategists in her training course, The Content Strategy & Marketing Course. Julia lives in Austin, Texas with her daughter, husband, and one fur baby.