I want more comments!
Who doesn’t love comments?
(If you raised your hand, please leave now. We don’t want your kind here.)
Getting comments makes blogging worthwhile and meaningful. I don’t care how many people say, “Blog for you, not for comments-” you’re still going to wonder when you hit publish if anyone will care enough to say something. Agree, disagree, share a story, come out from lurking – comments are the backbone of a public blog.
So when you start blogging, you realize there are people who have like 254 comments on every.single.post. Naturally, because we’re human, we all start to wonder, “How come they get so many comments? And how can I get more?”
So we’re here to help you out as much as we can. At least give you a jumping off point – because never in my 5 months of blogging have I gotten near 254 comments. 🙂 This is Part 3 of our New to Blogging Series.
First and foremost – comment on other blogs. Period. Make time for it. Carve out a few hours a week to do it.
Then, find your niche, and really work hard to build a community around it. Make sure you’re connecting with people who have similar interests and ideas – because if you blog about attachment parenting and you only comment/write bloggers who post on CIO and sleep training methods – you aren’t going to have much reason for them to visit you. Join sites that have moms who are interested in the same things you are, and share with them.
Make sure there is some type of a back story for people to look up or be reminded of. Links to old posts within your blog work great to navigate people to a previous story, as well as a good About Me page or side bar. Keep it updated and relevant.
-What’s happening right now in your life? That’s what I look for when I hit a new blog – what’s going on?
– Where can I find it?
– Who are you?
– If someone new clicked on your blog right now, and wanted to know more about you, where would they go?
You want to make your blog one that people recall when thinking about something that you wrote about.
Blog like you’re talking to friends with short term memory loss. Keep it friendly and familiar, but at the same time let them know who we’re reading about. When I read, “It was so fun to see Mindy this summer because we had the best day together last year. We laughed about that time with old Aunt May!” I feel very confused and slightly angry 🙂 because I have no idea what you just talked about. Nor does anyone else that doesn’t know you personally. Link it or do a short explanation.
Ask questions in your posts. Try to figure out what others think about what you wrote. Oh yes, this is scary. There are going to be people that disagree and want to let you know about it. But that’s ok – it’s good to listen to different points of view on topics and have people interact on your comments. And if things get nasty? Well, delete them. It’s your blog after all.
One of my best friends (I don’t care that we’ve never met, we talk every day and we’re so going to meet. Like BlogHer ’11!) Metta from 365 Days: 30+ Mommyhood has some real gems of advice to share – especially since her blog has evolved from a SAHM while she was on maternity leave to a working mom.
When I first started blogging and gaining followers, it would make me all warm and fuzzy inside to see comments. It was nice to know that I’m not writing just for the internet cosmos to suck in and be forever gotten. And what I started to notice was that I had a handful people who commented just about every day…or at least caught up reading my blog on days when they had time to take it all in.
But now that I’m part of the working momma ranks, I can’t leave as many comments b/c I just don’t have time to read all the blogs I want to. As a result, I’ve noticed the traffic/comments on my blog have slowed down. I even blogged about it once, when I was too focused on stats and not enough focused on why I truly blog. But that post provided me with some great suggestions on how to go about commenting, so here are my thoughts on the issue…and some other random things having to do with comments:
1. I set up my blogger account so that when somebody sends me a comment, it is emailed to me. That way I can take a minute or two to type up a response to them that will be sent directly to their email. (NOTE: This doesn’t always work b/c if your account is set up so your email is not public, I can’t write back.) This has helped me to continue to network with other mommy bloggers.
2. I try to hit up and comment on my favorite blogs at least once a week. Sometimes I only have time to skim posts, if even that, but I want my mommy blogging friends to know that I’m still here, even though I’m busy being a working momma.
3. I never ever leave comments for others with my blog url in them or comments like, “Come check me out.” I hate it when people do that to me. It’s just so insincere. I want people to comment b/c they have something to say about my posts…not b/c they are trying to get more traffic on their blogs.
4. I’ve noticed that the more someone speaks their mind…the more controversial someone is with blog posts…the more comments they get. I’m usually not like that…the having balls to 100% voice my views on things…but yeah, something I’ve just noticed.
5. People won’t comment on just any post. This sucks for me at times b/c I’ve set my blog up to be a 365 days post and well sometimes, I just don’t have epic things to write about. But, I’m ok with that as this blog is a lot for me about being able to look back at this year as documented. When I do pour my heart and soul into a post that is when I tend to get more comments. But this takes time, and thought, and energy, and can’t be done all the time.
So yeah, comments rock. I mean I know blogging is about writing for me…to process all the emotions that come with being a first time mommy, but sometimes I need to hear a “I totally get that,” statement, or a “Have you tried this,” statement. Oh, and I’m always down for a, “Abby is so freaking cute,” statement as well.
Another thing we both agree on is this; yes, almost everyone with a public blog loves, and at times writes, for comments. It’s part of being a blogger – to connect, to share, to find others around you that are on the same page as you in life, or have “been there done that.” But your posts should be for you – they should reflect your way of thinking, your life, your voice. When you write, it should be personal.
Whether you get 3 comments or 300, the post you wrote needs to be written in your words, from your heart and mind.
Keep in mind that when people comment, they are telling you something they want you to read. So take a moment, really read what they wrote, and comment back if it needs it. It’s not just a number, if you’re just thinking, “16” when you get a new comment, then you’re on the wrong track. A comment is much more than that. It’s a little piece of someone, and a bit of their time, that they left with you to validate or connect with what you just wrote.
Want more? Read “Comments – how to get ’em.”
Next weeks topic: Blogging Etiquette
– Interested in contributing to this?
– Have questions on this topic you want answered?
Email me at hormonal-imbalances at hotmail.com. Even just a small bit of advice is wonderful to get.
Thank you to Metta who helped me this week to put this together. Much appreciated!