And it’s easy to see why we’d want more comments, after all, if our readers leave more comments, it has a lot of benefits for us:
- More comments means more people will be likely to comment
- More comments means more people will be reading the post, and spending time on our blog
- More comments means there’s a greater chance of the post getting more links and retweets and being shared on other social sites
- All those extra links and retweets means more traffic
- We just like to know that people like the content we are creating
So we all know the reasons why WE want more comments. Commenting is one of the key actions we want our readers to take when they visit our blog.
But have you ever asked yourself what’s in it for the reader? What does the reader get from commenting? Because if commenting is the action you want your readers to take, you need to give them a reason to. And when they do, you need to acknowledge them. Here’s some ideas:
- Answer as many comments as possible. It’s not a coincidence that I leave about half the comments written here. And when I leave comments on other blogs, if the blogger replies to me, that makes me more likely to leave another comment there.
- Promote the comments that your readers leave. You can do that in the post, or even when you share a link to the post on Twitter. I often link to each new post I write 2-3 times on Twitter. Normally the first link is to the post itself, but often when I tweet out the post the second time, I will point out a great comment that someone left. If they are on Twitter I might tweet ‘Love this comment by @BethHarte on my post about time management and social media!’
- Add a Recent Comments plugin or something similar that displays the most recent comments left. Readers like to see that you appreciate their contributions, and that’s a very simple way to do this.
- Write posts based on comments left, and point out the reader that wrote the comment.
The point is, you’ll get more comments if you give people a reason to comment. So don’t look at it as ‘here’s how I benefit from more comments’, but think about what your commenters get from the deal.
How have you increased comments on your blog?