5 Ways To Increase Engagement On Your Blog Posts
If you’re taking the time and making an effort to consistently create content for your blog, wouldn’t it be nice to have some sort of indication that all your hard work is making a difference to your readers and advancing your business?
For example, reader comments — or lack of them — can serve as a helpful barometer for evaluating your blog’s effectiveness.
Comments on your blog posts serve as a way to:
- Determine if people are reading your content from start to finish
- Gauge the level of interest readers have in the topics you address
- Glean potential topic ideas for future posts
- Open the opportunity to future discussions with prospective customers
And, no matter where other readers may come in contact with your blog posts (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.), comments on your posts will be seen by all of them. When people notice that others have interacted with your posts, they may feel more compelled to leave a comment. Often, commenters will reference other readers’ comments when sharing their thoughts, thus turning your blog into a mini-forum.
But the vast majority of people don’t leave blog comments (I admit that I usually don’t). They’re busy. Or they’re not inspired to do so.
So, what can you do about it?
5 Tips for Getting More Comments on Your Blog Posts
1. Choose your topics carefully.
People will be more willing to comment on blog posts that cover topics they care about. This is Content Strategy 101. And your content planning efforts should be rooted in it. Seek to create content centered on what is top of mind for your target audience.
Ways to home in on that include paying attention to:
- Frequently asked questions your company receives from prospects and customers
- Past blog content that was well received by readers
- Blog comments that readers left on your past posts
- Discussion threads on LinkedIn groups to which your target customers belong
- What your top competitors are writing about
2. At the end of your posts, ask readers to answer a question.
- “What would you add to the list?”
- “Have you tried any of the tips I’ve mentioned? How have they worked for you?”
- “What are your thoughts on this topic?”
- “Have you faced similar challenges?”
3. Tell them to leave a comment.
After you ask a question to encourage engagement, tell readers that you would like them to leave a comment.
For example: “Please leave a comment here. I’d love to hear what you have to say!”
These tactics will prompt readers to consider how the topic relates to them and invite them to share what’s on their minds.
4. Be attentive and responsive.
If readers see that others have left comments and you’ve never acknowledged or responded to them, they’ll think: “Why bother?” Pay attention to the email notifications you get from WordPress (or other content management system) so you’re aware when someone leaves a comment on a post. Then respond to the comment as soon as possible to demonstrate that you care about interacting with your readers.
5. Increase the odds of engagement by driving more traffic to your blog.
The more people who read your blog, the better your odds of getting comments.
- Consider offering incentives for people to subscribe to receive your blog posts via email. A special, free piece of content — such as a white paper, report or video guide — might do the trick.
- Share your blog posts via all your social media channels. Consider putting a little paid promotion behind strong posts that you’re proud of. By doing so, you expand the exposure of your posts to an audience beyond your blog subscribers.
- Include links to your recent blog posts in your email newsletters.
- Comment on other blogs. (Rand Fishkin offers some helpful insight on “comment marketing” in this Moz blog post.)
Final Thoughts on Breaking the Silence
While the sound of crickets chirping on a quiet spring evening is comforting, radio silence on blog posts can be unsettling. It may be a warning sign that your blog isn’t touching on the right topics, doesn’t have a tone that readers relate to or isn’t sharing anything new or interesting. If making efforts to encourage blog comments doesn’t succeed, you may need to evaluate and adapt your overall content strategy.