The Internet is awash in a sea of blogs – 31 million to be exact – with every blogger vying to be first; the first to be read, the first to be ranked by the search engines and the first to receive a slew of blog comments. It’s the latter that you should be concerned with. A blog that has a list of strong comments in the comments section will always be seen as the more popular one among readers. After all, the average reader can’t tell at a single glance how much traffic you’re generating or how extensive your social reach happens to be. They can only determine popularity by the amounts of quality blog comments you receive. If you can think of the blogosphere as an ocean, you’re about to learn how to go hunting for sharks. Sharks, in this case, indicate strong commenters that actually have something to say and that actually add value to your blog. When you write a blog and proverbially cast your line into the deep abyss of blog readership, you shouldn’t be satisfied with a nibble or even a bite. Oh, no. When you want blog domination, you should only be content by starting a blog comment feeding frenzy with every blog you write. Here are 20 ways to do just that.
Run a Tight Ship
Before you can hope to attract a herd of voracious sharks to your blog, tighten up your ship. In other words, optimize your blog to make the chances of a blog comment feeding frenzy more likely to occur.
- Engaging Titles: Get in the habit of crafting titles that cause your readers to whip their heads in your direction. Be concise, use keywords where appropriate and use powerful language that effectively steals readers from your competitors.
- Fresh & Regular Content: Tom Demers, founder of Measured SEM, recommends that you post at least two to three blogs per week for best results. The more posts you have under your belt, the more comments you are likely to receive with each post.
- Make it Easy to Comment: Test your blog out by leaving a comment of your own. If you encounter obstacles, fix them now before you hinder any strong commenters in the near future.
- Provide Excellent & Sometimes Weird Content: Your blogs should have something to say, they should have a clear direction and should seek to inform, educate or at least entertain with every post. Whatever you do, strive to be different. Don’t be a cookie cutter blogger. Stand out and the comments will come.
- Set Comment Alerts: Modify your blog settings so that you are notified whenever a new comment comes in. We will get to why in a moment.
- Have a Good Time: Srinivas Rao, co-founder of BlogcastFM, says that you should always strive to have fun when you blog. The more fun you have, the more your blogs will resonate with your audience and the more comments you are sure to receive.
Cast a Strong Line
Your blog is now optimized and you have the proper bait in place. Now it’s time to cast your line and hope for the best.
- Leave Something for Readers to Add: When you write your blogs, don’t be so thorough that your readers have nothing to add to the conversation. Purposefully leave a void that your readership can fill.
- Ask a Question or For Readers’ Opinions: The blogs that receive the most comments tend to be the ones that actually ask for them. Urge your readers to participate and they most likely will.
- Share the Comment-Wealth: You’ve heard of the commonwealth? Well, this is the comment-wealth. Pass it around. Find other bloggers in your field and leave meaningful comments that are sure to get noticed by the blogger and his/her loyal readers. The more comments you leave, the higher the likelihood of you receiving comments in return.
Clean Up the Water
To attract more sharks, you need to keep the water spotless.
- Cut the Spam: Use plugins like Akismet or other means to keep spam to a minimum. The less spam you have, the more quality comments you will receive.
- Don’t Restrict Comments, Monitor Them: The more restrictions you place on your commenting system and the more hoops you force your readers to jump through to add to the conversation, the fewer comments you are likely to receive. Instead of restricting comments, monitor them (here is where blog alerts come in handy) to get rid of any useless comments that aren’t detected by the anti-spam system you have in place.
Add Some Chum
Now it’s time to add some delectable morsels to the water to really draw the sharks in.
- Extend Your Social Reach: Use as many social networks as possible to advertise your blog. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr and even YouTube are all possibilities. The Internet is vast and only social networking will help you reach all four corners of it.
- Email Marketing: Start an email list so that you can blast out notifications of your blogs with every post you publish online.
- Friends, Family & Associates: Ask those within your immediate network to leave the first comments to start things off and get the party started.
The Smell of Blood
Here’s how to add a drop or two of blood to the water, which they say sharks can detect from up to a mile away.
- Don’t Be Afraid of Controversy: Don’t always try to agree with everyone, as that makes for a very boring blog. Instead, look forward to opportunities that have you going against public opinion. You may appreciate the outcomes.
- Reply to the Best Comments: Blog commenters like to know that their comments are making a difference. Respond to the best comments you receive and let your readers know that you value their viewpoints.
- Ask Questions in Your Replies: While you’re responding to comments, ask questions and encourage more readers to relay their thoughts on the subject at hand.
- Make Posts About the Best Comments: Reward your best commenters by crafting entire blog posts based on their views. This will encourage more commenters to participate as they all vie to be the next one to act as inspiration for a future release.
- Polls & Contests: Most everyone on this planet has two things in common: they love to give their opinions and they love to win free stuff. Use human nature to your advantage by using two of the best comment enticers – polls and contests – whenever possible.
- Show & Tell: John Chow, blogger and entrepreneur, says that, “Blogging is about forming relationships.” To attract more comments to your blog and to start a feeding frenzy, really get to know your readers in the comments section. Share your stories and encourage your readers to do the same. The more can you make your blog seem like a one-on-one conversation between you and your readers, the more loyal your readers will become and the more comments they will leave behind.
Are You Prepared for a Blog Comment Feeding Frenzy?
You could put all the above tips into practice and your blog still might fizzle out if you’re not keeping on top of all the quality comments that come in. On the other hand, if you do all of the above, if you optimize your blog, cast a strong line, add some chum to the water and a little drop of blood here and there; you are sure to experience a blog comment feeding frenzy the likes you’ve never seen. When that happens, to paraphrase the words of police chief Martin Brody in the movie Jaws, “You’re gonna need a bigger blog.”