7 Ways to Get Engagement
Consistent blog writing is one way to build SEO juice. Getting comments on your blog tell search engines that you’re creating relevant content. Hopefully your website is building visitor traffic. Even so, you may not be getting the engagement you want or need.
According to Neilson Norman Group, a user experience research firm, 90% of users are lurkers, 9% contribute intermittently while the remaining 1% generate most of the online commentary. Assuming that content is properly optimized, the odds are still stacked against us. Here are seven things to incorporate into your blog writing efforts to encourage more comments and engagement:
1. Check Web Analytics for Telltale Behaviors
Dig into your Analytics to see what’s getting visitors to your site. Figure out what keywords are driving the most traffic. Pay particular attention to how long visitors stay on your posts. This will give you an idea of how engaged your audience is with your content. If they stay on your blog posts for 10 seconds or less, there may be a mismatch between the meta description promise and the content actually presented. Blog writing is not just about the post itself, but also the “mini ad” that accompanies it. Be sure that your meta data is carefully crafted.
2. Ask a Question
I can hear you now: “Duh!” But you’d be surprised on how many blog posts are out there that don’t conclude with a question. Your goal is to get that elusive 9% to leave a comment. Maybe they just need a little encouragement. People naturally want to share their opinions, and a well-phrased question may be all that they need. Great blog writing should answer a question (like a Google search query) but also lead to deeper related content on your site.
3. Thought Provoking or Controversial Content
Blog writing shouldn’t be dull and cookie-cutter. Content marketing is the fuel that feeds SEO rankings. Followers follow leaders. Are you showing thought leadership in your content? If not, maybe it’s time to take a chance. We’re not encouraging you to be disrespectful or inappropriate. All we’re saying is that interesting content gets more commentary.
4. Reply Etiquette
If someone posts a comment, be sure to practice good reply etiquette. Besides responding in a timely manner, show that you are engaged. Scripted answers are simply not interesting. Just as you put thought into your blog writing, craft answers that are worthy of reading by other visitors. This can be the impetus for additional comments.
5. Make It Easy To Comment
Recently one blog readers left a comment/question: what captcha plugin would we recommend on WordPress. We absolutely do not recommend any plugins or forms that make it difficult for a human to respond to a post. Yes, you will get spam comments. Yes, you will have to slog through crap to find some golden nuggets. That’s all part of the blog writing process. If you don’t make it super easy to comment, then don’t expect your blog to have much engagement.
6. Pose Questions on Social Media Channels
People are used to posting comments on social media channels. Support your blog writing by posting questions on social media channels. Ask for feedback. You may be surprised by who responds and what they think.
7. Blog Writing Inspiration from Actual Comments
There’s a goldmine waiting for you: combine behavior insights from Google Analytics with comment content. Be open to new sources for blog writing inspiration. You may get an off-the-wall comment that inspires you. If someone has commented on one blog, then add posts around it. Add links to other related posts where you talk about a subject in more detail.
OK, these are our top 7. What would you add to this list? Have a secret weapon that’s a sure-fire way to get comments on your blog posts?
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