The Secret to Getting Article and Blog Comments

Posted: December 28, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Probably like most writers, I wanted to know the secret to amassing large numbers of comments on my blogs and articles. Because I seldom get comments, every time I get one, I become so excited, I feel like calling everybody in my address book, posting proof of those comments on Facebook and Myspace, and taking out a billboard to announce the fact that at least one reader enjoyed reading my blog.

As you might have guessed, I’m jealous of people who get hundreds of comments every single time they write a blog or article. I can’t help but whine (to myself), “How come I can’t gather a following like that?”

It’s not that I haven’t done my homework, you know? I have followed all of the advice I’ve read about how to get more comments. Some of them recommend, “Comment on other blogs – bloggers will return the favor.” or “Promote other bloggers. They’ll promote you!”

So I’ve commented on other blogs, but that method doesn’t work very well for me, because commenting on other blogs feels like swallowing Tedral (a horrible tasting pill I used to have to take for my asthma when I was a kid). It makes me all nervous and twitchy.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s not that I don’t want to comment, because I really would like to support my fellow writers, and I do comment from time to time – it’s just that I’m anal about the type of comment I leave – not only does it have to be perfectly grammatically correct, but also it has to be pithy and smart, which means I take hours to craft my comment. Ultimately what that means is that I spend more time commenting than I do blogging.

But blog promotion? Definitely something I would enjoy! Besides, promoting other blogs is a great way for me to expand my writing skills AND help others – a win-win.

So, to give myself more writing opportunities and to help other writers, I started a blog with the express purpose of promoting other blogs. I called it Your Blog Connection and I asked people if they wanted to participate. Lots of people did, but when it came time to follow though, not many bloggers contacted me with the information I needed to promote their blogs.  Why? Too busy, I assume.

But back to the subject matter – the secret to getting article and blog comments:

When I wrote Could Psychic Abilities Help Solve Crimes? for Xomba, I never imagined the controversy that would ensue as a result of that article. How did that article turn out to be controversial, you might ask? I discussed a television program that uses psychic KIDS to help solve crimes.

Psychic Kids: Children of the Paranormal finds psychic kids who feel alone and frightened by their psychic gifts. The producers then bring the kids together with other psychic kids, while adults and these psychic kids explore haunted houses and people. The adults discuss with the children how the kids can better channel their psychic abilities.

As with any article or blog, people who read it bring along their own life experiences and they apply those experiences to whatever they are reading. Readers had a lot to say about using children to solve crimes. I hadn’t anticipated that kind of response.

I’m the paranormal feature writer for Xomba and the whole point of the article was to inform people about the possibly that psychic kids (and adults) could help law enforcement by using their gifts. I never expected any comments, let alone the ones I received. That one article gave me some insight into why people might stop long enough to comment. (You can read the article and the comments by clicking Could Psychic Abilities Help Solve Crimes?

How did I receive so many comments on that article? The first part of the secret is to get noticed. That article appeared on the front page of Xomba.

Getting noticed requires writing good copy and, more importantly, attracting the attention of the people who are in charge of putting your blog or article on the front page of their web site. Getting noticed seems impossible, but work at it long enough and somebody will notice the effort you put forth.

Another writer friend of mine, Nancy Tracy, received thousands of page views in ONE DAY, when Associated Content placed her article on the front page. In ONE DAY, she made $700 on just one of her articles.

In her case, she provided readers with information they wanted to know. So, while writing what you know is great advice, writing what others want to know is even more important, and it is the second part of the secret for gathering more comments – the more people who read your content, the more likely at least one out of a hundred of them will comment (according to Darren Rowse of problogger).

So what is the third part of the secret for garnering LOTS of comments? Well, if you bypassed the obvious term above, another secret for getting LOTS of comments is controversy (though Darren Rowse of problogger questions the use of controversy in getting more traffic to your blog).

While writing the article, I didn’t realize the controversial nature of Could Psychic Abilities Help Solve Crimes?, but when the comments came in, a light bulb went off in my head, and I realized the value of controversy in getting comments. I may consider using controversy more often.

HOWEVER (note the caps) as Darren Rowse of problogger states, “…there’s nothing like controversy to get people commenting on your blog. Of course with controversy comes other consequences – one of which is the risk of putting off less vocal members of your readership.”

As I don’t really have much of a readership, the chances of putting anybody off are slim to none. And I would never write controversial comments about anything that would incite hatred anyway. Voicing an opinion is almost expected in a blog, but incendiary comments about race, nationality, religion, creed, age, gender, sexual orientation – NO! My nature won’t allow me to write about controversial issues for the sole purpose of angering people. If I make readers angry, I lose readers. And I want to keep the ones I have. If I feel strongly about a controversial issue, though, I will voice my opinion. Stay tuned.

By the way, if you would like your blog showcased, click any of the links for Your Blog Connection.

If you would like to read helpful advice from the blogging genius man himself, click Darren Rowse‘s name or anywhere you find problogger.

If you want to read Nancy Tracy‘s articles, click her name.

And if you want to read any of my other blogs and articles, I invite you to read the following:

Your Weird Dreams
Your Blog Connection
Help For Single Parents
My Heart Blogs To You
Writer of Blogs
Paranormal Minds
My WordPress Blog
Associated Content Articles
Xomba Articles

Thank you for reading (and for commenting).

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