Blogging – The Benefits of Value Commenting
Value commenting is fun!
Blogging, writing and sharing our lives isn’t an easy task for anyone. The reasons any of us decide to sit at a computer and begin the daunting task of learning about blogging varies from person to person. I started blogging initially as a gift to my son. I felt the more I was able to write about different moments in our life the more we would remember. My focus only changed slightly when others started to take notice of my blog. I now keep up two blogs, one focused on my son and our life and the other focused on life, parenting and fatherhood.
As I have learned more and more about developing your own site I discover how little I actually know. As I discussed last week, Blogging – 5 Things No One Said, my life would have been so much easier if there was an easy way to build a website and find followers. I have learned there is no “quick fix” to blogging. The only way to make a blog successful is to pour your heart into it and hope for the best.
What Not To Do
1. People will come. Sit back and doing nothing is the best option.
2. Write, write and more writing. Writing will make people find me.
3. Refuse to change. It’s not working because other people don’t value my work. I am sure it has nothing to do with me.
When I started out blogging I was a “lurker.” I would go to other people’s sites look around, read the blog posts and leave. Looking back now I realize this strategy was not a great idea! Simply stated, how are they supposed to know I was there if I don’t leave a comment? Short answer…they don’t unless they want to go through the extra work to track me down. An important lesson I learned early on in blogging is the need to comment on other people’s sites. I refer to it as value commenting.
1. Learn your audience – If you are going to try to use value commenting on various sites make sure you know who your audience is. I have a parenting blog and I will spend extra time commenting on sites that fit into my niche. I know that other parents are the most likely readers of these sites. Does this mean I will only leave comments on parenting sites? No, I find value for my readers on lots of various sites, however, I will place the most concentration on parenting sites. If I leave a comment that is well thought out and meaningful it is more likely they will come to my site to see what I have to offer.
2. Time - I set aside a few hours on Saturday or Sunday to do nothing but read blogs and to work on value commenting on other people’s posts. I have discovered that leaving comments on one of those two days brings me extra traffic the next two to three days for my blog. You should also try to get into the habit of leaving a few comments everyday on various sites to let others know you are reading their work.
3. Thoughtfulness – Value commenting is all about taking the time to read another persons work. Everyone likes to feel appreciated and the only way they know their work matters is through comments. We can have traffic to our sites but we don’t know what anyone thinks without a comment. I have discovered the more thoughtful and useful a comment is the more likely you will gain a friend and a reader.
4. Read – I can’t emphasize the importance enough of actually reading the post you are commenting about. The difference between value commenting and commenting means you have to read a post from beginning to end. I have seen many comments that are short answers, “I couldn’t agree with you more!” or “Great post! Loved the insight you offered me!“ As an author, it tells me nothing about how you felt or if you actually read my content.
5. Now what – If you start to use value commenting you will find more people reading your blog. Once you have readers on your site you need to make sure you get value comments. The easiest way to receive good comments is to ask them to leave comments based on a set of questions, e.g., “Do you like comments on your site?” or “Do you set aside time each week to make comments?“
If you believe value commenting is only to bring traffic to your site you are mistaken. You will quickly learn that not all commenting systems will link back to your site. You should remember that bringing back traffic is a bonus for making good comments. The most important thing you can gain is the friendship and respect of other bloggers. It is this group of people who can and will help you with your blog when you need it. They will be willing to do guest posts or have you as a guest author. They will answer questions for you when you need help. It is your fellow bloggers that can make or break you. Never forget that value commenting leads to other authors that can help you when you need it.
Blogging doesn’t have to become hard. We can make it as easy or as hard as we want. How do you handle comments? Do you leave ones that are well thought out or short ones? Do you set aside time each week to make comments? Has commenting benefited you in more traffic or better friends? Be sure to tell me in the comments!
My Life In 24 Hours is featuring me as a guest author for the article I wrote Reasons To Love Parenting. Be sure to check it out!
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, life parenting