You finally hit pay dirt with a blog post that people want to talk about. It’s being shared, liked and tweeted but now you’ve got a comment section packed with honest questions, plenty of spam and “troll” contributions. Do you know how to take charge of your blog’s comment section? You can start by checking these four things off your list.
Set a friendly tone
You don’t want your commenting procedure to be so complicated that no one wants to ask a question or make a comment. However, controlling spam is a real need if your posts begin to see a lot of play.
Require participants to leave their name and email address. Ask your administrator to regularly block spam emails. You won’t be able to banish spammers completely, but it will cut down on some unwanted comments.
Do it daily
If you want to take control of your comment section, you’ll have to do so regularly. Make cruising through your blog posts a habit and take note of any questions you see. If you find a comment that looks a bit iffy or unclear, just say something like, “Thanks for posting.”
Lead the conversation
Allowing people to randomly comment on your posts is okay, but if you want to take charge of your blog, end the post with a specific question. By leading the conversation, you’ll keep the posters on topic. For example, after your brilliant piece on Google Panda’s next roll out, pose a question like, “How are you preparing for the search engine’s upcoming algorithm changes?“
Respond to each comment
Your followers want to hear from you! Reply to all reasonable comments and answer questions. Chances are you’ll get a few followers who don’t agree with you–some more vocally than others. You don’t have to belabor a point or argue but leave some kind of comment like, “Thank you for sharing“, or “That’s interesting“. Feel free to ask questions about how they came to their conclusion. Be open to other opinions.
Consider incorporating Google + comments
One thing that helped me increase my posts’ discussions was incorporating Google+ comments. I replaced the default WordPress comments with Google+ comments (as you can see below). I found this to be a great move, because now people get to share their thoughts directly from their Google+ streams. However, there is a downside to this approach. Many people don’t have Google+ accounts, or simply don’t want to use their social media profiles for commenting.
An alternative would be to incorporate a plugin which supports both social media and WordPress commenting .
Which ever approach you take, make sure your posts provoke discussions, and that you participate in those discussion. Getting a handle on your blog’s social side isn’t difficult, but it does require consistent attention.
As always, please share your thoughts with the community — after all, this is a ‘commenting post‘ .