September 8, 2012

Pajama Musings - Theirs been a few thing on my mind lately

Copyright by Shoebox

Now I cannot claim not receiving any comments on my blog for weeks on end, but to be perfectly honest I wouldn't mind getting more than I currently do. And just because your blog is comment friendly doesn't mean people will comment. Why? My pet theory is that blog readers are a notoriously lazy breed. Don't scoff at this statement ... I ain't seeing you typing a comment yet, do I?

*ohhh ... touched a nerve ... I can almost hear those fingers hit the keyboard and type a nice little comment*

Long story short, I still remember in the early days how I was pretty clueless about those little things that will encourage others to leave a comment. I might not be the high priestess of comments, but let me assure you, implementing some (or all) of the following suggestions is definitely a good start if you want to boost the number of comments others leave on your blog.

Make it simple for people to leave a comment. I hate nothing more than Captcha. And yes, in the beginning I used it too. It's obviously not such a small step from being annoyed by it on other blogs and realizing that you don't treat your own readers any better. Trust me, your fear of getting totally spammed is completely unfounded. I don't even remember the last time I received spam through the comments. And if you do insist on some kind of safety feature then why not implement a fun one such as Sweet Captcha which does the trick without being utterly annoying.

Invite your readers to comment. Your blog post might be utterly brilliant, but sometimes people just don't quite know what to say aka comment. Encourage them with one or two questions at the end of the post. This can be as specific as you want to - ask about your reader's take on things or if there is anything they might want to add. Personally I found this to be extremely helpful.

Interact with those who comment. Before Blogger made it possible to reply directly on someone's comment this was a bit of a chore, but today there is no excuse for not reacting on what someone else has got to say. Admittedly I am not always the fastest in doing this, but I do reply to most comments ... except for those "Great post!" ones, but this is excusable, I think.

Give incentives. Now that is something I personally don't, but quite a few bloggers do. Think along the lines of a lil' reward aka giveaway for one randomly drawn commenter each month. This is obviously nothing you must do to get folks to leave comments, though if you want to motivate your blog readers that way it's certainly not a bad idea.

Lastly, heed one more piece of advice - do onto them as you want others to do unto you. It's not just about your own blog! So go out there and visit  your fav blogs regularly, leave a comment or two and you'll see that many will visit your blog as well and leave a comment. Of course I should really take some of my own medicine in this case, ahem!

Anybody else familiar with lazy blog readers? Are you one of them? If you plan to just move along and not even leave a wee one liner for yours truly, then yes, it's you I'm talking about.

And how about my fellow bloggers? Anything you would like to add to my tips above? Please share!

Ya all know what I expect you to do now, right?

Right!?

*distant sound of crickets*

22 comments:

  1. Well, I was just about to correct you on the title :))) Anyway, I do comment when I feel like saying something, I don't keep track of who and how much commented on my blog, although it is nice to see that people pay attention to what you're expressing on the blog... Also, I know that some people apply the rule that "if I don't leave a comment, others won't leave one" but I don't really care about this fact...

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    1. Not to say I am keeping track, but sometimes I do wonder why so many people read a blog post and only one person is actually commenting. I'm not leaving comments so others will visit me either, but I know that many, especially newbies, will do that.

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  2. I am one of the lazy ones! I am bad at commenting, and, frankly, I am not after cooments for the sake of it. If someone only comments because I commented on their blog (or would that be they're blog?) they might as well not do it. I comment when I have to say something, and that is that, :).

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    1. Good to hear I'm not the only sloth when it comes to leaving comments. While I might not leave all that many comments I am trying to better myself, though admittedly it's also a question of finding the time for writing meaningful comments and not just a standard one-liner.

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  3. I agree wholeheartedly, especially about the CAPTCHA (I can barely make out most of them and I have really good vision, must be a cognitive thing). I also agree about replying and interacting. But let's face it, we bloggers are at least a little bit narcissistic, why else would we be putting our views out there. The best thing to do is to read and comment and hope people come to your corner of the Internet and do the same. (That being said, book bloggers are by far a friendly and interactive bunch!)

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    1. Whoever created Captcha must be a sadist by nature *grumbles* and I have no clue why some bloggers still stick to it.
      Anyway, I agree, our little blogger ego's love to see page views rise and comments appear no matter whether we admit to it or not.

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  4. Ok, you caught me - I am a very lazy blog reader. I follow quite a few blogs but trying to think of something relevant to say on most posts makes my brain freeze...I probably write a lot off 'great posts' comments just beacuse I think of anything stronger to add! The questions at the end of the post definitely helps me focus on what I can add to the discussion!
    I must try to be better! :-)

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    1. If it's any comfort, I must try to be better with commenting myself! ;-)

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  5. Oh Sweet Captcha is so cute!! I was playing with it for like 5 minutes just then aha :)

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  6. This made me snort laugh tea this morning. Now must go clean keyboard......

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  7. Oh, I love this post! You're right on all counts! The "Theirs" typo got my attention right away and then I just had to read the comic, which made me really laugh because I can just imagine it! Guilty as charged. I don't comment as often as I should, but aim to change that. Thanks for this! Really made me smile. :D

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    1. I knew those typos would lure people in and make them comment ... I wonder if they'll continue commenting if I keep up spelling words wrong, hmmm!

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  8. The Captcha thing has been an irritation for me for awhile. That Sweet Captcha is great though, cute and less of a pain to do. I have learned over time what you mentioned--asking questions and interacting with the people on your blog. It takes awhile to get to that point but it has gotten easier over time. Great advice!

    PS: Love that cartoon! :D

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    1. Captcha can be so frustrating, unless it's one of those easy ones like Sweet Captcha. I wonder if those bloggers are even aware of what they are doing to their readers?

      Yep, that cartoon says it all - I totally cracked up when I first read it!

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  9. it seems that bloggers regard commenting quite differently. while some never respond to comments on their blog (even if they get direct and relevant questions), some always respond and "return the favor". I must admit that I often get discouraged or lazy to keep on regular commenting if certain blogger never visits me back - or in other words: I get encouraged to keep on doing it because they also stop by my blog now and then. however, I'm still commenting here regularly (maybe not as often as before, but still) because you know how to post the right questions and I feel like I have something to say. :)

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    1. In the beginning I rarely responded to comments either, but with Blogger implementing the feature where you can reply directly to each comment, that totally changed. I might not be the fastest to do it, but I will write back to most comments now.
      And uhm ... I haven't really visited your blog have I? Let me think. Maybe once or twice? I feel bad, I really do, especially as you're one of my "regulars" ...

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    2. don't worry about it! I just thought that this may be the reason why some people stop commenting... as it happened to me on some other blogs, especially if they never responded even on their blog.
      yeah, Blogger really sucked before for leaving comments. I changed the commenting system just before they implemented a way to reply.

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  10. I looked at that title thinking, nah, Birgit knows better than that! Doesn't she? :-)

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    1. She does. But hey, look how many people actually comment on this post!!

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  11. Great post, Birgit! I am the same - so many people would look at the post, but only 6-7 friends will comment. I am guilty as charged of the same thing - unless I personally interact with people on regular basis I would not comment, simply because there is just not enough time in the day to comment on everything. I mostly skim posts and read them thoroughly if something grabbed my attention. Lazy yes, but it's self-preservation as well, otherwise I won't be able to do anything else ;)

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    1. With me it's also a mix of not enough time and being lazy. On the bright side, it's nice to know that people will at least read posts even though most of them won't leave a comment.

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  12. Now I knew by being incredibly late in commenting, others would have beaten me to it ;-)

    It makes me a little bit sad when I don't get a single comment on a post, but then if it doesn't appeal to people, there's not much I can do about it.

    I love commenting, but I'm also very very paranoid about leaving lame comments - quality over quantity I guess!

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