When you are just starting out it can be depressing to see each post you carefully craft get no comments. It is like your words are going out and not reaching anyone. But what can you do to encourage comments? Participating on other people’s blogs is one way to get people to notice you, especially if your comments really add to the discussion. Just posting “Great Post” or “I agree!” will not get you noticed. You have to have something of substance to say.
Start by finding blogs that are similar to yours and attract the kind of people who would like your blog. Read older posts to get a good idea of what the blog is about and see what kind of exchange there is in the comments. This will help you when you start to comment on the newest posts. You will know where the blogger is coming from and know how to frame your thoughts. I know I have found some interesting blogs by reading comments then clicking through to that person’s blog.
How do people find your blog?
Many blogs have their comments section set up so that your picture will show up, your name will be a link to your blog, and some will even show the title of your latest blog post. If you leave a well written comment that contributes to the discussion, many people will click on your name and take a look at your blog.
WordPress.com and Gravatar.com
In order for your picture and link to your blog show up, you need an account with WordPress.com. It is free and you can get an account even if your blog does not use WordPress. Go to WordPress.com, click on “Get Started.” Don’t fill in that first form. Look down to where you would fill in a blog name, in the explanation to the right, “sign up for just a user name” is in blue, click on that and fill out that form.
Once you have your WordPress.com account, then set a free account with Gravatar.com. Gravatar avatars are used all over the web for blogs and forums. The size is 80 x 80 pixels, but you can upload a larger picture and Gravatar will resize it automatically.
If you know you will be commenting on blogs, it saves time by signing into WordPress.com first. You don’t need to keep the window open, just don’t close out your browser. That way, when you do go to comment, you probably won’t need to sign again to WordPress.com again.
Staying in touch
Going out and reading other blogs is a great way of staying in touch with your subject. You can actually build relationships with other bloggers. If you are starting out and you find other new blogs, you can email the bloggers, introduce yourself and suggest that you both exchange comments. Many experts swear that no one wants to be the first or only commenter on a blog. By seeding comments, you can encourage others to comment. This is a way to get communications started.