Does it look empty and lonely with too few comments?
Comments are absolutely necessary in order to get some social juice to your blog.
If your blog looks like a Graveyard… and you want to get more comments and social buzz, then here are some things you can do.
There are many types of groups where bloggers come together to help each other get social proof and a steady flow of comments to their articles.
Here’s a short list of these groups:
- Blogging Communities
- Blogging Alliances
- Facebook Groups
- Google+ Communities
All of the above will have certain rules to follow. If you cannot commit yourself to the time involved, then that group is not for you. But, if you are looking to get more comments to your blog, you may want to think twice and find the time to join.
Good groups usually have the rule of reciprocity. The rules are usually posted above the group so you can get a good idea of how much time you have to invest.
Reciprocity rules are the guidelines for sharing and commenting. Some Facebook groups, for instance require that you visit two blog posts written by other members of the group, comment on each of them, then like and share those posts on your social sites. After fulfilling that requirement, you are able to post a link to your latest article on the group site, so others can reciprocate likewise.
Some groups work on a point system.
There is a Blogging Alliance I belong to that has a wonderful rotation system that minimizes your visits to the same people over and over again. They rotate groups, so you can go to blogs that are different each week.
The point system goes something like this: The more people you visit, the more points you get. Yes, you can extend yourself outside of your group and visit just about everyone if you like, giving you more points. Then you get “rewarded” by being a top visitor. This means the entire group has to visit your blog.
Nifty isn’t it!
When joining a new blogging group or community, the first thing you want to do is check it out.
Say, for instance, you see a great group on Facebook.
Look and see if people are active there, or if they are just dropping their links and flying out. “Link dropping” benefits nobody. It’s all about reciprocating at the same time that you are sharing your link with others in the group. Everyone else agrees to do the same for you.
Groups rooted in good reciprocation rules and efforts will be strong. That’s where the good bloggers are.
I have to say it again.
It’s all about reciprocity!
When you find a group where everyone is visiting every blog posted for that week, and syndicating them… you know you are in the right place.
It is a commitment you choose to make, but for me, it is a great one!
As one man wisely said: Eighty percent of success is showing up (-Woody Allen)!
Now let me not forget yet another place you can work with other bloggers… Mastermind Groups.
In Mastermind Groups, people get together for a common purpose. For bloggers, this would mean, sharing ideas they find are working for getting more comments, better comments and a higher level of social engagement.
Masterminding is great to improve and test your own techniques and strategies.
Again…follow the rules.
If the Mastermind group is meeting once a week, ask yourself if you can really do this. You don’t want to join just to be a drop-out. It will get you nowhere, and you’ll start to give yourself a reputation as being unreliable.
Masterminds groups can be really good places to gain essential skills, practices and strategies that can take your blogging from average to expert. People in these groups often get together to critique one another’s posts, design and traffic strategies.
You will receive lots of encouragement and insider methods in mastermind groups.
The best part is, you will get closer to people in the group. That means you will start building alliances and friendships with people who might become future guest bloggers on your site, or might joint venture a business or product you are promoting.
There’s no telling where a mastermind group might lead you, but if you’re a serious member who strives to help others… you will build solid and long term relationships here that can pay off big over time.
To get the most out of a mastermind group, get over any fears you might have about speaking up and asking for help, or even giving help to others.
You may not know anything about a particular topic on the agenda at any given time. That’s okay as long as you make it your business to learn. So ask a question, or 2 or 3!
You’ll find that your mastermind friends just love to answer questions. Don’t ever feel like you are asking a silly one. Nothing is silly so get over it now.
Get up the nerve to ask a question and you will be surprised how many people are willing to hep you.
And don’t forget, people in your mastermind group will get to know you and go to your blog. If they find you interesting or you make a good connection with them, they’ll start to comment and share your posts to all their friends in their own social circles and sites.
Now there is another way to get your blog out of the Graveyard.
That’s by using strategies that you can implement independent of joining groups, communities and masterminds.
This is not for everyone, though. Most bloggers that I’ve worked with, especially newbies, do best in groups. It gives them structure and sort of a forced routine to work with.
If, however, you are truly and independent worker who can set up systems for blogging, syndicating and social sharing on your own… and stick to it… then, here’s my advice.
Find other bloggers in your niche and treat them as if they were in your blogging community, even though they’re not.
In other words, visit them on a regular basis, leave good comments, share their posts on your social sites, and expect that they’ll reciprocate eventually.
There’s actually a rather detailed strategy I teach in my “Blogging Magic” course that goes over this in quite a bit of detail. I discuss things like where to find these bloggers, who to syndicate and who not to, how many of these bloggers you’ll need to put on your syndication list, for how long and how to build serious relationships with them.
Again, I don’t recommend this for everyone.
I advise most bloggers to join formal groups that can quickly help them build up their blogs into social buzz sites, filled with the comments and social shares that Google loves almost as much as your target audience does.
What methods do you use to build social engagement on your blog? How’s that working for you?
I’d love to hear your comments below.