Many bloggers become discouraged because they don’t know if anyone is reading their posts. It’s good to concentrate on building up involvement in your blog so it becomes more of a conversation. Here are some ways to do that:
Invite comments at the end of every post and make the invitation individual to address an issue within that specific blog post. For example, for this post, I wouldn’t say something generic like, “Please leave a comment.” Instead, I’ll say, “Do you know good ways to increase the involvement of your readers? Please share your suggestions.”
Provide incentives for comments. I’ve held a commentathon on my pet blog in the past. It was very successful. Essentially, I said at the beginning of the blog post that I’d give 50 cents per comment to a specific charity. The word spread. Not everyone who left a comment was all that interested in my blog—some just wanted to up the ante, but that’s okay. One time, I received 126 comments and I know some just came out of curiosity, but that’s okay too. You never know when someone might remember your blog down the line and refer a friend.
Giving something away for free always draws attention. If you have a book out, have a drawing from the names of people who leave comments and give one away. One way to do this is to number the comments and have random.org impartially draw a number for you. Another version of this is to ask readers to tweet or post on Facebook about your blog. Then choose one of those to receive a free book.
Of course another way to gather participation on your blog is to dress up your post with a video or cartoon, something that will elicit participation.
And, always remember that you’ll have an easier time attracting interaction if you communicate with your readers rather than talking at them.
Do you know good ways to increase involvement of your readers? Please share your suggestions. Thanks.