Here is something many bloggers don’t think about but is imperative to establish power engagement with your readers. You have to remember when replying to messages and comment’s is critical. First, you have many people with different experience which means they don’t have the type of experience you have in the industry. They have come to your blog to learn something important and might need clarity afterward. In most cases, they will publish questions within the comment box while keep checking back for a reply. If you answer it will build loyalty, but if you don’t they will go searching somewhere else. Secondly, NOT replying to comments can have an impact on your credibility because people can openly share their experience. For example, if you do a quick search on Google you’ll find more than a handful of people stating how specific bloggers don’t follow up on their content. These bloggers don’t reply or engage with readers after going live with their content. Both of these factors will destroy your user base and stagnant growth going forward.
In Part 4 of my series, we’ll discuss some important ways you can increase user engagement effectively through commenting and replying to messages. Let’s get started.
Email Form on Blog
No matter what website you visit, you’ll notice they have a â€œContact Usâ€ page with information outlining how to get a hold of them. Some will leave phone numbers, social media information and have a contact form. It’s so easy these days to have a contact form installed on your blog because all it takes is a simple plug-in. I am currently using Contact Form 7 which is a simple install in the backend of WordPress. However, this is only one part of the equation because when people use the form to contact you, it’s important to make a conscious effort to reply back. Here are a few ways to increase the likelihood of this happening:
- Set up form to forward messages to your regular email addresses. This will ensure you get the message.
- Make sure your form or IP address isn’t blacklisted because this will force messages to go into SPAM folder.
- Provide a drop-down box so people can select appropriate subject to filter messages correctly. This works if you have a large team who is in charge of different departments.
Here are a few awesome plugins to incorporate:
- Contact Form 7
- Jetpack Contact Form
- Slick Contact Form
Test each one and find one that you find easy to customize
Replying to Comments
One of the MOST popular ways to engage with your users is by following comments and replying to them. Comment boxes have been part of WordPress communication since the beginning and the value cannot be underestimated. These comments are very targeted because each one reflects the content above so your answers will be targeted. Next, comments boxes are installed with the theme so in most cases no coding is required. However, you need to make use of them or you’re losing a valuable source of engagement. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
First, people will leave comments and you have to ensure you answer them to increase loyalty. Secondly, these comments can be used for additional content idea’s which in turn will add value through content. However, answering comments is an excellent way to start a debate and get feedback from different users which you can then add to your content. Third, comments are a great way for others to engage with each other so you start to establish a community and loyalty.
Many people also send messages through social media and this is a great way to build loyalty while increasing engagement. I personally don’t use this method, but many bloggers do because they find it to be a better way to get a hold of them. Social media has become a huge part of every one’s life with people spending hours a day on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. This means you have a higher chance to network with bloggers through these platforms. If you do get a comment or question after â€œsharing â€œ content be sure to get a reply posted as this is NOT only shown on your profile, but others. This will increase traffic and brand awareness since comments will be posted on all profiles relevant to the comment.