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Engage: Make Your Online Home a Place for Conversation

January 24, 2013

Ping-O-Matic is all about getting your latest content out into the world and driving more traffic to your blog. And if you have a blog, chances are you want to be part of a larger community. You don’t just want to create and share your stuff — you want to connect with people who share your interests and passions in a meaningful way.

Publishing a post is just one step in blogging — getting people to engage with you is another. How do you start a conversation?

Here are some tips:

  • End with a prompt. At the end of a post, encourage comments by asking a specific question or two, which is a better way of generating feedback than more general “Leave a comment” or “What do you think?” prompts. Your blog isn’t just a monologue — you want to open up the discussion to others.
  • Reply to comments. Your job doesn’t end when you hit publish. When readers leave comments, keep the conversation going with a thoughtful reply.
  • But don’t reply to every comment. If you receive many comments and reply to each with a generic one-liner (“Thanks!”), your comment thread won’t be interesting. Feel free to reply to first-time visitors to welcome them to your site, but in general, reply only if you have something substantial to add to the existing conversation.
  • Moderate with care. It’s best not to encourage or allow nasty and abusive comments. They intimidate new readers, derail conversations, and distract you from good blogging. It’s your online home — don’t be afraid to give polite warnings to visitors who aren’t appropriate.
  • Post commenting guidelines. If you find yourself doing a lot of policing, one way to be transparent about the type of comments you will and will not permit is to post simple guidelines. This can help you attract the kind of commenters you want, and deter unwanted behavior.
  • Return the visit. Developing friendships with your readers is one of the best parts of blogging. If you have loyal commenters, make sure you visit and engage on their blogs, too. If they like what you post, chances are you’ll be into their stuff as well.
8 Comments
  1. February 22, 2013 4:57 pm

    Nice post. Importance of commenting guidelines is now increasing because of the increase in number of spammers.

  2. February 18, 2013 10:48 am

    @mobileshalom,

    Try with different blog title then you may be able to send to pings.

  3. February 8, 2013 12:12 am

    I have been to Ping-o-Matic 8 times this month. Each time I try to Ping results says I pinged 5 min ago. What is wrong?

  4. February 7, 2013 5:10 pm

    You don’t post often on this blog but what you post is good stuff!

    One question: What do you think accounts for the massive drop-off in pings around late October last year? It seems that pings dropped substantially and show no signs of recovery.

  5. Franzi Feblen permalink
    February 7, 2013 2:34 pm

    Does the WordPress Foundation has a source-code repository somewhere (like on Github) where the code of the Ping-O-Matic site can seen and downloaded? And if not, are there any plans to free the software you’re running for that site?

  6. February 3, 2013 5:24 am

    As you rightly said, getting people engaged to our site is the most difficult part. Your tips are awesome. Nice post. Thanks for sharing.

  7. February 2, 2013 7:17 pm

    Thank you. I am new to blogging. This is the first I have read about pinging.

  8. January 25, 2013 12:31 am

    Nice post. Good ideas as well. I like the part about being your online home.

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