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December 14, 2008

"Tip of the Week" - Use Blog Commenting Wisely

What are you hoping to achieve when you comment on a blog? 

  • Is it to continue a conversation with an author because they have engaged you and inspired you to answer? 
  • Is it because the blog has high traffic and you hope to get a little of that traffic directed to your site (providing you give a URL when prompted)? 
  • Are you simply doing so to get noticed by the blog author regardless their traffic?
  • Or is it a combination of all of the above in varying degrees depending upon the blog?

I would venture to say most commenters are moved by all three in varying degrees.  I know I am. So I'd like to make a few recommendations:

1.  Only comment when you have something of genuine value to add to the conversation.
2.  If you have a blog, don't just link back to your main page.  Link back to either your About page which lets the author and her readers know who you are or link to a particular post you are quite proud of and/or got high readership and comments.
3. In addition, depending upon the sophistication of the blog, quite often the author will have enabled a widget which will also grab your most recent blog post.
4. Go to Gravatar.com if you haven't already and sign up for a universal gravatar.  This way, if the blog (or any site for that matter) is gravatar enabled, every time you post a comment your picture automatically comes up when you use the associated e-mail address.   The picture which you use will hopefully be one you use elsewhere and this creates a subtle, 'I know her' effect.

For example, depending upon the blog author's site, I will either sign in with a relevant post from this blog or from Solo Practice University, but it will be one that makes sense for that readership.

But most importantly, make comments that are meaningful and add value.  This is what reflects most upon you and is the single most important factor contributing to your online reputation.  The rest is just an added bonus.

(And in case you didn't see, check out our recent faculty announcements at Solo Practice University.

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Great advice! especially about having something of value to say!
-Arnold Zeman

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