Blog Tip

4 Tips For Improving The Conversation On Your Blog

Blogging is a one-to-many medium, but smart bloggers know who to turn it into an active group conversation between the readers and themselves. This requires the ability to communicate effectively – and it’s something that us bloggers can train ourselves to do better.

Here are four simple tips to help you improve your communication skills – this will not only help you in blogging but also in your networking efforts and life in general.

1. Simplify Your Message

Quite often what you say gets drowned out in how you say it. This happens because we tend to add extra, unnecessary information to our message.

Forget about impressing people with big words or complex sentences. They can make you look smart for a while but at the end of the day if you’re not getting the results (as a blogger this could be subscriptions, comments, product sales, etc), then all your efforts are meaningless.

Omit needless words. Keep things simple and focus on one thing at a time. Each blog post of yours has a particular purpose (that could be search engine traffic, comments, subscriptions, links, etc). Keep that purpose in mind and write accordingly.

Getting your message across means that you have to make what you’re saying absolutely clear to the other person. Don’t attach your feelings, second thoughts or justifications to your message – just be clear, be clear, be clear.

2. Talk To The Person

As bloggers we tend to have this annoying tendency to ramble on – it’s as if we like hearing ourselves talk (or reading our own words). The trouble with this approach is that when you write like this you have the wrong audience in mind. Who is your audience – your own ego or the guy sitting at home on a Thursday night looking for the banned Alicia Silverstone ad?

It is super-important to get the right picture in your mind about your intended audience BEFORE you start writing. Ask yourself who your audience is, what their needs are, how you can fulfill them and how much time you have to do this (time can be limited by a number of factors – attention span (can’t write too long a post), competition (be first with the news), etc.).

When blogging, remember that you’re talking to your audience and they have specific needs, motivations and preferences. If you don’t respect that, they won’t respect you.

3. Be Credible

People won’t believe you / trust what you say if they doubt your credibility.

There are two ways to convey credibility to your audience: First, show conviction – if you are confident and believe in what you say, it shows through your writing and attracts readers to you.

Second, back up what you say with your actions. If you are preaching a certain SEO technique or are giving weight loss tips, it makes a world of difference if your audience can see that you follow what you preach. For each blogger it will be a different story – celebrity bloggers can’t practice what they’re preaching (primarily because there’s not much preaching going on)- but in many cases you’ll have situations where you can boost your credibility and if you get the chance, make it count.

4. Seek a Response

As you blog, remember that the goal of all your blog posts is action. If you dump a bunch of information on people without leading them to the next step, you’re not doing your job. Every time you blog, give your audience something to feel (the need to improve their blogging skills), something to remember (how to be a better communicator) and something to do (the formula to become a better communicator).

If you’re successful in doing that, your blogging will improve and your audience will become more responsive to what you are asking them to do.

Takeaway

If you want to engage your readers and improve the conversation on your blog, you have to a) be clear, b) refocus your attention towards the audience and c) become credible.

Anyone can ask their readers for action (although it’s surprising how many people forget to do so) – but no one is going to listen to your subtle or obvious suggestions unless they have a reason to do so. And unless your audience understands and can relate to your message, they won’t feel inclined to respond.

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Author: ahmedb

3 thoughts on “4 Tips For Improving The Conversation On Your Blog

  1. Asking questions doesn’t always work, which is why I think you need a critical mass of regular readers first. Once you’ve got those visitors, then I think asking is effective. Otherwise, I suspect that with a small readership you get a situation where people are waiting for someone else to respond first.

    I’ll concede that this is just my own experience but I have come across a healthy number of blogs where questions are regularly asked but there are no comments to be seen. In these situations I often try and get the ball rolling but it doesn’t always pay off with other comments.

    Actually, that reminds me of something. If you don’t get many comments, bloggers should always respond to the ones that they do get. If people leave comments and then don’t get any response or recognition in reply, who can blame them if they don’t bother in the future?

  2. At FWJ, I throw everything out for discussion. If you visit, you’ll see a lively community of writers helping each other and discussing their habits. How did I get so many people to participate? I asked. I always ask their opinions or tell them to discuss it among themselves. I’m amazed at the response I get to some things – anywhere from 20 or 30 comments to hundreds. All I did was ask.

    Sometimes incentive is in order too. Though I really don’t need it, occasionally I have a content. This month it’s for the person with the most comments – he or she’ll win a $50 gift certificate. Even without the contest though, I have an active community because I almost everything I write, I write in order to stimulate discussion..and at the end I always ask a question.

  3. It can be hard to get comments unless you have a critical mass of readers to begin with. Sometimes I think it might be useful if you could round up a few people you can trust and get them to comment and converse around your posts. Hopefully this encourages other readers (and random passers-by) to jump in and add their two bits. Like most things in life, these tips probably aren’t as effective if used in isolation.

    There’s not much worse than seeing a big fat “0 comments” post after post. Not only does it look like the blogging equivalent of tumbleweeds across the empty plain, having no comments can quickly lead to self-doubt. Blogging is hard enough on the confidence as it is without thinking “Wow. There really is no one reading…”.

    EDIT: Oh, and do Performancing posts come with a Stumble button? I couldn’t see one. If not, shouldn’t they?

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