Bloggers usually love to receive comments. But as a reader, I sometimes don't leave them, even if I love the blogger and content. It occurred to me as I looked through my RSS feed this morning that there's one blog in particular that I almost never comment on. I admire the blogger. I love the content. But I don't comment. Why?
There's one simple reason -- post frequency. The blogger only posts about once each month.
I get why some bloggers do this. The blog might not be a major part of their business or marketing plan, so they don't want to invest too much time. And I've heard a few bloggers say they post infrequently because it lets them get more comments on each individual post before they move on to the next. Yet they're losing some too.
Here's the problem.
We're busy people, and that's probably the case of any group of readers made up of professionals. We only have so much time in a day to check blogs, read the content, and comment. I don't have time to comment on blogs I like every day, but I try to at least once in a while. But if you only post once or twice a month, I'm going to miss some of those posts.
I check the blogs that I know are likely to have good and fresh content up first (Lori Widmer's and Anne Wayman's blogs are usually early stops). If I only have time to look at a few blogs that day, these are the blogs I check. Others get sidelined until I have more time to catch up on them. That's true whether I check my RSS reader or manually visit the sites (my preference actually). There are dozens of blogs in my reader. I might look at five or six on a good day (because I don't let reading blogs interfere too heavily in other work that needs to be done).
If you post infrequently, I know chances are good you won't have new content up on any given day. So I move on to those who frequently give me something interesting to read and comment on. I'll eventually get back to your blog. And I'll read the content. But if it's already a few weeks old and comments have slowed down, it's unlikely I'll comment. At that point it's stale conversation.
In the end, it's not about how many comments you get on individual posts. It's about how frequently people engage in conversations with you and your blog's readers -- and it's okay if that's split up among multiple posts.
This isn't meant to be a call to post more often. I know not all bloggers want to do that, regardless of results. It's just that I've heard the "but this way I get more comments per post" argument so much that I wanted to give a different perspective as a reader. I'd rather be able to choose from a few recent posts and comment on the ones most interesting to me than feel like the only way to connect with you as a blogger is to comment on the one topic you think is worth talking about over a long stretch. It feels kind of like having a friend with a one track mind. Eventually that gets boring and we pay less attention overall.
Just my $.02 for the day.
Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, freelance business writer, and indie author. She began writing for clients in 1999 and started her first blog in 2004.
She owns 3 Beat Media - a publishing and client services company which operates All Indie Writers as well as several other websites and blogs including The Busy Author's Guide and BizAmmo. Jenn comes from a background in online PR and social media consulting, having owned a small PR firm for several years before choosing to pursue a full-time writing and publishing career.
Jenn also writes fiction under multiple pen names in the areas of children's fiction, mysteries, and horror fiction. Jenn is an active member of the Horror Writers Association (HWA) and currently serves as the organization's Assistant Coordinator of Promotions and Social Media.
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