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7 Ways To Make Your Blog Comments Stand Out From The Crowd

Effective commenting is an art and when done correctly, it can raise your profile, establish your credibility, drive more traffic to your site and gain you new readers.

Have you ever sat with a blank greeting card in front of you wondering what to write?  I sometimes think it feels a little like staring at a blank card when it comes to leaving a comment on a blog. You may find yourself faced with that blank comment box wondering how to be original.

So, how can you make your comments stand out?

  1. An obvious place to start, but do make sure you read the post in its entirety and understand the point of it before you wade in with your comment.
  2. Don’t be a “drive-by” commentator.  Find a more interesting way of introducing your comment than “nice post” “totally agree with you”  or “good read”.  Always try to add value to the conversation.
  3. Equally too lengthy a comment runs the risk of not being read by the reader who is skimming quickly through the comments section. If however you do feel moved to write a longer comment to clarify a point, then break it up into chunks of text, bullet-point, bold and italicise it if you can (this isn’t always possible on many sites, but try to make it as readable as possible).
  4. Stuck for something to say? Why not focus on one point in the post which has particularly interested or moved you and respond to that (even if you disagree with the statement).
  5. And speaking of disagreement – it is fine to disagree, just do it in a non-aggressive manner please.
  6. Do you know the name of the blogger? Then use that person’s name in your comment – we all like the personal touch.
  7. Finally, and do I even need to say this?! Don’t make the comment all about you, your product, or your service. An instant turn off for blog owners is blatant self-promotion. So don’t pepper your comment with links to your own site and if you have nothing of value to add to the post? Well save your comments until you do.

Can you think of any other tips to make your comments more visible?

Marie Ennis-O’Connor is a freelance public relations consultant with over 10 years experience in a variety of PR roles. Drawing on her PR expertise, Marie now specialises in advising non-profits on a social media strategy which leverages its potential to build networks, to attract more donors, volunteers, advocates and brand ambassadors. Since 2006, Marie has been secretary of Europa Donna Ireland, the Irish Breast Cancer Campaign, an advocacy group working to improve the treatment and care of women in Ireland with a diagnosis of breast cancer. She is also a grassroots leader with LiveStrong, a movement, which unites, inspires and empowers people affected by cancer on a global level. Marie is author of the successful Journeying Beyond Breast Cancer blog, a finalist in this year’s Irish Blog Awards.

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  • Good one Marie.nI would add to point one, read all the comments. Sometimes what goes on in the thread is even more interesting than the post itself. On the other hand, if we don’t read all the comments we might just be saying something that the guy in comment 3 already said :)nFinally, if you really want to build trust, enter your name when signing up for a comment, don’t use anchor text with phrases that clearly point to the SEO game. Some people might think that you’re not there to join the conversation but just passing by and leaving a breadcrumb for search engines 🙁

  • Marie, I agree with Fred (and yes I have read the post in it’s entirety, as I always do, and read all comments) about adding value, and not just leaving breadcrumbs. We can link to our own blog/website by setting up a system like we have here with Disqus.nnWhat really annoys me sometimes, is when the comments shift from the point of the post, to a completely different conversation, and actual brawls start. nA debate is great when it happens, and sometimes, watching the flow of comments go off in tangents is interesting, but commenters, please leave the EGOs at home!!nnSome sites should simply NOT have a comment function – like YouTube for example – the profanities are simply downright inhumane at times. But I do love a good debate!nnA note on the “drive-by” aspect; I always acknowledge the blogger, by saying great post, or interesting read etc, no harm in being nice ;)nnGreat post btw, totally agree with you 🙂

  • Well you certainly added value here Fred 🙂 Great points, particularly your point about what goes on in the thread rather than the post itself and this leads to another tip for the blogger hard-pressed to come up with new blog ideas – this can lead to a new blog post for them.

  • Elaine, thanks for your comment and yes I agree with you re You Tube. Often I find myself totally distracted watching a video by the comment thread and my enjoyment can be spoiled by the nastiness that goes on there sometimes.

  • Hi Marie, slightly off topic but I listened to an interview with Guy Kawasaki at and he was making the point that authors need to make their posts more readable, numbering, bullet pointing etc. While I’d like to read every word of every post, the truth is I don’t and will comment on occasion where I haven’t. Therefore I think that authors need to be more aware of this when they write, in that many people who comment either won’t or can’t read the entire post?

  • Hi Marie – I wonder if we’re somehow related (Ennis). Wanted to address no. 5. Seems like no matter what you say these days, if you disagree in any sort of manner it’s viewed as a threat and not welcome. Anyone else have that experience?

  • Been staring at this blank comment box and still can’t come up with anything original to say – but nevertheless I do want to add how useful I found this post both and it and the comment thread has inspired me to think more about how I comment in future (though as you can see – I still have a ways to go yet!)

  • Lorna

    Great blog post Marie, there I go – generalising!! But I have read everyone else’s comments and am staring at the blank box trying to think of something original to say!nI guess I’m stating the obvious here but I think it is worth saying that all bloggers love seeing comments and the more the merrier and if it gets a discussion going, all the better. So even if some comments are a bit vague and ‘great post’ ish or ‘thanks for sharing’ ish, it still says someone has taken the time to click that comment box and write something but I agree, comments that really engage with other commentators and the post itself are what shows enthusiasm and your own personality and if it helps generate more traffic to your own site, all the better.nI feel I am wittering on now – am tired but yes, great points made here. Hope everyone has a lovely wekend 🙂

  • Yes Lorna, I too like to see lots of comments on my own blog, but have to say it is those comments which really add value and engage me, which encourages me to follow up and find out more about the person leaving the comment. I may ask them to guest blog for me or end up doing a new post expanding on their comments. It has also been a means of developing community and increased engagement with my readers too. As you can tell I am a great fan of the power of effective commenting!

  • I guess some people are more sensitive to perceived criticism than others – the problem with comments, emails, tweets, etc, is that people can misinterpret the tone of the communication. On another matter…I wonder if perhaps we are related? Do you have Irish connections?

  • That’s an excellent point Niall and it is always good blogging practice to make your text as readable as you can. With so much to read on the internet most readers just skim read anyway, so it is worth bearing this in mind when you write your posts.

  • Thanks Paul – good to see so many of us are in agreement regarding disagreement!

  • Facundo

    Anything to get you out of “working mode” is good. I am doing plenty of things this year, including having joined a table tennis club. Really makes a difference

  • Hi Roisin,nA topical subject always. My experience with clients has been that the first 12 months are always the hardest in terms of time management, separating work tasks from non work tasks, setting boundaries and that all important time away from “work”.nnThe issue becomes more critical when there is a spouse/partner working outside of the home, who just wants to “be at home” during time off. My first few Bloggertone posts addressed these issues, such as andn’s important to highlight these issues, so work at home people can realise they are not alone, and it takes time to settle in. The trick is to take one’s time, as so much is going on, and as you mention – exercise is so important for all our faculties 🙂

  • Anonymous

    Niall,nnThat’s the beauty of this exercise. I often hear how busy small business owners are and I get like that too. However, without an overarching plan, we’re more like hamsters on a wheel. I look forward to seeing how Bloggertone blossoms over the long-term!

  • Hi Elli, nnFor me, it’s about brand building. Why? Because Google is rewarding brands as trusted sites and relegating others. Gotta get that brand out there 🙂

  • Anonymous

    I have to agree! Keeping good bookkeeping records is important so the budget can be based on real numbers. That u20ac6k over a year can catch up with a small business in a hurry! When we talk about running a lean business, we’re really talking about not only having accurate financial information but the strength to face challenges and make tough decisions. nnGlad to hear you’ve found a way to remain sustainable! Keep up the good work!

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment, Ivan! It’s a lot easier to grow when people know you exist. Brand builidng is definitely a tool that requires us to remember SEO and keeping our online content fresh as well as the offline brand building activities.

  • n I’m son love this blog, already bookmarked it! Thanks.n

  • Anonymous

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  • Eric Bryant

    It’s all about having a system in place. It can be a disaster if the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing. Having a CRM in place is a must. Great read Michael!.

  • Welcome to Tweak Your Biz Frank. I work from home half the week and must say that I much prefer it. I have to be focussed as the job has to be done – and mainly only I can do it – and I live alone so I don’t get the distractions that some people may with a family. I think it’s certainly something that many should consider as an option though. I look forward to your next post

  • I have studied the concept, The Third Place, for some time and it is interesting to see how we are able to work in different settings nowadays. I have heard some IT companies (e.g., IBM) that don’t have stationary workspaces for every employee, instead they have to use mobile desks depending who is in and who is on the road.

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