Does your blog look like a ghost town?
You have put so much effort into writing great content and it deserves more engagement.
How can you encourage your readers to engage with you?
This can take the form of blog comments, mentions on social networks, mentions on other blogs, or something else.
You can do it, and in this post, I'll show you how.
Let's dive in …
# 1 – Understand your audience and how you can help them
Your audience is the foundation of your blog, they are the reason it exists.
So it makes sense that you need to understand exactly who they are, what they need help for, and exactly how your blog can help them.
Basically it is important to be able to answer this question:
My blog helps ____ who ________.
An example of a B2B blog could be:
My blog helps small businesses do that want to get more customers.
Once you've answered that question, you're ready to create personas for your target audience.
A persona is just a profile of your ideal reader where you answer other questions about demographic information, goals, challenges, and more.
Note: Overall, they can appeal to a broad audience, but it pays to create content for different sub-groups within that audience. For example, if you run a marketing blog, you might want to create specific content to target freelance marketers, agency marketers, and in-house marketers separately.
What if you don't have enough information about your target audience?
There are a few ways that you can get great information to help you out.
Analytics tools like Google Analytics and Clicky are a good starting point for quantitative data. However, you will get the best insights from qualitative sources like polls and polls.
Typeform.com is a great solution for this. So you can create surveys for free that you can send to your email subscribers and / or social media followers.
Another great option is to find a forum or online community that your target audience is in. You can search posts to find exactly who needs help. And there's a good chance you'll get a number of great content ideas too.
Does your audience know how you can help them?
When someone visits your blog and reads your info page, or starts here, they need to be able to easily identify how you can help them.
Here is a great example from Stefan Pylarinos:
Anyone who reads this page will immediately know how Stefan's blog can help them.
# 2 – Create a blog that your readers will want to return to
User experience is everything and if you want people to come back to your blog, making that experience better is extremely important.
Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Deliver a clear message about why your blog exists and how it can help people. Consider removing badges / widgets that aren't helping you or your readers. Remove any ads that aren't working (this depends on how you are monetizing your blog). Simplify your navigation and move less important links to your footer. Fix broken links but avoid using a WordPress plugin. An external tool like SEO PowerSuite's Website Auditor is best. Update old content to maximize your traffic. Improve page load times on your blog using an optimization platform like NitroPack or one of these WordPress optimization plugins.
# 3 – Post content that is so good that people want to tell the world about it
You already publish great content, but how can you keep things better? How can you create content that is so good that people can't help but tell the word about it?
This means spending more time creating blog posts, but the benefits are fantastic.
And It is these types of "pillar" posts that form the basis of many blogs.
Aside from getting more engagement, they also generate more traffic and deserved links so you have time to promote them effectively.
There are many ways you can approach these pillar posts:
Cover a topic in more detail than other posts on the web. Use clear images. Create a unique design / layout for the post. Add a table of contents for better navigation. Add a level of interactivity, e.g. B. Filter options for list items
# 4 – Write the right headlines
Headings can affect or affect the success of your content. So it is not surprising that the web is full of tips that can help you here.
But before you even consider using any of the advice you can find online, It's important to remember that your headline is a promise and your content must deliver.
If your content doesn't deliver the promise your headline makes, you might get a lot of traffic, but the chances are you've got the wrong traffic. And it will annoy people – never make a good first impression!
If you need help with headings, be sure to check out our guide to writing better headlines for blog posts or our article on headline writing tools.
# 5 – Mention other bloggers in your content
I've talked a lot about including other bloggers in your content and it works.
The results can include more traffic, engagement, and the foundation of a relationship with other bloggers – those relationships will pay off in the future.
If you want to use this tip, there are a few pointers to mention:
Don't Mention Other Bloggers – If mentioning someone isn't helping your audience, don't mention them. If your mention confirms your point or sets a good example, go for it! Let bloggers know when you mention them. The important thing here is that you don't force people to leave a comment or share your comment. Just give them a head up and let them know why you mentioned them.
# 6 – Write on current topics and be the first to jump on trends
Keeping an eye out for trends and being the first to write about them is A great way to grow your audience while increasing engagement.
Reading larger publications in your industry can be a great way to spot these trends. You can then post a post in response.
Ann Smarty wrote a great guide on how to monitor and write content worth reading that is worth reading.
# 7 – Publish content as often as your audience can consume
If you want to drive engagement and get more comments from your readers, Post frequency is an important factor.
If you post too often, some of your readers will be unable to keep up, so the average number of comments you get may drop.
Again, the length of the content comes into effect because if you post longer content it will take longer to read.
It is important to find a balance between content length and content frequency. And it will likely vary from niche to niche, so it's worth experimenting with to find the perfect balance – there isn't a perfect answer here.
# 8 – Post different types of content
There's a lot more to publish than blog-only posts.
Publishing different types of content can expand the reach of your blog and tap an audience that you would not have previously had access to. For example, some people prefer podcasts to written content.
I've had great success in the past with group interviews that are time-consuming to put together, but the fact that many other people are involved in the content creation process is a great catalyst for engagement.
My group interview about setting up an online presence had over 5,000 visitors in a few days and received 2,100 social shares. There have been lots of comments and some great mentions on other websites.
The post was converted into an infographic and posted on TweakYourBiz.com, where it received an additional 2,000 shares and over 32,000 visits.
If you vary the content you publish, you can get some great results. However, if you convert this content to other types, you can take engagement and visibility to new levels.
# 9 – Offer something helpful to your readers for free
With many blogs, around 75% of visitors will never return.
What can we do against it?
The most effective solution is to Offer a free download to join your email list.
This allows you to send updates of your new content to people who may not have signed up elsewhere.
The free download you offer can be an eBook, template, checklist, discount code, or something else. Exactly what you choose depends entirely on your blog, offering, and niche.
For more information on how to build an email list, check out my ultimate guide.
# 10 – ask questions
Sometimes asking a question is enough to fuel engagement.
You can ask questions in the emails you send to your subscribers, or you can ask questions at the bottom of blog posts.
Where and when you ask questions depends entirely on what your goal is with your content.
For example, in some posts you might not want to ask a question and encourage your readers to act on specific advice instead.
# 11 – Reply to comments
More and more bloggers are removing comments. I removed them, but that doesn't mean you should remove them.
Comments are especially useful for new bloggers, but they become more difficult to manage as your blog grows.
Regardless of whether you have comments enabled, you can encourage more engagement by replying to them.
It can help you Get to know your readers better and build a more meaningful connection with them. You will likely get helpful feedback too.
How manageable this is depends on the number of comments you receive. Sure, you may not be able to answer all of them, but it's worth answering as many as you can.
# 12 – Comment on other blogs in your niche
A big part of getting involved is networking and building relationships with other bloggers.
And one of the best ways to do it is to Leave helpful comments on other blogs in your nicheespecially those where the author responds to comments.
# 13 – Build a presence in forums and communities where your audience is
If you want to develop an online presence, you have to be there, especially in the communities, forums and social networks your target audience is in.
This can include:
Niche ForumsFacebook GroupsLinkedIn GroupsSub Reddits
The key here is to keep focusing on building relationships and helping others rather than deleting links to your content.
The more helpful you are, the more goodwill you will create and the more influence you will have.
# 14 – Contribute to other blogs with an engaged audience
To get more engagement, you need to grow your audience.
One of the best ways to do this is by contributing to other blogs in your niche, especially blogs with extremely engaged audiences.
When you start out, you may want to contribute to smaller blogs and work your way up to the larger blogs.
All it takes is a quick Google search to get started – there are plenty of lists of the top blogs in various niches for you to use, and there are communities / social networks you can find too.
You're unlikely to get a deluge of traffic at the start of the guest post, but that should never stop you because The traffic you get is targeted and is more likely to get in touch with you.
Some people may read some of your guest posts before taking the next step of visiting your blog to learn more about you. The more visibility you have, the better.
For each guest post that you post, you create a different way for people to get to and follow your blog.
How you approach other bloggers is important
Some bloggers get a lot of guest posts.
Most of them are deleted immediately because they are so poorly written. And most of them are just templates with no personalization.
This gives you the opportunity to make your pitches stand out by writing personalized emails that are not based on generic templates. I'm talking REAL emails.
Where should you start
In my effective blogger outreach post, I outlined a few key steps. Well worth reading, but here are the cliff notes:
Over to you
We've discussed a number of tips that you can quickly implement.
Pick one from the list, try it out, and see how things go. You may not see an increase in engagement right away, but like blogging in general, it is all about developing a long-term strategy.