How to Respond to Comments on Your Company Blog

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Breaks comments down into different types and offers my guidance for how to respond to them in order to keep up the momentum of the conversation. Forget trying to control sentiment -- staying interesting and building contextual relationships is what this is all about.

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How to Respond to Comments on Your Company Blog

  1. Photo by CaptainKobold<br />How to Respond to Comments on Your Company Blog<br />Blog Comments: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly<br />By Shannon Paulhttp://VeryOfficialBlog.com<br />
  2. Agenda<br />Types of Reader Comments, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly<br />Responding to Good Comments<br />Responding to Bad Comments<br />Responding to Ugly Comments<br />What’s Next?<br />
  3. Types of Comments <br />
  4. Good Comments<br /><ul><li>Keep up the momentum of the conversation
  5. Stay on-topic
  6. Encourage a new, relevant direction for the conversation
  7. Show an understanding of the material in the original article regardless of opinion
  8. Express something meaningful for readers to consume
  9. Encourage other readers to participate (implicitly)</li></li></ul><li>Bad Comments<br />Sound unintelligent<br />Off topic (non-spam)<br />Thin<br />Bait “ the author sounds stupid”<br />Praise “good post, thanks.”<br />Raise non-compliant issues<br />
  10. Ugly Comments<br />Profane for the sake of being profane<br />Abusive toward the author<br />Abusive toward other commenters on the site<br />Abusive toward a third party<br />“Bernanke is a piece of… I hope he…”<br />Spam comments or linkbait comments<br />Name: Forex Software with link embedded to http://getrichwithforex.com<br />
  11. Responding to Good Comments<br />Rewarding Good Behavior<br />
  12. Why Respond? <br />Encourage engagement<br />Make readers feel “heard”<br />Competitive edge vs. BIG GUYS and established media outlets<br />Keep up the momentum of the conversation<br />Remember herd mentality<br />Establish personal relationships with readers<br />Increase personal relevance, social obligation to check in with you <br />
  13. Just Don’t Get Emotional<br /><ul><li>A “good” comment will not always be one you agree with.
  14. Discourse is good
  15. Don’t be afraid to be wrong
  16. But remember to be respectful
  17. Admit when you were wrong
  18. Don’t be afraid to be right
  19. Again, remember to be respectful
  20. This is always a work in progress
  21. People are dramatic online but they also have short attention spans… look, a kitten!</li></li></ul><li>
  22. Readers = Guests<br />Address Them By Name<br />
  23. The Power of Thank You! <br /><ul><li>Thanks for the comment…
  24. Especially when you disagree 
  25. Remember to think first
  26. Don’t get emotional
  27. Thank you does not mean you agree, but that you appreciate their participation</li></li></ul><li>Good Comments and Discourse<br /><ul><li>Take the high road
  28. Stir the pot
  29. Allow others to come to the correct (your) conclusion on his/her own
  30. Remember momentum, not agreement, is the desired outcome
  31. Give your point of view and ask others to chime in…
  32. “I disagree, but I’m interested to see what others have to say…”</li></li></ul><li>Building Rapport<br />Get to know frequent commenters<br />“You always have such great things to add…”<br />“Sounds like you’ve changed your mind since the last time you stopped by…”<br />Check out their links/profiles<br />Establish inside jokes based on tone/style/content of his/her comments<br />Emoticons may be your friend ;-)<br />
  33. Responding to Bad Comments<br />Guiding the Herd<br />
  34. Author as Facilitator<br />Thin or unintelligent comments do not necessarily warrant a response<br />Off-topic comments can sometimes be regarded as a test of the author<br />Are you paying attention to me?<br />Although sometimes they’re just completely crazy<br />Comments that touch on compliance related issues are an opportunity to discuss business <br />
  35. Be a Leader, Not the Star<br />
  36. Most People are Poor Listeners<br /><ul><li>They Don’t Read… Much
  37. Tangential Comments Are Not Always Bad
  38. Idea Generation for Future Posts
  39. Link to the comment in a future post, OR if the commenter is a blogger/author, link to her blog in a future post
  40. Put the Ball Back in His/Her Court
  41. “I’m not sure I follow your train of thought here… sounds like we’re having two different conversations, maybe you can help me make sense of how these things are related?...”</li></li></ul><li>Transparency Works<br />If answering a comment directly poses a compliance or regulatory breach:<br />Explain why you can’t provide a direct answer<br />Remind them that these laws exist to protect them and other consumers<br />Provide an alternative means of contact for his/her question or concern<br />Offer to connect them directly through an offline mode of communication e.g. email, phone<br />I can’t answer your question is a valid answer <br />
  42. Don’t be a pushover<br />This is still YOUR house<br />
  43. Focus on Your Herd<br />
  44. Remember the 90/9/1% Rule<br />90% of ONN readers will NEVER respond<br />9% will only OCCASIONALLY respond<br />1% will create 99% of the UGC (user generated content)<br />Nurture the 1% but remember you’re both on stage in front of the 99%<br />
  45. Dealing with ugly comments<br />Keeping it Clean<br />
  46. Defensive Measures<br />Spam filter will prevent 99% of all spam comments from ever showing up on the site<br />If you see a comment that looks like it may be spam on the site, email the administrator or tag the comment as spam yourself<br />Reserve the right to delete anyone’s comment if they engage in profanity or abuse<br />
  47. What’s next?<br />Encouraging Comments and Participation<br />
  48. What if Nobody Comments?<br />Comment on Each Other’s Articles<br />Email your friends and ask them their thoughts<br />Make room in your articles for questions – asking others what they think works!<br />
  49. If Two Authors for the Same Site Comment on Each Other’s Work?<br />99% will be entertained. 1% might be tempted to join in the fun<br />
  50. What if EVERYBODY Comments?<br />You don’t have to respond to everyone<br />If there are too many comments to respond, pop in just enough to keep up the momentum and show that you’re listening<br />Respond to those you recognize from past comments or other influencers in our industry <br />
  51. Final takeaways<br />It’s almost over <br />
  52. Remember!<br />Reward good behavior<br />Focus on your herd<br />Be a leader, not a star<br />Transparency works<br />This is still your house!<br />
  53. Thank YOU!<br />I’m here if you have any questions!<br />Shannon Paul<br />Very Official Blog<br />shannonpaul5@gmail.com<br />

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