When your posts aren’t getting any comments, you changed your way of writing to connect with your readers.
You even learned to laser-focus your content to be able to talk to your audience more effectively.
You asked for reader engagement. You got it.
Now feedbacks are pouring in. Some are good while others are bad. This is exactly what you wanted.
But how are you going to deal with it, the bad ones specifically? Do you listen or do you just “read blindly?”
On Good Commentaries
Should you listen? Most definitely.
Take all the compliments in. You deserve it.
When people praise your work or tell you that your article has helped them understand things better, it uplifts your self-esteem. It’s a feeling that you have done something right.
But don’t let that swell your head up with pride. Just let the good feelings in and thank your commentators sincerely.
Sometimes, if you leave “spaces” on your topic for people to fill-in, they do fill-out those spaces with their thoughts using comments. You should always reciprocate their invaluable contribution with gratitude.
Building relationships makes you a good blogger.
On Bad Commentaries
Have you encountered any bad comments before?
If it’s your first time to receive one then you can get affected easily. Your first natural reaction might be to jump in and fight back.
But really, you should read between the lines and listen to what people say negatively.
Remember, eyeballs are on you and not on the commentator. Your image depends on it.
Negative comments are way more “exciting” and handling it appropriately makes you a better blogger.
Although you might only receive a few, it is important that you know the basics on how to handle it.
1. Keep it cool
If you’re heating up, do not engage right away. Pause for a while. You can make yourself a cup of tea or coffee. Take a short walk and deep breaths while contemplating about the issue.
Do not fight back and stoop to a low level. As my previous boss used to say, “never answer any emails when you are upset.” It’s bad enough that you have a negative comment, it gets worse when you come to regret something that you already said.
2. Deal with the issue not the person
Sometimes a person can write the most horrible words in the comment section but in real life their character reflects differently. So if you are able to come across an obnoxious commentator you should never go after the person. Instead focus on the issue at hand.
If you get carried away things can turn ugly and that’s not good for you. Be rational and don’t get too personal.
3. Choose your words wisely
Blog commenting gives people anonymity. When they feel that your standpoint slighted their beliefs they can type in slurs that easily. To them, it is totally harmless to say insults online.
But they wouldn’t do that in real life. In fact, if you get a chance to meet them personally, you’ll be amazed on how totally different they are.
So this goes without saying that, more probable than not, they don’t mean exactly what they are saying.
Just remember, do not stoop down to their level. Don’t respond with the same negativity.
After reading this, you should know better.
4. Set your expectations straight
Not everyone is going to agree with you. That’s a hard fact. Deal with it and get over it.
Expect that 10% of your readers will not like whatever it is you are trying to publish or say. No matter how hard you try there will always be critics.
If you are lucky, you can encounter smart people who will fight through fire and water even if what they are saying is wrong. Engage with them in the same manner and you are like splashing oil over fire.
Comments are integral part of a blog. Without it, a blog is similar to a ghost town. Good or bad we want those comments in.
Personally, I do not concur with comment censorship unless it involves profanity.
If things are getting out of hand, it’s best to back off rather than make matters worse. It’s not worth your time and effort to be a spitfire over non-sense rants. After all if you leave it, it will be over before it even begun.
Over to You
I’ll be happy to hear any “exciting” experience that you had on blog commenting. Good or bad, let’s hear it in the comments.
Image Credit: Michal Marcol