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Do You Make This Mistake?

“Please post your answer on my blog”. That was the request at the end of a question I read on one of my social sites last week.

I see similar requests on other sites. Things like ‘please visit my blog and leave a comment’.

If there’s one thing that guarantees I won’t visit their blog, let alone leave a comment, it’s a request like that.

Why would I want to visit and leave a comment on a blog that covers a subject I have absolutely zero interest in or knowledge about..!?

And yet people who write blogs on cat feeding, or subjects equally as far removed from the subject of this blog, continue to leave ‘please visit’ requests on my social site profiles.

There’s nothing wrong with linking to a page or article on your site from a social site if it adds to, or provides more detail on, the subject being discussed, or the question that was asked.

In these cases the link is acting as a reference point to provide more information.

But being told (or asked) to put an answer to a question in a different place from which it’s being asked is just a lame attempt at getting visitors.

They’re trying to hijack the conversation – to move it off the social site and on to their blog.

From the blogger’s perspective it doesn’t do much good either. Most people won’t become regular readers of a blog unless it provides a good reason for them to do so.

So the odds are that anyone who went there to answer the question wouldn’t bother to return – unless that good reason was immediately obvious to them.

i.e. the blog needs to be packed with good, well written content that’s relevant to their interests, whatever they may be.

If they’ve got that, then they’d be getting readers naturally, so they wouldn’t be asking people to post their answers there.

So, if you want people to visit your blog here are some ideas:

  1. Decide what your blog is going to be about and stick to your subject
  2. Write articles (or post videos, post images, etc) that provide valuable information that’s relevant to the subject of your blog – i.e. how to’s, reviews, commentary, news, satire – whatever you want, but make it good.
  3. When you use the social sites avoid asking people to visit your blog.

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Brad Harmon 8 November, 2009, 5:31 pm

    Martin,

    I’m digging through some of your older stuff. I had an issue today where someone left a lengthy & critical comment on my blog. I replied back to his comment as thoughtfully as I could, and then I let him know via a @reply on Twitter that I had left him a response.

    When I looked at my mentions there were three from him on two of his accounts calling my conclusions BS. It didn’t help that there was an auto-retweeter from someone else mimicking these mentions. He even copied his reply and made a blog post out of it, and again said my comments were BS.

    He then tried to carry on a conversation with me via twitter w/ hash tags widening the audience. 19 @replys to me later (and a few more from the auto-retweeter) I decided to just drop the issue. I should have dropped it earlier, but somehow being told I lacked integrity.

    I really want to say just go reply to the comment on my blog, but I think that would have made matters worse. Or maybe this would have been one of those occasions to do it?

    Sorry, I got a little off your topic. I am a member of a couple of forums for small businesses, and I find most of the “welcome messages” that are posted on my profile are requests to check out whatever they are selling. Twitter DMs are the same so I do not even check them anymore.

    Brad
    .-= Brad Harmon´s last blog ..Is Small Business Saying No Thanks to Social Media? =-.

    • Martin 8 November, 2009, 9:18 pm

      I can well understand your frustration – sounds like this guy is a prize dick-head..!

      My view is that I’d have left things after making the thoughtful reply to his initial comment.

      I have things set up here so that anyone who’s interested in a meaningful discussion after making a comment has a number of ways they can ensure they’re kept in the loop with any replies.

      All commenters have the option of electing to receive email notifications of subsequent comments, and new commenters also receive a ‘thank you’ email. This email usually goes out a day or so after leaving their initial comment and it links back to their comment.

      I generally leave things there, because if they’re genuinely interested in what you’ve written, or in hearing the view of others, they’ve got those options for keeping in touch with the thread.

      Having said all that you could take the view that all publicity is good publicity.

      Anyone who took an interest in his tweets will have probably also seen your replies and had the opportunity to go to the original post. Hopefully they’ll have come to their own conclusions as to the value of the arguments on both sides – but if they didn’t you probably wouldn’t want them as readers anyway!

      I definitely avoid long arguments on social sites. The longer it goes on the more destructive it becomes.

      Put it behind you – this guy has an attitude problem that nothing you can do will fix!

      Cheers,

      Martin.

  • Brad Harmon 10 November, 2009, 12:17 pm

    Martin,

    Thanks for the advice. I had my highest and second-highest traffic days over the weekend which is normally my lowest days for traffic. My post on Saturday, which was related to the Friday post that caused the commotion, was re-tweeted 17 times which was also a record for any of my posts.

    In retrospect, I probably was asking for the raucous by fishing for the return comment. It turned out well for me but I can see how it could have easily went poorly. I think in the future I will heed your advice for situations like this.

    Thanks,

    Brad
    .-= Brad Harmon´s last blog ..Going Dutch – Moses, James Bond, and the Christian Entrepreneur =-.

    • Martin 10 November, 2009, 2:16 pm

      See – I told you: all publicity is good publicity..! 🙂

      Seriously, I’m glad you got some good traffic from all that and, for me, there’s a good lesson in this: I don’t know the post in question, but it clearly provoked a reaction from the original commenter – so it must have expressed a strong view on something.

      And, knowing you, it will have been very well and professionally written.

      So what you did was to write something that someone felt was worth talking about (lesson #1 from Seth Godin) and you had your best traffic days as a result.

      So keep writing those kinds of posts, and don’t worry about the flamers!

      Martin.