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The BEST Way to Generate Lots of Comments on a Your Next Blog Post

Last week on my Photography Tips site we published a guest post titled Three Lenses Every Photographer Should Own.

The author of the guest post emailed me a few days later amazed at amazing amount of comments left on the post. While the average post on dPS gets a reasonable amount of comments this post is climbing up towards 200.

Why did it do so well in engaging readers?

There are a few reasons. The guest poster didn’t really set out to do any of them – but stumbled upon one of the best ways to get readers interacting on a blog post:

  1. He Expressed an Opinion – the post shares one persons opinion on which lenses each photographer should own. While the post itself did indicate that it was his own personal preference and that others would find other options more suited to their situations – whenever you express an opinion you’re going to get other people reacting with their own.
  2. He Made a Claim – the title was key in generating this discussion. It made a claim that every photographer should own 3 lenses. I’m not sure how intentional this was but make this type of claim and you’ll almost always get a reaction because you’ll almost always have someone who doesn’t quite fit into what you’ve proposed – and they’ll want to tell you why. Write a post about ‘essentials’, or ‘the best’ or something ‘everyone’ should do – and you’ll generally get this type of response.
  3. He Invited a Response – the post finished by asking others what they’d include in their ‘must own’ category of lenses. This is the perfect invitation for an ongoing discussion.
  4. He Chose a Topic People Had Invested Heavily Into – the last thing I’d say about this topic is that he stumbled onto a topic for the post that readers had strong opinions about because they’d invested into the topic. Camera owners carefully research their lens purchases and put up considerable dollars to buy them. As a result they tend to feel quite strongly about their lenses and often feel the need to defend/explain their decisions.

Keep in mind that while when you write these types of posts you will almost always get a reaction from people that you need to be willing and ready to hear some strong opinions back – something that are not always easy to hear.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Wayne John says:

    Another way I’ve found is to write a post about comments. Everytime I see a post about comments, be it how to get them, how to increase them, how to control them, whatever, it seems that people have a comment to make about comment posts.

  2. the last thing I’d say about this topic is that he stumbled onto a topic for the post that readers had strong opinions about because they’d invested into the topic. Camera owners carefully research their lens purchases and put up considerable dollars to buy them. As a result they tend to feel quite strongly about their lenses and often feel the need to defend/explain their decisions.

    there’s no easy way to achieve this, isn’t it?

  3. WAHGO says:

    It was stated that the title was key to generating this many comments.

    The title really has the most influence on the success of a blog post or article. If someone doesn’t click on the story, there will never be an opportunity for them to read and comment on it.

    THANKS for the tips! You can learn something new every day and still crave more.

  4. Online Marketing Blog receives the majority of it’s traffic from search engines.Blog software with category features allows the aggregation of content according to themes. This makes it easier to algorithmically categorize content.

  5. Having an opinion and stating your case eloquently has always been a great way to engage others – people always have an opinion themselves and it is totally human to want to get in on the debate :)

    Playing devils advocate using someone else’s blog post and cross linking them can also grab readers attention! Bringing lots of readers across from the other blog and gaining notoriety for both bloggers :)

  6. John says:

    If you don’t like to hear some potentially unwanted reaction, don’t ask questions. Since question is on the table everything can appear.

  7. Thanks for sharing this! The ideas are so simple, really…but so true.

    As a relatively new freelance writer, I’ve noticed that the posts I write for one of the companies I blog for sometimes receives a bunch of comments while my other posts do not. I’ve wondered whether it has to do with the quality of the writing or maybe interest in the topic…but upon further reflection, those comment-attracting posts seem to fit the model described here.

    Thanks for helping me clue into this!

  8. chandan says:

    Thank you, yes if we write some opinion or write some thing new then we get more comment. For me when I write any new article on SEO or link building I ask people to leave their opinion on the comment and It help me to get more comment.

  9. Pyerse says:

    Wow, this is an great article. It might be challenging to do this is a fictional blog, but it’s worth trying. Thanks again.

  10. Inviting people to leave their comment or join to discussion can really help to get more comments to your blog.

  11. herocious says:

    I recently wrote a post on TheOpenEnd that I like enough in terms of content and appearance to wonder why it didn’t generate a response.

    In it, I express my opinion on the most expensive paintings; I claim that our culture is on the decline; I invite a response; and it’s all on a topic people have invested millions into.

    Here it is. Don’t let the silence scare you :-)

    http://theopenend.com/2010/03/03/most-expensive-paintings-ever-sold/

  12. Shiko says:

    Nice. I own a small and growing blog (Hebrew only) and I wrote about my opinions and ‘the best’, but it seems like most of my readers prefer to comment on the “about me” post.

    What is the reason for that ?

  13. Truth can only be one, and false can be many. Of course, you can’t please everyone, and get everyone to agree with you. As long as conversations are dealt with in a professional way so that truth is brought forth without being hidden. Although some may disagree to a certain truthful topic, others would have been searching about it for ages.I found very tough to make an attractive title than writing a blog when my business is something like Training. Your blog should give good and useful information then only good and relative visitors will comment on it.

  14. Tony says:

    Inviting a response seems like the most easiest idea. Why didn’t I think of that?

    Thanks for the tips!

  15. Dave Higgs says:

    Thanks Darren for another great article.

    Another post about engaging the reader I found very valuable was a guest post (here on proBlogger) by Cori Padget from Big Girl Branding. Read the post here

  16. I think that people are much more inclined to leave a comment when they are invited to do so.

  17. If your write a very good post that is the major way. I wrote a post once that got 6 comments yet i was getting 30 visitors a day. That said it worked out great because spinns featured the post.

  18. Hi Darren,

    I agree. Controversy can increase our comments, but it can also bring out those who want to shoot the messenger instead of only disagreeing with the message.

    When I first started blogging I remember reading this was a great way to gain attention. I tried writing controversial posts, but quickly found out that wasn’t who I am. I’ve since settled into writing from my heart. Although I don’t get a ton of comments, those who do show up take the time to leave meaningful responses that not only make me think, but help my other readers as well. THAT, to me is more important than a high comment count.

  19. The other way to get people to comment on your blog is by commenting on other people’s blogs. To attract comments one has to add value when commenting on other blogs. People will also comment when they are reading something they were looking for, for me this has work when people visit my blog and found information they were searching for they automatically leave their comments. After one has comment I always follow up and read their blogs or article online and often leaving my comments that when others reading they are likely to check my blog

  20. Bounce House says:

    I agree with many in that writing a blog with a claim or controversy will increase comments, but you may not want to clutter your blog with too many arguments and even hatism. It’s always nice to read other persons’ opinions but we should always stay focused on the main topic.

    At the end, people will judge your blog by quality of contents not by number of posts.

  21. Faiz Suberi says:

    These tips are great. It will work but has to be done the right way. If not the article might come out somewhat controversial don’t you think?

  22. Aglolink says:

    Applying your suggest, perhaps got luck!

  23. popupbooster says:

    In order to make a bold statement, you need to have some expertise in order not to make a fool out of yourself.

  24. drt says:

    After posting my last post and reading this post, I thought, may be I have to explicitly put down at the end of my post to ask those people whose lifes have been affected by Robert’s books on fighting high cholesterol and high blood pressure to leave a message to acknowledge his great work.

    http://www.atanone.net/the-link-to-robert-e-kowalskis-book-is-broken/

  25. Leesa Streed says:

    Appealing idea. I can find it be the outcome regardless not generally. I actually tend not to post but I wished to chime in this moment and let you know I enjoy the blog. It got very good layout but header fails to lign up anytime looked at on few portable smartphone. Have a great day

  26. Daniel James says:

    To get comments you need presence on the Internet. Unfortunately I have exceptional posts but little presence on the search engines. I have tried every available technique possible with no result. I only wish I could find out what I am doing wrong. I have done SEO and completely rebuilt the HTML code.

    I would like to be successfully online just like Darren. Not financial but in popularity because I enjoy helping people.

    Because of the sites popularity it helps people share their thoughts on the subjects.

    Thank you Darren for the insight

    Daniel James

  27. R.J. says:

    I’m kind of lost to the purpose of attracting “lots of comments.” I assume everyone wants a lot of comments because comments equal more search engine content and page impressions. But if you’re just attracting self-serving “Good post!” types, I don’t think the content of the article matters all that much.

    And if you allow that kind of commentary, then the people who enjoy reading comments, like me, get pretty turned off when every time they go to your comments section it is filled with that kind of garbage.

    On the other hand, if you’re actually trying to attract a committed readership, surely there are better ways to do that than provoking readers through controversy?

  28. Thank you very much, I did really like the response to my thread, and post replies have been really awesome. It could have never been better. Even hiring someone for this could have never met the experience all posters here have, thanks for saving dollars and adding really good information to this post to make things really easy and workable for us. Thanks again and great work.

  29. I read a comment above that controversy always increases the comments and that is so true. I mean look at Tiger woods and Sandra Bullock.

    Whether you intentionally stir up controversy which in their case it wasn’t their intention, you’re always going to get strong opinions. This is food for thought and something for me to keep in mind in the future as I write articles.

    Great article and thanks for sharing!

  30. Kyle Webs says:

    Thanks so much for sharing these tips! I’ve been slacking a lot on my blog and these tips have given me some new ideas..

    Also, use a website that doesn’t force readers to sign up to comment. I never read blogs that don’t allow comments. AND make sure readers can leave a url.

    Those are just a couple tips I just thought of.

  31. Lou says:

    Great suggestions. Thanks for sharing with us. I’m going to work on being enticing and provocative now.

  32. Mike Barie says:

    I even now could not realize some of one’s thoughts after examining this post. Saturday for me, undesirable morning, due to the fact yesterday I worked all time of day. great luck