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Blogging 101: Be a Good Neighbor

Get out your calling cards, and leave comments on at least four blogs that you’ve never commented on before.

Welcome to Blogging U! This course isn't currently active, but you can learn more about what we offer and register for upcoming courses on the BU home page.

The best thing you can do to build a readership is to engage. Publishing posts is just one part of blogging; interacting with the community is the other. You’ve already been following topics and blogs, so let’s take that up a notch with some comments.

Today’s assignment: leave comments on at least four blogs that you’ve never commented on before.

Why do this?

  • Because engaging in conversation is inspiring; you never know where (or who) your next post idea will come from.
  • Because if no one knows about you or your site, the best way to spread the word is by connecting to other bloggers. No blog is an island.

Engaging with other bloggers is the only sure way to increase engagement on your own blog. We know it can be a bit intimidating to leave your thoughts on someone else’s blog, but it’s an invaluable habit to start cultivating — so much so that we’ll be doing it repeatedly in Blogging 101.

When you leave a substantive comment, you make the original post that much richer, drawing others into the discussion. Not only that, but leaving thoughtful comments means that other readers will want to know what else you have to say — and will find their way to your site.

Head to your Reader and browse the latest posts in the topics you follow. Take a minute to check out the “blogging101” topic, too. When you read something that resonates with you, take a few minutes to leave a thoughtful comment.

Need more inspiration? Check out our post on thinking up good comments — and our post on what not do to.

Not sure what a “thoughtful comment” is? You’re not alone! Here are some tips for crafting comments that contribute to the conversation:

  • Try to avoid comments that simply say “Great post!” or “Thanks!” — make an effort to add to the discussion.
  • Be specific about why you enjoyed the post.
  • Ask a relevant question.
  • Respectfully offer a counterpoint. (And because it can’t be overstated: respectfully.)
  • Share a related experience.
  • Be concise. If your comment ends up being more than two paragraphs, consider writing a post of your own and letting the blogger know they inspired it.
  • Don’t leave a plug that simply links to your blog — your name links back to your blog anyway.
  • Mind your manners. If you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, don’t say it in their comment thread.

Also — remember the blogs where you left comments, because they’ll play a role in the post you’ll write tomorrow.

If you’d like to take this a step further, add a post to your own blog today highlighting and linking to the four blogs. Let your readers know why they intrigued you. Links are the lifeblood of the blogosphere; every time you link to something you love, you strengthen the fabric of the blogging community. Sharing great links with your readers also helps them see you as a trusted resource.

If you’d rather not share them in a post, feel free to share them in The Commons.

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Comments

      1. In our class there is a girl – India – she is amazing. She wrote me such a sweet comment once. i guess she is the perfect person for your guest post, as you know many people trust in God, but not all can put it nicely into words

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I think the guest posts will come in time, once you’ve grown a steady following (even if it’s just a few people!). I’m glad you liked the idea. Good luck!

        Like

      3. I have been blogging for just about one year, not quite though. I only got like twenty four followers which is fine but half of them look to be selling something or what not and by all means if someone is going to follow me I want it to be at least because they are partially interested… I also still have lots to learn like for instance what is a guest blog?

        Liked by 2 people

      4. Hey everyone! I know this thread is getting long so I hope all of you who inquired see this. If you’d like to guest post on my blog, email me at mzpresser@gmail.com with either a post or topic. Thanks and looking forward to hosting you!!!

        Like

    1. I really LOVE that idea Audrey. It shows your readers you’re not stuck in your tunnel of “me, me, me”. If readers don’t see you relate to others, than how will they relate to you! Happy to be following you and I look forward to your Shareable Sundays!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks for the pointers! I’m sorta new at blogging, so any information on proper blogging etiquette is good for my future blogs. I haven’t posted anything to my blog yet, so please don’t check my blog yet, ha ha.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. I have to agree — what inspires us, may very well touch someone else in the same way. Ever since Lesson two and pointing us towards Reader, I have found myself writing as much, if not more, commenting on others points and experiences then adding to my own Blog. It is incredibe the commonality between us.

      Liked by 2 people

    3. Hi Audrey, I really like the idea as well. Its a great way to add a new dimension to your blog and show your readers what inspires you. Also, it is a good way to record what you thought of a blog, or an angle to it which you might not remember later. I,too, would like to do the same, espicially since I’m just starting out.

      Liked by 1 person

    4. This does sound like a great idea, as this way you help other bloggers publicise their work, and also you expand your network of followers. The Opinionated Man (http://aopinionatedman.com/) is a great blogger for this. He has a ‘meet’n’greet’ post every so often, and as he has thousands of followers, people meet other bloggers through his post. I got quite a few followers that way. I will look out for your Sunday posts, @Audrey, thanks!

      Like

      1. shelie27- a guest post is when you post on someone else’s blog. It’s a great way for others to get to know you and follow your blog as well!!!

        Liked by 2 people

    5. Hi Audrey, I saw your post for shareable Sunday’s! I am a young college student just starting out but hope you will keep updated on my blogs to watch them grow about the little things in life!

      Like

  1. Hi guys 🙂 I guess I passed by and commented on majority of blogs I’ve seen writing comments here. If I forgot or skipped some – shame on me, let me know immediately 😉
    Have a great day America and good night Europe 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I love that you posted this. I think so many people (myself included a few years ago) failed o understand the true meaning of blogging. Yes, building a following is great, but interacting and making connections is so much more rewarding and has a higher value. Love this, thanks for sharing and bringing light to this for some people who really need it.

    Liked by 10 people

    1. I think it works very easy: you don’t “waste” your time going around and communicating just in one case: you feel your ideas and posts are better and more interesting than others (I faced this several times). Well, but if you are so brilliant up there, maybe we are not good enough to read and understand your posts? Maybe you are fine staying alone? And finally maybe you deserve it?

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I make comments on other blogs, but this post helped me to understand that I made mistakes in some comments by ‘ great post’ ‘ thanks’. I will avoid that words in future. I should not have asked, but I requested a photo blogger who has many followers to make comment on my photo posts so that I can improve. But that person never make comments on other blogs.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This will be my blog-attempt round 2, and after these helpful tips…no way I’m throwing in the towel this time! I couldn’t agree more in reference to your thoughts on being an active member of the blog community; how am I to gain feedback if I give non myself?! Thank you for sharing, and it truly helps encourage us young “baby bloggers” to not get discouraged!

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Hello ‘tantoverde’. Could it be that you’ve [accidentally] increased the size of your page – so that the sides are missing because the page itself is bigger than your screen?

        Try re-sizing your page (to a smaller size) and you might find that the sides of the blog pages then show themselves.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I love commenting on others post. And I’m guilt of leaving “Great Post”..smh But it’s important not to put high expectations on others thinking they will return the gesture when leaving a comment.I have notice most don’t return the favor. That’s why we must be sincere.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. The power and Principle of Reciprocity says, “first you, then me, then you, then me.” That basically means you will reap what you sow. The challenge is to remember that the Principle of sowing and reaping or Reciprocity is at work, whether we believe it or not. Don’t have an expectation that the person you comment on should comment back on yours. Give the sincere comment as your read and discover meaningful blogs and know that it will come back to you…more than likely from a different source…but it will come back! You can count on it.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. As a new blogger I have been trying to do this at least twice per day. I only leave comments on blogs that I truly enjoy or follow. I have had some comments left on my blog that have made my week. This is a fantastic community! A few kind words of encouragement go a long way. I am 100% up for taking on this challenge

    Liked by 4 people

  7. i am an avid blog reader, and so i am constantly reading a wide range of articles on a many different blogs but hardly ever do i comment and it not because i don’t want to, but because most times, i am reading from my phone, and i find it hard to type from there. by the time i get to my computer late in the day, i am exhausted and i have lost my train of thought for the post.But will cultivate the habit of at least making a mental note about where i i would want to leave a comment. Thanks for this . It is also very rewarding when i get a comment on my blog, that i make sure to reply and engage the reader further.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I’ve been visiting blogs and commenting on many over the past week but I’m sorry to say that not one of those bloggers has bothered to visit my blog or leave a comment. That’s very frustrating and discouraging. In fact, before reading this assignment I posted about this lack of reciprocity. I’m just about at the point of giving up but I’ll give it a few more days.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Baby bloggers…actually its a true thing.
      I am already making a confession that I get lost in the pond of all the comments flowing in but whosoever I read and visit…I comment or like(and that all the time is genuine either good or bad and if bad I say sorry in advance) but so far people I paid visit, visited me back and really helped me improve on my writing..thanks to them 🙂

      You will get your audience..don’t loose hope.
      GOOD LUCK

      Like

    1. I have to completely agree — I have very much enjoyed exploring the mind of others, and hopefully extending my own flare of life back in their direction when I have felt so inclined to reply. The “rules” listed in our lesson are critical — its is great to have an opinion and even disagree, and be open to the same with our own posts — yet, respect, respect, respect. Embrace and opinion no matter how out in left field you may think it is.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Hello. It makes sense to not just write, “great post” or “ITA” does anyone still write that? But I am guilty of it too. With writing it’s important to have specific feedback to not only engage conversation but possibly gain other followers.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I really like the last bullet point; because that cannot be overstated enough either. More and more people using any kind of social media should think like that. If you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, then you probably shouldn’t be posting it on the internet.

    Now that that’s been said, I can’t wait to find some new blogs to comment on today 😀

    Liked by 3 people

  11. I’m new to blogging and have been enjoying participating in blogging 101, but haven’t been able to access the Commons. I received an email telling me that registration is over, but I am registered. Perhaps it would help to let you know that I received my registration confirmation at one email and the email regarding the Commons problem on another. Any help would be appreciated! 🙂 Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I am new to blogging and since I´ve joined blogging 101 I´ve left comments here and there and also received some, it´s nice to receive feedback, confirmation or just to see someone saying your post was great. I love to connect with people from all over the world and so far everyone has been so friendly! 🙂 I will try to comment extra today 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I am a bit ..meh about this task to be honest. I think some blogs that are being thought leaders, yes this applies but some blogs (mine included) exhibit things made. Most of the blogs that I have been following to do with my interest in making and creating stuff post their finished projects or WIPs. And most of the time we are really happy with a ‘Great dress/hat/blanket/ mittens/ etc” . I really think this depends on the particular sort of blog what comment you leave

    Like

    1. I would suggest that the comment “Great dress!” *is* a substantive comment. “Great dress!” shows that you read the post and have good things to say about the content — in this case, the dress the blogger made. “Great post!” does not demonstrate that you actually paid attention to the post..

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Dear Michelle

    I’m delighted to know that you are a ‘dog snorgler’. LOL! I think I will adopt that as my phrase for the day. I could also be a kid snorgler, a hubby snorgler….Thanks for your lovely posts!

    Fran xxx 🙂

    Like

  15. This is great! i am a new blogger and I’m hoping i can use these tips to engage my readers. I’d like to stay anonymous so I can’t share my blog with my social media network. I’d love to get tips on outreach for my blog so I can apply the tips in this write up to engage my readers.
    Do let me know!
    I’d also welcome feedback: https://snowries.wordpress.com/

    Like

  16. I’m new to a lot of this, so stepping out and connecting with other bloggers (especially those more experienced) is a great way for me to learn from others! If you guys have any tips or suggestions on how I can improve my blog I’m open to hearing them! 🙂 -Nikkie

    Like