People start blogging for a number of reasons: they might do so to share a message they’re passionate about, as a business that creates income for their family, or to establish themselves as an authority in their field. No matter what your reasons for blogging are, building a sense of community among your blog readers is sure to make you more effective.
Here are some ways you can positively impact your blog community:
- Respond to comments on your blog and social media. Nothing will kill your engagement quicker than ignoring your readers! Think of it this way: would you keep visiting someone’s home if they never answered your questions or spoke directly to you? In order to be a good host, treat your readers like guests and try to be as friendly and helpful as possible. People will keep coming back to where they feel welcome.
- Create opportunities to connect. Host social media parties and encourage discussion in your blog comments. Live-streaming is a new way bloggers are connecting with readers in a really personal way. Encourage readers to connect with each other, not just with you.
- Be consistent. A community takes time to grow and develop, so keep showing up consistently to give your readers that time.
- Develop your own lingo. Some bloggers “name” their readers with a nickname for their community. Others use unique language or even made up words to create a sort of “secret language” for readers to catch on to as they hang around.
- Give them what they want. If your readers ask you questions or express frustration about something, create content that solves their problems. The more you able to do this, the more your readers will begin to see your blog as the go-to hub for your niche.
- Reward active community members. Mention reader comments in your blog posts. Send frequent commenters free copies of your digital products. When you reward the most engaged readers, it makes them even more loyal to your community and encourages others to get involved as well.
- Encourage email subscriptions. Social media algorithms can be fickle – email is still the most solid place to store contacts. Encourage your readers to sign up for your email list as the best way to stay on top of what’s going on in your community.
- Make sure your content is easy to share. Share buttons at the top and bottom of your posts make it quick and simple for your readers to spread your content for you.
- Be active in other communities. Don’t comment on other blogs just for the sake of it – take the time to leave a well-thought-out response to their post. Apply this to social media too.
- Stay real. Be authentic in what you share – it comes across and makes you a more trustworthy community leader.
By focusing on community for your blog readers, you’ll be serving both your audience and your sponsors. Your audience will get more out of your blog and your sponsors will enjoy more sales and engagement from your super-engaged audience.