Commenting: Good v.s. Bad

Commenting on other blogger’s post drives people over to your own blog, motivates and helps bloggers to write more, and may get you noticed. But that can only happen when your comment is well- written. “How can I write a good comment?“, you might ask. Well, I can help you with that! Here are some ways to write good comments, and some ways to stay away from bad comments.

Using Powtoon, I made a video on commenting. Make sure to check it out!

How to Write Good Comments:

  • Start with a friendly greeting. It is important to acknowledge the post’s author if you want them to even notice you. This can be done by simply say a greeting followed by the author’s name. Takes just a few seconds but starts you off on the right track.
  • Give them a sincere compliment. If you enjoyed the blog post enough to make you want to leave a comment, then let the author know. It encourages them to write more, makes them feel better about themselves and gives a good first impression of you. You can compliment the blogger specifically, their post, or both; just make sure it’s an honest compliment, otherwise it means nothing.
  • Be specific and add value to your comments. When the blogger is reading your comment, he/she will be looking for useful feedback or an opinion. Therefore, just commenting “Post is great! I liked it!”, won’t help them. Make sure to be specific, which can be done by informing them which parts from the post you especially liked, which parts they could improve, or your overall thoughts on the post.
  • Be insightful. Most importantly, a good comment is insightful. Make it obvious you actually took the time to read their post, and not just quickly skimmed through it. Try to challenge their ideas, pose questions on the topic, and add your own thoughts to the discussion. If you disagree with their points, you can tell them why by nicely stating your opinion in the comment.
Photo Credit: Jim Makos Flickr via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Jim Makos Flickr via Compfight cc

Some things to avoid:

  • Including more than one link. It is okay to include a link in your comment, as long as it’s relevant and contributes to the discussion. For example, if you’re trying to prove a point, you can provide a link as reference or backup. However, when you put more than one link, it comes off as you advertising rather than commenting on the blog post. The author of the post may label your comment as spam, which will definitely ruin any chance you had of being noticed.
  • Not reading the post thoroughly before you comment. Like I said, it is important that your comment is insightful, and you can only have insight if you actually read the post carefully. If you just skim through it or not even bother looking at it, high chances are you will say something unintelligent and embarrass yourself.
  • Repeating what the post said. Comments that repeat part of the post word for word, or even in different wording, are useless and provide no benefit to the blogger. When you write a comment, you’re trying to help the blogger out, and repeating what they said for sure won’t. These types of comments do not pose questions, add to the conversation, or even challenge the ideas in the post, which defeats the purpose of commenting.
  • Too many words. A long-winded blog comment, by its very length, defends itself against the risk of being read.”Kevin Duncan. Long comments may look almost intimidating, and encourage the blogger to just skip them. However, some good comments are long, so writing a long comment isn’t always bad, as long as it’s relevant and stays on topic. Remember, it’s the quality that matters, not quantity.

You must keep in mind that when you leave a comment, your screen name and profile picture show up as well. You have to make sure your profile looks professional, otherwise people may not be interested in your blog.

Some things that may affect your online reputation:

  • Using a silly image or a picture that does not represent you as your profile picture. When others read your comments, they want to know who they’re talking to, and the easiest way for them to identify you is from your profile picture. But if it’s just a random cartoon, that won’t help them and will often drive them away from your blog. Therefore, it’s best if you put a picture of yourself, or of something that represents you. If you do not want to include a personal picture but at the same time want others to recognize you, you can create an avatar, which is a cartoon or comic visual of yourself.
  • Using false names or unrelated nicknames. I’m sure “chubbycat101” isn’t your real name, and while you might find it funny, others will look at it as unprofessional and silly. It would be much easier for others to know who they are talking to and possibly connect with you if you include your real name. Also, weird screen names attached to comments may cause the comment to be mistaken for spam, so you should stay clear of funny nicknames.

I hope this post helped, thank you for reading!