How To Write Comments

Filed as Guides on October 8, 2012 5:43 am

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Commenting is often an important part of being visible on the internet. Doesn’t matter if you’re trying to build a popular blog or a profitable online business, you still need to find a way to get people back to your site or blog.

There are many techniques to do that, some work better for bloggers, and some for online business owners. Even though the goals are different, commenting can boost your popularity and expertise in general if you do it often enough.

However, only because you’re doing something often doesn’t make you good at it. And when it comes to commenting, there’s one important thing everyone should focus on … that is not looking like a spammer.

This may sound obvious to you. I mean, you’re probably not a spammer and you only submit comments when you actually have something to say, so you might think that this post doesn’t concern you. However, are you 100% sure?

Being seen as a spammer is easier than you think… If you submit a comment like this, for example:

“Thanks, great post. I really like your point of view!”

… along with an anchored name of, say, “Cheap Web Design” then this is spam. And the fact that you might have written it because you really enjoy that article and the anchored name just happens to be one you always use, doesn’t really matter.

In a nutshell: just because you know that you’re not a spammer doesn’t make you NOT look like one in other people’s eyes.

So how to write a proper, non-spam comment, then? I always try to follow these 7 guidelines:

1. Mention the content

Whenever you’re writing a comment try to mention the content of the post the comment is for. This way, you’re making it clear for the author that you’ve read the post before commenting and that you have some genuine input you’d like to share with others.

This is the most important guideline on this list. I believe that if you do only that, it will most likely make you look like a real commenter, not a spammer right away.

Just to give you an example, here’s a somewhat long comment that doesn’t mention any content whatsoever and can be well submitted under any post imaginable. In essence, it’s a prime example of spam:

“I find your opinion quite interesting, but the other day I stumbled upon a completely different advice from another blogger, I need to think that one through, thanks for posting.”

2. Don’t thank anybody

This should actually be more like “don’t only say thank you.”

Simple “thank you, great post” comments are the most obvious spam comments possible. They are short, one can submit 1000s of them in a short span of time even if they’re doing it manually, and blog authors tend to approve them because everyone likes to be praised.

The only problem with such comments is that they bring nothing to the discussion, and if you submit them along with an anchored name of “Cheap Web Design” then the reason why you’ve submitted the comment is more than clear.

In a sentence: If you want to thank somebody, do it only at the end of a good insightful comment, not as a standalone comment.

3. Don’t go off-topic

You’re going off-topic whenever you submit a comment consisting of these two parts:

  • Praising the post (a “thank you” of some sorts).
  • Talking about something entirely different.

For some discussions off-topic is good if you can turn it into a metaphorical lesson, but the problem is that, in most cases, people go off-topic only to trick authors into thinking that the comment is legit.

Here’s what a spam comment template built on the off-topic principle might look like in the marketing niche:

“Thanks for this post. I really enjoy your point of view on {INSERT TOPIC}. This reminds me when this one time I went to this new restaurant and I was amazed that so many people are willing to pay extra for what they could get at half the price somewhere else.”

See? You could submit such a thing under any marketing related post. But don’t.

4. Responding to the first commenter

Some blogs allow commenters to have threaded discussions with each other, and some people overuse this possibility to get additional exposure.

Everyone knows that the best commenter spot is #1. It’s where you get the most exposure and the biggest chance of your links being clicked. So if the #1 spot is already taken you can simply respond to this first comment and automatically take the #2 spot.

Don’t do this unless you actually have something to say to the first commenter directly. This is a situation where you’re commenting someone else’s comment not the article itself. If you respond to someone only to get the #2 spot this is really, really easy to see through.

5. Get a Gravatar

Gravatar has been around for a while. Quite simply, it’s a service providing image avatars for blog commenters. When you comment on a blog and submit your email address, this address is taken to Gravatar to check if there’s a picture connected to it.

Most spammers don’t spend time on getting avatars. They simply use a random email and submit as many comments as possible before they get banned. Then they just switch to another email.

But since you’re not a spammer, and you’re probably using the same email address everywhere you comment, you can spend 10 minutes on getting a Gravatar. This will be time well spent because when a blog owner sees a picture next to the comment, they’ll get an immediate no-spam impression.

6. Using a keyword-rich name

This is a somewhat delicate thing. Some people tend to use only keywords as their name (like my “Cheap Web Design” example). I’m sorry but if you are doing this then you are lame.

You’re lame because the field says “name” (not “keywords”) and what you’re submitting surely isn’t a name.

The advice is simple here. If it says “name” then input your name.

There are cases when a blog uses a plugin like KeywordLuv, which allows you to use your name along with some keywords. Those keywords become the anchor text and your name remains just an unlinked name. In such a case, by all means, use keywords that are important for you.

However, when you’re dealing with a blog having a standard commenting system then sticking to your name only is the better way around.

You can also try something like “Karol K from the {KEYWORDS}” but some bloggers tend to mark those as spam too.

7. Getting your grammar right lolz

I’m not a native speaker, okay, I don’t always get the sentence right, but come on! If someone submits a comment and ending it with “lolz,” they’re going in the spam folder no matter how great the comment is, sorry.

Apart from that, I’m in no position to teach you grammar, so just take notice of what you’re actually writing and do your homework. People are really more likely to approve your comment if it has some correct grammar in it.

Finally, your turn… Do you have a guideline no. 8 to share? Feel free to speak up in the comments. I’d love to get this post updated with your insights.

 

About The Author

Karol K. (@carlosinho) is a freelance writer, passionate about blogging and turning it into a profitable business. If you don’t have a blog yet, consider using a website builder that makes the process easy and straightforward.

 

 

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