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Building Blog Readership by Leaving Comments

Have you read Gary Vaynerchuk's book, Crush It yet? If you're considering starting your own business, whether it's online or not, it's a must read.

Vaynerchuk, a wine seller turned best-selling author and businessman, attributes a lot of his success to eschewing traditional promotional methods and instead "joining the online conversation" to create a personal brand. As an Internet marketer and SEO specialist, I found some of the most useful tips Gary offers in his book relate to building blog readership. His advice? For every hour you spend writing content for your blog, spend three or four hours writing comments on OTHER people's blogs, articles, or user forums.

Yes, you read that right. Three or four hours. And since you're supposed to be blogging every day, you're supposed to be commenting every day too.

Obviously, most of us don't have that luxury (although Vaynerchuk says we should just suck it up and stay up until the wee hours to get it done). However, he has some great suggestions on how to effectively leave blog comments that can greatly beef up your onlne presence with what time you can devote to it. And if you want to get traffic from the major search engines? Building backlinks is crucial.

Here are some of Gary's Do's and Don'ts when it comes to leaving comments to build blog readership:

SEO DO:

  • Devote some time to it. Few of us have hours, but most of us have thirty minutes. Schedule it in, like any other meeting. Think of it as a complement to any other social media efforts you've been trying out. Over the course of a week, that thirty minutes will add up, and the results might even inspire you to do more.
  • Leave intelligent comments. "Great post!" by itself isn't going to cut it here. Leave the blogger a note that clearly indicates that you read what he or she wrote and were motivated to respond to it.

SEO DON'TS:

  • Be commercial. Think of a time when you went to comment on an article and a fellow commenter said something like, "Great article! I sell the widgets you're referring to. Go to my website!" There is no need to overtly "sell" in your comment. If you leave a thoughtful statement that relates to the post, people will click through to your site if they want to find out what you're about. When you start to get "pitchy," it's not much better than random spam comments, and it zaps your credibility.
  • Comment on a post that has nothing to do with what YOU do. Links from other sites to your site are basically a ‘vote’ telling search engines you know something about that subject. Therefore, if you're wanting to leave backlinks directing to your business URL, limit comments to content that is in some way connected to your niche. Remember, if you've inspired a reader to click from that blog to yours, reward them with the related information they are seeking!

Consider spending thirty minutes today solely on blog commenting and let us know how applying Gary Vaynerchuk's tips have impacted your blog readership!

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