This is part five of a five-part series I’m writing. The five parts are homework, being mindful when writing, mechanics, promotion, and follow-up. The first installment also has a bit more of an introduction that sets up the what/why of this.
This section discusses a few things an author can do once the post has gone live and you’ve done what you can to promote it. This, in my opinion, is what makes social media truly social. For an example of who does this really well, take a look at Jason Falls and Mike Troiano (I spoke about them here). Jason lives in his comments, and his engagement with his readers shows.
- Most blogging platforms automatically alert you when comments are made. If your platform does not, get in the habit of checking once per day (sorry!).
- Consider signing up for the RSS feed of your blog’s comments
- Respond to comments (almost all of them). Comments that don’t necessarily need a response are the ones that read “nice post”. Otherwise, treat this like a conversation. It’s as if you said something verbose and important (in person), and this is a person’s reaction. Like a cocktail party (or any other face-to-face conversation, for that matter), you wouldn’t just ignore them. You’d respond. This is a digital conversation, not an e-mail exchange.
- If someone disagrees with you, you can politely defend yourself. If someone continues to do so, or is belligerent, take the high road and end with something like, “Thanks for stopping by!”.
- After your blog starts to take shape, consider running it through http://websitegrader.com or http://blog.grader.com to get a sense of how it stacks up on multiple measurements. Note that this is not a definitive tool, but it does lend some insight into what is working well and what can be improved.
What other things do you do after a post goes live?