By Robbie Mitchell
Do you want to start a blog or website but you’re anxious about the comments you might receive?
One way to manage conversations is to not have a comments section.
Although this practice may seem contrary to web 2.0/ 2-way communication, it’s becoming more common, and more acceptable to readers to see websites and blogs taking this route.
The key to help you steer away from the 1-way communication highway is to give your readers an avenue to comment. This might include:
- creating a separate online forum on Facebook or Google+
- having readers tweet you comments
- providing your email address.
Email is particularly useful if you want to carefully moderate comments and control the conversation – some conversations are arguments that often deserve silence.
Although comments can seem scary when trolls are mentioned in the same sentence, comments still play an important role in how we communicate online.
They can show how well we explained concepts as well as reflecting how engaged our audience is. That’s an important word, engaged.
While it’s easy to count the number of people who view our pages, too often we don’t consider how many people we have engaged. This is a key measurement because change often transpires from engagement.
This change might be a new client, new funding, a new collaborator or a new friend.
It might also change your way of thinking – comments are a great way to receive feedback and to correct some of your facts.
Comments also play an important role in building a community.
Commenting is a way for people to contribute to their blog community and you’ll often find that people are commenting for the right reasons, rather than the wrong.
To this end I implore you to allow comments, if you’re brave enough, or to at least give your readers an avenue to comment. You can always moderate your comments too.
And remember to reply and acknowledge those who have taken the time to consider your story and respond to you.
*Our blog does not have a comment section because of all the spam we receive. But we do encourage you to email or tweet us your comments. @RobbieMitch