|Come on, I had to fit cats in somewhere! Photo from Pinterest|
Recently I've been trying really hard to comment on every blog post that I read. When I began blogging I really made an effort with commenting and making friends in the blogging community, as an a former internet forum user, it was the chatting that I enjoyed the most.
However, I recently noticed that I had stopped leaving comments as much, and this was mostly due to me catching up with blogs on my phone. Most comment forms are pretty hard to navigate on a mobile, and if I make a mistake I have to delete the whole comment and start again because it's impossible to scroll in comment boxes on my phone. There's also the verification process, which is difficult enough to read on a computer/laptop screen, but when accessed on a phone is almost impossible to decipher (especially if you are a glasses-wearer who refuses to wear glasses....like me).
The pleasure that a well-thought out comment can provide is immense, and well worth the 5-10 minutes it takes to write, plus it lets bloggers know that you reading, and reacting to the posts they create. But then this leads to another phenomenon, not commenting on the posts from popular bloggers. I've seen a few people comment abou this, and the fact it doesn't seem worth it because the blogger gets so many comments they won't respond, and might not even read.
I'm trying to get over this type of thinking, firstly because even the biggest bloggers started somewhere - and the likelihood is that they got popular by reading and responding to comments - therefore building an engaged and responsive audience. And secondly, they're still people. And surely everyone feels a warm flush at knowing the work they put into something is being rewarded.
Of course, it's also equally as important to show support to the smaller, emerging blogs because kind comments can cement a love for blogging that could easily disappear with a lack of attention and interaction.
During yesterday's #lbloggers Twitter chat I mentioned that I value comments over followers, because they show me that people care about what I write, and it engages them enough to let me know. I noticed that I got a lot of replies agreeing with that sentiment, so it shows that even when you blog for yourself (as I think you should always do), then comments are welcome validation that you are worth listening, and chatting to.
Commenting is important because it not only lets bloggers know that you appreciate and enjoy their work, but also helps to build rapport and community. I know it can sometimes be difficult to find the time to comment when you need to focus on making your own blog the best it can be, but if you could take just five minutes to make another blogger happy, forge friendship links and create a welcoming, pleasant community isn't it worth it?
I am going to make an extra special effort to comment on every blog post I read and enjoy, regardless of follower numbers, time and any other factors. I have the time to read the post, so now's the time to appreciate it.