Sometimes an article is living proof of the very point it is making. Take Janine Popick’s recent “Three Reasons Blog Comments are Dead” article on Inc. online. Her blog was written shortly after blogging behemoth Copyblogger announced last month it would no longer publish comments because 96% them were garbage.
When we read her blog, posted on April 14, it had zero comments. Zip. Nada. But it already had 60 “shares” on social media sites. If our own experience and her premise are any indicator, those “shares” will yield far more and insightful commentary and engagement on OTHER sites than her blog.
Jason Kottke writes in “The Blog is Dead, Long Live the Blog” in Harvard’s Nieman Journalism Lab, “The primary mode for the distribution of links has moved from the loosely connected network of blogs to tightly integrated services like Facebook and Twitter. If you look at the incoming referrers to a site like BuzzFeed, you’ll see tons of traffic from Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Stumbleupon, and Pinterest but not a whole lot from blogs, even in the aggregate.” The pros and cons of social media vs. blogs are vividly illustrated in an infographic on Britain’s fairyblogmother site.
Most experts say blogs are not dead, they’re just dying…slowly, but dying. So what’s the takeaway for professional communicators and content marketers?
- Add plugins to your blog that allow for comments on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Reddit, Google+ and others. Or pick smaller but industry-critical social media platforms that target your desired audience.
- Social Media platform interfaces are more conducive to real-time conversations; no page re-loads, comment moderation, or e-mail alerts are required.
- If people can’t comment on a blog, they will make the comment in a post of their own, most likely with a link back to your blog. This in turn will likely be a more personal comment that will likely generate more comment…or sharing…of its own.