People rarely link to dead content, so you have to liven it up. The more people in your community that are actively commenting on your content, the more likely they are to link to it. There has been a lot of concern about content linking, and whether it is good or not, but if it is done correctly, there is no question that it is beneficial. So, the more active your community, the better audience you build, and all of this stems from good engagement.
Encourage Blog Comments
When you take the time to write good content, you want some feedback, right? Well, the truth is, most people who read an article never leave a comment, and the main reason is that you did not ask. When you write something, encourage a blog comment by asking for the reader’s feedback. Ask questions like, What do you think?, Do you agree? Did I miss something? All of these questions encourage interaction, and that is what you are after, so do not wait for them to respond, ask them to!
Set up your blog page to allow any comments made on the page to go to your social media pages as well. This helps keep content flowing through your social networks, and helps encourage more engagement from your community.
If no one is responding to your content, even with your requests, you may need to take it a step further. You can send out emails to everyone on your mailing list, post a tweet, or post a status update with a question linked to the content. Make sure you take it easy on this method though, every time you write something there is no need to spam everyone on your list, otherwise you will just be deleted, and that is not the type of engagement you are looking for.
You are not going to get any links through a survey, but it does help built community interaction. By creating a quick survey for your community, you can let them know you care about what they have to say, and learn more about what they are interested in. Use the survey as a marketing tool, knowing what they want to talk about, what they care about, and how they like to engage with the content is the key to writing good engaging content.
Getting insight into the minds of your followers is one of the main priorities of a blog when it comes to marketing strategies, so anything you can do to encourage them to speak up is considered a beneficial tool. Your blog may not always encourage the engagement you need, so by using a survey, it helps to let the users know that you need some insight, and most people are more than happy to add their two cents in on a topic.
Offer a reward for the survey to encourage more people to actually participate. Something simple, like a percentage off a product, a link to a free download, or anything that helps promote your business offers a benefit to both the user, and your business.
Use Feedback Questions
In addition to asking for a comment on content you create, ask for feedback. Asking the reader’s opinion is a great way to encourage engagement. Ask what you could have done better, if they know of a way to handle the situation at hand better, or just simply ask if they liked what they just read.
Positive feedback is great, but you learn more from your negative feedback. Feedback is a great tool to use for email campaigns. If you have several people opting out of your newsletter, knowing why would be very beneficial, right? So, you may want to add a quick feedback app to your unsubscribe button, so when they leave, they are asked why. If you see that 100 people unsubscribed due to the overwhelming amount of email they were receiving, you know to tone it down. Without that feedback, you would never know that you were driving your subscribers crazy, and you may actually start sending out more emails in fear of losing more….and that would certainly make sure you did.
The main goal for any feedback you receive is to learn from it. You may not necessarily want negative feedback in your comments section, but you do want it, so have a separate section where users can enter their answers in a private format that only you see.
Tweeting can become addictive, as you may have noticed from those you follow. Some users tweet 200 times a day, and they expect a response from someone on all of them. That is not realistic, so you need to set goals that are more comfortable for you, and your followers. Instead of flooding Twitter with tons of tweets each day, be more selective about what you tweet, and when, and of course, to who.
You can engage your followers by asking them specifically to offer an opinion to your content, just be sure it relates to them, and that you do not choose them for every piece of content you create. You can also tweet to your entire audience, but make sure you ask them to engage in the discussion, or to start up one.
Create Relevant Inbound Links
This topic has had some heated attention lately, and many web site owners have been leery of having their content linked on other sites, but there is no need to stress, as long as you do it right. Make sure you create content that is relevant to the site it is linked on, NEVER link your content to a site just because you can, have a good reason to place it there.
You want your inbound links to bring you traffic, so the ones you create on your own, be very, very meticulous where they go.
Obviously, you cannot control all your inbound links, the main purpose of having user engagement increased is to help build positive inbound links. Monitor your inbound links closely to ensure they are not being used maliciously, or being placed on unsavory sites. This is where Google has stirred up some controversy: banning sites from the searches for having poor inbound links.
Use Internal Links
Using internal links throughout your site helps keep users engaged, and keeps them on your site. A well-organized web site that offers related content and relevant topics for the reader after each article is more likely to keep a reader on their page than one that does not use internal linking. Make sure you actually link to related and relevant content though, just having random links to your other pages can cause confusion, appear unorganized and sloppy, and lose the traffic you worked so hard to gain.
As an example, when you create an article and post it on your page, use internal linking techniques to have other relevant content available on the article page, such as, if you liked this article, check these out, or if you are interested in topic A, these articles on Topic B may interest you. You can also use internal linking to create easy links to products, services, or other items on your page that relate to a specific topic. If a visitor is reading about how to build their own backyard birdfeeder on your page, why not offer them the birdseed you sell on your site with a link on the same page? If they have to go look for the birdseed, there is a chance they will end up on a competitor’s site, so keep them on your site for everything they need.