How to measure blog comments and forum discussions
After taking a week off, I forgot how quickly the chat goes by during the short hour. Props to Garry Przyklenk, Marketwire’s online marketing manager, for taking the reins during last week’s #smmeasure chat and to thank everyone who participated and helped spread the word. A big thanks to Sysomos’ Community Manager Sheldon Levine @sysomos for co-hosting the chat.
#smmeasure chat #6 recap
Last week’s chat covered first-glance metrics, rules of engagement, privacy and disclosure. This week we talked about comments and discussions. Below is just a small taste of the great conversation we had, but this recap will not do the chat justice. I recommend that you take a look at the full transcript for a more thorough account of what went down.
Q1: What are your top etiquette rules for commenting?
- @nmorganhowell: “The golden rule? Treat others as you would like to be treated. If you don”t agree, be critical, but don”t be rude “
- @inspiredtrain: “Reply to every comment, good or bad. This invites further comment or even new discuss.”
- @miketempleton: “Remember to add value when leaving a comment. No value? Don”t comment.”
- @miketempleton: “When filling in the “Name” field, use your real name – not a brand name or the name of your blog. A person is commenting.”
- @40deuce: “by adding to the conversation you can be seen as someone with their own thoughts and that will lead people back to your own site”
- @jgombita: “Top etiquette rules for commenting — really reading item plus all comments first, then adding value, not just personal plug”
- @JPedde: “Think before you comment. Don”t be a jerk – be constructive.”
- @bikespoke: “remember to separate your emotions/personal thought + professional thought”
- @karimacatherine: “you can leave a comment, even if you disagree with the author. It”s important to get the conversation going”
- @DavidSpinks: “If someone takes the time to write a thoughtful and insightful comment, don”t stiff them with a “thanks bro!”.”
- @DavidSpinks: “My rule of thumb: put in at least as much effort into responding to a comment, as the commenter put in.”
Q2: Do you leave a link to an article or links to your social media profiles when you comment?
- @TsarKasim: “If there”s a text box for it, you bet I”m leaving a link!”
- @brightmatrix: “Yes, I offer links to either my blog or Twitter. Again, to help bridge the connection I”m making by commenting.”
- @40deuce: “If I can I put our website in the “your site” field, but I always make sure to at least leave my company name somewhere”
- @iamChuckHarris: “I like to leave links to my profiles so people can connect with me off the blog.”
- @ambercleveland: “only if they are relevant. Never link just to link. But it’s ok if someone uses comment luv or something similar.”
- @marketwire: “When I comment, I stay away from the personal plug, but I include relevant links as well as links to my SM profiles.”
- @buona_vita: “Leave a link ONLY if it pertains to what the blogger wrote about, not just to backlink.”
Q3: What tools do you use to find blogs/articles to comment on?
- @JPedde: “Google Reader/Alerts”
- @brightmatrix: “Twitter. For me, all roads lead to/from Twitter. :-)”
- @40deuce: “(plug) I use our Sysomos software to find blogs relevant to our area to comment on”
- @nmorganhowell: “MY RSS feed has all the blogs I read regularly, but IceRocket.com is great for finding new ones”
- @buona_vita: “I like looking at Blogrolls of blogs I currently read, and Google came out with a search yesterday which is neat!”
Others include Wikio, Google Blog Search, Scribnia, and socialmention.com. The most popular “tool” to find blogs/articles to comment on was Twitter.
Q4: How do you measure relevant comments on blogs, forums and other discussion areas?
- @DavidSpinks: “Do you guys focus on being the first to comment on really popular blogs? It”s actually pretty effective…”
- @nmorganhowell: “Look at sentiment, then research the commenter. Reply to almost all comments, but decide which to give more time to”
- @40deuce: “I look for number of comments, sentiment in each comment and then value of said comment”
- @accuconference: “Isn”t every comment, as long as it”s not spam, considered relevant? Just a thought. Comments = readers.”
- @jgombita: “If youre blog doesnt have a “subscribe to comments” feature, you are missing out on return visitors/commenters.”
Q5: What action do you take after you”ve collected the measurement data? What are your next steps?
- @inspiredtrain: “My dentist told me to brush only the teeth I want to keep. Same applies to tracking. Measure everything.”
- @CelciusMI: “Re-Evaluate Interaction… What works? What Does NOT?”
- @BrandEngineers: “Data is only as good as the insights you can derive from it. Think about it in the context of everything else you know.”
- @inspiredtrain: “Measurement data is v. useful, esp. over time, Guides you to what subjects create most engagement. future subjects”
- @iamChuckHarris: “I like to use the data to for future conversations and posts. Use comments to better the blog.”
- @nmorganhowell: “Analyse data, see what tactics work, what needs tweaking, create more content & repeat! Also good to set benchmarks for msrmnt”
Funniest Tweets of the Chat
We have a nomination for Twitter’s theme music:
- @iamChuckHarris (responding to Q2 on tools used to find posts to comment on): “I trust my Twitter community for great articles. They never let me down.”
- @bikespoke responds: “Never Let Me Down; Depeche Mode, sorry song just popped in my head”
In addition to creative minds, we have comedians. What a fun group!
- @CelciusMI responding to a comment about users who leave anonymous comments
- @brightmatrix responds: “Yeah, that dude Anonymous Coward is everywhere these days. ;-)”
On Thursday, September 9th, Klout, the company that measures and scores online influence, will join us to discuss their platform and online influence. You can send questions to me by tweeting @marketwire, posting on our Facebook page or emailing me at nshin[at]marketwire[dot]com.
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Until next time,