Post sparingly, comment frequently

17 Dec

Participation inequality Remember the 90-9-1 rule?

This suggests that in a group of people, the overwhelming majority (90%) will be 'lurkers' – happy to visit blogs etc, but unwilling to participate actively.

Only 9% will even participate to the extent of leaving a blog comment, while a select 1% are the active content creators.

Despite the low barriers to entry and in spite of the growth of social networking sites built on user-generated content, these figures still seem broadly right.

But might they be too high? Are there really 9 commenters to every blogger?

My 862 posts on this blog to date have encouraged 1414 comments – that's fewer than two comments for each blog post.

For new bloggers, the situation is even worse – and it can be discouraging. Who wants to be that person on the street shouting at the passing traffic with people hurrying by and avoiding eye contact?

So here's what I've been doing over the past few weeks. I've only posted once a week to this blog (but more frequently to other group blogs I run). But I have been trying to leave encouraging comments on new student blogs I've discovered (the list down on the right sidebar has some new additions and my RSS feed has several more I'm following).

But even then I doubt I've managed a 1:9 ratio. But it's probably a good target to aim at. Why not make some other people happy today by spreading some seasonal cheer? Who knows, you may get some return visits (and even some comments) by doing so.

6 Responses to “Post sparingly, comment frequently”

  1. sikis izle 19/12/2010 at 7:39 pm #

    I would like to visit your site from Turkey thank you for the beautiful and useful information that you provide.

  2. Mark Dorey 20/12/2010 at 9:44 am #

    Hi Richard,
    It’s a great point – I’m certainly trying to discipline myself to comment on at least a couple of blogs each day.
    One down for today already!
    Have a great Christmas.

  3. LondonPR 21/12/2010 at 12:13 pm #

    Commenting blogs can prove a fantastic way of advertising your clients, but you have to be relevant.

  4. Bryony Czujko 28/12/2010 at 3:48 pm #

    I totally agree Richard! It can be a bit disencouraging… I read quite a lot of blogs but admittedly never bother to comment, probably leaving the author feeling like they’ve written it for no reason at all!
    I also plan on commenting and posting a lot more, so like Mark I am also one down today 🙂

  5. Annabel Kaye 06/01/2011 at 1:53 pm #

    Interesting post. I rarely comment on blogs because the comments I do see seem mostly to be self promotion or blatant advertising of inappropriate things (Not that I am suggesting the comments above are like this) and I feel uncomfortable joining this particular party.
    I like intelligent comments on my blog though (though most are spam!) and I will make an effort!

  6. Victoria Tomlinson 07/01/2011 at 4:27 pm #

    Just spotted your blog Richard – and very good point! It will be my new year resolution to do more. One of the points I picked up last year was from Liz Strauss’ book on writing a blog – don’t finish the conversation in your blog or why does anyone want to comment?
    So my goal this year is also to write blogs in a way that entices comment more easily!
    Good luck for yours

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