Getting a Blog to Thrive – The Importance of Interaction

Laura Ginn

Blog owners are often too focused on receiving visitors and growing their blog through constantly adding fresh content and marketing. While essential for blogs both old, new, or somewhere in between, growing a blog in size and in search rankings does not necessarily improve upon the blog’s number of repeat visitors, the life-blood of every blog. Instead, owners of thriving blogs tend to spend a little less time marketing and writing to spend a little more time interacting with their visitors. Interaction boosts the number of repeat visitors and creates a community of repeat visitors interested to hear what the owner, authors, and others have to say.

Photo by Annie Mole
Photo by Annie Mole

Responding to Comments

This is perhaps the easiest way to facilitate a community of repeat visitors. Listening to the visitors, responding to their comments, and taking suggestions tends to give visitors the impression of a tight knit community where everyone has a say. Furthermore, the Admin serves as a type of role model for visitors. If the Admin is responding to comments and states the comment somehow relates to another visitor’s comment, the community will be compelled to interact among themselves. Internal interaction is what will keep visitors coming back time and time again.

Monthly Contests

A little bribery never hurts. Monthly contests motivate regular visitors to keep checking back to see who won, and helps convert irregular and/or new guests to join, enter, and change into regular visitors. The prizes don’t have to be huge or expensive. Ideally, prizes are something related to the blog’s topic to attract visitors of the same interest.


Polls that dictate the direction one’s blog will take lets the community feel they have some control over the site along with its future. Don’t leave every matter up to visitors, however. Instead, take care of most of the behind the scenes work such as hosting and advertising and leave matters of topic, guest speakers, prizes, contests, etc. up to the guests. The latter are what visitors are interested in.

Invite Guest Writers and Speakers

No matter how good your writing is, visitors will want to hear from other authors with experience in the blog’s subject. Ask visitors for references and find someone they hold in high regard to write an article on the blog! Alternatively, you could interview the person or better yet, hold an open interview on the blog for a specific time. This can either be written or held on a program such a Skype (if the visitors are not camera shy). Guest speakers/writers may or may not charge for their advice – some are genuinely interested in helping others.

Referral Points

By setting up a system of rewards for referring active users, you are motivating regular visitors to spread the blog by word of mouth to those they interact with daily. This is great for grafting interested repeat visitors into the community at little cost. Just watch out for members who create false accounts to obtain an award. Make sure the accounts are under different emails and are active for a certain amount of time.