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How to Use Blog Comments to Land Gigs and Find Ideas

Any blogger or content marketer would agree that comments matter. Spammy ones aside, comments can serve as an indicator of how engaging or thought-provoking an article is. They also allow you to get to know your readers a little bit better and get insights on the types of content that resonate with your audience the most.

Comments are also encouraged by blogs because they pave the way for the 3 major Ds that drive traffic: discussion, debate, and drama.

But that’s just the tip of the ice berg.

Beyond content marketing and traffic generation, comments have some really practical uses, especially for freelancers. From getting more clients to finding stuff to write about, the comments section of your blog and the blogs of other people in your industry can serve as a goldmine for ideas and connections.

Don’t believe me? Below are a couple of ways on how you can use comments to your advantage:

Blog comments can enable you to connect with thought leaders and potential clients

Want to get the attention of thought leaders in your industry? Comment on their blog posts. And no, I’m not referring to posting some generic one liner (i.e. “great post!”). I’m talking about submitting witty, insightful remarks that actually contribute to the conversation.

Doing this consistently can put you on people’s radars and can help you land guest posts, partnerships, even mentorships with the gurus in your industry. How? If webmasters recognize you as a regular and contributing reader, they’ll be more likely to respond to your attempts to contact them. If you’re looking to “warm up” your cold emails or calls but can’t get an introduction, effective commenting is a good way to go.

Can blog comments actually land you some writing gigs? You bet. You just need to be strategic about it. Lengthy comments aren’t always necessary to turn the heads of your prospects. Sometimes, a genuine, thoughtful remark on the right article can do the trick.

Here’s how I did it:

Several months ago I came across an article on PandoDaily that covered the recent success of a former client. I was thrilled to learn about the news so I left a comment to express how happy I was for them.

I wasn’t really expecting anything to come out of the comment, but boy am I glad I took the time to write it. Because some time after that, the guys in the article touched base with me and sent a few projects my way.

blog comment

Since then I made it a point to follow news about clients and potential clients and I make sure to comment and contribute to discussions that they’re in.

You can use them to get ideas

A while back, I interviewed freelance blogger Sophie Lizard and one of the things that we talked about was idea generation. Sophie has written a ton of insightful posts on some of the best sites in the blogosphere and I was curious about how she did it.

When I asked how she comes up with things to write about, she mentioned that among other things, she sometimes got article ideas from the comments section of her posts.

“When I publish a post, somebody will pop up and go, ‘This is really cool but I wish you wrote more about this and that’, and I’ll go ‘Okay, then I will.’”

The next time you’re suffering from writer’s block or topic fatigue, consider following in Sophie’s footsteps. Mine the comments section of your blog or any other sites in your industry. Who knows — you just might find a gem of an idea that would give you your next big article.

Readers often bring up stuff that the article might have missed. Take note of these things and base your next post on them.

Also pay attention to the anecdotes and stories shared in the comments. Identify any pain points and write something that can solve their problems.

Francesca Nicasio (formerly Francesca StaAna) is the founder of CredibleCopywriting.net and is currently developing Copywriter2.0, an online course that teaches aspiring freelance writers the ins and outs of the biz.

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{ 34 comments… add one }

  • Rajesh February 23, 2014, 11:07 am

    Really Nice tips Francesca Nicasio, great writing efforts,

    I’ve also started commenting on the blogs to increase my reach and connect with bloggers like you,

    Thanks for the tips, following the blog.

  • Silas Nkoana December 10, 2013, 2:45 pm

    I make sure that i don’t outsource my blog comment accepts to my virtual assistant as my criteria for accepting changes all the time depending on the period in time, length of the comment and the questions asked. It is especially wise to look at the links that they leave with the keyword because they lead to the sites which might have similar content as the one on your site.

  • Joe Hart September 27, 2013, 4:50 am

    Great ideas come through great conversations.In the small commenting box of site could be an idea that can revolutionize your business.

    • Francesca Nicasio October 8, 2013, 8:10 pm

      “In the small commenting box of site could be an idea that can revolutionize your business.” –That’s beauty of blog commenting. :)

  • Sanjib Saha September 15, 2013, 2:10 am

    Hi
    Blog commenting is a part of my routine and I am sure this goes same for other bloggers too. There are unlimited benefits which can’t be covered in a single article. What you have mentioned is something unique and different. I liked the idea very much. I am looking forward to connect with you.
    Regards
    Sanjib Saha recently posted..Simple yet Effective Methods on How to do Job HuntingMy Profile

    • Francesca Nicasio October 8, 2013, 8:10 pm

      Thank you, Sanjib! I’m looking forward to connecting with you as well.

  • Sophorn September 11, 2013, 1:25 pm

    It definitely is a great way to interact with your readers. But comment spammers really ruin things. What is the best way to combat spam in your opinion?

    • Francesca Nicasio October 8, 2013, 8:09 pm

      Hi Sophorn,

      I use Disqus on my blog. A few spammy comments slip through the cracks every now and then, but overall I’m happy with it!

  • megha September 4, 2013, 12:19 pm

    As we all know commenting is a good way to interact with your readers and it help you to know them more better. But as you say, you can use them to get ideas is the part which i like most.Thanks for sharing such a good post!

    • Francesca Nicasio October 8, 2013, 8:07 pm

      You’re very welcome, Megha. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  • Harman August 24, 2013, 1:00 pm

    True said Francesca,
    Comments are one of the easiest way to build relationships with a pro by just leaving a quality content. Not to forget the link juice that is passed over via a comment link :P

    • Francesca Nicasio August 29, 2013, 10:44 am

      True. Thanks for reminding us about comment link juice, Harman! :)

  • Joe Hart August 24, 2013, 3:58 am

    For me commenting is a great way to cement relationships with exceptionally talented writers who give interesting perspective of things for everybody to grow.I think with trust everything else including a whole lot of projects will come your way.Great post Francesca.Keep such great articles coming.

    • Francesca Nicasio August 29, 2013, 10:46 am

      “Commenting is a great way to cement relationships with exceptionally talented writers who give interesting perspective(s)” — Completely agree, Joe! I’ve connected with several other writers as well, thanks to blog comments.

  • Marcie August 20, 2013, 7:41 am

    Love the blog I found it very helpful. I am looking forward to trying some of the ideas on my blog.

  • Ankit Bansal August 19, 2013, 12:06 am

    Now here is out of the box article.
    Loved the idea of the article. Making a useful and realistic comment help you understand better the author’s point of view and it also helps you create better ideas and conversations.
    Awesome article.

    • Francesca Nicasio August 29, 2013, 10:47 am

      Glad you like the article, Ankit! Thank you for leaving a comment. :)

  • denish August 12, 2013, 2:42 am

    I really get the innovative ideas from the blog comment , I prefer to read blog comments, actually in SEO industry there are many rumours sometimes say that blog commenting has been become the black hat seo some times no, but generally its not done.You also post a good information regards this .I appreciate your views .

    • Francesca Nicasio August 14, 2013, 11:36 am

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Denish! I think reading and posting comments to build relationships and connect with others is a great strategy. I have to say though, I’m not a fan of commenting for SEO purposes.

  • Shelley August 11, 2013, 5:56 pm

    A recent discussion within my writing circle spawned incredible resources for creative commons photographs. Everything I needed for a great blog post was right before me. Although it didn’t generate a lot of comments, it did reach beyond my normal sphere of influence (which is still small). Comment sections can definitely be the place for gleaning the seeds for new posts.

    • Francesca Nicasio August 12, 2013, 10:16 am

      Glad you were to generate a blog post from the discussions in your writing circle, Shelley! And yes, while your influence isn’t that big yet, regularly publishing blog posts and engaging in the comments (both on your blog and other sites) can help build up your influence in no time.

  • Hugh Leon August 9, 2013, 8:28 pm

    Yes commenting on other blogs does give us ideas or topics to cover, while reading other readers’ comments.

    • Francesca Nicasio August 12, 2013, 10:12 am

      Right you are, Hugh! That’s why I never neglect the comment section. Thanks for weighing in. :)

  • Pramod August 8, 2013, 10:33 pm

    Sometimes , i do get ideas for my next blog posts (not based on technology) through comments .I really appreciate the efforts of the commentators for giving me ideas :D .Nice post , thanks for sharing it with us !

    -Pramod

    • Francesca Nicasio August 9, 2013, 9:37 am

      You’re welcome, Pramod! I’m glad that mining comments for ideas works for you as well. :)

  • Gautam August 8, 2013, 11:54 am

    you rightly said that Comment works even the Spammy ones and one Can get great ideas from it if use it right way.

    • Francesca Nicasio August 9, 2013, 9:36 am

      Glad you agree, Gautam! Thanks so much sharing your thoughts!

    • Karan August 10, 2013, 3:04 am

      I don’t think spammy comment can be of any use and the same was mentioned in the article either you didn’t read it or you have a different point of view on this :D
      Karan recently posted..How To Add Google Custom Search On WordPress SiteMy Profile

  • Shathyan Raja August 8, 2013, 8:39 am

    Earlier Commenting is one of the easiest way to get backlinks. But now it has been a tool for getting reputation and also building rapport with bloggers or like mined people.

    The way we comments defines us in this virtual/online world which can lead us to grow in getting network in big people.
    Shathyan Raja recently posted..Balanced Corporate Web Marketing Seo StrategiesMy Profile

    • Francesca Nicasio August 8, 2013, 10:41 am

      “Earlier Commenting is one of the easiest way to get backlinks. But now it has been a tool for getting reputation and also building rapport with bloggers or like mined people.” –True. Personally though, I prefer reputation and rapport over backlinks. :)

  • Dean Saliba August 8, 2013, 7:15 am

    Fantastic to hear you landed some projects via a comment, I’ve had the same thing happen to me in the past. I used to send feedback to writers on a number of blogs back in the early 2000s and a lot of them ended up inviting me to write for their sites and newsletters. :)
    Dean Saliba recently posted..My Very First VideoMy Profile

    • Francesca Nicasio August 8, 2013, 10:43 am

      Right back at ya, Dean! Congrats on gigs that you got. Goes to show that you CAN comment your way into paid work. :)

  • Ryan Biddulph August 7, 2013, 8:18 pm

    I dig mining the comments field Francesca; super insight here! I landed a paid guest posting gig through the comments field and also had the writers at problogger.net ready to ask me to submit a post, even before I reached out to them.

    Such is the power of an insightful, well-thought out comment.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Ryan
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted..Release Dream StealersMy Profile

    • Francesca Nicasio August 8, 2013, 10:44 am

      Paid work AND the attention of ProBlogger? Nice. I’m thrilled that commenting worked out really well for you, Ryan. *Virtual high-five!*

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