You have just created an article that you have spent hours researching, writing and proofreading. This is the product of your sweat, blood, tears and you’re rather proud of your creation. Unless you’ve been writing for similar topics for quite some time, formulating an article will take considerable effort on your part.
There are 3 ways you check whether you have succeeded in your goal of reaching your target audience:
- Your post gets reblogged
- Your article gets shared on various social media sites like Google+, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest
- Your readers take the time to leave a comment on your article.
Comments differ. Public opinion varies. There might be a consensus among the majority but no matter how good and how thought provoking your article is, chances are you would still encounter disgruntled readers who will not think twice to let you know about their opinions and views. Or it could be the other way around. A mediocre or a sub-par article (at least to your high level of standards) might not always get the bashing you think it deserves since some of your readers may have loved your article and are not shy to leave a comment about it.
This is because it is a rare occurrence to get a unanimous opinion regarding one topic. Opinions differ due to so many factors and as a business owner and author of that particular article; you should be savvy enough to tackle these comments with dignity.
Regardless of what type of comments you will receive, it is your responsibility to your readers to acknowledge the fact that you are aware that they took the time to leave a comment.
May it be a positive or negative comment, you need to reply. Doing so lets your reader know you value their opinion. It could also help your blog, SEO wise.
So how do you address this concern?
Pretty simple. Listed below are the different types of comments you might receive and the appropriate responses you can give in return.
How to answer when the comment is positive
That’s the best possible comment to receive and what you, as a blogger and business owner, hope to get. Nothing soothes the ego more than a compliment for a nicely written article.
Positive comments come in different forms. If the comment doesn’t require any answer, a simple “Thank you. Glad you liked it” or “Thanks for the feedback. Much appreciated” will suffice. A happy emoji is also acceptable.
If the comment is positive but included specific excerpts from the article, it is still acceptable to say thank you but you can make it better by expounding the virtues of the particular subject highlighted by your reader. If there were important passages you have not included, now is the perfect time to dole out those information. Quote other resources if you have to.
If the comment is a positive testimonial in relation to your products or services that you are selling, include testimonials of other people to give the impression that his positive testimonial is NOT the only one you have received. This is also the perfect time for you to slowly introduce your other goods and services (if you have any).
How to reply if the comment is neutral
If the comment is a little bit ambiguous, be neutral in your reply. Words can easily be manipulated so you have to be very careful in giving out your replies. You don’t want a neutral reader become negative because of your poor choice of words in replying to his/her initial comment.
How to reply if the comment is negative
If the comment is negative then you have to thread carefully. Negative comments always have the tendency to rub off to other people. You have to be extremely tactful when dealing with negative comments. Do not let your emotions get the better of you. Do not take this type of comment personal. They are not attacking you as a person but the reader simply just doesn’t agree with your views on your article.
Be gracious still. You could start by thanking the reader for taking the time to leave a comment on your article. Do not be rude or sarcastic no matter how unfair your reader’s comment might be. Do not stoop down to their level.
After saying thank you and acknowledging their comment, you may defend your point of view. In your reply, ask them to allow you to explain why you’ve written your article in that way. Give short and concise replies.
If the reader will reply one more time and the comment is still negative, then you may leave it as it is, unless you still have several worthy rebuttals to support your stand.
If you’re getting more than your fair share of negative comments, never despair even if your readers might resort to bashing. Do not give your bashers the satisfaction by being rude to them.
How to reply to spam or bots
Most website creation tools allow the use of widgets or plugins that will automatically remove spam from your comments. There are free anti-spam widgets that you can use and this is very important because will help you save time and effort from weeding out spam comments from legitimate comments.
Most of the time spam is unrelated to your article, products or services. You may delete them if you wish.
Always maintain a professional facade
Just remember that you can never please everybody no matter how hard you try. Expecting everyone to agree with you is asking for the impossible. Your article is based on your own perspective. It is your own point of view. It is based on your own research, not your readers.
Unless your article is doing a hard sell on your products and services, do not expect or aim to have everybody agree with you. That will never happen. Your article’s aim should be to educate and inform people about a certain topic and nothing else.
Your answers to all kinds of comments must always be professional, gracious and sensible. Your article should never lose the tone of dignity and professionalism. Leave the sensationalism to gossip rags and tabloids. Your blog or website is the online representation of your business. How you reply to these comments will tell a lot about how you handle your business.