Before beginning your business blog, it’s not a bad idea to check out the competition.
Call it a form of market research, if you will: such checking allows you to see what people are interested in as well as to possibly avoid making the same errors as your competition.
In addition to creating a unique niche, or your own unique spin on a particular niche, seeing what’s out there helps you to make sure you are not mining your information from the same available sources. You want your blog to be as different from the next guy’s as possible. Take your cue both from what your competitors are doing well and what they may not be doing so well.
It’s not about seeing what you can “take” from other blogs; by commenting on other blogs, you can gain valuable back links to your own site, good for WordPress SEO. Recipient bloggers don’t mind this; in fact they love it!
Engaging the public is what blogging is all about, and it shows visitors that the blog is being read and that people are finding it useful. Not coincidentally, it can provide valuable PR for you, because each comment provides another link to your own blog, and in a place where does likely to be noticed by potential visitors.
Bloggers also like comments because people who are interested enough in the blog to comment on it are likely to return again in the future. Comments attest to the popularity of the blog, because for every comment there are likely dozens or even hundreds who read the entry without commenting. Comments show that readers are engaged with a blog and like what it has to offer.
How does it work? Most blogs offer fields not only for the comment, but for a link to your own blog or website. Therefore, if your comment is approved, not only will you gain a back link to your own blog that will be noted by the search engines (if the recipient blog does not have “no follow” set for blog comments) but, more importantly, those who are intrigued by your comment can click your link to visit your own blog or website.
There are plug-ins for the Mac and PC version of Firefox to make blog commenting easier. For example, the EasyComment plugin will automatically detect the blog commenting field on a webpage and automagically fill in your name and URL with the click of a button. It even has options like language mutation for making the actual process of commenting easier.
However, be careful to avoid leaving comments just for the sake of doing so, or of leaving comments that fail to provide an indication that you have actually read the blog post you are commenting on! Spam or negative comments will merely reflect poorly on your own blog and can ultimately reflect poorly on the whole blogging business.
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