I love comments.
When I receive a comment, no matter if good or bad, it means that I wrote something on my blog that created a reaction in a reader. The reaction was enough to motivate the reader to leave a comment – which doesn’t happen often.
Lately, though, comments I’ve received have been quite disappointing – and a little nervy. Many times the comments are nothing more than a book summary. Some include a plea to review it, while others are filled with Web sites and social network addresses for the author.
These come from both publicists AND authors and cause me no end of aggravation.
When it first started happening, I wondered if I needed to make a clear contact button, instead of using the "What’s Your Q?" graphic. I axed that idea when I realized I had the "Submit Your Question."
My second conclusion was twofold: Some were too lazy to look for contact information, or they wanted to leave a comment in the hopes that it would go public – and snag a few sales.
While I cannot say what they were thinking, I tend to lean toward the latter. I work with many companies and individuals who think flooding comment sections with canned PR stuff is a terrific way to generate buzz and improve rankings with Google.
Thing is, it totally sucks to readers and bloggers. Comments are for conversation, not for promotions. Sure you can leave your name and Web site link at the bottom of the comment, but the comment itself should add something to the blog post conversation. Even something like, "Great post! Thanks for sharing," or "I agree. Social media takes a lot of work, but pays off in the long-run," are better than a sales pitch, book summary or list of links.
When you leave a comment for promotion, how do you do it? Have you received book review or virtual book tour pitches via comments? How have you handled them?0