Encouraging Viewer Participation on Your WordPress Blog

29 January 2016

Engaging readers with your brand is one of the most critical functions of your blog. Modern consumers expect a certain level of interactivity in their media; they expect to do more than just consume your content. They expect to participate in the messaging of your brand. Your WordPress blog enables this kind of participation through a system of user accounts and syndicated feed outputs. Directing your consumers to these key functions empowers them to participate on your blog and take ownership of your brand.

RSS Feed Subscription

The most basic and passive form of interaction, the syndicated feed delivers your content to the consumer as soon as it is produced. Consumers may then read it at their own convenience without any pressure to respond. Using nested feeds, WordPress allows readers to select specific content and exclude others. The reader feels empowered by choosing to receive or exclude your content and your message gets delivered to interested consumers.

Post Comments

Readers who take the time to comment on your posts are displaying the most important behavior of all, that they value your attention. A certain amount of moderation is important when you choose to allow readers to post comments on your content. Your Terms of Use policy should clearly outline the conduct expected of users, and your controls should enforce those policies.

User Accounts

The WordPress system of user account controls allows the blog owner to control who can post and receive content. A user account provides you with valuable demographic and contact information about your consumers, volunteered at the time they sign up. Native controls allow you to incentivise the creation of a user account by restricting certain content to logged in users or only allowed logged in users to post comments.

Dynamic Comment Syndication

Viewers have the option to subscribe to just the comments feed from individual content streams. This allows them to follow a conversation between other users and to more easily participate in the conversation. Many users don’t even know this option exists; WordPress supports it natively. Drawing your reader’s attention to this feature increases the likelihood of participation and provides an incentive for readers to share your content.

Consumer interaction with modern media need not be extensive or controlled for quality. Your readers are valuable for the fact of their participation, not necessarily the quality of their content. Consumers who interact regularly with a brand create positive associations that lead to the ultimate goal of all advertising, conversions.

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