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If a prospect calls you and leaves a voice mail asking for more information about your services, you call them back.

If you meet a potential customer in person and they have a question for you, you listen carefully and answer it as well as possible.

If a client emails you with questions about a recent purchase, you send back an email as quickly as possible with a response.

In every instance, interaction is key to your business survival.

Then why would blogging be any different?

Today’s websites are being built on blogging platforms – 1 in 4 is created using WordPress. People wanted complete access to an easy system to add, delete and change content – WordPress was the solution.

As you are adding new content, your purpose should be to reach out and connect with people that may not have heard of you before. You’re sharing bits and pieces of information that attract people for different reasons. And once they follow the trail and end up on your site reading what you have to say, the next most obvious action they will take is to leave a comment. Whether it’s a question, a disagreement, an opinion, or just a quick “I agree”, it’s the first step in reaching out to you.

Why would you want to discourage that step?

“I’m worried people will say negative things about me.”

I hear that a lot from business owners. And yes, no one likes hearing negative comments about themselves or their business. But in some cases it can be an education. Maybe the commenter misunderstood you, or didn’t have enough information to make an informed decision. By allowing their comments to flow through to your post, you now have the ability to add to the comment and provide an answer. Correct any misconceptions. Add more information to get your point across.

People today don’t stop at the article; they read all the way through the comments as well. (Providing there aren’t hundreds or thousands of them.) You can use this to further educate your readers.

With comments, you can turn off the ability to comment, leave it wide open to post immediately when someone comments, or put them in “holding” until you approve it.

I recommend this last approach. Not only does it give you full control to only put through legitimate comments, it also gives you a chance to respond.

Delete the “you suck” comments. Yes, you will get those. They aren’t worth your time to dwell on. Just delete.

They use the rest to help you improve your customer service, add more depth to your site, and share more with your readers.

You’ll see its all worth it when you sign up a customer because of something you said.