We live in a world full of take, grab, me, me, me, etc. So sometimes it's a nice surprise when we come across someone who is willing to put others first, and try to do their best by them.
I'm talking today about altruism, a much neglected trait, certainly amongst commenters. Most marketers who attempt at social networking are selfish, spoilt, inward focused, bloody minded, full of self-interest and are hell bent on promoting themselves or their business. (If you don't agree, tell me so in the comments!)
Whereas I maintain they would do so much better otherwise. It is having the ability to think of and focus on other people which is why altruism is important in the world of commenting. Nobody is interested in those who are self-absorbed, unable to communicate properly, or prefer to dump their link and leave.
It is worth taking a step back to fully consider what this Infographic is attempting to tell you:
And here's some code you could paste into your own posts (via the text mode) if you want to share this Infographic with your readers.
Make a real difference
There has been a lot of talk recently, especially in the after-math of the pandemic, and amidst the throes of the cost-of-living crisis, about raising the wellbeing and improving the lives of people caught up in coping with today's world.
So if there is someone who is willing to make someone a bit happier than they were before, surely this is a good thing? It is the attention towards others, the interest in what they do, the unselfish concern and the willingness to help, which can make such a difference.
Altruism produces a positive effect on people. This generous behaviour which sets out to encourage others, offer beneficial solutions to their problems, or merely lets people know someone is prepared to listen to them, can carry enough weight to encourage them to carry on.
Share your knowledge
To benefit yourself from the importance of altruism when commenting online, make sure you are exposing your expertise to the right people. You need to ensure your benevolence is being transferred to the most appropriate quarter.
Think what you can offer from within your knowledge-banks. You probably have a wealth of experience which you can share. Combine this within a relatable story, delivered in an easy-to-absorb manner, for the best impact.
People are constantly looking for solutions. Most will be very grateful to receive something which they can understand and easily implement. Altruism works best if you can contain an instant 'hit' within your answer.
Why else would you comment?
You will need a change in mindset geared towards permanent kindness and positivity. Altruism can generate a sense of wellbeing for yourself as well, as certain chemicals are created within your brain and body as a 'reward'. Though altruism shouldn't be done solely for this purpose.
However, the importance of altruism in commenting can provide a purpose which may have been lacking before. It may be lovely to comment with your friends online, but without a proper objective, usually derived from a commenting marketing strategy, the benefits obtained could easily go awry.
The idea is to get those who read your comments to know, like and trust you through your comments. Offering and providing help where needed will certainly attract their attention, as it shows you are focused on connecting with them, and not solely for your own gains.
Stand out above the others
The ability to solve a problem instantly places you head and shoulders above those who can't. The fact you have done this without any recompense reveals a presence of mind which is admirable and to be commended.
This kind of commenting will easily set you apart, as most responses will not be so intentional, let alone well crafted and full of added value. Using this tactic is an excellent method to get noticed for the right reasons.
Now your newly captured audience will be more willing to read what you have to say. Being considered a fountain of wisdom can be easily geared towards becoming the go-to expert in your niche or industry.
Think how you can help
Try to do some social listening first, in this case actually and properly reading the post and all the other comments, so you can assess exactly what you can offer people through your knowledge, experience or authority.
Then when you write your comments, you are offering value, delivering tangible and implementable solutions people can immediately take away and use, and answers and solutions which stand out above all the other comments.
This is miles away from the usual comments people deliver. What value is there in "Nice post" or something similar? Because your comments are more superior, they will be welcomed, read and acted upon, and people will wake up and notice you whenever you next comment.
Increase your credibility
All this sharing, or altruism, is about improving your reputation, getting known for your expertise, and building up your credibility, so that people start to know, like and trust you. But the most important element is trust, because that is what makes them do what you want them to do next.
This increased awareness you have created contributes towards a sense of belonging between you and the people who have got to know you. You will have started to build up a community of loyal readers from your commenting activities purely because of the value you offer them.
As a result, if you hint in your comments that by clicking on your name, they will be able to read more information about the subject you are commenting on, they will be more likely to do so. Voilà, more traffic to your relevant post, sales page, marketing funnel, or whatever your strategic objective is!
What do people really want?
Now, part of the strategy of commenting is to not only attract suitable readers, but to get them to reply. They need to respond so you can start having a conversation with them. This is much easier in social media, where engagement is in real-time, but there is no reason why long-distance communication can't happen.
During these conversations, you ask questions which get your readers to tell you what they want, what is missing from their lives, or what problems they have. This is excellent research into what you can offer them.
If this isn't possible on this blog you are commenting on, entice them onto your blog or another social forum, where you can discuss things with them properly. Your blog is a hub of information for reference purposes, but your community is where the real magic happens.
No room for selfish altruism here
Selfish altruism is when you are kind or helpful to someone, but expect something similar to happen in return. For me, this is not what altruism is about. You should be freely offering your wisdom and help to others. If they respond, it is on their own terms, done willingly and not through coercion.
A great power happens when you understand why altruism is important in commenting. This activity stops being an automatic response, without thought or reason. There is a proper purpose, or a goal to obtain. More social relationships are built which could be developed into readers, clients, customers, or whatever.
But it needs to be done in the other person's favour. They need to understand and appreciate the benefits, feel comfortable with you when you communicate with them, and have an affinity or can relate to what you say or offer. Only then are they more likely to respond the way you want them to.
What do you think about the importance of altruism in commenting?
How much altruism do you do when you comment online? Blogs, social media, social forums or wherever? Even offline, in letters and other forms of communication? The power of extending your help could be limitless, as long as this fits in with your overall strategy.
Let me know in the comments below what you think about his post. Can you relate to what I say? Does this transform the way you approach commenting from now on? Or do you think this is a waste of time?
You could also share your successes, or failures, or any other story, about when you used altruism within commenting. Or in any other marketing format, activity, or just being generally nice and kind to people. We would love to hear from you.