Bloggers, here is a question for you:
Do you ask questions at the very end of your blog posts?
Always? Or only when you genuinely want to know the answer?
When I started blogging years ago, I never asked anyone any questions.
I blogged mostly for myself and even when I started blogging for the sense of community and knowing that other people read it, I still didn’t do it. I didn’t need to do it. Because without even asking them the people who wanted to say something would still leave their comment.
But then the blogging community boomed. There are more blogs in the blogosphere than ever. “Reader engagement” has become the main goal. ” You are none without your readers” has become a cautionary tale. “Build Your Tribe” has become a money-making marketing mantra. And I am not even going to touch the constant “reminder” to build a mailing list dished out by every single blogging guru I know.
One of the tricks, I mean methods, they teach is to ask the question at the very end of a blog post. To engage the reader to leave a comment. You know, to build a community, as they say. So a few years into my blogging journey, I started doing just that.
Not only had I been writing a post and ending it with comments, I even went as far as going back and adding questions at the end on the old posts too. Just in case anyone went back that far to read them and somehow inclined to connect with me to comment but not sure how to start because I didn’t ask them any questions to initiate the conversation.
Spoiler alert: hundreds of crafted questions later. None ever answered any. But I still follow the formula. Writing a post and ending it with a question.
Even if the questions are not well written, well placed, well asked, it’s always well-intended.
Until one day I woke up during this pandemic (of course, it must be during a pandemic because when else would my brain have the time to think about all these things) and decided to stop asking a question on every single blog post. Not only that, me being the Virgo that I am, I went and wiped most of the questions I posted in my old blog posts.
And let me tell you I have asked some fucking cringe-worthy questions. I have asked people which fish market they go to buy their seafood on at least ten different posts. No wonder none left any comments.
If you ask me why I did it — as in why I wiped the questions at the tail end of my posts — I can’t really say why. Or whether it was even the right decision for my blog. The only thing that I can come up with right now, while I am typing this, that might not even be the right reason, is I feel like not asking the question at the end of the blog post, unless I really want to know the answer, give back a bit of authenticity to the original act of blogging. Gosh, I am clearly rambling.
Do you think it’s important to ask a question at the end of a blog post?— see what I did there??