Have you seen the difference in the actual traffic of your site and the number of participants/active users? I bet it’s huge. I recall Darren stating once that only less than 10-30% of his visitors comment on his blog.
So there’s a huge potential with the inactive visitors to your blog. How do you trap (if that’s the wrong word, attract) them?
First let’s see why there’s a huge gap between active and inactive visitors.
Active visitors are your real fans. They want to make a personal bond to you. So they take part in all the activities on your site. Like competitions, comments, offers etc.
Active users have had a pleasant experience with you in the first place.
Active users would have been in contact with you on email, chat etc or they might have been impressed with one of the first posts they read on your blog. Or simply they would’ve loved your photo on the blog. Basically, if someone has a good pleasant experience with you the first time, they are likely to stick around longer.
It also means that you are yet to “touch” the bigger share – the inactive visitors.
They are the ones who read your posts regularly in the RSS reader, don’t really participate in the discussions nor try to contact you, yet they may like the contents of your blog.
How can we connect with the inactive readers?
– You have to understand what they need.
And believe me it’s going to be very very difficult. If it took you 2bricks to reach to your active audience then you may have to use 20bricks to reach the inactive crowd.
– You have to provocate them.
Sometimes, all the good talk doesn’t work out. You have to say/do something totally out of your normal style. Like write a provocative post, crossing the lines. Or it may require you to use a strategy to nudge them to act.
– You got to scan them.
Simply by assuming that there are some amount of inactive readers in your blog doesn’t work. You have to use the metrics to see how many are there and by what volume of the total traffic. If they are negligible I think that this exercise isn’t worth it.
– You have to bait them.
Just like link baiting to another sites, you have to do a link bait internally to your own readers. Probably give away prizes to some first time commenters, or an email subscriber who has never commented in your posts or something similar, it’s up to you.
Now all the creative guys out there, think of ideas by which you can get the inactive readers participating. I bet there are some wicked ideas out there…I’d like to hear from you though.