Blogging can feel like a very one-sided conversation sometimes. You’re sitting there, typing away, and sharing content with your readers. But you don’t hear anything back. They read and respond with silence. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way. Blogs were designed to facilitate engagement and communications. There’s a reason you can leave comments and all it takes is a little encouragement to get your own readers to do that on your blog. Combine that with a little social media interaction and there’s no reason you can’t turn this into a fully engaged conversation that will help you grow a loyal base of fans. Because let’s face it, while it’s nice for our ego to get lots of comments and interactions, when you’re blogging for a living what really counts is making enough money to pay your bills at the end of the month. And for that to happen you need a loyal audience that not only knows, likes, and trusts you but is also comfortable spending money with you or your sponsors. And for that to happen you need an engaged audience. Interaction helps too because with each email your readers send you, with each comment they post, and each social media post they write you learn a little more about your target audience and how you can best serve them. And that right there is the key to becoming a profitable blogger. Know your market, serve your market, and present them with offers to help them reach their goals or fill their need. We know it’s important, but how do we get the ball rolling and encourage our audience, our readers to interact with us bloggers? We do it by asking them questions, by asking them for feedback and by encouraging them to share their options – right from our blog posts. Let me give you an example. Let’s say you’re writing a post about getting your baby to sleep through the night. Within the post, ask your readers how old their kids are, or what their own experiences are with their infants. Ask them to share if they are struggling with getting enough sleep right now because baby wakes them up every few hours. Encourage them to share their stories and tell them exactly where and how to do it – by leaving a comment below. Now the next step is crucial. As soon as you see that first comment or two pop up, reply to them and keep the conversation going. This will do two things for you. Not only will you have a great conversation with the reader that commented (and a chance to form a deeper relationship), seeing you reply also shows other readers that you care and really want to hear from them. And that’s what’s going to encourage more and more of your loyal readers to comment. The same goes for social media engagement. When you post a link to your latest blog post, ask your friends and followers to like, share, and comment. Then let them know how much you appreciate it when they do. Of course you can get the conversation going there too by asking a question related to your blog post on Facebook for example. It’s a great way to share another link to your blog post and get the conversation going at the same time. Give these tips a try and see if you can’t get your readers to engage and interact with you. It’s well worth the effort.