Facebook Wall Comments — How Do We Attract Them?

by Robbie Schlosser

Magnolia Jazz Band Facebook Wall Comments — How Do We Attract Them?

Robbie Schlosser's poor iPad

Facebook Wall comments — we write them on our friends’ posts and we hope for them on our own posts.  Many Facebook experts offer advice on how to write great Facebook wall comments that will generate replies.

We’re all paying attention, right?  I’m told that engaging our friends with lots of comments back-and-forth will help us appear in each others’ Newsfeeds.  Have you heard this, too?  This is what we want, right?

Like most of us, I’m learning slowly but surely.  So far, however, my Facebook wall comments have been elusive.  Every day I comment on many friends’ posts, and I post several times a day, but most of my posts receive at most a few comments, if any.

It may be denial, but I think I’m doing the right things, just not well enough.  I envy watching a few of those experts write what seem to be simple posts, and then they receive a ton of juicy Facebook wall comments.  Aaargh!  What do I need to know?

Let me tell you a story about Facebook Wall comments.  I’m still trying to decide what to learn from it.

On a sad day last month, I posted the above photo on my Facebook profile.  You can see it (and the story behind it, and all the comments I received) in my Timeline for March 15.  It received 141 comments from my friends, as well as from strangers who since then have become my friends.  Sure, about a fourth of those comments are mine, replying back to the commenters, but I was astonished at the size of the response.

I haven’t experienced anything like that since, and I’d like to know what I created to generate all that activity.  Was it the ghastly photo?  Did I conjure up a scenario that everyone dreads?  Did I have the great (mis)fortune to post something most people hadn’t seen before, and they were just curious?

And when I finally figure out how to attract comments to my Facebook profile, I’ll turn my attention to my Facebook Page.  More important, especially for marketing my band.

How about YOU?  What do you think accounts for the flood of Facebook Wall comments I received?  How can I repeat it?

Thanks for reading my blog. I appreciate your interest and hope you get a few good ideas here. Please comment and continue this conversation. I’ll reply to you, and so will others who share your interest. You’ll make new connections.

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The Magnolia Jazz Band entertains at weddings and parties throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. If you are nearby, you’ll love catching us in action, seeing and hearing us create a great mood. In the meantime, please join our Facebook fans to receive daily tips for planning wedding and party music and to receive reminders for our public events.



The Magnolia Jazz Band entertains at weddings and parties throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. If you are ever nearby, you’ll love catching us in action, seeing and hearing us create a great mood.

Thanks for reading this article. I appreciate your interest and hope you get a few good ideas here. Do you know a friend who needs help selecting wedding or party music? Please do them a favor: SHARE this article.

Or POST in on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+. Or write me a little COMMENT and I'll reply to you. And if you find my blog useful, please LIKE it, TWEET it, and SUBSCRIBE for more ideas. Use those cute little icons below.

Magnolia Jazz Band Facebook Wall Comments — How Do We Attract Them?

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

StacieTamaki April 13, 2012 at 11:48 pm

Robbie I am so there with you. Often I post information on Facebook that I feel is helpful, informative or something that’s really important and maybe I’ll get a comment or two and one or two likes. But then I post some inane thing my husband said or geez, I’ll never forget the time I said “I love macaroni salad and can’t stop eating it” and next thing you know I had dozens of comments. My hubby said it shows that people don’t come to Facebook to be serious, it’s a place they come to relax and they just want a good laugh. OK, I can’t disagree completely but at the same time I do get messages from people who say they appreciate some of my more serious messages, even if they don’t get a lot of comments or likes.

I think your iPad update resonated with so many people because the image actually felt painful to look at so people were responding on a very visceral level. Plus you are such a nice person nobody wants to see anything bad happen to you. For some it was probably the cost of the device while for others it was recognizing that this was an important tool you use for your business that made them reach out. Either way I think it was genuine empathy that made people post to you that day.  

Reply

Robbie Schlosser April 14, 2012 at 11:26 am

Thanks for your kind and thoughtful words, Stacie.  I agree with you — Facebook always seems to be the right place, at the right time, for everything at once.  Serious and otherwise.  I think people are always both, toggling back and forth to gain perspective on our often bewildering world.  

I continue to wonder why so many people responded, and I’m developing a theory:  Perhaps the iPad image conjured both strong positive and negative feelings, and it’s this conflict that prompted action.  

Makes sense that people responded emotionally, and I suspect most people felt both moods: “I’m so sorry, I feel so bad for you, and thank God this didn’t happen to me.”  Deep down, I know I’d feel the conflict, too.  Can’t have a window without a wall.

I think it’s part of our nature to hold conflicting emotions and be driven by them.  Hard-wired, and not good or bad.  Like the effect of “comic relief”, we seem to know that to savor happiness, we need to taste sadness.  (There, an image for a foodie!)  

So does this mean we should aim our FB posts to evoke strong emotional conflicts? Well, the ensuing flood of traffic might boost our Edgerank, but all the continual anxiety would be a high price to pay.  

What do you think?  Do you often receive a better than average response from a highly charged post?

Reply

StacieTamaki April 14, 2012 at 1:13 pm

I don’t think it’s the conflict persay. I think many simply respond more strongly to messages that are more personal, less professional, in nature. It seems like my least professional posts are always the most popular on Facebook. It’s that window of accessibility to get to know the “real” you that draws people in. 

But I do agree completely that the conflicting emotions are a strong motivator in certain circumstances. 

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Nicky Kriel April 14, 2012 at 1:04 am

Hi Robbie

You have inspired me to write a blog about this, will let you know when it is done.

Nicky

Reply

Robbie Schlosser April 14, 2012 at 11:31 am

Thanks, Nicky.  Nice post at http://bit.ly/JeeAbn — this is a wonderful list of useful suggestions, and I’m getting started right away!

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Ruth Crone April 14, 2012 at 5:45 am

People like authenticity, Robbie, pure and simple.  Your post on FB must have given them that, or related to or resonated with them.  

Suggestion for you (not from a social media expert, I may add, we’re still learning loads too).  If you haven’t already, perhaps a personal message to each of the commentators inviting their thoughts on what ‘it’ was for them?  What value did they get?  
May get a low response but even low responses can be worth the time it takes to send out the collection of invites.  That’s been our experience anyhow.  Hope that helps. 

Reply

Robbie Schlosser April 14, 2012 at 11:42 am

Thanks, Ruth.  I appreciate your thoughtful suggestion.  “Authenticity” may be the key.  I certainly spilled my guts in some of my replies, didn’t I?  Until I finally ran out of time, I tried to reply to everyone who commented.  As you suggested, a personal note to each person might have been even better.  This will become a new habit for me.  In the meantime, how do YOU invite replies to your posts?

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Ruth Crone April 14, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Tend to just be myself.  LOL  But also ask questions.  The posts that get the most engagement usually have clear benefit for the reader, and a call to act either through a comment or a question or invite.  I also get a strong response from people I have met personally or engaged with elsewhere (such as on a call or at an event).     

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Linda Luke April 14, 2012 at 8:31 am

Emotional connection.  When someone’s pet dies or something exciting happens that people can identify with there tend to be more comments.  

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Robbie Schlosser April 14, 2012 at 11:54 am

Thanks, Linda.  Good suggestion.  “Emotional connection” certainly was operating here.  So I guess any post evoking some strong emotion is likely to receive lots of replies.  Makes sense, that people relate more readily with their gut before they’ll engage their mind.  It’s simply the way we are. 

But I can’t evoke a crisis with every post, can I?  To encourage replies, what else has been working for YOU?

Reply

Roy A. Ackerman, Ph.D., E.A. April 15, 2012 at 1:41 am

Hmm.   
As you notice, I am commenting here- directly on your blog.  Not via Facebook.
This is my preferred method to comment- and to receive comments.  And, I tweet, and hope others tweet my posts, as well.  And, I will post a blog on my Facebook pages if it can help my readers (business) or inspires me.  Which is better publicity for the blog than a Facebook comment.
Why?
Facebook comments really don’t appear on my blog to allow me to respond.  They require me to open up a new window, and then seek out any such comments.  So, that makes more work for me.
That’s my take, Robbie!

Reply

Robbie Schlosser April 15, 2012 at 8:18 pm

Thanks, Roy.  
I agree:  Simple and direct is often best.  Besides, Facebook comments aim to provide instant gratification (and all that implies).  They’re transient, whereas blog comments last as long as the internet lives.  People visiting this blog post will always see your comment, and can always reply to you.

By the way, what’s a “polymath”.  Something about arithmetic?  The word isn’t in my dictionary.  Ooops, I just Googled it:  “One who has learned much”.  Well, my hat’s off to you, sir.

On a related note, How are you liking this blog challenge so far?  Learning much? 
-Robbie

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