For about a year, I have been using the Postmatic commenting system here on the blog. It’s been great not only having comments delivered in a cool format, but the option of replying to comments via email is a terrific time saver for both me and my readers.
A Little History on the Plugins and Systems We Have Used
This blog has been around since 2011. Both Judy and I have been blogging for many years. And I do believe we have tried every commenting plugin and system for WordPress. Along the way, there have been benefits and drawbacks to each. We used some for just a few months, and others longer. I am not writing this post to give you the history of our experiences, but just to let you know, we’ve seen it all.
A Little History of Comments
We have written numerous posts over the years about commenting—from all angles and directions. And if you have been blogging for a decent period of time, you’ve seen the changes as commenting systems have adapted to new technologies and environments, the social media phenomenon in particular.
We have found that the whole commenting issue has a lot to do with what you blog about, how your write your posts and how—and whether— you want to engage people in conversations.
We do a lot of WordPress tech and blogging tutorials, how-to’s and tips. Our content isn’t geared toward getting a lot of comments. We find them more in the form of questions here and there. And we are okay with that.
Then Along Came Postmatic
When Jason from Postmatic connected with me via Danny Brown about a year ago, I was ready to give them a try for a couple of reasons.
- It worked with the native WordPress default system I was currently using.
- The thought of replying to comments easily via an email instead of having to log in on the blog first, was intriguing.
A Year Has Passed
In the last couple of days, Postmatic came out with the official version of 2.0. I had the pleasure of working with it a bit before then. What immediately caught my eye was a new feature called Digests. I had been doing my newsletter via on another platform for some time and, coincidentally, I was ready for a change. Since I was mostly sharing content from our blog via the newsletter, I felt there had to be an easier way.
It turned out that Postmatic was it.
Watch this video to see all it has to offer as I walk you through the backend and give you examples of the emails that I send out.
Note: I am no longer using it for my emails for various reasons, but still highly recommend it.
A Few Things I Didn’t Touch On In the Video
You can now send Postmatic subscribers to 500+ other applications and services. Their Zapier intergration uses Webhooks to send subscribe and unsubscribe notifications to the application of your choice.
The Postmatic Widget
I didn’t share with you the actual opt-in widget that can be easily placed in any widget area on your site.
Other Plugins for Postmatic
This is an alternative to Disqus if you are using it or considering using it. Epoch is more focused on speed and privacy. It’s cited as “100% realtime native comments in a self-adapting template which actually increases site performance.” Plus, unlike Disqus, there isn’t any data mining or ads.
Community Moderation with Crowd Control
Moderating a large community can be a pain. With this plugin, you can invite your users to lend a hand by flagging offensive comments, so you keep your site cleaner.
Postmatic Social Commenting
This lets your users comment instantly using their social profiles. Their lightweight social plugin authenticates their identity and after that, they are free to comment.
Elevated Comments uses language analysis and machine learning to identify the most relevant and thoughtful comment on each of your posts. The comment is then automatically inserted near the top of the post as a simple sidebar pull quote.
A Great Option for Your WordPress Blog Comments
I must admit that I love this plugin. It has served me well over the last year and now with 2.0 and its cool features, you have even more flexibility and possibilities for reader choices. If you are looking for a way to grow your comments while making it easy for your readers to reply, check it out. And if you are looking to get creative with your lists by letting your readers choose between a per post update or a digest, it’s time to take a closer look at Postmatic.
Remember, choices are good.