The larger your site grows, the more noise it will receive. You don’t want your site to be all things to all people. Instead, you want to have a focused audience who believes in your mission. They will be your biggest ambassadors who will not only share your work, but also buy your products and get others to subscribe as well.
Once you’ve established some core principles for your site, make sure you stick to them. If the noise starts getting too loud with too many complainers, negative commenters, and trolls, your readership needs a culling.
It is a weird phenomena that people who dislike your work will continue to follow along and give you traffic. They always say something like, “You’ve lost a reader!” “I’ve unsubscribed!” Yet they always seem to come back, addicted to everything you have to say. Perhaps there’s some kind of chemical imbalance to those with stalker tendencies.
But for your happiness and growth, it’s important to eventually remove them since they take up precious time and energy.
Much like how you regularly cull your e-mail list if subscribers haven’t opened one of your newsletters for at least 6 months, you can do the same with regular readers. Here’s how I do it to maximize traffic and minimize annoyance.
How To Get Rid Of Internet Trolls
I want Financial Samurai to attract intelligent readers who read beyond the headlines. The ideal Financial Samurai reader is one who gets deep into the content and shares his or her perspective in a respectful manner.
Even if they disagree with what I have to say, they do so with solid logic and backing. They aren’t easily triggered by every little thing, and find joy in intelligent banter.
I welcome different perspectives all the time.
Then there are some internet trolls who say they’ll never read my work again, yet harasses me publicly on Facebook with political and racial slurs when I publish new posts.
Yes, it’s nice that internet trolls are always clicking on my posts to give me more traffic and revenue. And as they say, any publicity is good publicity. But I’m getting tired of name calling and illogical conclusions. I feel like I get dumber every time I read internet troll comments.
There is this one internet troll who is a bitter person who is taking out her anger on me because she’s unhappy with something at home. It’s interesting to think she has the power of telling me what and how I can think and write just because I’m Asian. Unfortunately for her, there is no white privilege in thought or writing.
The way she thinks and how she treats others might be more common in Georgia, where they just signed the Fetal Heartbeat Abortion Law, but it is not common in cities and states like San Francisco and California where there is tremendous diversity and freedom of thought and body.
The solution for getting rid of internet trolls? Let them comment on your Facebook, but hide the comments. This allows the internet trolls to get out their rage, but doesn’t let their virus spread. You can also just delete or ban people internet trolls. But that’s not as fun or profitable.
Another great solution is to publish a post that will enrage internet trolls. This rage post will either permanently push them away, or make them become an even greater consumer of your work. Whenever somebody brings something up you’ve done, they’ll go into the forum or comments section and bash on your to bring about more publicity.
Controversial posts that are well-written will also allow your site to stand out from the noise as well. I always recommend writing an opinionated post with an interesting title around once a quarter to keep things fresh and interesting.
You must decide whether you want more peace of mind from unintelligent, racist, and belligerent people, or whether you want more publicity and traffic from your site.
I decided I wanted to experiment on one of my main female internet trolls, so I published a provocatively entitled post called, Democratic Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Gives Rich Private School Graduates Hope.
I figured the title would immediately anger people who either hate Democrats or hate women. Given my internet troll is from red-state Georgia, seeing AOC’s name made her really mad.
Financial Samurai is an extremely diverse site, and I don’t want shallow minded people like this internet troll be a regular reader. I’ve purposefully written content that I care about.
People who are racist, who never travel to see the world, who hate legal immigrants and minorities, who are easily triggered, and who are are very closed-minded can bugger off.
I also wanted to use interesting logic in the post that required intelligence and patience to truly understand my conclusions. The post is about 1,600 words, and only the type of readers I want to cultivate can get through it.
Removing Internet Trolls Successfully
At the end of the day, as expected, my internet troll called me names on Facebook. It was entertaining to go back and forth. Other people came to my defensive, and it helped increase traffic to two of the posts she disliked.
Then once the fun and traffic started dying down, I hid her comment so she could rage some more for my entertainment. Then I banned her from FB. Always feel free to do what you want with your own site and page.
It’s good to boost readership for your site up to a point. That point is when you start feeling annoyed. Once you get to that point, just delete at will.
Remember. The people who are angriest with you always have something bad going on with them. They’re projecting their frustrations and anger onto you. Use their anger to increase your traffic, but then kick them off the bus once they’re of no use to you anymore.
They’re dead weight. And in my internet troll’s case, she’s really dead weight.
Ignoring a troll and blocking them is simply the best way. But it’s not a bad idea to help cultivate a community of haters who will keep bashing your site behind your back to boost traffic. They are the gift that keeps on giving as curious readers come to visit and see your points of view.
I was recently informed that I’ve got another troll who has picked up this post and started spreading it around to my original internet troll’s dismay. She is in her early 30s and is also white.
She is dissatisfied that most of the coverage about the FIRE movement is about men, and likes to derisively generalize men as “tech-bros.” She also tries to discredit those in the FIRE movement who earned higher than average paychecks because she doesn’t earn much herself.
It’s too bad because there’s room for everyone to learn from each other, regardless of sex, income, or race. Unfortunately, she writes she suffers from tremendous anxiety and little things that are none of her business tend to set her off.
15 bloggers, men and women, have privately told me Angela is unstable and going through a lot of internal frustration and dissatisfaction in her personal life. She wants to lose weight, grow her site, and be free from work like most of us.
I hope she gets some help as we all have problems. I understand how she might feel better lashing out at others who have what she wants. But it’s not a long term solution to her own problems and frustrations.
I wonder whether she will realize that spending time hating on strangers, defending racists and trolls, and judging people about things when she doesn’t know the full context is one of the reasons why she suffers from tremendous anxiety. Can you imagine being so easily distracted that you end up ruining your life?
But sometimes it’s hard to see through logic if you have a mental illness. But if you go out of your way to harbor a terrorist, you’re a terrorist yourself not matter how much you say or think you’re not. Never defend trolls, bullies, and racists.
Despite her hate, I’m thankful for my newest internet troll’s obsession with Financial Samurai as she scans all my posts and pages to try and pick them apart. She says negative things about me on social media, and helps bring in even more traffic that sticks around and generates even more revenue. She’s also motivated me to update this post, which is great SEO practice for all bloggers and business owners.
I estimate internet trolls help bring in an extra $3,000-$4,000/month in revenue. Ironically, this money allows me and my wife to stay retired from Corporate America for longer.
Embrace The Internet Trolls
I hope these tips and tricks have helped you better deal with internet trolls while also growing your site. They will inevitably come and you will inevitably have readers who hate you for your thoughts, your looks, your race, your politics, your wealth, or whatever.
Instead of letting internet trolls get you down, utilize their hate to create even more content and more traffic! Never let the internet trolls win. When you’ve had your fun, just ignore and delete.
As Dr. Sandra Wilson once said, “Hurt people hurt people.” It’s true. Once you look into their backstory, you realize there’s something that has really caused them pain to lash out.
The best victory is having a successful site and business. Let the internet trolls drown in their misery while you live a great life.
If you’re being trolled or bullied online, don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself. Please help spread this post to give others who are being bullied the tools and courage they need to deal with the hate.