Increasing engagement on social media is the goal of most businesses. Social media represents a fantastic opportunity to promote your brand, reach new audiences and boost conversions. Good social media engagement shows that you are making an impact on the market.
You need to imagine social media as a dinner party – you want to welcome guests and invite them to make conversation with you and other guests.
What Is Social Media Engagement?
Social media engagement is a measure of other people’s interaction with your brand. It includes likes, follows, shares, comments, click-throughs and mentions. It’s not just about the number of followers you have, but how engaged they are with you. Having a lot of disinterested followers will not bring you any benefits, it’s about quality rather than quantity.
Engagement is important to build relationships with new and existing customers which will improve your brand image and hopefully lead to conversions.
So how do you increase engagement on social media? Do you just post the odd item and hope for the best? There’s a little more to it than that. Here we cover a number of ways to boost engagement.
1. Get To Know Your Audience
In order to engage your audience better, you need to know who you are dealing with. A 40 year old woman will engage with different content to an 18 year old man. Analysis tools like Google Analytics will help you learn the type of person who is visiting your website and converting. Looking at the type of customer who has purchased from you will help you understand the audience you should be aiming for.
Understanding your audience will then help guide you to the appropriate social media platform and give you ideas about the content to create, when to post and the tone of voice to use.
Look at the engagement you currently have, each social media platform has tools that will tell you the number of shares, likes, comments etc. that you are getting. This will show you the type of content your audience likes and should guide future postings.
2. Create & Share Valuable Content
The way to boost engagement on social media is to engage more with your audience. Millions of items are posted everyday so chances are your audience won’t see something you posted 3 days ago. You need to post regularly, having a spurt once a month won’t crack it, you should aim for daily posts or more. This may seem like a lot of work so you can use schedulers like Hootsuite or Buffer can help you manage this. On these you can schedule posts for the month in one go, and repurpose content across different platforms, saving a lot of time. You can then analyse the results.
Write content that your audience will find useful and want to share with others. Think of the questions or queries they might have and create blogs to answer these. This will not only improve your social media engagement, but also help boost the rankings of your website.
Exhibition Stand Contractor Quadrant2Design doesn’t restrict to publishing pictures of their exhibition stands, they also explain the benefits that their services have, for example, their exhibition stand hire service. They also post interesting content related to their target: shows dates or the trade shows to take part etc. That really keeps people engaged to the page, in this way you will be able to get fans, who will become clients eventually.
Different platforms will require different types of content – short and snappy for Twitter, longer posts for Facebook, images for Instagram and videos for Tiktok. The best way to assess what content works is to monitor the success of each post.
3. Be Topical
If you’re unsure about what to post, talk about a topical event or news story. Don’t just use social media to plug your brand, that won’t do you any favours. Try to start a conversation around something that is relevant at the time. Pop culture, events or holidays can all be good topics for a post.
4. Join Forums
Participating in a forum relevant to your industry is a good way to reach new audiences and increase engagement. Facebook has groups for just about anything, joining them and participating will get your name out there. But again don’t just use the groups to promote your brand, join in with the conversation and try to post useful information.
5. Keep The Conversation Going
On social media you need to be reactive as well as proactive. So if someone comments on your post, make sure you reply. Use a tool like Hootsuite to scan the web for mentions of your brand and respond to them. Companies like McDonald’s do this very successfully by always replying with a personal comment to every mention. Including the name of the person replying also adds a personal touch. People like to interact with other people, rather than just a faceless company. Adding your name will give your audience someone to contact and make the post personal, rather than just generated by a machine.
6. Respond Quickly
Replying quickly to a comment will help keep the conversation going and lead to increased customer satisfaction. With Hootsuite’s Saved Replies function, you can pre-compose responses to common queries. When a commonly asked question comes your way, you’ll be ready with a thoughtful, informative response.
7. Host A Competition
Giveaways or competitions are a good way to boost engagement. Ask your followers to share, tag someone or follow your page to enter, offering a prize to the first ones to do so. If your followers have to tag a friend that can bring you a whole set of new followers to engage with.
8. Add Visual Elements
Images and videos are proven to dramatically boost engagement. Videos are particularly effective – research suggests they generate 1,200% more shares than images or text. Particularly for Instagram and Tiktok. Some ideas could be to post a ‘behind the scenes’ video of your workplace, or a demonstration of how to do something.
Even something as simple as an emoticon can add a human touch to your posts, indicating how you are feeling.
9. Include Hashtags
Relevant hashtags enable you to connect with others also using the hashtag and reach new audiences as well as linking posts to a particular discussion. For instance Coca-Cola created the #ShareACoke hashtag and used it across several social media channels, encouraging others to post with it. Each post can be easily found by searching for the hashtag in the search bar.
Don’t go mad with hashtags though, if you include too many it can reflect badly on your business and brand.
10. Create A Survey
Surveys are a great way of getting people to engage with you and gaining customer feedback. Ask what improvements people would like to see in your products. Post it at a time when your audience is active. You can use the results to tailor future marketing efforts.
Increasing engagement on social media and building up your followers takes time and a certain amount of effort. It’s important to post useful, relevant content regularly and react to any mentions you get. Use analytics tools like Google Analytics, Hootsuite and the platforms own analytics tools to monitor your engagement and whether it is leading to conversions. This will show you what works and what doesn’t which can shape your future strategy.