Social media platforms offer a great opportunity for you to get your brand recognized and sell your products and services. But so many marketers get this wrong. They do not focus on engagement and most of their messages are ignored. When you involve your target audience in the conversation they will trust you a lot more.
So what is social media engagement? Well, the simplest way to describe it is “interaction”. If you post content and a lot of people comment on it and you respond to those comments that you are engaging with your audience. There are a lot of ways that you can increase your social media engagement and we will take a look at 7 proven ways here.
1. Utilize Relevant Images
People on social media will respond a lot better when relevant images are included in your content. The images need to be of high quality and make sense with the theme of the content. You can increase your engagement by up to 85% on Facebook if you have relevant high-quality images and your content can be shared by up to 35% more.
Images are a natural draw and a lot easier on the eye than blocks of text. Blocks of text mean effort whereas a series of images that tell a story are much more appealing. You can use images on all of the major platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and so on.
An image of someone using your product and looking happy about it is very powerful. Another powerful way to increase engagement is to use images with a caption on them that portrays the message that you want to get across. You can experiment with your images using filters and other enhancement tools to draw attention.
Use videos in your posts as well. Videos will normally provide a lot more engagement than just text and images. Facebook videos are particularly popular. Be sure to add value with your videos and not just use them to push your brand and products.
2. Discuss your Niche
A lot of marketers make the mistake of just discussing their brand and products on social media. Your target audience is interested in your niche as a whole so provide them with valuable information about it.
One of the best ways that you can do this is by becoming a member of Facebook groups that are related to your niche. Better still you can start your own group about a particular aspect of the niche.
If you are creating your own groups then invite your audience to join in the discussion. Look for key influencers in your niche and ask them to join in too. Be sure that you are adding value all of the time and not just discussing your brand and products. Discuss what is going on in your niche and the latest trends.
3. Ask Your Audience Questions
How do people start conversations in real life? They ask questions. So you need to apply this technique on social media as well. Give some thought to the questions that you will ask. If you know there are burning issues in your niche then create questions around these.
Ask your audience what they think about a certain aspect of your niche. This can be a product or service or a method to overcome a problem that you know affects many people. You can use questions that are not directly related to your niche. People like to test their knowledge so ask them questions that will do this and then you can send them to your website.
People like participating in polls on social media. So you could ask them what their biggest challenge is in the niche and then provide four different answers that they can vote for. For example, if you are in the weight loss niche the options for responding to “what is your biggest weight loss challenge?” could be:
- Finding a diet I can stick to
- Dealing with hunger when dieting
- Exercising regularly
- Avoiding temptation
If you create the right kind of polls then you can learn a great deal about what your target audience is looking for. Each poll is likely to provide a clear winner in terms of the biggest challenge and you can use this information for the creation of new products and services.
4. Add Humor
People like to read humorous posts, look at humorous images, and watch humorous videos. If you get the humor right then you will get a lot of engagement. Humor works because it stands out from the rest of the stuff that appears in people’s news feeds. After all, there are only so many pictures of your friend’s new baby you can handle right?
You can get inspiration for humorous posts by looking at what other people are doing. Try thinking outside of the box here. Is there a way that you can tie in a funny cat video with your brand? Memes can work really well. You can have an image of a person looking frustrated and add a humorous caption that relates to your niche.
A word of warning with humor. Always go for lighthearted stuff that will not offend anyone. You can laugh at yourself as this will not upset anyone. Don’t be tempted to use jokes that could offend sections of your audience. They will stop reading your content if you do this.
5. Ask for Opinions
When you ask your audience to share their opinions on a specific subject you will get high engagement as people love to give their opinions. For example, people will happily talk about products in your niche and what they like and don’t like about them. It is important that you choose a subject that is going to get a good response.
Ask people to state their opinions by leaving comments. Be sure that you are not incentivizing people in any way to leave their opinions. If you do this then you can get into trouble with the FTC. If you want opinions on one of your products then remember that not all of your followers will own the product.
What you can do instead is to ask a question like “how would you feel about a product that does X, Y, and Z?” If the product is something that the audience really needs then you will get some good feedback. Don’t go overboard with promotion. Most people will figure out that you have such a product (or are creating one) and will check your website for details.
6. Make it Emotional
People are emotional and will respond a lot better to emotional posts. But how do you make text emotional? Well, you can add words that will create emotion but often it is better to use images. Most social media platforms have a range of “emojis” that you can use now and these will often add that sense of emotion that you want to create.
We have all seen some posts on social media that are full of emojis. These are fine for personal posts when an individual is feeling particularly happy or sad about something but it is not recommended for brand posting. Just use one or two emojis to get your point across.
It is all about creating a connection with your audience. Most of the decisions that people make are based on emotions and this is particularly true when it comes to the purchase of products. You want to use emotion to get people excited and then want to take further action.
7. Create a Contest or Giveaway
The chance to get something valuable for free is always appealing. So if you run a giveaway or a contest then you will have a great chance of increasing your social media engagement. You could offer one of your products for free to a small number of people that provide the best answer to a question for example.
Always add a good image, or even a video, of what you are going to give away. You can encourage further engagement by telling your audience that they need to like the post and share it to have a greater chance of winning. You can get new followers from contests and giveaways that are shared by your existing followers.
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