There are many benefits to spending time and money making your brand relevant to your audience. This article focuses on how you can increase audience engagement with a few simple strategies.
Why Should You Create a Social Media Engagement Strategy?
Social media engagement is your audience’s interaction with your social media posts. You can measure this in likes, shares and comments. You can also see mentions, click-throughs, and how many new people started following your profile. The more your audience engages with your posts, the more engaged they are. Most social media platforms have insights to measure engagement.
You can use a variety of strategies to build engagement with your audience and create this genuine connection. Many brands tend to want to increase the size of their audience and, in doing so, lose out on all-important engagement and connection. Consider defining a social media workflow to maintain initial quality and consistency in building your brand on social media.
Engagement allows you to build relationships with your customers. You have the opportunity to get to know your customers better. This helps them feel like they’re interacting with someone and not a big company, making you more approachable.
Engagement allows you to build loyalty from your customers. Brand loyalty, in turn, creates brand trust, which means customers who come back to you and recommend to others. An active social media profile will also help increase your sales as more people get to know what you have to offer and learn to trust the brand.
Develop an Authentic Brand Voice
Social media users are inundated with business posts. To truly engage with your audience, you have to stand out while staying true to your brand. Users take less than a second to form an opinion about what they see on their social media.
To develop your brand voice, consider your audience. These are the people your posts will target. You should also consider the medium you are using. Each platform has a different length and post type.
Your brand voice incorporates your unique values and perspectives – that’s the personality of the business. Your posts and interactions with your audience should reflect not only who you are as a business, but also who you engage with. If your target audience is millennials, you will have a different presentation than if you target Gen Z. Likewise, the product or service you offer affects how you communicate with your audience.
You must know your audience when developing your voice. You should see how your audience interacts with each other with online posts. Ask your audience to describe your brand and what interactions or events influenced this view. This will give you a good indication of what your sound should look like.
Part of developing authentic voices is creating a message architecture. This will ensure that your posts always align with your core values and message. You can prioritize your goals by using certain phrases, statements and terms to use when communicating online.
Build community on social media instead of just having followers. Community is a social unit in which people feel part of them with common goals, interests and attitudes. You can build a community by welcoming friends and customers to your page.
A great way to build and strengthen a community is to host a live stream where you can connect with your followers in real time. You can use live streaming to hold short Q&A, announce a new product or service, or collect customer feedback.
It’s also important to respond to your customers’ posts to help them feel engaged. Make your posts private by using the handle or name of the person you are responding to. Help your audience feel important instead of just posting about your brand.
You should use relevant material, which often includes memes, gifs, videos, songs, and more. This way, you will be more relatable, which means people will share your posts. In turn, this makes your brand more likable.
If you are just starting an online business, building a community from scratch can be difficult.
You can be prepared to wait until you see engagement grow over time or consider acquiring social media accounts with legitimate communities from trustworthy sources.
However, this does not mean you are buying fake followers as this practice is always harmful and useless in the long run.
Run Prizes and Contests
Consider offering your followers something in exchange for sharing your post or getting more people to follow your page. Items with your company’s designs often make excellent gifts for gifts.
For example, branded embroidery on hats and shirts popular and serves as sustainable marketing. Similarly, you can offer other discount or free codes. Many brands choose to partner with different products to make the contest more interesting.
You can also use influencers to help reach more people. An influencer already holds the audience’s trust and can easily convince others to like your page. You can also measure and report on influencer activity performance with Influencer Analysis. This will help you to give away giveaways and contests as the best way to get people who normally don’t like or share to engage in your posts.
As an example, consider this giveaway from PuraVida food. They often arrange giveaways as a way to grow their audience. The company makes the giveaway rules very clear thereby increasing their chances of success.
Whenever you do a contest or giveaway, make sure you keep it as fair as possible. There are many tools available to draw random names. Always follow the draw date and make sure the winner is notified.
Social media is a fast paced place. It’s easy to become irrelevant and forgotten. All your channels should stay active through consistent posting. Your audience wants to know that you are relevant and what’s going on with your brand.
Posts that are done frequently will retain your followers while attracting more. Due to the fast-paced nature of social media platforms, your posts will likely be lost in the chaos within a day or two. Frequent posting means that you post several times a day, usually three times spread out at optimal times.
Find out when your target audience is most active on the platform and use this time to create posts. Make sure that you plan your posts ahead of time. There are a variety of effective management software that you can use to help you plan and track what and when you will post updates.
Posts don’t always have to be brand-related. You can post industry news or interact with users using hashtags that are loosely related to you. Make sure you keep your posts interesting to make it easier for followers to engage with the posts.
If you are not active, users may see you as a useless account to follow. The more active your account, the more likely it will appear in your audience feed. Search engine optimization also includes activity in its ranking system.
Ultimately, you want your followers to spend money on your product or service. However, rewarding loyalty shouldn’t just be about rewarding people who spend more money.
You can reward loyalty on social media by allowing your followers to sign up for a loyalty program using their social media pages. It makes the process quick and easy for customers while allowing them to link their social media activity to your loyalty program. For example, offer points to get a discount if a customer shares or likes a post.
If you encourage engagement on social media, you can get your customers to engage more with new users. You can even bring in customers to create original content about your brand on your behalf.
Offer an experience reward that people are more likely to post and share on social media. This could be as simple as having a gift for a picture, including your product, or hosting a customer at an event.
The more subscribers post and share, the more they are rewarded. Your customers are more likely to share the gift of experience on their social media, creating more awareness among other users.
Rewarding loyalty on social media can also be in the form of gamification. Have a little game that encourages subscribers to interact with the post and pair it with a gift. This post can be a puzzle, spot-the-difference, or similar type of game. Doing it increases customer lifetime value all the more.
People no longer want to see big companies kicking their products when they browse social media. Each post has less than a second to create an impact on a customer’s mind. Your brand must ensure that it has an authentic brand voice that stays true to the core values and personality of the business while reaching your target audience. Consider the platform you are posting to as each platform requires different types of posts of different lengths.
Allow your followers to be part of a community with similar opinions and interests. Community allows your customers to feel like them and keeps them more engaged with your brand, creating loyalty and trust.
Giveaways and contests are a great way to get followers to engage with posts, although they usually don’t. You should also make sure that your posts are consistent, preferably several times a day. Find out when your audience is most active on the platform and use this time to create meaningful posts.
If you value a loyal following on your social media, you can increase your audience while building more trust in the brand. Ultimately, brand trust and loyalty increase sales.
There are several tools you can use to track engagement. As you keep track of which posts are more popular and which aren’t, you can take notes and change your approach.