The Best Ways to Drive User Engagement
with Your Social Media Content
Our guest writer, Travis Dillard, has written an informative article on how you can better use social media to drive user engagement.
The Best Ways to Drive User Engagement with Your Social Media Content
For modern brands, an online presence is crucial, and strong media engagement is a powerful indicator that you’re making an impact on the market.
It’s about more than simply looking popular — it is about connecting with prospects and customers in a meaningful way, which can boost your brand’s reach and your company’s revenue both online and offline.
Below, you’ll find the best ways to build, manage, and analyze your social media engagement and rake its business benefits.
How to Increase User Engagement on Social Media
Although crossing your fingers and hoping for the best may result in your followers spontaneously getting more involved in the discussion, we wouldn’t count on it. You’ll likely need to provide a bit of encouragement.
Luckily, our friends from a web development Chicago company were willing to share a few tricks of the trade. These should help get the virtual party started and boost your engagement in no time. Let’s begin!
Analyze Your Current Situation
Measuring your growth without knowing your starting position is pretty much impossible by definition.
Pull your data-scientist uniform out of the drawer and begin recording the number of comments and shares your average post is getting, how many followers you have, or whatever other metrics you consider meaningful.
Once you have all the data, make sure to keep tracking it regularly. This will enable you to pick out dips and spikes in engagement and figure out what’s working and what isn’t.
Choose Your Strategy
You already know what we’re going to say — there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy to drive user engagement. Since every company has different business goals, their social media strategies need to be different too.
A pizza restaurant and a high-fashion clothing brand will have very different expectations from their engagement, which will drive the type of content they choose to post.
The pizza place could look to create a quirky, youthful and fun brand voice, while the clothing brand may aim to educate its users about the history of the brand and the sources of the materials used in production. Both can create engaging content, but for different audiences.
Depending on what your brand needs and what your company has to offer, there are a few social media goals you might choose to employ:
- Providing advice and resources to educate your audience
- Collecting feedback on new products and services
- Generating leads
- Improving your brand’s public image
Know Your Audience
If you don’t know who you’re talking to, it will be hard to have an engaging conversation.
The tone, resources, and language you use will be different for most companies, so it would be a good idea to conduct thorough audience research and learn everything you need to know about demographics.
Knowing your audience will be crucial in determining several things:
- Your preferred brand voice
- The type of content you should be posting
- The perfect time to post
- The social media platforms you should be active on
Produce High-Value Content
Now that you know your audience and why you’re trying to reach them, you’re ready for the next crucial question — what can you tell them?
It is crucial to create content that the audience will find helpful and valuable, addressing their pain points and needs. Think in terms of conversations, not lessons or broadcasts.
If all you’re talking about is how amazing your brand or products are, you’re going to have a hard time connecting with anybody.
For example, a t-shirt company may choose to post daily pics of their latest designs, but that is bound to become stale after a while. To create engagement, the social media marketer of this hypothetical t-shirt manufacturer should post unique fashion tips and bits of wisdom to help the audience out.
When it comes to the format of your posts, it is best to take some time to understand the type of content that suits each platform — Instagram is best for artful photos; Facebook can handle longer posts than Twitter, etc.
That said, don’t shy away from testing your creativity with different post ideas, such as:
- Media upload contests
- Custom stickers
Finally, the best way to learn what content works is to watch how others in and out of your niche do it. Put on your content-scientist hat and analyze, experiment, observe, adapt and repeat.
If you’re suffering from a lack of inspiration and don’t know what to talk about on any given day, joining an ongoing conversation is always an option.
Finding a way to tie your brand with ongoing events is a great way to connect with your prospects instantly. That said, it is also a quick way to alienate a lot of your audience, so be careful.
Viral memes, trending sporting and pop culture events, holidays, etc., can all be excellent excuses for a post.
Be Proactive in Keeping the Conversation Going
Some people say conversation is an art, and there may be some truth to that, but for the most part, it is about attention. If you genuinely focus your attention on somebody and they do the same for you, the conversation will likely flow very well.
To generate attention online, you’ll need lots of give and take. This means brands can’t only be reactive to current events or questions posed by their audience. They need to be proactive and be the ones sparking the conversation with people who may already be talking about something that relates to you.
Show Your Human Side
From a consumer standpoint, it is more tempting to engage with a brand online when you know there’s a real person on the other side of the conversation, so don’t hide your human side.
Many brands encourage their social teams to sign off on posts personally. If you’re charismatic, you may even create a bit of a following. But beyond putting your name on an Instagram post, there are several ways to get more personal:
- Show your team members and other people included in the process in videos and photos
- Respond to comments in an informal, more human voice
- Answer questions and respond to reviews
Keeping response times speedy is crucial if you want your customers to feel like you have their back. One trick you can use is pre-composing responses to frequently asked questions. When one comes your way, you can simply copy and paste the response and modify it a bit if needed.
This may sound contrary to the previous tip to show your human side, but quick responses will lead to greater customer satisfaction and save your customer service team time. This means you can serve more customers and employ the human touch where necessary.
Moreover, if you write your answers in advance, you’ll have all the time you need to make sure the tone is friendly and warm and that the message is as detailed and helpful as it can be.
Schedule Your Posts
Keeping your content fresh and available on all social streams is important, so you’ll want to post frequently — one to three times each day. You’ll also want to post at the best possible time to reach maximum exposure.
Although it may not take long to post a meme, you can’t be at your computer 24/7, but the various social media scheduling tools can help you plan and prepare your posts in advance.
Setting aside a weekly block of time to deal with scheduling and creating posts should be enough if you have the right tools. If you’re really busy, you can also schedule a time slot for responding to customer queries, although we recommend being available to your customers and prospects whenever possible.
Think Outside the Feed
Shares and comments are an excellent way to measure engagement, but they’re far from the only way to see that your audience is interested in your brand.
Story interactions, direct messages and private conversations are all great examples of how to keep an audience engaged, so make sure to track these numbers and dedicate some of your resources to these channels as well.
How to Measure User Engagement on Social Media Content?
Now that you have the comments and shares flying in at an unprecedented pace, it is time to buckle down, crunch the numbers and see how good of a job you’re actually doing. Performing high-quality social media analytics is crucial to measuring the success of your online marketing efforts.
Thankfully, many software tools can help you get a general overview of your social stats, including engagement rate and social ROI calculators.
If you’re not all that interested in using calculators and other social media metric tracking tools, you can always do it the old-fashioned way.
Measuring the effectiveness of your social platform can be done by keeping track of the specific metrics, but keep in mind that different things matter on various social media.
Our recommendation would be to stick to tracking tools as they can provide intel on your social media progress without too much hassle.
We would like to thank Travis for this informative article, you can read his bio below:
Travis Dillard is a business consultant and an organizational psychologist based in Arlington, Texas. Passionate about marketing, social networks, and business in general. In his spare time, he writes a lot about new business strategies and digital marketing for DigitalStrategyOne.