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6 Best Practices to Drive Social Media Engagement

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Social media presence is key for your company’s brand awareness and online marketing. But it’s about more than just getting people follow you on these platforms. The real impact from your social media efforts comes from comments, shares, retweets, likes, and favorites. From engagement.

How do you encourage followers to not just passively observe your social media activity, but instead to interact and participate? Increasing your social media engagement can be achieved by following these six simple best practices.

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Let People Know Who You Are

Setting the tone for your social media presence is a key part of effective branding. When people feel a sense of intimacy and understanding of your “personality” on social media, they’re more likely to engage with your posts.

When followers become familiar with your style of posts and sense of humor they’re more likely to engage as they know what to expect from you and are confident in aligning themselves with your profile. No like, share, or comment is private – everyone is aware that their activity is being broadcast to their followers. Unless someone is confident that they like your brand and are happy to publicly align themselves with it, they will be reluctant to engage.

Lead by Example

If you want to get your followers to interact, the best way to do so is to lead by example. Like, comment, and share things which are relevant to your branding and your company.

Start conversations, participate in discussions, follow back. It is important to be part of a community and be proactive in engaging with members of that community. With social media engagement you get out what you put in.

It is also critical to respond to any question, comment or mention about your company. This is a huge part of customer service and branding in the digital age.

It’s Not All About You

There’s a difference between someone liking or following your social media page and them engaging with it. That difference is the value of your posts. If your posts offer something of value to your audience they are more likely to engage with it.

The quickest way to turn people off is to only post promotional content. Remember – it’s not all about you. The best content to post is termed “adjacent content.” This is anything which is related to your brand and your product without being directly about those things. Think tips and tricks, life hacks, recommendations – things which will provide value to your followers. For example, a hair dressing salon might post a gallery of the best celebrity hairstyles of the season.

“Value” doesn’t necessarily mean information. It can provide humor, escapism, or a trip down memory lane. Anything which contributes positively to the reader’s day.

Give Your Brand the Human Edge 

Social media is meant to be casual. Your social media channels are a great place to humanize your brand, even if you’re usually quite formal and professional. It’s the best place to build relationships and trust, and to show off your corporate social responsibility.

Snapshots of behind-the-scenes, profiles of employees or clients, and pictures of social functions or charity and volunteer efforts are all excellent examples of this.

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Time It Right

There’s not a huge amount of time between posting something on Facebook and it disappearing into the darkest corners of a follower’s newsfeed, never to be seen or read. Timing your posts for maximum engagement is critical.

This is where social media strategy and metric measurement are so vital, as these are the best ways to determine what time is the most effective for you to post content.

Remember the Basics

The final thing to keep in mind when driving engagement on your social media channels is the basic tenets of what makes an engaging post.

It is common knowledge that users engage far more frequently with statuses which contain images. Always include an eye-catching image to maximize viewing and engagement.

Similarly, framing your statuses or posts as questions drives more engagement. This encourages people to think about and answer the question. Questions such as “who would you like to visit this place with?” are particularly useful due to the increased audience created from followers tagging other friends in the comments.

Follow these six best practices and you’ll see your social media engagement rates skyrocket.

Alex Sizer

Alex Sizer is a red wine lover, content writer and social media marketing specialist. When she's not writing her own travel blog, she's writing for The Social Savior's content team.

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