Social media is a modern-day tool for many businesses, big and small, to connect with potential customers and build their brand. Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are now just as valuable as other types of advertising, as so many people are using these platforms to share their own lives and connect with others.
If your business is not using social media, it’s no secret that you’re missing out on possibly the best, cheapest, and easiest way to market your brand – but ignoring tips and tricks to ensure your content gets seen and interacted with can be just as detrimental.
With changing algorithms on all platforms, engagement is everything – people see posts with more interaction on them. For this reason, you want your audience to like, comment, share, etc… but they aren’t going to do it on their own!
Here are simple ways to increase your engagement on social media.
- Call to action. Expecting your audience to like, comment, or share your post may not work – but inviting them to almost always heeds results. Caption your photos or posts with a simple “Leave a comment telling us what you think!” or “Don’t forget to like!” and watch your engagement soar. If people know they are invited to engage, they will! Try this trick to keep people from just scrolling on by.
- Hashtags. Thousands of people now stress that hashtags are everything – and they aren’t wrong. Using them is one of the only free ways to get your content seen by people who aren’t already following you – people who are looking for content just like yours. Try tagging your posts with ten to fifteen popular, relevant hashtags (no spamming!) and see if your likes, comments, and views increase. If not, experiment with different hashtags until you find some that work for you! There are thousands of hashtag generators out there, but seeing which hashtags some of your favorite successful accounts use is also a great way to choose some good ones.
- Offer a reward. Some businesses offer a reward for engagement, such as grand prizes like expensive electronics or gift cards if people like posts and follow certain accounts. Not only is this exciting for your followers, but it gets your content seen by exponentially more people, especially if you offer a reward for sharing your posts or account. While this isn’t free, it can be a great investment for your business and can even be written off in your taxes as a business or marketing expense! Anything that gets people excited is an amazing marketing tool.
- Pay to boost your posts. If your posts simply aren’t being seen by many people (you can check this in your social media data analytics,) you can always pay to advertise. While this may not seem like the most attractive option at first, you can’t expect a large return without a little investment – and ensuring that more people see your content in the first place is an excellent way to increase sales. On most social media platforms, you can boost a post for as little as five or ten bucks, and your budget can be completely controlled and monitored by you throughout the process. There are no surprises or hidden fees with this method, making it popular among businesses of all sizes.
- Post content worth liking. This may seem like a no-brainer, but getting likes isn’t just all about getting your posts out there to more people – it’s about posting content that people genuinely want to interact with. Posts with bright colors, minimal text, and clear photos tend to do best on photo-sharing platforms, as they attract attention, are easy to read/view, and usually, have an aesthetically pleasing look. Avoid dark colors, photos with long text overlays, grainy or blurry photos, or stock images to avoid your post going stale (or even a fine for using unoriginal photos.)
- Post on-brand. When you post, your followers should immediately be able to recognize that it was your brand who posted. Having a set color palette, font, filter, etc… for your brand makes your social media more cohesive and makes people want to press “like” simply because they know it’s a brand they love. If someone can’t look at your posts and see a resemblance between them, it may be time for a social media revamp. Do a quick sweep of your feed and see if your content looks like it all belongs to the same brand. If not, do some rearranging and make your next posts cohesive.
- Post consistently, at good times. With thousands of bots on the internet nowadays, people are wary of liking and commenting on accounts who are only active once in a blue moon. Not only does it make you seem undedicated, but your followers may not be sure you’re a real person – which, obviously, can be detrimental to your business. Do some research on when your target audience is online (Are they in school and without their phones from seven to three? Do they work the night shift? What time do they check their phones before going to sleep?) and post every day or every other day at that same time. You can even use a social media scheduling platform to automate the process and ensure you don’t miss anything.
There you have it – these are easy, low-cost, and almost always successful methods of increasing your social media engagement. Using a simple notebook as a tracker of analytics is a great way to see how your new tactics are working over time.
Remember, success does not happen overnight, and it may take a while to see your new approaches pay off. Try not to feel discouraged if you don’t see results immediately after applying a new method of social media advertising. Stick with it and the return will be well worth it!