Social media is one of the most influential forces in the digital world today. Whether you love it or hate it, there is no escaping social media marketing if you want your brand to succeed. With over 1.82 billion social network users worldwide, you are sure to come across your ideal customers. Needless to say, you can’t execute an effective marketing plan unless you make social media a priority.
There’s a difference between making online brand profiles and boosting business through your online presence. Many brands strive to increase user engagement through their social media marketing strategies but it’s not easy. The key is to create content that encourages one-on-one interaction instead of just cranking up the number of posts on social websites.
People don’t like unnecessary flooding and they’ll end up tuning you out. Furthermore, algorithms for social websites only show content to more people if it draws engagement initially. So, what is the secret behind engaging your audience and attracting new customers? Here are four ways that can help you boost your social media engagement levels with minimal or no investment at all:
Share visual content
Most people on social media platforms are only in for the visual content. You can’t expect your social media strategy to generate results without having strong visual content. In fact, according to a recent research, using images in your posts can result in an 85 percent interaction rate on Facebook and can also increase chances for retweets up to 35 percent, according to Social Media Examiner.
While it may not be cost-effective to share an infographic every time, you can still share behind-the-scenes shots or pictures of team members to gather the interest of your audience. Make sure that it is something that adds value and enjoyment to your audience’s daily newsfeed.
Another great way to drive engagement on social media is through engaging videos. According to a survey by CoSchedule, Facebook users watch over 100 million hours of video every day. It is a great way to grab the attention of your fans and followers. You can share short and catchy videos related to entertainment, culture, customer responses regarding a certain product, shout-outs, demonstrations, and more.
The human brain processes visual content 60,000 times faster than plain text, according to Neil Patel. Videos are the only source of content that captures visuals, sound, and text all in one—making it the perfect medium to generate maximum engagement.
Create emotional content
Humans are emotional beings. We like to feel and express. Social websites are the perfect platforms to share things we like with our family, friends and loved ones. This is the science behind social networking. You’ll be shocked to know that among 1.6 million organic posts on various social networks like Twitter, Facebook, and Google+, 99 percent of posts receive almost zero engagement, according toVentureBeat.
The reason behind this is that most social media posts lack emotional appeal. People will only engage with your content if it connects with them. Most decisions are emotional, and you have to bank on them to achieve a successful social media marketing strategy. Use intelligent copy on your social media channels to get your followers excited and show them there is something useful and valuable in it. Remember, emotion drives action.
Highlight an offer
Interactive and gamified social media strategies have their own share of perks, but you can even attract and engage customers in an old-fashioned way: make an offer they can’t refuse! Talk about the coupons or discounts being offered by your brand. You can focus on your loyalty program or other offers such as free shipping or clearance items.
For example, take a look at Pura Vida Bracelet’s Instagram bio. It is overflowing with happy photos, customer testimonials, questions, and charitable causes. With over 1 million followers on Instagram, they have surely hit jackpot with their social media marketing strategy.
Know when to post
Don’t post without being mindful of the time. There are several factors that come into play while posting on social media, including your location, the topic of focus, your industry, and which social network you are publishing on. The best way to identify which time is ideal for posting is to study your brand’s analytics. You can choose the integrated tool on Facebook or use another social analytics tool to get more personalized data about user behavior on your previous posts. There are also online studies that guide you about the best time post on average. Look at these two infographics by Sumall about when to post and when not to post.
Piquing your followers’ interest and earning social media engagement is a tough feat but think about it as a way to genuinely connect with them. Once you tweak your approach and make it about the people and offering them valuable content, you will see success. Know your audience and set achievable goals throughout your social media marketing plan.
There are many other ways to increase user engagement on your social media platforms such as holding contests, asking questions and guest blogging. The best way is to identify what works for your brand and track your metrics. By monitoring the numbers, you will have a direction to work towards. You can tweak your strategy based on the results and keep changing it until you achieve maximum social media engagement.
Megan Dennis is a blogger at PNC Digital, an Orlando-based digital marketing agency. She specializes in SEO and SEM techniques.