In the digital marketing world, the topic of social media engagement gets tossed around constantly. How much is the right amount? What type of engagement should my brand participate in? Do I really even need to engage with my customers?
In 2017, where there’s more social media awareness now than ever, yeah, you do need to engage with your customers.
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The type of social media engagement your business should participate in depends on your industry, of course. But one thing that is consistent across the board is that every business can benefit from engaging with their audience online. It’s one of the easiest ways to let them know your brand is alive—that your brand is human.
Does My Business Need a Social Media Engagement Strategy?
Yes, yes, yes! All businesses (no matter the industry) can benefit from social media engagement. Many consumers start their search for new businesses to buy from online and through social media. No one is flipping through a yellow book anymore. Sorry, Grandma.
Social media allows for sharing and spreading the word about what you like. So if a business is already getting attention on social, best believe their audience’s friends and families also know about said business. Consumers trust what their friends like and share; thus, a great reason for your business to be active on social media platforms.
Creating a social media engagement strategy allows you to connect with your clientele. With social media, your brand becomes alive and active. Often, users look for a company’s social media presence to decide whether or not they will buy from a certain brand. I can attest for this myself—if a company is inactive or inconsistent with their social media posting, I’ll move on to find another company that is.
Engaging on social media can strengthen the relationship between a brand and its audience. This can then lead to greater brand visibility, customer loyalty, and the creation of a community. Hence the word social in social media.
What counts as social media engagement?
Social media engagement is any type of interaction between brands, pages, people, and businesses. Here are some ways you can interact with your audience:
- Retweeting and sharing relevant posts
- Liking and commenting on posts
- Replying to both negative and positive feedback
- Following people back
- Hosting Q&A sessions and contests
- Publishing polls and surveys
- Using hashtags and interacting with trending topics
Social media engagement like the examples above show that you are active in your industry and that you value other opinions and stories. No one likes a selfish profile that only focuses on its own motives. Show your audience that you’re interested in what they have to say. Engage with people, and they’ll engage back.
Using Social Media for Business, the Right Way
Now, before you go out and decide to go all willy-nilly crazy with your social media posts, there is a right and wrong way to do things. Think about best practices, and vary your social media strategy depending on your target audience and the platform you’re posting to. Once you understand who your audience is, you’ll be better able to decide which type of content to share with them.
When in doubt, take heed this advice:
Don’t be pushy
Avoid oversharing on social media. Your intentions may be to get more engagement from followers, but you may actually receive negative feedback. The sweet spot is about one Facebook post per day and at most three Tweets a day. Also, afternoon hours have the most engagement for most platforms.
Don’t be salesy
Customers may have followed your page initially to learn about a product or service; however, that may not be the reason they’ll stay. Give them some quality content that will teach them or entertain them. If post after post is telling your audience to BUY ALL THE THINGS!, they may decide to click that unfollow button. When posting, just ask yourself, “Does this post benefit my consumer?”
And, a quick update on Facebook-specific things:
Posting more on Facebook will not necessarily equate to more follower engagement. Facebook is creating an algorithm that’s more selective with the posts that show up in users’ feeds. Currently, the key is to give users more relevant, useful content. Posts with links that lead to websites with spammy content filled with ads will be given less priority.
The Best Social Media Marketing
Social media can do great things for your business—but only if you do it right. Let the experts do the talking (or in this case, typing).