If you’ve been in the social media sphere for a while, you may be frustrated by your lower engagement rates. You probably blame the algorithm.
If you’re newer to social media, you may be frustrated that your pages are growing a lot slower than you’d like. You probably blame the algorithm.
Wherever you’re at in your social media journey, you’re right. The various algorithms at play are frustrating, but that’s because the social media platforms are constantly improving for their individual users, not necessarily for the brands who use them. Is your social media strategy adapting to the changes? Or do you want to give up?
Please don’t give up. Social media has so many benefits! But you do need to adapt to the changes over time. Right now, and for the foreseeable future, that means taking these 4 steps to boost the engagement on your social media pages:
- Share quality content.
- Add calls to action (CTAs).
- Engage with followers.
- Engage with brands and people who interest you.
These 4 steps are really a constant process you should integrate into your regular social media strategy. You can benefit from choosing one or two steps, but you’ll see the most engagement growth by implementing all 4 steps now and for the rest of your social media journey. But don’t worry. These steps don’t take too much extra time from your busy days.
1. Share quality content.
You’ve probably heard this before, but it bears repeating: Share quality content. Don’t just sell to your followers. Share quality content that will inspire, intrigue, and inform your followers. That’s what social media is! It’s one big conversation about so many interesting, emotionally-charged topics. Add your brand’s voice to the noise in a meaningful and positive way, and quality followers will engage with your brand on a regular basis because they want to.
2. Add CTAs.
Sometimes your followers don’t know what to do when they see your posts. Depending on your audience and your content, they might like and share willingly, but this isn’t always the case. Sometimes you need to tell your followers what you want them to do. Without knowing what they should do, how can you expect them to engage with your content?
If your posts don’t usually offer a desired action for the follower, then it might be time to rethink your social media content creation strategy to incorporate them. However, it is important to note that not all posts need a CTA because they might be shared to intrigue or inform, without the need for engagement. In the same breath, we’re here to increase your pages’ engagement, so let’s start implementing them into your posts.
If your quality content isn’t receiving the likes, comments, and shares you’d like, adding CTAs will help your followers know what you expect them to do when they see your posts. Think of CTAs as guidelines. You’re not forcing your followers to like, click, comment, or share, but by encouraging them to do so, you’re helping a few more people who already enjoy your posts actually interact with them.
Popular CTAs include:
- Learn more at (link).
- Comment below with your…
- React to this post to cast your vote!
- Retweet your answer.
- View our XYZ → (link to XYZ).
- Order now at (link).
- Contact us at (link or phone number).
- Donate today! (link)
- Which one is your favorite? (poll)
- Subscribe today! (link)
- Buy now and save! (link)
Note that many of these CTAs involve a link, probably to your website or blog. Whether you’re selling or informing, encouraging your followers to click on a link that will lead to your website will not only help with your engagement rates, but it will also bring them closer to becoming a customer.
3. Engage with followers.
Once followers like, comment, reply, retweet, and share your content, it’s time to return the favor. Since they showed an interest in your business, show an interest in theirs, even if it’s just a simple “Thank you” comment. A comment can mean a lot to a follower, especially someone who really likes your brand. And if they recently learned about your brand, then one comment can intrigue them enough to learn more about your brand. This entire process not only shows your followers that you care, but it also shows their friends that you care, which will, in turn, increase your reach, brand awareness, overall brand image, and engagement.
For many business owners and busy professionals, the task of logging into each social media account to reply to every comment, share, and DM (direct message) might seem exhausting. But it doesn’t have to be! In fact, if one (or all) page admin logged into each business social media account for 10 minutes per business day to reply to followers, your total engagement would increase.
If you have a small social media following, this might seem frustrating as you wait for a few comments to roll in. But don’t ignore those comments when they do happen! After all, your brand will grow one customer at a time, so don’t ignore growing your following one follower at a time.
If you have a large social media following, this might seem impossible. The trick? You don’t need to reply to every comment! You can if you want or if you have a person (or team) for that, but it isn’t necessary. For those with very large social media followings, it’s nearly impossible to reply to every comment, share, and DM. For those who are in this boat, take a deep breath and time it. Dedicate a certain amount of time every business day (or most days) to spend on each social media platform. Don’t just scroll; like and reply to comments.
Say it’s 10 minutes. You can sip your morning coffee while checking Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, all in a half-hour! Then move on with your day, knowing you’re caught up. Or split them up for different parts of your day to break up big projects and meetings. However it fits in your schedule, whether that’s daily or not, start to engage with your followers and they will continue to engage with you in return.
4. Engage with brands and people who interest you.
If you don’t have a large social media following (and even if you do), one way to grow engagement organically is to reach out to others on social media who interest you. These could be other brands or just individuals, but it’s probably best not to include competitors in this effort. Start by following brands and individuals your brand can relate to, either business-wise or in interests. Did a follower like your post? Did someone start following you? Check out their profile and scroll through their posts. If you connect with one, like and comment on it. By engaging with them, they are more likely to engage with you. Why? Because you first engaged with them, which shows them that you might be of interest to them.
Note: When communicating with individuals on social media, the best platforms to use are Instagram and Twitter. Facebook makes it more difficult to use this tactic, as does LinkedIn, but the potential is there if you look for it.
The key here is to provide value or show interest and to never be spammy. Never share a link to your website for your products or blog posts in a comment unless they are specifically asking for a product or blog post just like yours. Instead, take a softer approach. Let them know you read their latest blog post and why you liked it. Respond to their CTA. Agree with their post and respond to it in a meaningful way (AKA not just “Great post!”). Chances are, that person or brand will see your comment, respond to it or like it, and visit your profile. From there, they will decide whether or not they want to engage with you further (see step 1).
Overall, social media itself is a journey. It takes time and dedication, but it’s a great place to virtually meet customers you never would have met otherwise. It’s a place for communication and being “social.” So enjoy it. This is part of your business, but it can be enjoyable, too.
Tip: This is your brand’s account. Don’t just follow your friends and family members. They can help you get your page off the ground, but this is still a place for business.
Tip: Don’t just follow popular accounts with thousands of followers. Chances are those popular people and brands are too busy to read or even see every like and comment. Besides, they won’t always equal quality followers.
In the end, a quality follower who engages with your content on a regular basis is more likely to turn into a customer than a paid or passive follower is.