There are few things in digital marketing that are more disheartening than putting time, effort, and creativity into a social media strategy which ultimately fails to drive engagement.
Social media is something that everybody seems to be doing. Facebook has over two billion active monthly users. Its sister platform, Instagram, has over a billion. Twitter has 330 million. And don’t get us started on LinkedIn, YouTube, Reddit, Tumblr, WhatsApp or any number of other potential social media platforms your organisation could be featuring on.
But if you’re busy creating and posting and find that no one is engaging with it, it can often feel like you’re shouting into the abyss with no hope of being heard.
And creating an impact via social media seems set only to become more challenging: evolving consumer behaviour means users expect more and more from the social channels they follow. So, how can you stay ahead to ensure you capture the attention of your audience, and maximise the potential of your social presence?
What is social media engagement and why is it important?
Social media engagement is not only about getting followers to interact with your content. It’s also an opportunity to build brand loyalty and lasting relationships with your target audience. It opens up a line of communication with existing or potential customers and offers a valuable opportunity to obtain feedback on your business and marketing tactics.
Whilst your vanity metrics, such as Likes and Followers, will give an indication of how you’ve grown on social media, your engagement statistics – those users who are regularly consuming your content by liking, commenting, watching and sharing – will give you a far clearer picture of your social clout.
Remember that social media success is not just about reach, it’s also about depth.
Why your social media engagement isn’t up to scratch
There could be many reasons why your social media strategy isn’t working and why you’re receiving little to no engagement. We’ve listed a few of these potential issues and provided some helpful social media engagement tips to reignite your social presence.
1. You don’t post frequently enough
A common reason for a lack of interaction from your audience is that you’re not posting regularly. Social media channels are becoming increasingly busy and a business which only posts once in a blue moon will easily be lost amongst a plethora of posts on people’s newsfeeds.
To help make sure you are posting consistently, we recommend creating a posting schedule which aims to see your content appearing regularly in the feeds of your users. But don’t overdo it – users won’t be impressed by a business which constantly spams their feed, and you’ll quickly see those follower numbers dwindling.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that you could be producing the best content possible for your audience, and you could be ticking all the right boxes to initiate engagement, but if you’re posting at the wrong times, then your efforts will be fruitless.
Utilise the intelligence of social media analytics to understand when your customers are online, and when they’re most likely to engage with you to streamline your strategy.
Find the balance and ensure you’re kept front-of-mind with regular posts, but remember that quality always trumps quantity.
2. You’re too focused on selling
While social media can be an excellent sales tool, it’s far more valuable for brand awareness and telling your brand story. Pushing the hard sell down the throats of your users will get very old, very quickly.
Instead, focus on sharing content that is valuable and is going to benefit your customers in some way. For businesses that sell products, instead of pure sales-led posts about the benefits of said product or – worse – your latest discount, think about content which gives people a behind the scenes look at your brand. Perhaps that’s a blog about what inspired you to create the product in the first place? Maybe it’s a time-lapse video of the product being made. Think outside the box and your audience will thank you for it.
3. Your content just isn’t interesting
Sometimes, a lack of engagement can be indicative of a social content strategy which is, quite frankly, boring.
Social media is a fast and visual arena. To capture, and hold, the interest of your audience, and ultimately win their engagement, you have to stand out and add value. People engage best with a human tone of voice and largely respond to humour or useful information. If you can – where appropriate – combine the two, then you should notice an immediate uplift in responses.
Remember to also utilise images and video where possible to draw the eye of your followers. Diversify your post types – think graphics, videos, links, polls, and questions. And don’t forget to join the conversation by using relevant hashtags.
There’s no excuse for dull content. Even some traditionally ‘dull’ corporate or B2B brands are making waves on social media – if they can do it, so can you. GE is an excellent example of a business who have their social media strategy tied up. They may be over 125-years old, but GE are frequently heralded as innovators in social media, as well as science.
4. You’re not engaging with your audience
You’re constantly talking at your audience without inviting any comment from them. No one wants to be talked at, so try to involve users in the conversation. Ask questions and include calls to action to encourage your audience to do more than just read your post.
Crucially, make sure you have a process in place to answer people’s questions, respond to feedback and – most importantly – deal with any complaints.
Brands who bury their heads in the sand when people criticise them on social media risk not just their engagement levels, but their reputations too.
5. You’re not monitoring results
As we’ve mentioned, social media analytics can be immensely valuable. Use Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics, and any other available social reporting tools to evaluate your social media strategy and adapt it as necessary. Utilise tools to not only understand when your audience is online, but which posts are capturing their attention and engagement, what content is most popular (whether that be image, text or video), and what actions users take after viewing your content – are they liking and sharing, or are they clicking through to your site?
Analysing the ups and downs of your social media efforts will help you to build a much stronger strategy and drive that all-important social media engagement forward. Find the time to evaluate what you’re doing on a regular basis – trust us, you’ll thank us later.
How do you drive engagement with your audience on social media? We’d love to hear more about your tried and tested tactics – fill us in on Twitter.
If you’re looking to supercharge your social strategy or are in need of fresh social media engagement ideas, we can help. Take a look at our social media services to understand how we can support you.