In an age of influencers and followers, it can be easy to only focus on having a massive following on social media as a business. But you need to realize that social media engagement is more important than followers. This applies to both B2B and B2C. But getting the right engagement can be challenging. To help you with it, we have put together this guide on the importance of engagement—and how to get it.
Social Media and Business
As a business, you’d have to be living under a rock not to recognize the importance of social media for business. Social media is an essential business tool to help grow your brand and customers. It should form part of your overall content marketing strategy. A company without a social media presence in this day and age looks archaic. It gives customers a bad impression—something you want to avoid at all costs. Your social media, along with your website, is your 24-hour online ambassador for your brand.
What is Social Media Engagement?
Social media engagement is essentially an online conversation between people. When you post on social media, you are starting a conversation with your followers/audience. When they like, share, or comment, they are engaging with you. Social media can often be the first step in what becomes a long-term business relationship. Engagement with your network can generate business inquiries, email signups, website visits, and more. Social media for business is all about forming relationships with people who might become customers in the future. The more engaged they are, the more they are likely to do business with you.
Engagement Over Followers on Social Media
Think of social media engagement as quality over quantity. That is, you have quality followers (can be just a few) that are engaging with your brand and buying from you. They are loyal to you. Whereas with quantity, you could have 10,000 followers or more, but none of them are paying attention, let alone buying from you. This results in a low ROI for your business. Besides, having a huge following can easily lead to “vanity metrics” (feed your ego) but do nothing to give you a good ROI. Of course, you still need a certain number of followers for your brand to be taken seriously, but it doesn’t need to be colossal. Always choose quality over quantity!
Types of Social Media Engagement
Depending on your overall business objectives and content marketing strategy, there are many different types of engagement (how followers engage with you) that you can monitor on your social media to give you metrics, including:
- Likes on posts
- Shares of posts
- Comments on posts
- Replies on posts
- Tags of people in your posts
- Mentions of you in other’s posts by tagging you
- How many opened a link you shared
- How many watched a video you shared
Social Media Engagement is a Two-Way Street
Like any other relationship, social media engagement is a two-way street where your followers engage with you, and you engage with them. It isn’t always possible, of course, to reply to every comment. However, if you’re unable to make the effort—like if you don’t have the time—consider hiring a team that can. People love it when someone responds to them. It helps build trust and loyalty. Consider also engaging with businesses that share the same values and ideas as you. It can lead to:
- And who knows what else
Getting More Social Media Engagement
Now that you understand how critical social media engagement is, you need to work at getting more engagement. It’s a process that requires a strategy. Please keep in mind that building engagement takes time; it’s not an overnight thing. But by implementing the following best practices, you’ll be well on your way to generating more engagement (and more partnerships and business) on your socials.
1. Create a Content Marketing Strategy
Creating a content marketing strategy should be your first step. This is your blueprint and a marketer’s bible for a business. Hiring an expert to design one for your B2B is an excellent solution if you don’t have the time or staff. Such a strategy will help you establish your overall content marketing goals, including your social media marketing. Essentially, it’s your roadmap. Content marketing is vast and incorporates a wide range of content like articles, podcasts, videos, infographics, etc. All of these can form part of your social media engagement.
2. Create Quality Social Media Content
Content is the holy grail of your content marketing strategy. When it comes to social media engagement, audiences crave stellar content. So, give it to them. But don’t just provide them with any content. Give them quality content that is relevant and engaging to your audience. It must add value to them by offering solutions, entertainment, or education. From there, see which content gets the most response. If it’s articles on LinkedIn, then invest time in these. If it’s Facebook posts, invest time in those. Consider adding humour to your content to increase engagement. Humour, especially on Twitter, can generate high engagement.
3. Be Active on Social Media
The worst thing you could do is open a social media account and then hardly ever use it. Throwing a post up once a month isn’t going to get you much engagement. It can also give the impression that your business is closed. Remember, social media is very much an active thing, so you need to be active on it. And posting regularly is what makes you active. It can be overwhelming to consistently post on social media, especially when you’re on several different platforms. But having a social media schedule in place or using a social media management service can take care of this. And now, thanks to a host of digital tools, your posting is automated for you.
4. The Reach of your Audience
The reach of your audience is far more vital than how many people make up that audience. If you have a few influential followers, that instantly connects you to a bigger group. This kind of indirect influence can lead to not only more engagement but also the amplification of your content. If you’re a small business, consider reaching out to micro-influencers who have a small but very dedicated following.
5. Offer Customer Service
As a business, offering customer service via your social media is a sure way to get engagement. Most people today want their inquiries and questions answered quickly. Customer service on social media has grown so much in recent times that it’s become just as significant—if not more so—as customer service in person or over the phone. Your responsiveness as a business to your customer’s inquiries and willingness to assist will not go unnoticed. Customers will reward you with loyalty and trust.
6. Monitor Your Social Media Metrics
Your social media metrics are essentially your engagement rates that you should regularly pay attention to. Remember, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. By analyzing your audience data, you can see if you’re on track with your social media goals. You can also understand what content your audience responds best to and what content they are not interested in. From here, you can craft a new strategy and cater to their needs. All social media sites have their own analytics tools that help you see what’s working and what’s not working. You’re able to view metrics like likes, shares, comments, and more. The analytics pages feature graphs that are easy to read and show you the overall success of your social media marketing strategy.
H2: Extra Tips for Getting Social Media Engagement
The following are other ways of getting social media engagement:
- Commenting on trending topics. Such topics naturally generate high interest and engagement among audiences.
- Doing polls and quizzes. When done right (benefits to audience is clear and not too long), they can help get engagement.
- Who doesn’t love a good giveaway? Be generous, but don’t overstretch your budget.
Stop stressing about the number of followers you have and start thinking about engaging more. To help you with your social media and overall content marketing strategy, speak to our experts. Contact Content Callout Today!