Have you ever looked at your competitor’s Facebook or Instagram page and wondered, “Why does everyone like their posts and not mine?” or “Why do they have more followers than me?” You’re not alone.
The key to any social media strategy is to get social media engagement, which is the measurement of comments, likes, and shares.
1. What is engagement?
One of the best examples we’ve heard recently is that you should be treating social media engagement like a dinner party, welcoming people, and encouraging conversation between the host and the guests.
Of course, you want to build up your followers, but ultimately, the greatest measure of social media success is an engaged audience, not just a big one.
As a business, it’s quality, not just quantity, that you should be striving for.
Imagine you threw a party, and heaps of people showed up, but they all just sat there silently and had a terrible time. Was the party really a success? The RSVP list looks good, sure, but did your guests have fun? Will they talk about how wonderful your party was to other people?
Activity and engagement are crucial for every social platform, so that you build a positive brand experience, and develop meaningful relationships with both current and potential customers.
Social media engagement is measured by a range of metrics that could include the following:
Shares or retweets
Followers and audience growth
Mentions (either tagged or untagged)
Using branded hashtags
2. Have a strategy
This is the biggest mistake we see small businesses make. You know that being present and active on social media is important, but you don’t really understand why or how to do it effectively, and therefore don’t see results.
Depending on what suits your brand and what your business has to offer, your social media engagement goals might include:
Changing public perception of your brand
Developing new customer leads
Collecting feedback about new products
Educating your audience with resources and advice
Increasing awareness of your brand and offerings
Choosing a key goal allows you write more effective copy, better target your audience, and allows you to see how well your post performed—which will give you an idea about how you can tweak your next post to be more effective.
3. Which platform?
After you’ve determined what your goals on social media are, you need to decide which platforms you’ll be active on. Below are the most popular social media platforms and recommendations for which companies would benefit most from using them.
· Facebook is the most popular social network in the world with more than two billion users. That means almost everyone in your customer base has a Facebook account, which is why it's a top social media site for businesses.
· Instagram is one of the youngest social networks out there, with most users under 25. That makes it the perfect social network for brands or companies that target young, hip demographics and it also integrates with your Facebook and Twitter accounts. If your service or product is very visual—like landscaping, for example—you need to be on Instagram.
· Twitter gives its users a steady stream of information and new content from all over the Internet. It has millions of engaged users every month, and practically every brand in the world has an account to update its customers. It may not have the same broad audience as Facebook, but it’s easily one of the most accessible networks on the planet.
· LinkedIn is a good place for you to reach professionals. Staffing companies and B2B companies can find a lot of success here.
· Pinterest is a place to share (or “pin”) different visual content so that other people can see it. That can include everything from a scarf to an infographic, which means practically any company can find at least part of their niche on this social network.
· YouTube also has over 2 billion users and is a kind of a catch-all when it comes to video content since so many people use it (it’s the second-largest search engine in the world after Google). When your customers want to learn, you simply can’t beat YouTube.
You will need a content calendar to ensure a clear engagement strategy -there are lots of good programs you can google for this or you can schedule posts on Facebook for Instagram too and use an excel spreadsheet or outlook calender to get you started– we use Hootsuite as it’s easy to use and cost effective. When creating your content calendar, keep in mind to include a good mix of business and non-business-related content so you’re not overselling to your followers. Most of the time, you should create posts that either informative and helpful in some way, or entertaining.
5. Use paid ads
Paying for adverts should be part of your plan. Take Facebook for example, they collect so much information about each user that you can target them based on:
Subjects they’re interested in
Whether or not they’re homeowners
And much, much more
The detail you put into ad targeting makes it worth the investing in paid social media advertising. It’s also incredibly cheap compared to many other advertising methods. We can practically guarantee you, if your competitors have heaps of engagement on social media, they’re using paid ads effectively.
At Profiler PR, we’ll strive to get you the content and plan you need to help attain the results you want on social media, so contact us today via our socials or an email to firstname.lastname@example.org