7 Social Media Tips to Improve Fan EngagementPosted on Monday, 04 February 2013
Small businesses often focus less on social media marketing than they do on other channels of business marketing, even though social signals have become an integral part of SEO in the past few years. Engaging fans and keeping them interested in social media platforms requires dedication and time, so businesses might quit doing it or never start.
If this sounds familiar, you must be aware that you are missing a great opportunity to build your brand amidst real people on the web. Once your brand is established on social media sites, engaging your audience requires less effort than it does during the initial stages of your social media involvement. Your content will go viral thanks to the engagement you have built with your fans and followers over time. It is definitely worth the effort to build this platform but if you do not have the time to invest in it consistently it is probably best not to do it at all.
The following are seven quick tips that will help you with your social media profiles. These will help you create immediate engagement with your web audience and build your business brand pages:
1. Keep Your Posts Succinct:
Keep the content you post on your social media profiles short and precise, about 80 characters long. There are character limitations on Twitter but even on Facebook and LinkedIn (no length limitations) do not stuff in a lot of information. Shorter updates grab attention instantly, triggering conversation and engagement among your fans and followers.
There is an exception to this criterion with Google+ as it allows you to post an unlimited number of characters. Using your Google+ posts like full-fledged blogs creates a higher chance of appearing in top Google search results for your targeted keyword.
2. Whatever You Do, Do it in High Quality:
Quality photos grab immediate attention. They could be of products or of you and your staff, just make sure you post something that will grab your follower’s attention and hopefully initiate a conversation. Take, for example, our own WooRank team showcasing their fun and creative side on our Facebook page by posting a high quality picture of the team creating a human ‘WOO’ in the snow. This did not require strategy or planning, it was something simple and spontaneous that invited conversations among fans.
You could even embed images with questions or comments, or add a description along with the photo that shares surprising or humorous information or asks for opinions.
Take a look at a sample screenshot below from the Facebook fan page of Chocolate for Breakfast. It is a perfect example of a post with a high quality photo and conversation starter question.
Similarly, if you post videos, make sure they have high image and sound quality. You do not want to disappoint your followers with a poor quality video.
3. Post When Your Audience is Not Busy:
Posting on your social media profiles in the evening can effectively increase engagement rates. People check their social network notifications during breaks at school or work, during transit or at home after work or school. You want to be visible to your specific audience demographic at the right time of the day to grab their attention with your post. Twitter posts are real time updates that need special attention when it comes to timing. Facebook and other social networks show posts to your fans and followers in their news feeds which can be seen anytime during the day, however, if your fans and followers have a lot of people in their circles or networks your posts may be quickly hidden by newer posts. To be on the safe side, post during the evenings. The best days to post on Facebook, according to Jeff Bullas, are Wednesdays and Sundays but you can check your engagement metrics and decide for yourself what type of posts are most popular on which day of the week and at what time of the day.
4. Contests and Giveaways are Guaranteed to Grab Attention:
Social media brand pages are a great platform to promote giveaways, discounts and contests as they encourage engagement among fans. Fans and followers will share the contest or giveaway information on their timelines, thus increasing its exposure. Note: Ensure you abide by the rules of the social network where you host the contest. Otherwise you could use a separate web page created within your website specifically for contests and giveaways and promote this page effectively on all your profiles.
5. Post Sharable Content:
Posts that spark conversations or encourage sharing generally contain humor or interesting trivia messages. These could also be images with meaningful or funny quotes embedded in them. You can also create custom images that speak for themselves to entice a conversation among your followers. Take, for example, Pepsi’s brand page on Google+ which has a ‘Fill in the Blank’ post that generated 145 comments, as shown below:
Here is a great example of a jewelry business including a product tip on an image:
6. Interact With Your Followers:
Nothing is more likely to create engagement among fans and followers than you interacting with them. Some brand pages even handle customer complaints and queries on their social media brand pages. People will feel that their participation on your brand page is valued when you take time to comment on their posts and thank them for their interaction on your page. Your social media integrity may also encourage them to share your posts and spread the word. Have a look at one such sample screenshot taken from WooRank’s Facebook page:
7. Interconnect and Cross Promote:
Include social media in whatever you do with your business offline. If you have an official local event, announce it on your social media pages and invite fans and followers to join if they are in the vicinity. If you have holiday offers at your physical store then make them known to your online social media audience. Promote your coupons or any other incentives. If you have been awarded in your industry, show it off to your social media audience. Interconnect everything you do on your website with your social media pages. If you have a blog, base your main content on the blog and promote it on your social media accounts. Just take care not to post the same updates on every social media brand page. You may have common fans on all the pages so it is wiser to tweak your updates according to the page you are promoting or updating it on. Here is a great post about social media profile setup on different social media platforms and interconnecting your status updates.
Building engagement with your fans and followers on your social media brand pages pays off as your brand becomes popular among your follower’s networks. Social media is an indirect form of marketing that needs patience but with the right moves you can establish your brand on these platforms and create a broad base to reach old, new and potential clients.