Are you wondering how to use your social media posting tool to increase your social engagement and bring in more business? Have you heard that engagement is the key to winning at your social media game but are unsure how to go about doing that?
I hate to break it to you but setting a social media scheduler to work and forgetting about it is not the right answer. Instead, automating your posts while logging in daily to engage with your audience is.
Yep. You heard that right.
Automated social media posting only shows results best when it is paired with human effort. In fact, this is the exact idea that this post explores. Like the sound of it? Stick around and you’ll learn plenty.
We’ll start by looking at what engagement is, how social media scheduling can save your time, how to prepare content that will spark conversations with your followers, and effective tips for engaging on social media.
Let’s dig in:
What is social media engagement?
Engagement is interaction. Having a high follower count won’t help you achieve your social media goals. So what is it that works, you ask? Engagement.
Engagement attracts followers to your account (hint: increased brand awareness), increases your account’s reach, and keeps you top of your audience’s mind. In a nutshell, engagement is what gets you results.
Okay so you now know how important engagement is for your social media. This begs the question though – how can you tell you’re getting enough engagement? Note the following parameters that denote engagement on social media:
Let’s get to the meat of the matter now.
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How A Social Media Scheduler Boosts your Social Media Engagement
On its own, a social media posting tool can never get you the topmost engagement. Sure, it would deliver content to your audience consistently and grow your followers somewhat.
In an experiment conducted by the ContentStudio team, posts were automated on a newly set up Twitter account using the social media posting tool. The results? In only 28 days, the tool brought in 716 followers and 109,000 tweet impressions.
These are some good results. 👏
But you can easily get the best results when you pair automation with human effort. Put simply, you need to use a social media posting tool and spend some time on social media yourself.
So, this is what does the trick:
Successful social media engagement = Use a social media scheduling tool + Spend time on social media
We can boil this down further:
Social engagement = Automation + Manual effort
But if you’re spending time on social media yourself, how is a social media posting tool helping you anyway? By reducing the time you give to social media and ensuring you spend your time productively.
Without a social media scheduling tool, you’ll have to post consistently on multiple social channels and engage with your followers. All this takes a lot of time. However, social media posting with a scheduler can cut this time in half by posting on your behalf, giving you the space to engage.
Let’s elaborate on these benefits of a social media scheduler next.
1. How does social media scheduling help you?
We’ve three solid reasons here:
- Saves your time, giving you time to engage
Let’s say, you don’t have a social media scheduler and you log in to your Twitter account to tweet daily multiple times.
You’ll have to write your tweet, reply to comments, and jump into your feed, and comment on other tweets. You will also need to log in again to join a Twitter chat or two during the day. And, log in again (say 5 times) to make 5 tweets and engage with people who comment on your tweets.
That’s A LOT of work.
However, if you’re using a social media scheduler, you will only need to log in to join the Twitter chat(s) and devote an hour or a few minutes throughout the day to engage with your followers. That’s all.
Didn’t this just save your time?
- Keeps your social media feed fresh
You’re only human. You might not get the time to update your social media daily. A social media posting tool helps save you from an old, untimely-updated social profile.
An updated social feed tells your audience you’re consistent, present, and if they interact with you, they’ll hear back from you.
In fact, 63% of social media users expect assistance from businesses. By keeping your social feed fresh, you can easily use your social media as a channel to not only connect with your target audience but also solve their problems.
- Helps maintain consistency
If you were to ask me to share one secret to win on your social media, my answer would have been consistency. It’s no secret really, it’s just that not many people can maintain consistency.
But with a social media scheduler, you can be consistent as the tool posts content on your behalf.
Bonus: ContentStudio can improve your engagement by helping you curate content. 🎉
Curating content or sharing content from others in your business can also help improve your engagement. Make sure you tag the author and the publication and share your thoughts with it. Here’s how you can go about curating content for engagement.
Simply add keywords, domains, or authors in the search bar and the social media management tool will bring up the latest content.
2. How to use a social media posting tool for engaging with your audience?
So you get the main idea here, right? You schedule posts using a social media scheduler and then commit some time daily to engage with your audience.
You now have the cure for inconsistency on social media and a way to remain on top of your audience’s mind.
Want to grow your social media further and increase engagement? Read on to find out how to create engaging content to add to your social media posting tool and improve your engagement.
Let’s first study an example here, shall we?
We’ve Innocent Drinks in the spotlight on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Note what they do here:
- Content that aligns with their brand voice
Innocent Drinks has an informal, easy-going, and funny tone of voice(TOV). And this voice remains consistent throughout its social channels, website, and every other channel. But do you know how it makes a difference? It makes Innocent Drinks stand out. This means every time the brand tweets, people listen and interact.
If you can make it through Monday without eating your entire advent calendar then you can make it through anything.
— innocent drinks (@innocent) December 2, 2019
- Their social content follows their branding down to a tee
Again, this means all of Innocent Drinks content is consistent, not only by its TOV but with its branding too (colors, designs, etc.). Suppose a user, let’s take me as an example here, likes to read Innocent Drink’s tweets.
So when I come across this on Instagram:
I can quickly tell it’s from Innocent Drinks and I’ll connect with the brand there too. Did you see what happened here? Innocent Drinks’ branding made it memorable and easily recognizable. So, I started engaging with it not only on one social network but also on the other.
- Their content resonates with their audience
Innocent Drinks’ content is carefully planned. It puts their customer at the center of their social content. They don’t blabber about their smoothies all day long. But when they do they never make it sales-y.
- They create content specific to the social network
Lastly, you would never see the same content from Innocent Drinks on its social channels. That’s because each social network has a different audience. For instance, Instagram has a more visuals-loving audience and LinkedIn has folks from the B2B industry. Therefore, you need to create content that meets specific audience needs.
Here’s a post on Innocent’s Drink Twitter:
The same message is packaged differently for their FB audience:
And different still for Instagram:
So you get it, right?
In a nutshell, Innocent Drinks creates content specific to its TOV and branding, makes sure it talks about things that interest its audience, and tweaks content to meet the specific requirements of each social channel.
And that’s exactly what you need to do too. Let’s condense these takeaways into a checklist:
✅ Create content that interests your audience. You may not get this right the first time around. Trial and error can help.
✅ Make sure you maintain your branding guidelines and tone of voice
✅ Alter your content to meet the needs of different audiences on different social channels
Plus, some more tips for growing your engagement when using a social media posting app:
- Share different types of content formats
Don’t stick with making only text-based updates. Add GIFs, infographics, behind-the-scenes photos, videos, screen recordings, and more.
See how Wendy’s keeps things exciting by adding variety to the content it shares on Facebook:
- Write captions thoughtfully
Add personality to your captions by giving them your voice. Make sure you get straight to the point. Use Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF), the military communication tactic, which stands for revealing important details first so you don’t waste your reader’s valuable time.
- Don’t post on all social channels at once
The frequency and timing of your social posts also depend on the social channel. Make no more than 1-2 posts on Instagram, 3-15 tweets, and 1 Facebook and LinkedIn post daily. Set your scheduler to update your social account when your audience on each is most active.
3. How to engage on different social media networks?
Now that you have some effective tips for engagement using a social media scheduling tool, let’s talk about the manual efforts you need to put in.
While your social media posting tool maintains consistency on your behalf by sending out engaging content you’ve written, your efforts are what are going to drive in the results.
Let’s start with some universal engagement tips that help you grow on all social channels and move on to engagement tactics specific to each channel.
Social media engagement tips that work for all channels
a. Make your audience the center of your social story, not your business.
Like Trello what does helps folks relate to the message and understand how your product or service can be beneficial for them.
b. Ask interesting questions
Again, this puts your audience in the spotlight and they’d happily jump on sharing their insights and experiences. Grammarly does this the best:
What was the best book you read in 2019?#SaturdayMorning #AmReading
— Grammarly (@Grammarly) December 7, 2019
c. Show the human side of your business
After all, humans can best connect with humans, right? Give background insights into your work. Be vulnerable or share lessons you’ve learned. You can also show how your team has hit their targets.
d. Share video content
Video brings in 12 times more shares than images and text combined in social media. Social videos are snackable and break the monotony in text, which makes them pretty popular.
e. Leave thoughtful comments
Commenting on others’ content is the best (and the fastest) way to grow your engagement. But leaving comments like “great job,” “excellent piece,” is only going to take you backward. Because your audience is quick to figure out you’re commenting only for the sake of it. The solution? Leave thoughtful comments. Read the content and add to it. Tell me what you liked about it. Or share your relevant experience.
Platform-specific Tips for Engagement on social channels
Want to make sure you’re doing the best you can to get success on every social network?
Read on to find more tips that are specific to each social profile:
1. Facebook engagement tips
Long gone are the days when we made multiple updates on our Facebook pages. Facebook’s algorithm have changed a lot, causing a drop in the organic reach of Facebook pages. This is why you now need to focus on posting less. Focus on quality. And make sure your post doesn’t just talk about you.
Your content also doesn’t need to be limited to your niche. Instead, it should talk about what interests your audience. Followers can’t hear you talk about your business all the time. So serve them what they like best. (Via: Societygal – A Community for Creative Female Entrepreneurs )
Another way to increase your engagement on social media is by joining niche-specific communities in Facebook groups. Talk to group members, comment on their status updates, and vote when they set up polls. It’s important for you to be active on daily posts that group admins make.
Once you become a recognized, active member of the group, ask your questions. Share business updates without sounding robotic (shown below). You can also get feedback on what you’re planning next for your business.
Via: Women Helping Women Entrepreneurs
2. Instagram engagement tips
Use Instagram story stickers to engage with your audience. The vote, poll, and question stickers are best to encourage your followers to talk to you. Stickers are great for getting customer feedback too.
Add hashtags not only to your captions but also to your stories. These make your content easily discoverable on the platform, which means you increase your odds of views and engagement.
Here’s more on getting engagement using hashtags on Instagram.
Don’t forget to make sure all images you share are high-quality. After all, Instagram is a visual platform and nothing repels Instagrammers more than blurry, poor-quality pictures. In addition to the quality, try to capture images that tell a story. Complete the story you capture with engaging captions (you’re allowed up to 2200 characters long captions).
3. LinkedIn engagement tips
LinkedIn is home to 260 million monthly users. 40% of these monthly users use LinkedIn daily. Get their attention by sharing life lessons and experiences you gain. Dave Gerhardt, former VP of Marketing at Drift, shares short nuggets of his experience, wisdom, and takeaways that get him a lot of engagement:
It’s best not to be very formal on the platform. Stay professional but friendly so people know you are easily approachable.
Lastly, a LinkedIn video is an excellent way to grow your engagement. 59% of senior executives on LinkedIn say that if they were given the choice to either read content or watch the same, they’d always opt for watching video content. For you, this is great news as you can tap into this increasingly consumed content format for delivering your message to your audience.
Make sure you prompt people to engage with you by asking questions at the end of your videos. Besides, you don’t need to limit yourself to posting work-related videos. The Founder & CEO of TrackMaven, Allen Gannett, shares videos of his interviews with entrepreneurs from various walks of life. He asks them a hot question and posts their responses like this one:
4. Twitter engagement tips
Join Twitter chats to engage and make meaningful connections. For instance, if you’re a blogger, you can use the chat hashtag to connect with other like-minded bloggers. Make sure you give value-packed answers to questions asked on a chat. The more helpful your answer is to your readers, the better it helps to position you as an expert in your field.
Besides providing value, make sure you interact with all chat participants. After you’ve engaged with them a couple of times, follow them and build relationships with these people.
Another super valuable way to grow your Twitter engagement is by asking and answering questions. It’s something that I love to do myself in addition to joining Twitter chats. Twitter marketing expert, Madalyn Sklar, shares, “If you want to get replies on social media, ask your audience a question that you’d love to get answers on. This is great for doing market research as well! Or ask a question that you know will kick off a lively, fun conversation.”
Long-Term Positive Impacts of Remote Work
* Revitalization of small towns 🏡
* Reduced vehicle emissions 📉
* More cross-cultural collaboration 🤝
* Meaningful work for primary caregivers 💯
* Technology advances to support distributed work 🌎
— Doist (@doist) December 9, 2019
Lastly, host engaging polls. It takes less than a split second to vote, which makes it extremely easy for your audience to interact with you, helping grow your engagement.
Wrapping it up
In a nutshell, aim to use your social media posting tool to schedule your posts and join in regularly to engage with your audience. Setting it and forgetting may help you get some attention, but it’s never a good strategy in the long haul.
Masooma Memon is a pizza-loving freelance writer by day and a novel nerd by night. She crafts research-backed blog posts and articles for small businesses and app companies who aim to employ quality content to educate and engage with their audience.