For many brands, having an online social presence and active engagement on their social posts is a sign that they are making an impact in the marketplace. This is because social engagement allows them to make meaningful connections and become popular with current and future clients which help to boost brand awareness and ROI both on and offline.

In order for a brand to be successful at this, it’s important to first know how to build, measure and manage social media engagement. We walk you through the steps required to get started. 

What is social media engagement?

Social media engagement can be defined as the measurement of likes, mentions, branded hashtags, comments and shares or retweets on a social post. And of course, is the ultimate measure of social media success. It’s surprisingly considered even more important than the number of followers you have because, from a business perspective, quality is just as important as quantity.

Think of it in these terms, imagine you threw a party and a lot of people showed up but just sat there doing nothing. They didn’t dance, didn’t speak to one another and didn’t engage in any controversial drinking games. Could you really call the party a success? Granted a lot of people came but did they have fun? It’s the same for social media posts and pages, activity and engagement are critical to building a positive brand experience and play an important role in developing meaningful connections with new and potential clients.

How can my business encourage social media engagement?

Let’s be honest, crossing your fingers and hoping that people will spontaneously engage with your social media content hasn’t exactly had the highest success rate, has it? That’s why you are here. Thankfully, there are effective tricks that can be used to boost engagement and get the ball rolling. After all, social media engagement is and always should be about socialising. So you should be aiming to put the “social” back into social media which involves putting in the necessary time and care to engage and effectively connect with people. When your followers know how much you care, then they will care about how much you know.

  1. Look at your past social engagement

What gets measured improves, so start at the very beginning to observe and measure your growth. Go through all your followers, past comments, likes and shares and take note of how many you are getting on average per post. Use this at a baseline and then be intentional about keeping track of spikes and dips in your social media engagement going forward. Watch the metrics closely and look for clues about what is working and more importantly what isn’t. 

  1. Tailor your social engagement strategy

Every business has a different brand voice and different goals so it makes sense that their social strategy will be tailored to these things. For example, Nando’s brand voice is bold and cheeky with an added bit of fun and their social content will come across as such. Usually “fired up” and often poking fun at politics and other controversial South African topics, designed to get either a laugh or a rise from their South African audience. In the same way, make social content that is in line with your business goals and your brand voice, highlighting what you have to offer.

Below are some social media engagement goals to consider when reworking your social media strategy.

Do you want to:

  • Develop or change the public’s perception of your brand
  • Focus on attracting leads
  • Gather feedback from existing and new clients
  • Educate your audience with helpful information
  1. Get to know your audience

To properly appeal to your audience, you need to get to know who they are and by extension, their likes and interests. It’s admittedly hard to keep people engaged if you don’t know who you are talking to, right? So get to know the sort of language, tone and information that they would use in order to develop relevant and interesting social content that resonates with them. If you want to tailor your content even further, look at which social media sites your brand should be active on and when the best time to publish your social media content is.