In today's world, businesses rely on social media to succeed. With 3 billion social media users worldwide, there's plenty of room to interact with your target audience. But some business owners fail to create a strategy that helps them reach their goals.
Without a solid social media marketing strategy, there's no plan to build brand awareness, grow a following and improve your social engagement. Perhaps you post content, but it doesn't garner the attention you thought it would. Or maybe you have trouble understanding what your audience wants to see from your brand.
Either way, it's essential to understand why user engagement on social media is important and how it affects your business.
Why is social engagement important?
Users average around two hours and 29 minutes on social media every day. If you don't use that time to interact with them and familiarize them with your brand, you're missing out on the chance to cultivate relationships that lead to conversions.
People use social media for several reasons, and one of them is to engage with businesses. Before it, the only way you could get in touch with a company was by calling, emailing or contacting it on its website. Now, social media makes it easy and convenient for customers to interact with businesses, build relationships and receive support.
Customers also expect businesses to respond to their questions and concerns quickly. The convenience of online shopping has increased their expectations, so they want to receive support as soon as possible. Through social media, you can track your brand's mentions, messages and comments in one place, making it easier to tend to customers.
As e-commerce businesses become more popular, consumers have more options. They can afford to be picky about what companies they invest in. If they see that you aren't active on social platforms, it looks like you don't care or don't put forth enough effort.
Now that we know why social engagement is important, let's explore a few ways to get started.
1. Know your audience.
Before a business can create content and cater to its audience, it needs to know its audience. You need to narrow your focus and figure out what they need from you and how you can provide value for them.
By pinning down your target market, you can figure out what kind of content to post, how frequently and what time of the day to post it, and much more. Without knowing these details, you'll fail to cater to your audience's needs.
The best way to learn about your customers is to talk to them. Listening shows them that you care about their needs and concerns. People want to engage with brands that understand them, and addressing their comments is a great way to start.
When you collect enough data and information about your audience, you can convert it into buyer personas. These are customer profiles that outline details about your audience, including their location, buying behaviors, pain points and interests. The more you know about them, the easier it is to create campaigns that fit their needs.
2. Share user-generated content.
When you post on social media, it's important to incorporate different types of content to excite your audience. Users get bored easily and have short attention spans. They also have a lot of content on their feeds, so you need to immediately catch their eye.
We know that images perform well with users, and so does user-generated content (UGC). This is any media created by your audience that they upload to social media. It allows prospects to visualize themselves as customers using and enjoying your products. This helps to move them through the sales funnel and convert them into paying customers. It also encourages them to post content about your brand in the future.
Around 85% of consumers believe that visual UGC is more influential than a brand's own photos or videos. It's an effective way to build trust around your brand and convince customers to invest in your products and services. UGC tells the story of satisfied customers.
On top of that, visual posts are 40 times more likely to be shared on social media, which could do wonders for your engagement rate. People are more willing to interact with visual content because it's more stimulating, so the more you post visual content, the better your conversions will be.
3. Respond to users.
About 56% of social media users experience FOMO, the fear of missing out, when they see other consumers enjoying products. They want to replicate that happy feeling, which compels them to buy the same product. This psychological phenomenon is known as social proof.
Before anyone can trust your business, they need evidence that you're the real deal and that you provide value. Without it, they won't feel comfortable enough to buy from you and will look elsewhere. Responding to users on social media shows prospects that you provide support and care about their concerns.
There are two ways you can respond to users on social media:
- Reactive engagement: Responding to comments, mentions and messages
- Proactive engagement: Initiating comments, mentions and messages
Businesses on social media need to make social engagement a priority by responding to as many users as possible. You should use both reactive and proactive engagement to improve your overall engagement rate and attract more followers.
Just because someone is talking about your brand doesn't mean they're directly mentioning you or that they intend for you to see it. Regularly search for relevant, brand-related hashtags and keywords to know what users are saying about you. This can be a great way to start a conversation and convert them into followers.
4. Provide value.
For any marketing strategy to succeed, it needs to demonstrate value to its target audience. Why do they want to buy your products? Why will customers enjoy a better experience with your brand than with your competitors? You need to give people reasons to choose you by providing them with value.
A great way to give your audience value is to post social content regularly. If you're only active on social media once in a while, it'll be challenging to reach your goals. Growing a following and interacting with users requires your brand's active engagement.
To build brand recognition and increase user engagement, you need to be present on social media. You can't expect your conversions to improve if you don't consistently post and interact with others on different platforms. Studies show that brands that publish content daily receive better engagement results than brands that don't.
Because most people use social media daily, you want to show up on their feeds regularly. They can't forget about you or focus on your competitors if you constantly show up when they log on.
Back to you
Engaging your target audience on social media doesn't have to be difficult. If you know who you're targeting and what they need from you, it's easier to get the results you want. With these tips, you should be on your way to improving your social media engagement rate as well as your connection with customers. How will you boost your social engagement with users?