Article tags ▼
How to Build Engagement with Your Social Audiences
By Ryan Lovett - Senior Account Executive Read time 5 Minutes 6th Septemeber 2018
Social media is everywhere. If you’re not on it then where’ve you been the past 10 years? Close to half the world’s population (a touch over 3 billion people, up 13% year-on-year!!) are on some form of social media. Your sister is on it, your dad, your nan and increasingly more common, so is your pooch. With these vast amounts of users out there, why are you finding it so hard to actually engage with your followers? Social media is as much about engaging with your follower base as it is about regularly posting, that’s why it’s called “social” media, you need to interact with each other. If all you post about is your products or what you had for tea last night your follower base just simply won’t feel engaged, and ultimately a lack of tailored posts to these followers will lead to them committing the ultimate social sin of all… unfollowing!
As a general rule of thumb for building your social media engagement there are 3 steps you should take:
- Understand or assess your current following
- Choose your post content strategy
- Analyse results
… and repeat!
Understanding Your Follower Base
If you can firstly understand who follows you, you can then understand how best to go about tailoring your content to those people and achieving higher engagement… simple right? A crucial part of this is the use of social media analytics. A lot of the most commonly used social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have tools built into their sites and apps to do such a thing.
If we take Instagram for example, they have an ‘Instagram Insights’ section of the app which is available for business pages. From here you can access all sorts of demographics on your followers:
- Follower count
- Gender split
- Age range of followers
- Where your followers are from
- Times and days when your followers are most active
- And much, much more..!
Research into these demographics will then put you in good stead for your post content strategy. Knowing the best time to post, what age range and gender to target are all key areas you should be focussing content around to achieve the highest levels of engagement.
Once you know WHO your audience is, you can then turn your attention to HOW you can boost your engagement with them.
What Should You Post?
Tailoring your content to engage with your following should be the next logical step in this journey. There are a multitude of different tactics you can incorporate to achieve this. Your audience is used to seeing posts day in day out that aren’t differentiated from each other, if something appears on their timeline that is different from the norm, be it through visualisation, a poll or a game, then they are more likely to spend time interacting with that post. Here are, in my opinion, the top 5 methods for increasing engagement with your social audience just through the way you post your content:
Method 1: Create a Poll
A good example of a social platform a poll can be incorporated into is Twitter. A poll will get your audience to engage through interacting and voting with other like-minded people. Not only do you increase engagement through interaction on your poll, but you can also post questions that can help your understanding of your customer base or gain insight to public opinion on a potential future offer or product you have in mind. A good example of a twitter poll was posted by Airbnb, posing the question ‘What are your weekend plans?’. Not only do users get to have their say and see what other people are up to, Airbnb can also see what their social audience like to do, and from here they can tailor future posts or advertisement on Airbnbs in and around cities.
Method 2: Offers & Promotions
This method is more tailored toward businesses who want to look to increase their social engagement. If you provide a product then creating a simple offer such as a product giveaway could work for you. Base your offer on terms that the user must like and share your post to be in with a chance to win. Not only does this increase the amount of existing follower engagement, it also gives you exposure with the people who connect with your audience as your post will be shared to their timelines too!
Method 3: Talk to Your Audience
This whole blog is based on increasing engagement with your social audiences, the simplest form of this is to respond to any messages or mentions you may receive. Try to respond to all as soon as you can, adopt a friendly, helpful tone of voice and personalise your responses through the use of the users name. Not only does the person themselves feel valued but other users within your audience will see your responses and conversations and feel like you’re friendly and easy to engage with. It bridges the gap between just being another Twitter account to being an engaging account you can actually have a conversation with!
Method 4: Incorporate Hashtags #
The use of ‘relevant’ hashtags within your posts can help keep your posts current as well as engaging. The use of a hashtag means that your post is linked to a worldwide search of that particular hashtagged phrase. This is useful as it can help you track who is talking around the same topic as you and allows you to reach out to like-minded people and potential new additions to your social audience. A trap most people fall in to is to just chuck a hashtag on to the end of their post because they feel it is the norm. The trick is to use relevant hashtags that may relate to current events in the news or social trends that people will be searching for at that moment in time. A massive campaign started by Coca Cola where this was a huge success was their #ShareACoke hashtag. They printed globally a VERY wide selection of names that were country specific onto their coke bottles. They then urged their audience through social posts and the use of the #ShareACoke hashtag to post a picture of themselves holding a bottle with their name on. This prompted thousands of people worldwide to do such a thing and to get others involved with them making their campaign go viral! Users could search the hashtag and engage and interact with other Coke drinkers and the Coca Cola social pages too.
Method 5: Humour
Increasingly more common is the use of humour in posts or responses, with Twitter probably the best platform to use this method on. If you can respond to people sending you messages by adding an amusing twist and it gets enough traction your post can go viral. By changing your tone of voice in posts to be more light-hearted and jovial your audience are more likely to engage with you, seeing you as more approachable and human-like, not just a social account!
Analyse Your Results
You’ve worked out your social audience, you’ve tailored posts around how you think best to engage with them, what’s next...? Time to see how well you faired!
It’s all very well taking the time to tailor engaging posts to your audience, but if that’s where you stop your process then you won’t be able to learn and increase your engagement levels. Not all your campaigns will have succeeded, some will work well with your particular audience and others will drop like lead balloons. The trick is to learn from your analytics this time round and evolve or amend your plan for your future campaigns. Engaging with your social audiences isn’t just something you should do every once in a while, it should be ongoing and brought into every level of your social footprint!
A trio of new contract wins has delivered a £1.2m ‘travel’ boost to a leading West Midlands full-service advertising agency. M3, which has offices in Birmingham, Wolverhampton and Oxford Circus in London, has been appointed to support the expansion of Affordable Car Hire, Solos Holidays and Long Travel.
12th February 2019 Read time 5 Minutes
As we enter into 2019 with no clear indication of what Brexit looks like for the UK, many clients and are struggling to understand what impact Brexit is going to have on their business, and the sectors they operate in. I believe marketing teams have a huge role to play in planning and shaping the future of their businesses. There are many different factors that are currently affecting customer confidence and subsequent actions:
6th February 2019 Read time 5 Minutes
As a result of continued growth, our Birmingham-based digital team has moved to a new Birmingham office. The team is now based in Somerset House, on Temple Street, which is ideally located in the heart of the city centre. This location is a 2-minute walk from Birmingham New Street, and a 3-minute walk from Birmingham Snow Hill, meaning it’s perfectly placed for clients and staff alike
24th January 2019 Read time 2 Minutes
When it comes to local searches, businesses with physical locations have a strong advantage compared to online-only businesses. In fact, a study released by Google in November 2018 showed that 61% of shoppers would rather shop with brands that have a physical location than ones that are online only.
19th December 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
One of the leading personalities in the travel market has joined M3 as part of its ambitious plans to double accounts in this sector. The West Midlands full service advertising agency, which has offices in Birmingham, Oxford Circus in London and Wolverhampton, has appointed John Donnelly as Non-Executive Director to build on more than £1.5m of recent contract wins.
3rd December 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
It's that time of year again, no not Christmas (just yet) but the weekend that we all look forward to in the shopping calendar. Yes, I hear you scream Black Friday & Cyber Monday! Well, some of you will.... the rest of us will be turning off the TV & Laptop, hiding under the covers and avoiding making any crazy purchases - or is that just how I feel? I should highlight that statistically I am in the age group that is less likely to embrace the Black Friday phenomenon.
20th November 2018 Read time 6 Minutes
As someone who has recently joined M3, it was a little intimidating when discovering how much there is to learn in such a fast-paced and forward-thinking industry. It's very much a case of being a sponge and absorbing as much information as you can to learn as much as possible from others. It's also important to be taking the initiative and learning as much as you can by yourself.
2nd November 2018 Read time 3 Minutes
Ever since Joseph Nicéphore Niépce made the earliest known surviving photograph (View from the Window at Le Gras) made with a camera C.1826/7, photographers worldwide have strived to create the perfect image. It was only a matter of years later that the first fake, or manipulated images started to appear.
17th October 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
Regardless of the type of business you have, getting new customers can be fundamental to the overall success or failure of your company. The first step is to look inward and clearly identify your own USP’s (Unique Selling Points). A SWOT analysis can help you to identify your top strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and it should have strong bearing on your business development plan. Knowing where opportunities sit and clearly focusing on them can help you to quickly accelerate towards achieving new business wins
10th October 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
A couple of months ago, I was fortunate enough to be asked to join the design jury at this year’s Kinsale Shark awards. Last week saw them reach their climax. It turned out to be one of the most informative, and inspirational weeks I’ve had. As well as a thoroughly beautiful location, it was brilliantly delivered.
4th October 2018 Read time 3 Minutes
Much is currently being made of the financial pressure in print media occurring at present – editors being made to re-apply for their own jobs, wide-spread redundancies across journalist and photographic roles, enforced pay cuts, and entire production departments being relocated across the other end of the country.
21st September 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
We all know that to be successful in business, it’s imperative to maintain a healthy competitive advantage in the marketplace. To do this well and improve sales and market share it’s crucial to know and understand your main competitors and their business strategies. Here are some key aspects to focus on, to help you keep ahead of your competition:
14th September 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
A few days ago Nike premiered their new brand ad. It got a few tongues wagging. The ad celebrates the 30th Anniversary of “Just Do It” and features former NHL player Colin Kaepernick who, in 2016, controversially decided to kneel during the American national anthem as a protest against police brutality and racism, which was met with great support but equally huge backlash, including a vehement speech from Donald Trump, who aped his time on ‘The Apprentice’ calling for him to be “Fired” for disrespecting the flag.
11th September 2018 Read time 4 Minutes
Social media is everywhere. If you’re not on it then where’ve you been the past 10 years? Close to half the world’s population (a touch over 3 billion people, up 13% year-on-year!) are on some form of social media. Your sister is on it, your dad, your nan and increasingly more common, so is your pooch. With these vast amounts of users out there, why are you finding it so hard to actually engage with your followers?
6th Septemeber 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
So, you’ve made the decision you need a new website, but where do you start? Your website is main point of contact with customers and can act as sales representative, education tool and, in some cases, is the first interaction a customer will have with your business – and we all know how important first impressions are! So, it’s vital its done right and portrays the right image for your business.
30th August 2018 Read time 3 Minutes
When you are faced with the minefield of choosing the right font when there are just so many to choose from, how do you choose? And why does it really matter anyway? A typeface can literally make or break a piece of design work, reflecting its own personality into the page.
22nd August 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
Nearly every advertiser would like to see their brand on TV, it looks great and increases brand awareness across a potentially huge audience. But what if you are a local advertiser who needs their marketing budget to cover multiple advertising formats and work just as hard
15th August 2018 Read time 3 Minutes
Just in case you live under a rock, on Mars, or in Glasgow, Rome or Amsterdam, this summer has been dominated by the FIFA World Cup in Russia. Daily office discussions have ranged from waistcoats to VAR, Mbappé to Modrić, predictor pigs
8th August 2018 Read time 4 Minutes
Can anyone be creative? Creativity is everywhere, you just need open your eyes and look for it. In today’s society we tend to walk around with our heads down, plugged into our digital devices.
1st August 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
User experience – or UX for short – is an integral part of the web design process. It encompasses a variety of factors, including usability, accessibility, performance and design. But the key word here is ‘experience’ – UX is all about how a person feels when they interact with a website.
25th July 2018 Read time 5 Minutes
One of the West Midlands’s leading digital marketing specialists has been appointed to lead the expansion of M3, with the aim of delivering £1m of new business.
12th July 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
All marketeers understand the importance of using highly targeted marketing to reach the right audiences online, particularly for conversion driving and there’s a range of measurable channels to choose from.
18th July 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
Tactical versus brand. It can seem like a struggle sometimes. In the blue corner: Hardworking tactical campaigns driving revenue and meeting immediate objectives. In the red corner: Big picture brand thinking about what you actually mean to your audience.
6th July 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
Defining any brand has its challenges. Defining your own - even more so. It’s as much about soul searching as strategic thinking. Especially when many of your colleagues and senior management have strong, long-standing emotional ties to the business you’re about to utterly redefine.
26th June 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
SearchLeeds is the biggest search marketing event in the North and we were thrilled to have the opportunity to see some of the best figures from the search community speaking about what we need to be aware of in our ever changing digital landscape.
18th June 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
This year saw the inauguration of the Birmingham Design Festival. The four day celebration of creative culture saw a series of workshops, seminars, exhibitions, demos and screenings...
15th June 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
A leading Wolverhampton-based full-service advertising agency is celebrating the launch of its new brand by sealing a hat-trick of client wins.
12th june 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
Our let’s do something launch day. You may have noticed that here at M3, we’ve got a new philosophy: Let’s do something. When we launched this new mantra to our team, we did something pretty special.
12th June 2018 Read time 1 Minute
How smaller agencies can make a big difference. It pays to be flexible. Just ask any gymnast or yoga instructor. And in the modern marketing world, the most agile agencies are not always the biggest.
25th May 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
We’ve put on our mittens and filled up a Thermos to create a new low temperature, high action campaign for West Midland Safari Park’s fantastic ICE AGE family attraction.
30th March 2018 Read time 30 Seconds
We love winning awards. But we also love it when our clients win them too. And we’ve got everything crossed that Solmar Villas will continue their award-winning streak at the 2018 British Travel Awards.
6th December 2017 Read time 30 Seconds
Making your customers spend more time with you. Your brand is amazing. You’ve got a great product. You offer amazing value. But unless you back that up with the right customer experience, your audience won’t give you a second look.
2nd May 2018 Read time 2 Minutes
Digital channels work. They’re the main way audiences get to know brands and find the ones they want to spend time (and money) with. But with a sweet, tempting pick ‘n’ mix of channels to choose from, which ones are right for your brand?
19th April 2018 Read time 3 Minutes
Co-op Energy do power with a difference. They asked us to promote their energy options, but to also show how customers help the community through the
24th November 2017 Read time 30 Seconds
The essentials for talking to your customers. First things first, there’s no magic formula. If any agency tells you there is, make sure there’s a fire extinguisher handy, because their pants will be going up in flames shortly afterwards.