I am not a social media guru by any stretch. I find the Facebook algorithms, Linkedin etiquette and Instagram hashtags an utter mine field…let alone the character limit on Twitter!!! However, what I do know about and what I continue to research is language and language use.
I take an interest in which posts seem to get people engaging. On Facebook, for example, this includes reach, likes, other reactions, comments made and full ‘conversations’. From my anecdotal research, I think the following seems to help…
Good images get people talking. I admit I am all about the words but it does seem that a bright photo or something unusual or funny seems to jump out on my newsfeed.
Giving your followers something to look at rather than read, can be a relief sometimes. The biggest question is ‘what image?’ I guess. It depends on your content strategy and your business, but I think a personal photo can be a great talking point some times. When I say personal (don’t panic!), I mean perhaps a frosty pic of your garden in the beautiful blue winter sunshine; or maybe you have seen something funny and you manage to take a snap; or perhaps you have seen your product or something related to your business somewhere strange of unusual. I think this often gets followers talking and even asking questions, like ‘where did you see that?’ or ‘when did that happen?’ which allows you to respond and engage too.
A good image can bring out your personality, make your feed more human and give you something to smile about too.
Polls and votes
Facebook now allows you to do polls. This is a great way to get engagement because it is so quick and easy for your followers. They don’t have to comment or share, simply click on their chosen option. Simple, quick, engaged. It can genuinely be really helpful for getting a decision or an answer to a question you have been mulling over.
If you can’t do polls, simply giving people options also helps speedy engagement.
For example, give three options labelled A, B, C and then just ask people to comment with just a letter. Many people don’t have time (or don’t feel inclined) to respond to questions but having to only give a letter can seem simple and appealing.
What I have noticed is that if you just said “What is your favourite coffee shop?” – you may get 1 or 2 (if any!) responses. However, if you write “What is your favourite coffee shop? A) Starbucks B) Costa C) Nero D) Local E) Other”, the responses come flooding in. What’s nice about this too, is that every time someone else ‘votes’ then a fellow follower who has also voted gets a notification so that might bring the follower back to the post for a second time.
Feel good stories
The best content tells a story – so tell your story. Have you met an interesting client today? Have you done something a bit different? …did you lock yourself out of your house??? Telling the world seems to engage followers. I know I have got hooked in to someone’s saga or difficult situation but with a happy ending. I would stay away from anything too negative. Make it positive and upbeat in the end at the very least…if it is humorous even better! Keep it real though. Unless you are some amazing fiction or script writer followers will soon see through anything fake and also only write about what you are comfortable with and what you think ‘suits’ your business. Genuinely though, by analysing my Facebook posts data, it does seem that when I tell my followers about someone new I have met or something different I have done, the reach certainly seems to go up.
Go on get your followers engaging today!