Everyone wants more likes, RTs, pins, favorites and shares on their social media posts. Isn’t that the point of social media, to spread your business and personal influence to as many potential followers and customers as possible?
But how do you earn those RTs and shares? It may feel like there is some sort of secret sauce that makes some users get more than you, but it isn’t. Here are numerous ways that you can boost engagement on your social media accounts.
Listen to and engage with your Customers
This one is easy and is one of the main elements of the Duct Tape Marketing Social Media System. Social media is not designed to be a one-way street. You can’t just broadcast your messages and expect your customers to engage with you. Social media is best used as a listening post, a momentary glance at what your customers are doing and talking about.
Take time to listen to your customers. Create a Twitter list of your customers and maybe even the accounts they engage with most. Find what they’re talking about and, if it applies to your business, join the conversation.
Imagine if you are a plumber, and one of your customers tweets their frustration with a DIY plumbing project they are working on. This is a perfect opportunity to offer some tips. If they can fix it, great! Now you have earned even more trust. If they can’t figure it out, I’d be willing to bet you’ll be the first plumber they call.
Add Visuals / Videos
Social posts are much more likely to be engaged with if they have pictures or videos attached. This can be anything from product pictures, to behind the scenes photos, to custom infographics or designs. Videos can include do-it-yourself step by steps or just personal updates from the owner.
If you have a new display in your shop, share a photo to drum up excitement. Even taking an Instagram photo of the sunrise over your building is a great way to engage your customers. They were probably already talking about the weather.
There are many great tools out there to create excellent custom graphics and infographics on a budget. I’d suggest piktochart for more complex infographics or Canva for social and blog images like the one above.
Promotions can be a great way to spur engagement. Offer your customers a discount or a freebie for a share or retweet, and you’ll see your post spread like fire through their social networks. This can even be offered to guests who have already come into the store. If you offer them a promotion at the point of sale, it can be a nice surprise, especially if they were already planning to buy.
Ask a Question
Ask your customers for their opinion and they’ll be happy to give it to you. You can even include polls on Facebook giving your customers multiple choices. On Twitter, ask your customers to RT for one option, and favorite for another. The RTs will almost always win (RT’s will spread to other people’s feeds where favorites won’t) so it isn’t scientific, but it will certainly help increase your engagement and help you identify leads.
If you’d rather not use an actual poll, you can also create photos and graphics with multiple options and ask your followers what they prefer. You should share your customers’ answers and engage with the conversation that ensues.
Include a Call to Action
All sales copy you write usually includes a call to action, why should social media be any different? You should always include some call to action. Avoid using phrases like “Please RT” or “Like this post for…” unless it is a promotion. Instead, try to get a bit more creative.
For example, if you want someone to share your post on Facebook, try concluding your post with “Ask your friends and family what they think.” The easiest way to do that is simply press the share button. Or maybe this call to action can simply be an attempt to get people in the door like “Hurry in before they’re gone!”
Earning social media engagement isn’t rocket science. All you have to do is design your posts and make it easy for your customers to engage.
Do you have examples of social media posts you have created that used these tactics? Let me know in the comments below, or share them with me on Twitter – @AlexBoyerKC
Alex Boyer is a Community Manager and Content Ninja for Duct Tape Marketing. He loves to write, tweet and talk about sports and content marketing. Connect with him on Twitter @AlexBoyerKC