Part of being a content creator means listening to your audience, understanding their needs, and also learning how to best connect with them on social media. Knowing when and how to prioritize the above will allow you to get more personal with your followers and form a stronger relationship with them while also boosting engagement with your audience. "Interact with your audience when they take the time to interact with you. Human connection is no Instagram hack, but it makes a big difference when it comes to user engagement." - ForbesA huge part in understanding your audience and creating content that caters to their interests involves getting to know them on a more personal level. When it comes to engagement on social, you want to ensure that you're leveling-up with your followers so that they know that you're listening, that you care, and that you're there. Here are the top 8 ways to engage with your audience.
1. Get Personal
Share more behind the scenes of your everyday life – both the glossy and raw moments. Don't be afraid to be vulnerable and share the real you with your followers. The more vulnerable you are with your followers, the more they'll connect with you. Engagement is a two-way relationship. Keep in mind that they want to see all the versions of you! This means both the casual and the glam sides of you.
2. Write Thoughtful and Balanced Captions
Use captions to share thoughtful and authentic stories. Keep a balance between heartfelt and humor. Captions should also vary in length, from a few words to a few paragraphs. The captions that you create for content within your social platforms should be mindful, timely, organic, and engaging. Followers are always on the hunt for inspiration. Be a constant source of timely and honest inspiration by staying true to your brand.Justin Baldoni is a true storyteller, both through images and captions. He gets real, keeps it honest, and has fun with the personal stories he writes for Instagram.
3. Check your DMs
Check direct messages on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, & Twitter to stay on top of questions and provide helpful feedback. Keep a close eye on your direct messages to answer questions and let your audience know that their feedback is appreciated. By being responsive, your followers will feel included in your community.
4. Prioritize Originality and Creativity
Focus on creating and posting original content through posts and stories to best serve your audience. Continue to create what you love – don't worry about always hopping onto trends or feeling like you need to do something different. Your audience is there because they love what you post. Your posts and stories are there for you to showcase YOU. For Stories, our StoriesEdit app simplifies creating personalized and design-driven stories. Simply create your template, add your imagery, save, and reshare on other social platforms. VOILA!
5. Respond Quickly
Timing does matter. Aim to get back to your followers' questions within 24 hours. The PLANOLY Comment Management Tool makes this easy! The more you interact with comments from your followers, the more they'll continue to engage and feel a part of your online community.PLANOLY Pro Tip: Use our Comment Management Tool to save time when responding to comments from your followers. The best part too - it's available on both web and mobile! Click here to learn more.
6. Integrate Interactive Extras
Launch polls and Q&A's on Instagram Stories, create an Ask Me Anything post on Facebook where followers can drop all of their questions for you to answer, or send out a follower specific survey that you can link within in a tweet on Twitter. All of the above will help you get to know your audience better and in return, allow you to better cater future content to their specific interests and needs.
7. Share What You Love
Find your niche and be the expert! Be the first to share interesting finds, hacks, and products. Connect your audience with the brands that you love and use throughout your daily life. This continues the trend of them getting to know you more. Share your expertise and interesting finds to be a reliable source for your followers.
8. Promote User-Generated-Content (UGC)
Screenshot and share meaningful comments or tags when your audience mentions you. It not only includes others into the conversation but strengthens your community. Thank them for sharing the love for your brand by tagging them or leaving a thoughtful comment. Sharing UGC creates brand value for the user and inspires them to continue to engage.Ashley Kane takes it a step further with UGC by sharing responses from her followers (under BoC Friends) when it comes to posts that she's shared or created for them! This keeps the conversation going about her brand, and builds on engagement with her audience.Start engaging with your audience now. Use the PLANOLY Comment Management Tool to stay on top of your comments audience engagement and be sure to tap into our Analyze Web Dashboard for advanced analytics you won't find anywhere else!