Why isn’t anyone commenting on my pictures? Why isn’t anyone sharing our Facebook status? Why aren’t we getting more retweets? If these are the questions haunting you before you fall asleep at night, you’re likely a social media manager or someone in charge of growing the social audience for your brand or company.
There’s a lot of advice on the internet about how to improve social engagement, but it can often be overwhelming or confusing. Here are 10 tried-and-true, easy ways to make better social media posts.
1. Join the #TBT trend, and whatever comes next
Trends are always changing in Internet culture, and you should watch for them and try to jump in whenever possible. (Remember planking? The Harlem Shake? These things come and go.) Joining early and often makes your brand look relevant, hip, and aware.
Right now, #TBT (Throwback Thursday) is a great way to join new conversations on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You just find an old picture, post it on Thursday, and add the hashtag #TBT. It’s a fun way to show how your company has changed and grown, while being mixed in with celebrities, like Katy Perry, and other popular accounts.
2. Ask questions
This is one of the simplest ways to get more engagement on your social posts. This is a strategy that works on most platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Be careful though: As any reporter would tell you, asking a yes or no question won’t usually get you the type of answers or engagement you want. The best words to use when asking a question are: Should, What, Would, Which, Who, and How.
When you’re on Twitter, it’s easy to slip into having a one-way monologue by just tweeting out constant links. Retweeting is a great way to show the love for your followers!
In fact, according to Twitter, accounts with above-expected follower growth send 200% more retweets (3X) compared to those with below expected follower growth.
4. While you’re retweeting, talk to people, too
Not every tweet should be promotional or even about your brand. If someone tweets a great sunset picture, let them know! This humanizes your brand and lets people know there are real humans working on the account.
According to Twitter, accounts that tweet 20% fewer URLs and 100% more @mentions grow followers 17% more than expected.
5. Treat your fans and followers like VIPs
Give them behind-the-scenes access to the stars of your company or what it’s like to work there. People are intensely interested in getting special treatment or a secret glimpse of what’s really going on somewhere.
In this example on Instagram, you get to see Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll in a casual outfit and glasses, getting ready for the flight before a big game.
6. Make original posts on Facebook
While it can be tempting to just share other people’s posts, it’s not the best strategy for growing your overall reach. Facebook values original content more than shared posts, so it’s best when possible to just start from scratch if you want a post to reach the most eyeballs.
7. Avoid duplication
It can be tempting to write one post and then send it out to every social media platform you’re using. But stop right there! They all have their own languages, photo sizes, and general best practices, so that’s not a good strategy. Plus, super savvy social users will notice that you’re just blasting one thing everywhere, so they may not want to follow you on all of your channels.
8. Make sure to include photos, even on Twitter
While Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest have always been focused on photos, Twitter used to be more about words. Now that Twitter is showing pictures in the stream, it’s more important than ever to include them. According to Twitter, tweets with media (a photo or video) receive about 3 to 4 times more engagement than those without media.
Rival IQ data validates that, with up to 50% of the most engaging tweets by Business-to-business (b2b) companies and some 90% of the most engaging tweets by business-to-consumer (B2c) companies on Twitter now including photos and not just status updates or links.
9. Watch the clock
While people are spending more and more time on social networking sites, there are certain times of day that are best for making your posts. In your Insights on Facebook, you can see when your fans are most likely to be online. Make sure to make your best posts during those time periods!
But also do some tests yourselves. While some social media managers swear by posting every hour at a certain time, others have learned the best thing to do is to mix it up. Pay attention to your most engaging tweets and posts, and what day and times those are, and the do more of that.
10. Highlight user-generated content
People want to interact with brands and have their voices heard. If they send you photos, share them! This will create a feedback loop where more and more of you fans and followers are sending you content. (And that makes your life easy!)
Start Creating Better Social Media Posts Today!
I hope you can use these ten easy tips to make your media posts better and more engaging. Please share other ideas you’ve found that works, so we can help each other be more successful.