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The most important thing to do when you are trying to boost engagement on social media is to add value to your audience. We are all guilty of trying to sell too much online, buy this product, subscribe to this service, pushing out unengaging messages. While you need to tell people about what it is that you offer, being sold to isn’t what engages us. An easy way to add value is to give out information or provide entertainment. If you offer a service you can demonstrate your expertise by giving out free advice online. Let’s say you are a painter and decorator, one thing you could do is give out one piece of advice each week, called Tuesday Tips. These could be anything from the best paint to use to a list of essentials for anyone renovating their home. Each post will give your audience value, allow you to demonstrate your knowledge, and by using accompanying pictures of your previous work show what a great job you do.

Utilise video
One of the best ways to increase your levels of engagement is through the use of video content. Video is by far the most engaged with content type on social media and very low effort for people to consume. Of course, this is easier said than done and you may not possess the skills within your team to start shooting long, highly edited videos. That’s ok, but it doesn’t mean video should be neglected as even the simplest videos will help raise your levels of engagement. For example, using a free piece of software such as Canva will allow you to turn images into short, animated videos at the click of a button, bringing your content to life. Alternatively, shooting a 10-second story each day of a product behind the scenes in the office is a simple way to use video without needing to have the extensive knowledge and expensive equipment to do so.

Two-way engagement
Social media is all about building relationships with your followers. This can be done by adding value to them as discussed above, but also can be done by engaging with them directly. This can be as simple as liking a comment or replying to a post, something that not enough businesses do. Most people will put up a post or a video etc, receive likes and comments from people that for businesses could be potential customers but then not make the effort to engage further. Repying to direct messages is another big one. If people take the time to send you a direct message make sure you reply, even if they are asking an obvious question or just sending you a link to their website, page or business, replies go a long way for building the reputation of your brand. The last thing you want is to be known as a business that doesn’t reply to messages on social media.

Paid social
The way to take your social media to the next level is through social media advertising. In a nutshell, this will allow you to get your content seen by more people, whilst making sure they match the target demographic of your business. Each social media platform has different options in terms of advertising and cost etc, but to give an example, on Facebook you can advertise from as little as £5. Even at this cost, your advert can still be seen by people who you have selected as your target audience. You can be as specific as you like with this creating a target audience by looking at location, age, gender, interests, the family setup, etc. Social media advertising is therefore a very effective tool from a marketing perspective and you can make different content to target audiences.

Two-way engagement
Social media is all about building relationships with your followers. This can be done by adding value to them as discussed above, but also can be done by engaging with them directly. This can be as simple as liking a comment or replying to a post, something that not enough businesses do. Most people will put up a post or a video etc, receive likes and comments from people that for businesses could be potential customers but then not make the effort to engage further. Repying to direct messages is another big one. If people take the time to send you a direct message make sure you reply, even if they are asking an obvious question or just sending you a link to their website, page or business, replies go a long way for building the reputation of your brand. The last thing you want is to be known as a business that doesn’t reply to messages on social media.

Use an expert
To give your social media the love and attention it needs it is best to use a social media consultant or agency. In the same way, you would outsource your finances or your HR, social media should be no different. The way we use our personal profiles is very different from the requirements of what our business needs hence the benefit of outside help. Get social media support.

If you are not in a position to get outside help at the moment, no need to worry, there are lots of resources that you can utilise online to help you in your production of better quality content. Use this article as a starting point but explore software such as Canva and Hootsuite to help with designing posts and scheduling content in advance. Both will help you improve your current social media output. Get social media training here.