According to recent statistics, 77% of the United States population have at least one social media profile. Worldwide, there are about 2.34 billion social media users, and by 2020 we expect to see nearly 3 billion.
This growing number of social users means more and more people are connecting with each other across the web. It’s also indicative of the growing potential for businesses to be more successful than ever - if they embrace social media.
To truly embrace social media is to embrace your audience and create a thriving community. And for that, you need to take an active role in planning and executing a social media strategy. But perhaps most importantly, you need to engage people. Engaging people requires you to publish engaging social media posts on multiple platforms, and to do it consistently.
Which begs the question..
How do you create engaging social media posts consistently?
Well, we’ve created a simple guide to creating engaging social media posts that you can start using today!
This may seem like social media 101, but when planning engaging social media posts, think about your audience.
Not just your demographics, but who they are as people. What are they looking for when they follow you on social media? Will they respond to tongue-in-cheek humor, actionable tips, or infographics? What content are they likely to share with their like-minded friends?
Spending some time getting to know your audience can help guide you in creating posts that they will enjoy. When a person enjoys a post they’re more willing to like, comment or share that post and Voila! You’ve engaged that person.
It may take some trial and error and some critical thinking on your part, but figuring out how to talk to your audience will pay off big time when they start to respond to what you’re posting.
If the era of memes or Instagram has taught us anything, it’s that posts that include photos or other visuals are more noticeable to people scrolling through their feed. And as a result, get more likes and responses.
Try creating several different posts pairing visuals with messaging, and test them to see how your audience responds. Any photos or graphics you use should be consistent with your brand; this will help solidify your brand and create consistency.
But whatever you do, ensure the visuals you use are high-quality and relevant to the content. If your business doesn’t have any great visuals to start with, you can always use stock photos and videos.
Just because you’re promoting something doesn’t mean you have to put on a social media dog and pony show.
Your audience follows you—at least in part—to get to know who you are. Don’t be afraid to show them. Brands that are authentic to who they are resonate with people more than the cookie-cutter brands people see every day.
You can showcase your brand voice and style on social media a little bit more than on other mediums (think website, blog, etc.) It’s possible to let your hair down a little while still establishing a brand and message. In the words of the Genie in Aladdin, “Beee yourself!”
Engaging social media posts get responses. If you want people to respond, ask them to respond.
If you want them to look at your website or take advantage of a promotion, it’s okay to be direct and ask them to do so. With an interested audience, a call to action is usually appropriate.
If your posts sound trite or contain overused words, they’ll be easy to gloss over. Try using powerful words that tap into the emotion of your audience and/or prompt them into action.
Words that might be powerful for one audience may not have an effect on yours. Try to tune into who your audience is before deciding what words are likely to draw out emotion, making them think or act.
Keep in mind that your first few words may make or break whether your followers read the rest of the post, so engage them right away!
The most engaging social media posts are often the most simple. Your audience probably doesn’t have time to read 300 words, no matter what eye-catching visuals you use with it. In most cases, when your post starts to get long, social media platforms will cut off and make the user click to read the rest.
This will usually work against you. Consider the time constraints and attention span of your followers. To avoid being too long-winded, try to keep your posts to between 100 and 250 characters (yes, characters, not words).
This should be enough to get a point across without asking followers to spend too much time.
If you consistently publish engaging social media posts, you’ll get more responses, shares, and followers. Whether you’re using Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or other social platforms, this is one of the best ways to create brand loyalists and better exposure for your business.