With fans interacting online now more than ever, how can your brand capitalize and increase organic social media engagement? According to Statista, there are over three billion people worldwide who use social media. Diving deeper, 90.4% are millennials, 77.5% belong to Generation X and 48% classify as baby boomers. And of these groups, the average user spends over two hours on social media each day. That presents a huge opportunity to turn these social media users into loyal brand ambassadors.
At Bolt PR, we have a digital team who drives social media and digital marketing strategies for our clients. These clients represent a wide range of industries, both B2B and B2C. We tapped into these digital marketing pros to get their best tips for brands to increase organic social media engagement.
If a fan is following your brand page, there’s already established interest in your products or services. Instead of flooding your social networks with constant hard-sell promotional posts about your offerings, try shifting content to include a mixture of lifestyle or educational posts. Keep these posts relevant to your industry and audience interests. Graphics, infographics, GIFs and memes are great for capturing audience attention, when appropriate. Sharing industry news and educational content will improve your status as a go-to resource in your area of expertise. When in doubt, err on the side of keeping captions short, clean and easy to digest. Studies show that short-form content is more likely to catch an audience’s attention compared to long, blocky text.
Branch out and reach fans in other places on social media rather than only relying on your brand page. Join groups and contribute to meaningful discussions about topics that directly relate to your brand. However, always aim to keep content non-promotional in these environments. Your goal is to attract fans by showing how your industry expertise can add value to their everyday lives.
If your brand has a physical location that fans can visit, creating a thorough listing on Google My Business is a great way to share posts about sales and promotions. Utilizing this social media platform helps your brand rank higher in local organic search results and gives you more opportunity to showcase relevant content on priority channels.
As with anything in the digital marketing realm, the best way to know what content resonates most with your audience is to test and measure. Look at your data each month, at minimum, to track top and lowest performing posts. Then, adjust your strategy accordingly. You will likely find that different content performs better – or worse – based on the social media channel. Once again, adjust your plan accordingly.
Once you’ve narrowed in on your audience’s interests, it’s likely that more fans and followers will directly comment on your posts. Use this opportunity to humanize your brand. Respond directly with tailored, personalized messages and show your brand’s personality. Refrain from robotic language and even consider incorporating an emoji or two for extra flair.
As you turn fans into true brand ambassadors, user-generated content (UGC) is likely to also increase. Most frequently, fans tag brands in personal photos that feature the product or service. Incorporate on-brand UGC into your social media strategy, when appropriate. Tag the fan’s page for photo credit and add a comment or words of gratitude for an extra personalized touch. According to Stackla, fans are 2.4 times more likely to view UGC as authentic compared to brand curated content.
Due to social media algorithms, it can be challenging to increase organic reach and impressions without the use of strategic tags. When sharing lifestyle or educational content, tag relevant parties mentioned or credited in the piece. These can include news outlets, writers, other brands and beyond. Once tagged, these pages are more likely to share your post with their audience. At the very least, they’ll receive a notification they’ve been tagged and it brings further awareness to your brand and page. Social media shares expand your reach to new prospective fans just waiting to fall in love with your product or service.
Using hashtags is another great way to expand your digital footprint. When brands use hashtags in post captions, they become a part of a larger discussion on social media. The post becomes visible to everyone who searches the hashtag, boosting your brand’s visibility and perception as a thought leader on the topic. Also, try brainstorming a personalized hashtag that is relevant to your specific brand. Then, incorporate that hashtag into your organic social media campaigns, encouraging fans to use that same hashtag in their online discussions about your brand. This helps with data tracking to see which campaigns generate the most viral discussions online.
Looking for some additional help with your organic or paid social media strategy? Get in touch with our team to learn more about how we can expand your digital footprint and increase your brand’s social media engagement.