Social media is a pain in the ass, but you already know how much you love meeting people online into the same stuff you are. Sometimes you even dare to call them your fans. It’s okay to be in the never-ending love-hate between wanting to keep your personal life private, but also share your entire story with the cyberspace.
You should post for more than likes. (You knew that though.) Try and get real-world engagement. (You are all about that.) Here are just a few ways I found help increase engagement on my social media pages.
(This piece is for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter as of August 2017)
1. WRITE LONG FORM ON INSTAGRAM
This one is easy. Any picture you would've posted and only typed "#nofilter", try using a full sentence and describe what the image means to you. I understand aesthetic, but this advice is for those who want to be thought leaders in the realm where they thrive. Perhaps posting that same image on facebook will allow you to write even MORE words. Trust that someone will read the words just as you are surely reading these. This is because a real audience knows how to get to the information they need. Go share your story!
2. LOOKUP HASHTAGS AND RESPOND INTELLIGENTLY
Feeling stuck? Look up hashtags you use and see who else is using them and how. I challenge you to click every hashtag that you put down for your last 5 Instagram posts and comment something different on each post that moves you. The larger your sentence, the more engagement you'll get. Its okay if you don't use punctuation. Most people will understand.
3. USE TWITTER TO FISH FOR AUDIENCES.
Twitter is literally people texting to a cloud. You can search any word or term even without hashtags. See who is using words you want to sell against. If that concept is too deep, look up words on twitter that relate to what you do. Maybe you can find people needing mixing and mastering service if you type "mix" or "mastering". (Be careful with searching "mix" on twitter. There is an alarming amount of people looking for a partner to sit on the couch with them and eat the pretzels out of their Chex "mix". How's that for a niche?")
4. SPEND 2 HOURS OF POST-PLANNING FOR THE WEEK.
Spend more than two hours. If you don't want to stress about posting so often on your facebook page, sit for 2-4 hours on a sunday evening and schedule posts for the week. I do this when I go on vacation usually, but it is a great way to alleviate the stress of curating good content every single moment of every day. It requires work. If you don't want to post on your social media, but you want to be a brand in 2017 (or beyond), you are tripping. Post on your social media. Post interesting shit.
5. RESPOND TO YOUR AUDIENCE QUICKLY.
This one is a slept-on concept. Youd be surprised how many people end up buying a product from a company because someone handled their question with such speed. People love as if there was a person right there waiting to help. YOU must be that person. (The one that avoids emails). Thats has to be YOU. (The one that avoids texts). Thats you. Be the person who responds to everyone quickly. The quicker the better. Go now! I challenge you to get all of your email inboxes down to 0. I dare you.
6. SHOW FOOTAGE OF YOU DOING WHAT YOU SAY YOU DO.
If you bake. Get someone to film you baking. If you produce, film yourself producing. If you manage a producer, get someone to shoot you having a conversation with your artist. Maybe you want footage of you at a registration office of some sort. You are what you vibrate. Vibrate what you are. If you want to be a swim champion, you need to always be swimming. If you want to be on Wall Street pushing stocks, you have to move a certain way. Show yourself moving the way you say you want to move, and eventually people will seek you for those movements.
7. POST "A OR B" TYPE QUESTIONS.
Find a concept in your niche and test it against your audience. For example: I enjoy martial arts culture, so I put up a post with a photo of a Ninja and a Samurai and asked "who would win in a 1-on-1 fight?" This post has gotten more engagement from seemingly "random" users. The reality is that it allows a wider platform for your audience to discuss ideas with each other. Put yourself in their shoes an imagine the type of posts you would enjoy commenting on. It sounds cheesy to compare 1 thing to another so plainly, but you also are reading a "10 ways to _____" post.
8. SHARE ARTICLES ON YOUR FACEBOOK "LIKE" PAGE.
You most likely already repost articles and fun links on your facebook all of the time. Instead of posting content on your personal page, put it on your "like" page. It sounds like an impersonal habit to form; however if you already know what it takes to build a brand, you can trust your gut. Either you post on your personal page to all of your many friends, or you build the community on your "like" page by just posting it there. You could do both if you want to cater to both personal and professional crowds, but don't overwork yourself if you don't have to.
9. SPEND MONEY ON PROMOTIONAL SERVICES
If you are a musician, there are promotional services on platforms like soundcloud that will bump your numbers up a bit. You definitely have to get to a point with your craft that people are offering promotional services to you. You can sniff them out first, but that takes time and research. Test them all. If it felt like a robot, it probably was a lazy promoter who didn't want to customize their introduction letter in your DM. Shop. Window shop. List what works, and nix what doesn't work.
10. SPEND MONEY ON GOOD QUALITY ADS.
Figure out how to create an ad on facebook. Take a course online or on pdf. Run simple "like" ads, for your page. Run ads that lead people to a website so they can submit their email address. You need to feel like the people are within reach. They need to feel the same. You have to be ready for real word engagement. You will literally feel the presence of another person responding to a simple advertisement you create JUST for them. A relationship with a potential customer or client does not have to be exploitative. Make your presence real.