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social media how toDo your fans interact with you on social media?

Want to spark more engagement?

While it’s relatively easy to get people to like and share posts, it takes creativity to drive comments and dialog.

Here are seven ways to get your audience to talk to you on social media.

improve social media engagement

Discover seven ways to improve your social media engagement.

Listen to this article:

#1: Ask Questions Creatively

Asking your fans questions may get some response. But if you really want to inspire engagement, take things up a notch.

Let’s say you’re in the food industry. A question like, “What’s your favorite dish?” could be so basic that fans might not bother to answer. Ask a similar question with multiple-choice answers, illustrated by an interesting graphic, and you’re likely to get plenty of responses.

Zomato, a restaurant finder app, writes excellent and witty social media posts. They ask questions designed to genuinely get to know their fans, and include intriguing, above-average graphics. As a result, their posts always get huge engagement.

zomato facebook question post with an image

Zomato doesn’t just ask open-ended questions. They give their fans multiple-choice questions, illustrated by a creative graphic.

Post questions your audience wants to answer. Remember, pictures and a little humor do wonders for engagement.

#2: Organize Unique Contests

Social media contests are very common these days, so it’s important to stand out and do something different or unusual for your brand.

TurboTax is well-known tax-filing software, which may not seem interesting and appealing to people. To add some fun during tax time, this year they initiated a lighthearted Instagram contest to promote their product. People had to follow the brand on Instagram and post a picture with three zeros and a designated hashtag, #absolute0, for a chance to win $500. The contest received more than 730 official entries.

turbortax contest post

TurboTax ran an Instagram contest where they asked their audience to post and hashtag a picture with three zeros on it. Not what you’d expect from tax software, but it was unique enough to get lots of entries.

Don’t just create any contest. Think outside the box and come up with something fans will want to participate in, share and discuss on your and their social sites.

#3: Arrange a Q&A Session

Your customers more than likely have questions for you, whether they’re on the company itself or your products and services. Establish a forum where they can be heard.

Host Google hangouts and Twitter chats or even create a simple Facebook post that asks your audience what they want to know about your company or product. You can interview experts related to your industry in that type of scenario as well.

For example, NASA occasionally arranges Google hangouts with astronauts and scientists, which are open to anyone interested in space exploration or work done by NASA.

nasa q&a hangout on air

NASA hosts occasional Google hangouts where people can ask questions.

No matter what your business, there are things your audience wants to know. Give them an opportunity to ask, and as a result, there will be plenty of social media engagement.

#4: Tag People in Curated Content

There are a couple of ways to curate content that will lead to more engagement.

First, whenever you share someone else’s content, remember to tag the original publisher. This is the easiest way to attract the eyeballs of the original content creators. In the most likely scenario, they will post a comment thanking you for the share.

Another method is to write curated articles. Choose a topic and reference multiple articles, along with their authors and links. Then, tag everyone mentioned in the post when you post socially.

For example, Andrea Beltrami created a blog post with top articles on visual social media marketing. When the post went live, she shared the link and mentioned the names of all of the authors included. Andrea also gave them a shout-out on her G+ profile. The post got lots of shares and comments, many from the mentioned authors.

tags in google+ post comments

Andrea Beltrami curated a post of visual resource articles, and tagged everyone mentioned in the post when she shared it on social media. Many of the authors commented with their thanks.

People mentioned in a curated post are likely to comment with their thanks. The more people tagged, the more comments there will be to get the conversation going on your page.

Tagged authors are likely to share your content on their profiles and pages as well, and tag you back.

#5: Encourage User-Generated Content

User-generated content (UGC) is an excellent way to get your fans talking on your page. It’s the most convenient, yet trickiest, way to get engagement. If you don’t draft the blueprint carefully, it might go unnoticed. However, you can take ideas from brands like GE, Belkin, Target, Warby Parker, Pepsi and Starbucks to get your creative juices flowing.

Starbucks’ #WhiteCupContest is an excellent example of a successful UGC contest. The coffee giant took the cue from their customers, who doodled vibrant designs on the brand’s iconic white cup. In 2014, they launched the first #WhiteCupContest, where customers were asked to design the cup, take a photo and share on social media using the hashtag.

starbucks whitecupcontest posts on pinterest

Starbucks asked customers to share their white cup designs on their social pages. Image: Placeit.

The campaign received more than 4,000 entries in just three weeks. Overwhelmed by such amazing results, Starbucks launched the campaign again this year, but this time just for the store partners.

When your fans contribute to the content on your page, they’re likely to engage and get their friends to join in.

#6: Connect With a Social Cause

Even if a social cause doesn’t directly relate to your brand, you can still embrace and promote it on your page. It’s always nice to do things for others. Plus, it enhances your branding.

Estée Lauder is a world-renowned beauty product manufacturer. When they conducted a Breast Cancer Awareness (BCA) campaign, it made them a socially aware and sensible brand. The call to action of the campaign was “Hear our stories. Share yours.” And that’s what their fans did.

estee lauder breast cancer awareness campaign

Social campaigns, like the one Estée Lauder did for Breast Cancer Awareness, inspire fans to comment.

They asked their audience to visit BCAcampaign.com to hear from breast cancer survivors and share their own stories. When they initiated the program, hundreds of people shared their stories on the platform.

If there’s a cause your company supports, create a campaign or just spread the word on your social pages. Fans are likely to engage with socially responsible content.

#7: Post About Current Events

Being topical always brings fresh traffic to your page, whether it’s centered on a holiday, event or live show.

For example, Papa John’s Pizza posted about the March Madness basketball finals on their Facebook page. They asked fans to pick the winning team, and received more than 50 comments within a few hours.

papa john's facebook current event post

Papa John’s Pizza’s posted about the March Madness finals to spark a lot of engagement in a short period of time.

When you create content that relates to current events that people are already talking about, it really helps to engage your fans.

Over to You

There’s lots you can do to inspire conversation on your social media pages. You just need to get creative and come up with unique posts that will engage your fans and get them talking.

What do you think? How do you engage your social media audience? What inspires your fans to talk on your page? Please share your experience and recommendations in the comment section below.

Starbucks #WhiteCupContest image created with Placeit.
Custom image icon made by Freepik from Flaticon.
how to improve social media engagement

Tips for improving your social media engagement.

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  • treb072410

    Great tips here Ishita.. Thanks for sharing..

  • Great article Ishita. I’ve been searching for tips on how to get
    more engagement for social media and this really helps a lot.

    I’ve also already tried a few (around only 2 or 3) of these techniques
    and got great results. I hope to master #1 though because it is very
    effective (especially with image quotes). #4 though seems a little hazy
    for me. I haven’t yet grasped it’s full potential.

    Well thanks again for sharing your insight. I’ll try these techniques as well.

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Sure Anika and let me know how they work for you. Cheers!

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Thanks 🙂

  • Thanx for such a Nice Article….

  • Great article and tips.. Giving your audience multiple choice questions definitely gets more answers from them!

  • Great article! I will follow these tips. As we know, that social media is quickly becoming one of the most important parts of marketing strategy. It is really important that we must engage in social media regularly because it helps in brand promotion, build loyal customer, and increase engagement between user and customer base.

  • Prince Nel R. Rentoria

    Worth spending my time reading this. Thank you 🙂

  • Hi Ishita! Another great article. I can attest that these will boost your engagement stats. We’ve tried most of them and it’s definitely working. Cheers, Ma’m! 🙂

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Thanks 🙂

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Thanks Alicia.

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Thank you for the kind words.

  • Ishita Ganguly

    I’m glad it helped you.

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Thank you 🙂 Cheers!

  • Sue Anne Dunlevie

    I’ve always liked Andrea’s Google+ profile and posts. She exemplifies branding your blog!

    Thanks for the great info,
    Sue

  • Interesting tips. I might use it myself. I mostly stole other peoples content for my fan pages but now I will take your advice and credit them by tagging them. 😀

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Great. Let me know how it works for you. Cheers!

  • interesting

  • Gil Pacheco

    My safari hat’s off to you Ishita Ganguly! You did a fabulous job of mapping out the key elements of social media engagement. I really learned some good stuff from your article. Thank you and keep up the great work!

  • Ishita Ganguly

    Thanks 🙂

  • Great article. Thanks

  • Impressive! This is noteworthy, Ishita. #6 is my favorite. Online marketers must not forget social responsibility to balance with business and marketing. You nailed it again, as always. Thanks for sharing this! 🙂

  • Prakash Chandrasekhar

    Good one Ishita….wondering what would be the top 3 choice of the 7 in the list for many of them…while all of them are definitely great..

  • Very nice information ishita. You have shared a very nice topic about social media engagement.It helps me a lot!!