18 Aug How to Increase Social Media Engagement: A 2020 Guide for Marketers
Are you looking to modernise and grow the online presence of your brand? The importance of having a strong social media engagement signifies to your audience that the brand is making an impact in the market.
Of course, it is not just about looking popular, it also serves as a vehicle to make meaningful connections with your present and future audience. This allows you to boost your brand’s visibility, engagement and ROI (return on investment) both on and offline.
Moreover, due to the world’s current events of COVID-19, more and more companies are looking to adapt to the current landscape. Companies and brands are now investing more efforts in opening up online channels, such as Social Media, Website optimisation, E-commerce stores to reach and capture a larger audience.
What is social media engagement?
Social media engagement is measurement of public comments, likes, views, shares for an online business’ social media efforts.
It is usually calculated by a range of metrics that could include the following:
- Followers and audience growth
- Mentions (either tagged or untagged)
- Using branded hashtags
- Shares or retweets
- Content Views
The success of Social Media is measured by having an engaged audience who are raving fans about your brand. It is not about racking up the followers, fake-bot followers or ghost followers who do not interact with the brand, or make a purchase.
Brands and businesses also need to understand the constant algorithm changes on Social Media platforms, so that their marketing efforts are not wasted.
Instagram’s social media engagement algorithm in 2020
According to Techcrunch, there are 6 key factors that influence the Instagram algorithm for feed posts:
Instagram’s algorithm is powered by machine learning, which means that any new behavioural patterns or trends will be factored into how the algorithm works.
When it comes to feed performance, we know that the algorithm prioritizes content that receives the most engagement.
But what are the most important social media engagements?
According to Instagram, the most important social media engagements for feed ranking are comments, likes, re-shares, and for video posts, views, which is really helpful to know as you plan your content and captions.
If you wonder why and how Instagram changed this system, it was simply Instagram playing with its algorithm; and deciding that they want to show “the moments you cared about first”. You can read Instagram’s official press release in regards to this change here. As this change affects probably every Instagram user out there, it’s no secret that business accounts are the ones who are most affected. Digital marketing agencies or their in-house marketing department need to adjust to this change and step up their Instagram game plan; to make sure that they can still engage with their audience in the best way possible.
How to make sure your Instagram followers see your post
There are some really helpful tips and tricks on how to increase the likelihood of your followers to see your post. Since Instagram predicts the moments its users care about; us as a business need to make sure that the things being posted aren’t just for ‘the sake of posting’. The content needs to be a high quality content, an appeal to Instagram saying that your content is worth showing on top of its users’ feeds. Some highlights from the tips and tricks would be to utilize Instagram’s features. Such as (of course) posting photos, videos, stories and going live.
Now, we’re officially going to tell you the secrets of when to post on your business’ Instagram account. Not only to increase the chances of your audience to see your post, but also to maximize your engagement with your audience. Mavsocial mentioned that every ‘brand’s audience is unique’. Which means there are truly no right or wrong formula when to post on instagram nowadays. You just have to tailor it based on who your audience is and where the predominant timezone of your followers are. Besides monitoring your followers engagement with your account, the ‘science’ behind when is the best time to post on your instagram is by understanding your user’s journey.
People will usually go on social media and check their phones when they have time to do it. For example, in the morning before work starts, during lunchtime on weekdays, commuting home after work, before going to bed and weekend afternoons.
Best Practices for engaging users on Social Media
1. The day and time you should post to your business’ Instagram account
Just a month ago, HubSpot released the ultimate ‘recipe’ of when to post on Instagram to generate the most audience engagement.
- Sunday: 10 AM – 2 PM CDT
- Monday: 11 AM – 5 PM CDT
- Tuesday: 5 AM, 9 AM – 6 PM CDT
- Wednesday: 5 AM, 11 AM, 3 PM CDT
- Thursday: 5 AM, 11 AM, 3 – 4 PM CDT
- Friday: 5 AM, 9 AM – 4 PM CDT
- Saturday: 11 AM CDT
In the same article, HubSpot also breaks down the best times to post on Instagram for different business industries.
Other helpful tools to help you maximise your audience engagement
- Sproutsocial’s ‘Best times to post on social media’ article –
Breakdown of when to post on various social media for various business industries
- Later’s ‘Best time to post on Instagram’ feature –
Automatically calculates the top posting times for your Instagram account
Sure, following these pro tips and using tools to achieve maximum audience engagement is a great resource. However, the engagement you make with your audience depends on you and your business. It depends on what industry your business is in and your audience’s demographics and behaviour. Don’t be afraid to experiment and do some trial and error test. You’ll never know what would work and what would not work if you don’t try. Post during night time on weekdays and afternoon on weekends, vice versa. See which time get the best reception from your audience.
2. Post Daily
Keep your brand at the top of mind for your audience and potential customers. It is very important to post witty, entertaining content daily to keep your brand visible. One to three posts a day is a consistently safe range to aim for, and anything higher may be seen as spam.
3. Monitor Engagement
There are many free social media marketing apps which track all the social metrics, such as weekly engagement and impressions, and follower growth. Sites like HootSuite, Social Mention and Addictomatic use various crawlers and algorithms to determine who is seeing your social media posts and how they’re responding.
4. Contests and Giveaways
Contents and giveaways is one of the most effective ways to increase engagement and followers on your brand profile. Working with another brand or influencer will yield a higher multiple effect.
5. Social Listening
Like all communications, Social Media Marketing is also a two-way street. It is a great way to hear what people are saying about your brand, and respond to any good or bad feedback. It is important to be responsive and generous with your customers, and can be done via follow up posts or direct messages. Also shows that the brand really cares about their customers.
6. Use engaging content such as videos, reels, GIFS and stories.
Canva makes it super easy to edit content and make it look professional in seconds. Video is also extremely engaging and generates 1,200% more shares than images or text. There are a million video editors out there, but Clips app for iPhone and Funimate for Android users makes it super easy to create scenes and add music or text frames.
7. Use Social Media Hashtags correctly
Hashtags are an integral tool for getting your content in front of fresh eyeballs, and get people to start engaging with it. Use hashtags that are relevant and authentic to your brand, and it is recommended to use less than 20~25 hashtags per post. Using misleading hashtags that are not relevant will annoy people enough you might find yourself flagged. Having a branded hashtag and consistent hashtag is also incredibly important for the business to grow.
8. Influencer Marketing and USG (User Generated Content)
Our Orient Influencer App connects over thousands of Nano and Micro Influencers to brands like yours. Brands can create their Brand Campaign on the Orient website and see submissions of Influencers and USG flowing in. Find out more on how Orient can improve your brand’s engagement and ROI.