“Engage, Mr. Data”
Everytime I hear the word “engage,” all I can think about it Patrick Stewart’s icon character, Jean-Luc Picard, from “Star Trek: The Next Generation.”
Well, engaging in new worlds and lifeforms was their mission.
Image Credit: Grunge
Have you made your business your intergalactic starship “Enterprise?”
Excuse me for the Trekkie reference, but the Gene Roddenberry’s sci-fi universe is a consistent lesson and psychological observation of humanistic conditioning.
So why not consider your social media engagement an experiment of building connections in far off destinations.
Become the ambassador of your starship.
Social Media Engagement Strategy 2019: Let it Rain
Why is social media engagement important?
The ability to grow is to have a formula of life.
And in digital farming we have our elements just like the real world – to grow and harvest, you need you sun, soil, air, and water.
Check out how these businesses generated massive success using social media growth hacks.
Water will come when it rains or if you irrigate.
And watering the plants (your customers) has to be a gradual and consistent process.
If you don’t water your plants, they will dry up and die.
And say goodbye to your farm (business).
If you do too much watering, you’ll flood/drown them and they will wash away.
Timing your watering is a big part of your plan.
Posting in the middle of the night may not be the greatest of ideas.
Depending on your target market, you can get data on consumer behavior on social media from several sources.
An example would be for a snack product targeted for pre-teens optimal time will be after 330pm;
or as early as 630am as they get ready for school, and weekends at 9am and 4pm.
Again, this depends on your business, target audience, and history.
All this information can be found through your social media analytics.
Placement of your posts is also part of this research.
From Pew Research Center, you’ll see that age demographics are very segmented.
If you are selling a product or service targeted for individuals 25-50, consider leveraging Youtube and Facebook.
And across all demographics by age, the most popular in usage of platform are Youtube and Facebook.
Does it mean abandoning the other platforms?
Just do not expect a high rate of return on time and messaging.
What can you say yo generate engagement and perhaps action on your posts?
Social Media engagement questions?
You can start with asking a question.
Make it about the product or brand you are selling,
or make it a request for recommendation on the best tacos in town.
Even less intense can be a simple question of who is going to win the super bowl?
Or, a trivia question.
“Without googling, what happened on this day with XXXX?” you can use history, celebrities, or company history.
It doesn’t matter what you ask,
people will engage on getting their opinion out there if they feel like it’s non-threatening or “salesy.”
I wonder what would happen if you asked a question and said the answer is somewhere on your website?
Who Doesn’t Love a Million Dollar Idea?
An example of a question wrapped into a business energizer to develop a new product or feature is a contest.
LAYS used a crafty contest to develop a new chips flavor and subsequent flavors to shake up the snack aisle and tempt daredevil eaters.
Not since the shitty run of Wow! Chips (the olestra phase – and if you didn’t know, olestra caused horrific anal leakage), has the chip scene been cool.
The “Do us a Flavor” contest generated nationwide response and crazy ideas back in 2012.
The public was asked not just to submit ideas, but to vote on submissions as well.
And today we’ve been blessed with the wasabi ginger kettle chip, chicken and waffles chip, and pickle chip.
Now, they were giving away a $1 million idea prize, but if that’s out of your budget, smaller businesses can leverage a “freebie” offer – branded giveaways, a gift certificate, or other option that suits their structure.
Social Media Engagement Strategy 2019: Hash It Out
The emerging use of hashtags for brand identity and sourcing is great for customers to interact and share their experience.
Designate a way for customers to interact with each other in a unique way.
A generalized and commonplace hashtag gets lost in the traffic and not linked to you.
So if you want to hashtag an event, ie. wedding (which is becoming passe), you can create your couple name.
Or a way to connect your fans is to create a fan club like HOG (Harley Owners Group with a tag. #omnidigitfarmers
Reviews – Make Me a Star!
On most social media platforms you can rate the or view a business profile.
These customers give thumbs up, down, stars, follows and subscriptions to your business. Never turn down positive or negative reviews.
It can seem scary, but interacting with the customer and thanking them for a positive or negative can make people feel appreciated and that your company does care and takes action.
Offer – On Sale Now!
Now this subject, if overdone, can cheapen your brand.
Discounts and offers need to be approached based on the industry you are in.
Services should only offer this once in a blue moon because service industries fare worse when discounting.
It becomes an expectation that people can get your services cheaper if they just wait another week or month.
This is why Groupon is great to consumers, not-so-good for service providers.
Someone will do it cheaper and they can buy discounted services over and over and over again, never paying full value.
Don’t you value yourself and your business?
If your company sells a product, you are trying to move inventory and long shelf life is not ideal.
So offering a pick your discount offer, or bundle packages, can bring new clients, and reinforce relationships with current customers on special pricing just for them.
With most social media, you can even promote your offer in an ad to drive more people to your page and website.
Be mindful on how you approach your social media ads.
Work with an expert in the field to get most traction. Social Media Marketing is not just about posting messages multiple times across social media platforms.
The messaging for engagement has to be right on ads to be effective and achieve a positive ROI.
Is it all Words and Pictures?
While all social media posts should include a visual and content writing, there are other avenues to be useful in engagement.
The power of video is an underutilized way of communicating.
If you make your video audible, get viewers to listen.
Some users, when browsing, don’t have settings for automatic sound.
Get around this with a click for sound prompt or subtitle throughout the video.
Thoughtful clickbait can engage customers and go viral.
If you are attracting a demographically male audience, the creation of video focusing on an attractive female doing a particular movement with a particular product or service you sell, will certain slow the scrolling and swiping left.
As more content comes onto social media, we have to create content that gets people to slow down and check you out.
Living on Live Video
With the option of Go-Live on some social media accounts, the real-time marketing takes it to a new level.
It also allows the customer to relate as a real person or people.
Just be prepared that just like live TV, things can and will go wrong.
But that rawness is what makes LivePD a popular show.
And for some communities, it drives down crime in that area while their jurisdiction is on live.
On live video, companies can feature new products, social events, and spotlight even employees and their community.
Best part, it live video can be saved to the platform and revisited and shared.
Engagement during live video can help as well watching comments come in or welcoming new viewers.
It’s that shout out of hey, thanks for coming, it’s great seeing you, and welcome to the party!
With all things considered, a strategy is needed for the success of a social media engagement campaign.
Doing the same thing over and over and over again is just dull and depressing.
Find new ways of contacting people.
Surprise yourself and people who know like and trust you (in a good way, not a creepy way).
Explore the connections you can make and enjoy the universe around you.
What unique strategy or tactic did you implement in your social media marketing strategy?
Leave a comment below, and spread the word.