(And hence protect followers from depression?)
There have been enough and more studies that prove a direct correlation between thoughtless scrolling on social media and depression. Why do I bring this up here? Because if my headline made you think, I have engaged you in a meaningful way and helped you (even if for a minute) in avoiding depression by shelling out something that may not interest you. You have found something to read on; something that is relatable.
I feel for you if you scrolled your newsfeed all day and found nothing to stop for and ended the day with a feeling of emptiness. You are not to blame. Social Media holds that kind of power to either elate you momentarily or treat you like someone who does not belong anywhere.
As a company, you may have streamlined your calendar to fill in the month with certain content blocks with an end goal to either increase awareness of your product or service, establish your brand, engage your employees, showcase your events, sell your products and so on and so forth. You may have also promoted these posts to reach a certain type of audience who may be interested in what you have to say and rightly so. But how do you humanize your company? In all those audiences that are accepting and appreciative of your posts, there is a common thread. A thread that binds them all. They are all humans and all have a light non-serious side that you can easily connect with. Something that will make them smile.
Now from a marketer to a marketer below are 5 things you can do to engage your followers:
- Reward - Who doesn’t like being put on a pedestal around an applauding audience? Choose a new fan of the month and show your appreciation to him/her by sending her a gift or simply acknowledging their support publicly on your page.
- Trivia/Puzzles - Imagine a typical newsfeed filled with happy pictures, get-togethers, food, inspirational quotes, jokes, and personal updates. What in these will make you stop scrolling? My guess is (unless it is from a family or a close friend) nothing. What if in the midst of that you found a puzzle that intrigues you? Something that may be pertaining to a company but is intriguing enough to make you pause? You will stall and you might even spend some time solving the same. It will add a few meaningful moments to your day.
- Contests and Giveaways - These have a way of drawing audiences like nothing else. The simple thumb rule to apply is the more your ask the bigger your give away should be. Imagine the thrill a follower will get if she wins something she really wanted by providing a simple caption or clicking a selfie. Chances are she will remain a follower of your brand for a very long time.
- Showcase Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives - This one might take you by surprise. However, today’s world is filled with people who want to make a difference, support a cause, give to charity, volunteer and so on but are unable to do so for very many reasons. If your company has an active CSR department - share your stories. People love hearing stories that helped a cause. It may feel like you are blowing your own horn when you do this but think about the many companies/individuals you will inspire, egging them on to do more for communities or the world at large. You pave the way for many and this engages audiences in a very positive way.
- Follow Best Practices - You have a winner engagement strategy in place if you have done all the above with a smart and engaging copy, a visual that cannot be missed, have targeted it to just the right audience and have followed the best practices of the social platform that you are on.
So go on, share what is important to your brand but don’t forget to engage your audiences in a way that makes them never want to part with you. Market responsibly, market to humans.