Posting to social media can seem like a minefield, hashtags, posting times, engagement stats and algorithms all seem daunting and confusing. How do you get your posts seen on social media in a time where it seems like the algorithm is against you?
It’s no secret that the likes of Facebook and Instagram limit the reach of business posts and favour content from your friends and family, but it wasn’t always this way. In the early days getting great engagement on social media seemed simpler, but paid advertising revenue is the bread and butter of the likes of Facebook who also own Instagram, so it makes sense for them to limit organic growth.
There are ways to try and ensure that your social media account is relevant and engaging, the more engaging it is the more it will be shown and therefore grow. These include;
- Growing a relevant audience interested in your product or service. (Don’t buy followers or run irrelevant competitions to boost your stats. Find out more about that here).
- Post relevant content. researching your audience; know their likes, interests, pain points and points of view can help you create content that will pique their interest.
- Utilise a mix of content, don’t purely promote your business.
- Use clear call to actions and ask for engagement, say things like comment with your favourite xxx or tag a friend that this relates to etc.
- Use relevant hashtags where appropriate i.e. Instagram and Twitter.
While the above are all fantastic ways to grow social media accounts, one of the biggest mistakes we see businesses making on social media is posting and ghosting.
What is posting and ghosting?
This is the practice of scheduling content to go onto your social media channels and then leaving them with no interaction. This can be particularly detrimental on platforms such as Instagram and twitter. Social media is reciprocal, people like to engage with others there. Businesses that post and ghost can easily find themselves in no man’s land, getting little to no engagement on their posts.
How to be active on social media
We know it can seem like an additional task in an already busy day, but a mere ten minutes per day can go a long way. This can be on the commute, while sitting in the car waiting for the kids to come out of school, on a lunch break, before bed even. Simply taking the time to visit your Instagram and Twitter account, liking others posts, adding a comment here or there, reacting to stories and so on all help to demonstrate to algorithms that you are a genuine account and help you build a rapport with others.
This practice can help you find people with a similar interest to yours, or those interested in your products or services who can follow you and engage with you, perhaps even champion your product or service on their own channels.
On Instagram take five minutes to scroll through your feed and like and comment on posts, five minutes to take a look at the hashtags you follow and use a lot and engage there and a couple of minutes checking out and reacting to your story feed.
You can also share relevant content to your own story to help other businesses and they may do the same for you.
On Twitter once again five minutes scrolling through the posts and commenting, retweeting and liking and then five minutes scrolling through the trending hashtags and doing the same can help. Businesses may also get great benefit from joining some networking hours on twitter and engaging in them. Many local networking hours take place weekly as well as national hours.
Did you know you can follow other people’s pages from your business page on Facebook? Simply visit a business page, click the three dots (. . .) and select like as page from the dropdown as shown on the screenshot below.
This will give you a feed of pages you follow which you can interact with as your page. Like, share, comment and engage with the pages here. They could be suppliers, other local businesses you have a connection with or just things you are interested in. Not only does this help promote healthy relationships with the other pages, it also gets your name out to their followers.
LinkedIn is the ideal place to connect with other businesses and professionals. Here you really get the chance to showcase your knowledge and set yourself apart as an expert in your field. Comment on people’s posts, comment in groups, become part of discussions and even publish your own content here. This will get you noticed and you will undoubtedly begin to see more connection requests.
The same goes for other social media channels such as Pinterest and YouTube. Comment, like and share. It goes a long way – Just DON’T post and ghost!