Increasing Engagement on Social Media

How do you get conversations started on social?

Read this quick guide on some conversation starters for you. I’ve used a pet shop in my example conversation starters.

Ask opinions

Ask your followers to tell you what they think about products, ideas or images. Mix up your questions to invite short or long answers depending on the subject. You can then use the same questions to create polls and questions on stories.

Do you prefer cats or dogs”?

“What do you think is the perfect first pet for a family home?”

Invite a question

Your followers see you as an expert, and inviting questions from them help you establish your expert credentials, your brand authority, or simply inject a little fun into your posts. One of your content pillars could be “ask me a question” with a different theme each time based on your product range, specific skills for your industry or even about your business. Don’t worry about attracting questions you won’t know the answers to – you can take your time to research the answer, or even invite them to give you a call or pop in to talk about it further.

“Ask me anything about training a dog”

“Ask me about attracting birds to the garden”

“Ask me anything about feeding cats”

Invite recommendations from followers

We often like to share recommendations, and asking followers for theirs may or may not be industry related. You could simply link it to what’s going on with you or your team. You could even ask for recommended top tips.

“We fancy lunch out today, where would you recommend?”

“We’ve got a rare Saturday free, tell us your favourite places for a day out”.

“What would your advice be to a new dog owner”?

Ask for memories

Many of us love reminiscing and memories can generate ongoing conversations between followers.

“Who can tell me what used to be here before us”?

What’s your favourite memory from the puppy days“?

“What animal was your first pet”?

Piggyback events & news to start conversations

Sharing trending news stories and events can help conversations start online.

Who do you think will win tonight”?

“If your pet entered the Commonwealth Games, what sport would it compete in?

Share interesting stats that might prompt comments

Bizarre and little known facts can entice comments and conversation.

“Did you know the cocker spaniel was the first cancer detecting dog?*”

Watch and learn

Look at previous posts that have worked well and take away learnings so you can repeat best practise. Following other businesses that generate great engagement can also inspire you – watch and learn from other businesses.

Doing all of above and still not getting engagement? Double check whether your images are stopping the scrolling thumb & check the timing of your posts.

And finally….

Don’t forget to reply and keep the conversation going. You can even tag in other people to invite them to join in.

Don’t forget you can repurpose the comments you get to create blogs and future posts.

Engaging in Place

I’m part of the Visit Knowle marketing team, and recently, spirits have been high in the Visit Knowle camp. Over the last two months, we’ve been encouraging local businesses to join the conversation, post more and comment more on social media, and now we are starting to see the results of our hard work. So much so, that the team have been doing ‘happy dances’ in their kitchens all week.

Why engage in place marketing?

Many customers want to shop local, and there is a role for places to invite visitors to come to their town or village, alongside shops, restaurants and businesses inviting customers to their premises. If we combine our voices and talk about both the individual businesses and the place, then we’re working together, encouraging visitors to browse in a place for longer. By working with each other and engaging in each others posts, we’re also introducing our followers to neighbouring businesses we think they’ll be interested in.

Engagement in Knowle is growing

We’ve been watching the engagement graph for Knowle turn upwards and we’re pleased to see that August and September engagement figures in Knowle are greater than the previous two months.

Even better, we’re now seeing more comments on our own posts from businesses that we weren’t hearing from before and we’re starting to see them comment on their neighbours posts too. We know it’s just the start, and that we’ve got a long way to go yet, but we like to celebrate success.

What we’ve done to get there

  • We’ve been deliberately creating posts that invite businesses to comment
  • We’ve deliberately been creating posts that businesses can share (and given example content on how they can share our posts to their advantage)
  • We’ve shared lots of good news stories
  • We’ve role modeled how to be social on social – commenting (lots) on local businesses posts, especially on Instagram
  • We’ve run a few stories and posts about joining the local conversation
  • We’ve run a “best post in place” post weekly, not only featuring the top 5 but saying how you can get into the top 5
  • We’ve shared our aims with our businesses by email regularly
  • We’ve been inviting our businesses to benefit from MayBe’s insights, training and platform regularly
  • We’ve used Maybe’s dashboard and place insights to plan our campaigns and share insights with our businesses
  • We’ve rocked up without fail to Maybe’s weekly webinars to gain further insights on what works and how we can be the best place we can be.

It’s helped our own account too. Instagram followers are growing on average 6% per month, and Facebook followers have increased 15% (since June), with a healthy level of engagement – all of which means any local posts we share reach a growing audience. 

We are delighted that our hard work is paying off. We’ll continue to encourage more engagement, whilst starting our campaign to get more businesses active in social media. So any Knowle businesses who aren’t posting yet, we’re here to help and we’ll be visiting soon!

%d bloggers like this: