Having high social media engagement is one of the best ways to grow your platforms in 2020.
From engaging with your audience to sharing in-depth captions, we’re sharing everything you need to know to boost your social media engagement across all channels.
Ready to see your social media engagement skyrocket? Let’s get to it.
How To Boost Your Social Media Engagement
In simple terms, engagement is the number of interactions people have with the content on your page.
Think likes, comments, shares, saves, retweets, etc. Tracking and understanding your social media engagement is super important in 2020 (even more than tracking followers!).
In fact, when most brands are looking for influencers to partner with, they’re actually prioritizing influencers with high engagement over high follower counts.
Engagement leads to conversions and deeper connections with your followers — which is what you want!
Here are a few surefire ways to help boost your engagement on social media:
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #1: Engage With Your Audience
While this may sound like a no-brainer, it can be easy to overlook.
As creators, we often put most of our focus on creating the best content. But what happens after we post that content?
That’s where the real work begins.
As a simple rule, try to reply to every comment, DM, and story reply that you receive. If people are willing to engage with you, it means they care about what you’re posting.
And if they care about what you’re posting, you should deepen that relationship so that they will always support your work!
Let that be the base of your social media engagement strategy.
In 2020, the Instagram algorithm rewards engagement over impressions or follower counts. This is why you may always see posts and stories from your “favorite” accounts first.
The Instagram algorithm is taking into consideration who’s content you engage with the most and is showing you that person’s content more frequently than the content you don’t engage with.
Plus! The more people who engage with you, the more your content shows up in their feed.
It’s important to note — when we say engagement, we mean more than just leaving a heart eyes emoji when someone comments “I love this!” on your post.
Instead, reply “Wow, we’re so happy to hear that! thank you, [person]” or something to that effect. It’s important to show that there is a real person behind your account!
See how travel blogger and influencer @hey_ciara actually takes the time to sincerely reply to her comments.
Replying to Direct Messages is another way to engage with your audience. If you have the time or means, spend a few hours each week replying to your DMs! Small tasks like these are truly appreciated by fans.
Sparking up a quick convo with your followers is a way to sort of future-proof your engagement. Someone that you interact with briefly is going to be more inclined to comment on future posts than someone you’ve never interacted with. Keep that in mind!
For companies and creators alike, this type of engagement increases loyalty and word of mouth for your brand and/or services.
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #2: Dive Below The Surface in Your Captions
Not every caption needs to be a storytelling moment, but think of your social media captions as a way for your followers to get to know you or your brand a little bit better.
Studies have shown that longer, more thoughtful captions can be great ways to connect with your followers and foster a higher level of engagement.
The followers who are likely to read your longer captions may also be more likely to leave a comment responding to your caption.
Again, this doesn’t need to be done in every post, but a nice, occasional storytelling moment can be a great asset for boosting your social media engagement in the long run.
Not sure where to start with writing Instagram captions? Check out our Ultimate Guide to Writing Good Instagram Captions and our free video workshop!
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #3: Use GIFs and Emojis
Never be afraid to use GIFs and emojis in your posts.
In 2020, the way we communicate has changed drastically, even compared to just 10 years ago.
Tag the brands:— Fast (@fast) August 21, 2020
We’ll give away free Fast hoodies for getting the most right
Using GIFs and emojis (if on-brand for you) helps bring a human element to your channels. Emojis breathe new life into captions and your brand voice, helping to capture your audience’s attention as they are scrolling down their timelines.
When you find out he still use that 3-in-1 body wash as a whole skincare routine pic.twitter.com/119QpkZV8U— FENTY SKIN (@fentyskin) August 19, 2020
Use emojis, GIFs, or even memes that are relevant to your brand and industry. Research how your audience communicates with their followers. Read through your comment sections to see what stands out!
For example, check out this great Twitter thread from @GoodMarketingHQ about making your content more human!
2/ Most product launches feel like a copy and paste job.— Harry's Marketing Examples (@GoodMarketingHQ) July 24, 2020
Look what happens when Rihanna drops the clichés and talks like a real person. pic.twitter.com/Ij1Dbrgb15
When you’re planning your social calendar, keep in mind that there are ways to have fun and be human on social media, while still being professional.
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #4: Include Clear CTAs in Your Captions
Call to actions (CTAs) are a way to get your audience to take action on certain prompts, questions, etc.
This is an opportunity for you to have fun with your audience, or to gauge their thoughts on whatever topic is at hand.
If you share a post about your favorite new ramen restaurant in the city. At the end of your caption, why not ask your followers what their favorite type of food is?
This simple step prompts followers, who perhaps would have only liked the post and kept scrolling, to stop and leave a comment. For example, take a look at author Alexandra Elle’s caption and how she asks her audience to leave a comment.
Comments are an awesome way to boost engagement for the Instagram algorithm, so the more you can encourage comments, the better your post may do!
Sparking up that quick convo with your followers is a way to sort of future-proof your engagement. Someone that you interact with briefly is going to be more inclined to comment on future posts than someone you’ve never interacted with. Keep that in mind!
Don’t forget you can plan, schedule, and post to all your social platforms in one go with Later! And with the added benefit of tailoring captions for different platforms, it will seriously simplify your content calendar!
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #5: Make Use of New Features When They Roll Out
It may be hard to keep up with every social media update, but platforms typically reward users who use their latest features.
In the case of Instagram, now is a great time to start experimenting with Instagram Reels.
Instagram Reels is similar to TikTok in its video-based nature — allowing users to record up to 15-second video clips set to music.
One of the major advantages of creating Instagram Reels content is shareability.
You can share your Instagram Reels to your Instagram Stories, and, with the 15-second maximum running time, your entire video will play during an Instagram Story.
This is different from the 15-second preview of IGTV videos. Having your full video in Stories could spark audience interest — enticing your audience to press in to see your other content!
Another major advantage of using new features like Reels is the Explore Page placement. Everyone on Instagram, even those who don’t follow you, can come across your Instagram Reel.
Instagram Reels placement on the Explore page is super prominent, basically taking up the entire mobile screen.
The earlier you jump on the Instagram Reels train, the better chance you have of going viral on the Explore page.
Want to jump into the details of Instagram Reels? Learn everything you need to know to create your very first Instagram Reel in this handy step-by-step video:
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #6: Grab Attention with Video Content
Speaking of Instagram Reels, let’s talk about video!
It’s no secret that video content is more engaging than photos on social media. When you’re scrolling on any social platform, you’re more likely to pause on a video, simply to see what the video is about!
There are so many ways to utilize video content. Instagram Stories, IGTV, Instagram Live, Pinterest, TikTok, Facebook Live…the list goes on!
If you want to increase video engagement even more, add subtitles to your video!
One of the best ways to grab attention is by using text on your videos. If people can read what you’re saying, they may be more likely to stick around till the end.
And, not only are subtitles important for people who are watching without sound, but it’s also incredibly helpful for those with hearing difficulties.
Not sure where to begin? Check out our guide to creating killer video content for Instagram.
Boost Your Social Media Engagement #7: Audit Your Own Content Using Insights
If you have a Business Profile on Instagram, you have access to Instagram Insights.
Insights allow you to get a deeper understanding of what content your audience engages with most, who your audience actually is, and so much more.
This data is very important for boosting engagement because it helps you understand your audience. With this information, you’ll be on your way to creating content your audience actually wants to see.
If you’re posting a ton of content, but have no clue how it’s actually performing, you’ll have no way of knowing how to grow your engagement. Understanding your insights will allow you to strategize a clear path for growth for your account.
ICYMI: Later Analytics auto-calculates your Instagram engagement rate for you? Check out our full guide on Instagram analytics.
By keeping this guide top of mind, you’ll be well on your way to boosting your social media engagement across the board. There’s no one-off way to increase your engagement, so be sure to always experiment and try out new tricks.
Scale up your social strategy today with Later! Plan, schedule and publish to all your platforms for FREE with Later.