June 28, 2022

4 Ways to Create an Engaged Community on Social [With Examples]

4 Ways to Create an Engaged Community on Social [With Examples]

When users have brand loyalty, they are almost two times more likely to recommend and spend money on your brand. The key to brand loyalty is creating an engaged community on social media. Want to learn how your brand can do this? 

We thought so. Read on to get our four top tips to help brands of any size master the art of fostering engaged brand communities on social.

1. Provide Value

If there’s one thing you take away from this blog, it should be this. Are you ready? Put people first and your brand second. That’s it. It’s that simple and yet it’s something we see brands get wrong on social over and over again. You are only going to create an engaged community on social if you’re providing your audience with value. 

Think about it like this; 80% of the content you share should be helpful, solve problems, and cater to the interests of your audience. The remaining 20% can be more directly tied to promoting your brand. Posts should be providing value to followers and value starts and ends with problem solving.

If you want to create an engaged and vibrant community you need to be solving their problems. 

To do this, dial into the issues and needs of your community. You can’t provide value if you first don’t know what their pain points are and how they’re using your product or business to help solve them. Get creative in how you do this.

Using the Q&A feature in Instagram Stories, ask your audience about what they’re struggling with, what they’d like to see more of, and how your brand has solved a problem for them.

Ellevest, a financial company for women, frequently uses this feature in Stories to poll their audience on what financial issues they have questions on and what they want to know more about. Media brand Girls’ Night In recently launched a weekly email series featuring product recommendations and turned to their community to make sure they’re directly addressing their shopping needs.

People always respond to human connection, and it drives brand loyalty. Studies found 57% of consumers will stay loyal to a brand if there was more human communication.

Ask your CEOs or others in executive leadership to host an Instagram Live to get community feedback and learn how your brand can better help serve and solve the problems of your audience.

Your community is more likely to be engaged on social when they see a real human on the other side of the screen. Also, consider tapping into social listening to uncover pain points. The goal is to gather as much information as possible on what your community needs and wants before you get to work addressing those issues via content.

Once you’ve identified your audience’s pain points and how your brand can help solve those, you’ve got the golden ticket to a successful engaged, online community.

Remember, put people first and your brand second.

2. Create Opportunities for Engagement

Engagement begets engagement. The more you engage with your community on social, the more appreciated, valued, and seen they feel. This compels them to engage again and the cycle continues. So, how do you get them to start engaging?

First, take a look at your past few months of content and identify what has performed best and resonated most with your audience. Also consider competitor channels and what content seems to have driven the most engagement for them. This is your secret recipe to creating engaging content; find out what your followers and competitor’s followers have responded well to in the past and iterate from there.

Now, this doesn’t mean to only post giveaways because they garner a ton of engagement (don’t get us wrong, we love a giveaway) but take a holistic look and drive content from there. And remember…solving people’s problems should be at heart of what you’re creating.

There are a few tried and true social tricks that tend to get people engaging no matter who or what your brand is.

Start making Instagram reels and videos:

There is a general industry trend towards all things video. Instagram is now a video-first platform that’s following TikTok’s shoes. If you want to create content that your audience engages with – try posting short informative videos or reels. 

Reels allow your brand to reach new audiences that traditional content hasn’t been able to. It also gives brands the chance to utilize short-form storytelling. Instagram’s algorithm favors reels and video so it will naturally push those content pieces to receive more engagement.

Need a guide to creating reels? Take a look at our blog How to Make Instagram Reels That Stand Out to learn more.

Create a campaign or series about a recurring topic that’s aligned with your brand:

Try a recurring topic or post series that will get fans and followers excited. Consider an office hours segment with company experts (playing into that human connection we know communities love) or a simple “this or that” story series like REI did below. Content like this gives your community something to look forward to and encourages more recurring engagement.

Utilize User Generated Content (UGC) to Create an Engaged Community:

UGC is your best friend. Not only does it help to build an engaged community and boost organic reach, but it’s content that’s already been created. The easiest way to start working with UGC is to re-share Stories when users tag your organization. Read our blog to learn more ways you can use UGC to attract certain consumers. 

Also consider UGC campaigns where you ask your community to share photos wearing/watching/using your brand with a specific hashtag. Clothing brand Outdoor Voices encourages users to do just this with #DoingThings and frequently features these posts in feed. Re-sharing this content makes users feel seen and like they’re a part of your brand’s community. People first, brand second.

3. Develop Your Brand Voice for an Engaged Community on Social

In a recent study, 58% of consumers said human communication would increase their likeliness of spending money with an organization. That’s in addition to the previous stat we mentioned that said human communication increases brand loyalty. The same study also found that if people perceive a brand to be more human-like, they’re more than twice as likely to love the brand and 1.8x more likely to recommend it. Moral of the story? Make sure your brand, and specifically your brand voice feels genuine and real. 

What does this mean exactly?

Identify adjectives that best describe your brand, think: useful, helpful, friendly, responsive, thoughtful, rule breaker, witty, casual, professional, etc. These will become the pillars of how you communicate with your followers.

Using these pillars allows you to craft your messaging in a consistent and reliable manner. Followers will come to know and expect responses to feel a certain way, thus creating a more human experience. Your brand will have a known personality that allows for more meaningful, human communication.

4. Don’t Forget Your Community Management Strategy

Your brand voice should then be translated into everything you do, including your community management strategy. We’ve compiled some of our best community management tips below to help you create an engaged community on social:

To keep things feeling genuine, try to avoid repetitive or disingenuous responses to comments, such as the same emoji or saying. A good rule of thumb here is if you don’t have anything interesting or worthy to say, don’t respond.

Going off of that, you want to make sure you’re engaging with loyal and supportive community members. To check this, take a look at the account before responding to make sure they’re of age, and haven’t posted content that goes against your brand values.

Engage on social with other like-minded brands. Start by following 10 medium to large accounts in your similar niche and become a part of their audience. Develop a regular cadence of interacting with Stories and posting insightful comments. This will help you to develop a relationship with other like-minded brands in your space.

To sum it all up; there’s endless value in fostering an engaged community around your brand, but you have to be willing to put in the effort to show the human side of your organization and be ready to solve your community’s problems. If your brand can master this, the sky’s the limit.

Interested in learning more about creating an engaged community on social? Contact us using the form below!

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