Since I started working with social media, the one encompassing theme I have heard over and over is the following,”Social Media is about engagement not selling” I believe the debate is out regarding the amount of time spent engaging versus the overall return. It really comes down to your goals, I know that sounds cliche’ but it is true. That being said, I think the biggest learning I have found is how to engage on different sites. Let’s take a closer look.
Engagement on Twitter
The best form of engagement I believe on Twitter are Twitter Chats where everyone uses a common #hashtag and carries out a discussion based on a particular question. All of the answers are online and frankly the 140 character limit is a great way to control someone from dominating the conversation.
Is retweeting engagement? Some would say yes. I would say no. Most people just retweet something without adding comments. Sometimes their hands are tied because the original tweet was pushing the 140 character limit.
The best way to engage on Twitter is to call someone out by actually typing in their Twitter Id and making a comment or posting a question. This takes some work, but it can help you connect directly with people as opposed to being another tweet in the crowd.
Engagement on Linkedin
The best way to use Linkedin are the following ways:
- Post an update each day 1-3 at the maximmum
- Tell someone you liked their post, by commenting on something they said.
- Give someone a recommendation
Also, be aware that people may be reading your information and watching your updates and may not be saying anything until they see you in person. I see this type of response a lot with respect to Linkedin. It makes sense because this site is about professionals connecting with each other.
Engagement on Facebook
I can only speak here about the Company Page. Obviously, you are connecting with your family and friends on Facebook or maybe not, but that is something each person has to figure out for themselves. With respect to the company page, I post information each day and if someone makes a comment, I make sure to comment back. Once in awhile I will ask a question, but I have found engagement pretty limiting on Facebook Company Pages.
Engagement on GooglePlus
This is the hard one for me. It seems to me everyone is a broadcaster on GooglePlus. If I wanted to engage more, I could spend the time posting comments with different people and companies. I did this for awhile and saw some success, but I only have so many hours in a day and I need to see returns from my efforts. I am still in the testing phase. The only thing I can tell you is that I try to stay active on GooglePlus because, well it’s Google and you never know what direction Google is headed in.
Engagement – Where do I go from here?
Spend your time wisely on social media and try to find a system that works for you. Learn from others but understand that people come from many directions when it comes to engagement. Do you really want to spend your whole day on Twitter and try to start conversations with people?
Start listening and following people, look at what type of tweets they are posting. I have found that those people who have an accompanying blog site that they update regularly have something to talk about and stand for something. (I want to connect and engage with these type of people)
Get on social media sits and learn ways to best communicate with your connections. Stop worrying about trying to connect with the masses. You wouldn’t do this at a local networking event, why would you do it online.(Focus on Quality People, Not gaining all the new followers – You can buy software that will do this for you)
Maintain a presence, but don’t go crazy and spammy. Get people thinking and spend the time on your content. Give people a reason to engage with you. Show them what you are all about, by posting great, solid information on your website or blog site. Too many people curate other people’s information. This is the easy way out. (Be consistent – maintain a presence)
Too many people are worried that they are not engaging enough online. If you do your homework right and give people a reason to connect with you, like posting great content, people will notice and tell you and others. (You only have so much time, engage with the best)
Image courtesy of JanPietruszka / FreeDigitalPhotos.net