Over the last year or so, I’ve had jobs that involved being in charge of posting to social media (primarily Twitter/Facebook) for a number of organisations/companies, including a charity, a advertising agency, and most recently a site that promotes arts and cultural events. I’ve been really lucky to get to do something so relevant to my admittedly nerdy interests, and I’ve also been lucky enough to work at places that have allowed me to try new things, and really learn the ins and outs of social media management through hands on experience.
Now, the greatest part of Twitter/Facebook for any organisation is the engagement with your followers – and there must be a million articles out there by now about how to do it ‘right’. To be honest, I don’t feel like there is one single way to do it and get it right. It really depends on what your followers are like, why they are following you and the sort of content you are putting out. Engagement for the charity accounts was relatively easy, because people like charities and like to tell them about it (they also like to tell them when they disagree with them in any way – fortunately that’s quite easy to deal with – you just have to be polite), but elsewhere it turns out – Engagement is really, really hard!
I totally understand it of course, I know that I use Twitter a lot, but I don’t actually tweet a huge amount – the same goes for Facebook. I get a lot out of social media just by reading through my newsfeeds, and often I don’t feel the need to actually, well, talk to other people, except people I know very well. I highly doubt I’m the only person who acts this way. So, how to get that level of engagement?
There might be a single, guaranteed way of doing it, but a lot of the time it seems to be trial and error, and finding out exactly what will attract your followers to want to talk back to you. Also, I think sometimes you have to accept that people don’t necessarily want to talk back – they just want to read. And that’s okay. They’re still interacting with your stuff to an extent.