imagesOne of the many questions I get asked here at Roselawn House when it comes to Social media is simply “how do I get people to engage.”  Unfortunately, there is no right or wrong methodology when it comes to guaranteeing interaction, however, there are ways you can encourage and facilitate it. Let me introduce you to what I have aptly named the TOUCH, PAUSE & ENGAGE methodology. (Which, for some reason that I can’t put my finger on, clients seem to remember)

So, first up, Touch. In order to “stand out from the crowd” you need to be able to touch people with your posts and content on varying levels. For example, you may want to touch people on an emotional level. There are many companies who do this exceptionally.  Have a look at any of today’s most successful companies and you will find they have perfected and adopted this concept tactically. By forming an emotional bond with customers that differentiates you from other businesses, you will be able to create and maintain a loyal following on a prolonged basis. Coca Cola are a company that spring to mind with their moving Christmas advertisements. The advert’s touch people at an emotional level that levers some form of emotive response in some shape or form.  With the help of Social media, this is now easier to do than it ever was before.

Next up, Pause. Instead of over-loading followers with information, sometimes customers quite simply want to be heard.  Stand back, “pause” and listen to what your followers are saying. The information you hear can be invaluable to any business as your customer is your company. There are so many tools that can facilitate the listening process.  A survey for example can give essential insight or feedback that is invaluable to any company.  Our favourite survey tool at the moment is SurveyMonkey.  SurveyMonkey is essentially an online survey tool which has some incredible features such as free surveys, polls, questionnaires, customer feedback and market research abilities. Once you know what your customer wants, it will make the next step much easier.

This leads us onto the final stage, Engage! Once you’ve spoken to your followers and listened to them with intent, you should have a good knowledge of what they want to hear. This is when its time to engage and interact.  When it comes to engaging with your online followers, you need to remember that they are more than likely at an “information overload” point already, so try not to bog them down with immaterial or irrelevant information. Engage on a “one to one” level. Offer real time response and don’t the focus be simply business related.

Building communities, interacting on social media sites and engaging in forums are all examples of how you can interact and engage.  Ask questions, be proactive in engaging and of course, listen. Follow these tips and it should give you a good starting point in the engaging process. Let us know what works for you, we’d love to hear.

Michelle Noonan Roselawn House