Many content creators are beginning to recognize the value of engagement. Primarily concerned with growing their numbers, sometimes bloggers get carried away with content creation for more likes and followers and tend to ignore the valuable metric of engagement. Taking the time to genuinely create conversations instead of “speaking at” your community builds engagement and can raise your bottom line. According to a Marketing Science Institute report, increased engagement on community sites can result in up to 25% increase in revenue (MSI). An increased engagement rate means an increase in return visitors which translates into increased website revenue and better ad rate with merchants.
What is engagement?
Engagement can be defined as how a current audience interacts with a blog post. Engagement is not about growing an audience but rather what content creators can do with their current base. Common blog engagement metrics include number of social shares on a blog post, number of comments, and subscribers.
5 ways to improve engagement
1. Establish brand trust
For bloggers, building brand trust is critical. Gaining trust of your target audience leads to outstanding organic traffic and with more traffic comes a higher conversion rate.
Here are a few steps to establish trust.
- Bring value: create valuable content that creates conversations and keep up with the latest news in your industry/niche. Your advice and quality content shape your authority.
- Maintain consistency: Ensure you are posting content through a consistent brand voice and aesthetic. Schedule out your content on a schedule so your readers can expect when to hear from you.
- Be responsive: Communication is a two-way street. Respond to any comments or questions in a timely manner. Quick and thoughtful responses build brand trust and credibility.
2. Offer your readers something for free
Consider catching your audience’s engagement by offering a valuable content piece for free. For example, if you’re a fashion blogger, offer your readers a downloadable list of upcoming trends. Your readers will share your free content with their followers on social media and in turn you will gain more exposure.
3. Ask a question
You may be already creating valuable blog posts but do you ask questions? Don’t be afraid to speak directly to your reader and ask a question. Try ending your blog posts with a question and use user polls on social media. Not only do you want to write interesting content but be interested in the topic and in your reader’s opinion.
4. Try video
Widespread use of smartphones have made video one of the most popular forms of content. From Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat and the new IGTV, more people are watching video and consuming video content more than ever. After all, it’s easier to watch a video than read a whole page. Instead of always writing up content, try using video in your next blog post. You can create a video tutorial, a video summary of an event, or a vlog. The key is focus on the art of storytelling to capture the attention of your reader.
Don’t forget to include your affiliate links in your video by using ShareASale’s Make-A-Video tool.
5. Respond to comments
As stated earlier, being responsive is a step in establishing brand trust and essential in increasing engagement. Good content will spark dialogue. However, blog engagement is not based on receiving comments on your posts but forming the two-way relationship with your audience. Let your readers know you read their comments and their feedback is appreciated by responding to comments.