Engagement can be one of the hardest things to consistently experience, particularly with Facebook groups. And of course, without engagement, why have a Facebook group at all?
Engagement can be tricky. There are certain things people love to talk about and things they don’t. We’d all like to think that “if you build it, they’ll come,” but that’s certainly not the case with Facebook groups… or anything. They may join, but that won’t get them talking.
So, what will get your audience responding to you and engaging with each other? There are a few tricks of the trade that work to get people interacting.
Here are four ways I’ve experienced increased engagement within groups that we manage:
It’s simple. Ask questions, and people will answer them. People love to talk about themselves, so ask questions that help them reveal more about themselves. This is, by far, the easiest way to at least have people begin responding to your posts. Ask questions related to your group’s niche or topic, and make sure you respond to each and every response you receive. Just answering a question is boring. Interacting with the owner of the group is not.
Think About Your Timing
When is your audience using Facebook? If your audience tends to work a 9-5 job, they may not be online to see your post at 10am or 2pm. If they are online perusing Facebook when they receive a notification of a new post in your group, they’ll be more apt to check it out and get involved. Social media auto-posters such as HootSuite and Buffer have analytics to help you determine the best times to post to get the most views, and ultimately the most engagement.
Typically we see the most engagement in the evening, when people have some down time and are playing on their phones. Same goes for early morning, as most of us check our phones before we even get out of bed.
Photos Are King
More people look at posts with photos, and people are much more inclined to respond if it is a photo that is on-topic or eye-catching. When I have something to post that doesn’t have a link, I almost always include a relevant photo with it because I know it will get more traction that just a post with only text.
Alternatively, you can create a pattern interrupt by using a shocking photo that is entirely not on-topic for your group.
Survey and Poll Your Members
Want to know what your members want? Ask them. This is different than asking questions. Use a survey or poll in your Facebook group to find out exactly what your members want to hear from you. Maybe they want more video content. Maybe they want more industry news. It depends on your niche and topic, but by asking your audience what they want, you can deliver that, and make the group fit what they’re looking for. That is bound to make them more interactive.
Plus they’ll appreciate the attention you take to try and meet their needs.
What about you — what gets people engaging in your groups?