high quality engagement

How to Earn Higher-Quality Engagement and Why It Matters

The purpose of social media is to make connections. So naturally, you’d think the more engagement you get on a post, the better. All those likes and follows count as connections, right? Not necessarily.

It turns out that one key factor in converting social followers to loyal fans is the quality of engagement, not quantity. Let’s talk about more about that here.

Why You Should Care About Engagement Quality 

Brands aren’t on social media to keep up with old friends. The goal is to strengthen existing connections with fans and create new connections with potential consumers. A common mistake many brands make is thinking that the total amount of engagements is the clearest indicator of social success, and them working towards increasing those numbers.

But believe it or not, the numbers aren’t the most vital piece here. First, artificially increasing your follower count by buying them is a huge no-no for social. It will inflate your performance numbers and give you an unrealistic interpretation of your consumers’ feelings about your content.  

Secondly, likes, follows, and other low-effort KPIs are often what we consider as vanity metrics. These are metrics that look nice but can’t gauge how engaged your audience is. 

Additionally, posts with CTAs like “Tag 3 friends to win” might grow your follower count. However, it will not get you an in-depth connection with potential or with an actual fan of your brand. And there’s that word again: connection.  High-quality engagement means genuine followers willing to invest their time into interacting with your brand, who becomes potential customers and advocates.

So essentially, content designed for high-quality engagement leads to a high-quality community, which can essentially act as free advertisement and endorsement for your brand. And a small, high-quality community is far more valuable than millions of fake accounts that don’t care about your brand. 

How to Improve Engagement Quality 

While low-quality engagements take little effort from your followers, high-quality engagements come from people who care enough about your content to invest their time and energy into interacting. These higher-quality engagements may look like sharing posts, sharing heartfelt stories in the comments, submitting UGC to a contest, and other interactions that take time and thought.  

Encourage these higher-quality comments with higher-threshold calls to action that require more effort by:

  • running contests asking your followers to share their favorite memories,
  • creating posts encouraging people to tag friends that make them laugh, or
  • holding sweepstakes for UGC of their most memorable vacations.

People love talking about the good times and will happily engage in these more in-depth requirements to share their stories and be part of the moment. In general, you can expect the total number of engagements to be lower because not everyone is willing to invest time into these high-quality engagements. Still, you’d be surprised by just how many people actually are.  

Every year, our Entenmann’s client has a campaign for their Minis snack products called Mini Acts of Kindness which encourages spreading positivity and good deeds throughout your community for the chance to win Entenmann’s Minis snacks. While the campaign itself is positive enough to earn good engagement, one year, we decided to try a new approach: asking our followers to share their own stories of spreading kindness. This simple switch in narrative changed the typical outcome of brand contest posts into an incredibly successful, heartwarming, and entirely organic social campaign that received over 160,000 unpaid impressions and over 5,000 engagements.  

That’s thousands of people putting time and effort into writing heartfelt comments on organic brand content. And if you think that’s just a lucky one-time deal, here’s another example of a contest we ran asking for high-quality engagements, which broke brand records for organic engagement on both Facebook and Instagram. 

Be sure to foster these deeper connections with your higher-quality audience by responding in thoughtful ways to these comments and rewarding their efforts. 

Final Thoughts

There you have it. In summary…

  • Don’t get caught up in vanity metrics; a few thousand high-quality fans are far more valuable to your brand than a million unengaged followers. 
  • Encourage quality by asking for it! Ask people to share their stories, memories, etc. 
  • Not everyone is willing to invest time in higher-threshold CTAs, and that’s ok. The ones who are willing will provide higher-quality engagement for deeper brand connections. 
  • Reward these high-quality efforts from your fans by responding in genuine ways. 

Building a better community is just one of the ways to guarantee your success on social media. Build your brand the right way with help from our social experts. Contact us below to find out how. 

Ignite Social Media