Even though social media algorithms are constantly changing, the overall purpose of social has remained the same—to make connections and share your authentic self, as a person or as a brand. Planning, creating and sharing content is a large piece of social media development, but community management is just as important. It helps to foster relationships with your followers and lets you connect with them one-to-one. It also lets them know you’re listening and that their voice matters as you respond to both positive and negative feedback. Here are six community management tips that can help grow your engagement and further your success on social. 

  1. Don’t just be a brand on social. Have a voice and a personality that makes you stand out from the rest. Create a persona and imagine you are responding to followers in person vs from behind a screen.
  1. Use captions on content that encourages engagement. Ask people to tag friends, caption posts for the brand, respond to favorites with emojis, choose between different options via comment responses and more. There are so many fun, interactive and creative ways to pull your followers in and make them want to stop scrolling and start paying attention to your content.
  1. Develop content that people want to save and come back to later, share with their friends or ask questions about it. Cooking recipes, fun experiments, interactive quizzes, children’s activities and how-to’s are all perfect for this type of content development.
  1. Acknowledge positive interactions when your followers engage with your posts. Responding to and liking comments is a great way to connect with others. Keep in mind that many social media users feel the ultimate compliment is for a brand is to share their content to the brand’s page. This is called user-generated content (or UGC for short). Brands can go even further by re-sharing Instagram Stories that others have tagged them into their own Stories.
  1. Try to address any negative feedback as quickly as possible. Imagine the customer is face-to-face vs. online. Each person on your social media team is part of the brand’s customer service team. If someone was standing right in front of you, you’d want to respond as quickly and calmly as possible. The same goes for interacting on social media. Don’t let the comment or negative feedback linger for too long. Always apologize first and foremost, then provide a solution in a polite, even-keeled and kind tone.
  1. Respond to negative feedback or concerns publicly and then move the conversation private. If you don’t respond to negative comments and feedback, it makes the brand look unresponsive. Analyze the problem via a private message to determine how to solve the issue. Keep in mind, freebies aren’t always the answer as this can encourage more negative responses. Sometimes, customers just want to be heard and acknowledged.

Overall, don’t overanalyze your interactions. Just remember to be a brand steward and keep the conversation lighthearted and fun as often as possible. There is a reason your followers are engaging with your brand or a reason they’ve reached out. The worst thing you can do is not be responsive at all. Keep the conversation going, stay friendly and at the end of the day, have fun with it!

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