Everyone talks about engagement. But what is it? How do you do it? What does engagement on social media really look like? Short answer: it’s a conversation. A back and forth of exchanges. Someone has to start the conversation. Someone has to keep it going.

Firstly, you should respond to your audience: whether it is a tweet, Instagram post, or a blog comment.

But engagement is more than just responding. As a brand, who is building your awareness and audience, you will want to go out of your way to engage. Think of it as outreach.

What is engagement?

Merriam-Webster states that engagement is the state of being engaging, “tending to draw favorable attention or interest.

Drawing attention to your brand by being polite and interesting is the way to engage on social media.

What about short comments?

Are short comments less valuable? In a word: no.

It’s a conversation. Sometimes you say hi to someone in the grocery store or in the coffee room at work or while you’re at the neighborhood bar. The engagement isn’t less important; it’s just brief.

Conversations are valuable regardless of the length. I’ve talked about the value of small talk before. Often small talk is a way to build trust before talking about deeper things.

Be Interested

If you want people interested in you, show interest in them.

Whatever you choose to do, I recommend spending five minutes a day finding posts you can reply to. Set a timer if it helps you. Do it in the morning or after lunch. I enjoy scrolling Twitter while I am drinking my coffee in the morning.

Here are some recent examples of people who reply often.


Engagement is up to you.

Think about engagement as outreach. It’s allowing people to know that you are relevant. It’s keeping your brand top of mind. For business engagement shows you’re still in business.

In most lines of work referrals are our bread and butter. Why wouldn’t you want to build relationships on social media? It’s not different than “real life.” We work in digital; we live in digital. Let’s succeed in digital.

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