8 unique ways to engage your audience

8 unique ways to engage your audience

Audience engagement should be one of the top priorities for any creator. An engaged audience is one of the most important ways to connect deeply with the people who you are creating content and products for online. Plus a more engaged audience allows you to really understand what their needs are so you can tailor your products to be of the most value.

The usual advice around audience engagement involves batching content, posting every day, sending a weekly email to your subscribers, and responding to all the comments left on your posts. While these methods do work, they can also be very time-consuming and feel repetitive.

However, there are ways you can meaningfully engage with your audience more easily. These can be great when you have a packed schedule or when you’re feeling a bit bored with the same posting schedule. Use the list below to help give your content a unique edge and to invite new audience relationships into your virtual space.

Tips for increasing your audience engagement

1. Broaden your topics for engagement

The topics you’re asking your audience to engage in don’t have to be strictly related to your niche. There can be a lot of value in sharing the more personal and authentic side of you. This can look like sharing an Instagram story with a picture of your pet and their nickname, and asking if your audience also makes up names for their pets. Besides humanizing you, these are opportunities to build rapport with your audience.

2. Share affirmations on Instagram stories

A positive boost of encouragement can be valuable no matter what kind of content you usually share. Using the poll feature on Instagram, you can post a series of statements such as “My skills are a work in progress,” “I’m exactly where I need to be with my journey,” or “I’m growing at the perfect pace.” Then set the poll options to two positive words, such as “yes,” “absolutely,” or “100%”. This helps to create a welcoming and warm environment, making your online space one that your audience looks forward to being in.

instagram story affirmation

3. Offer vulnerable stories or shares

Perhaps one of the most effective (and sometimes uncomfortable) ways of engaging people is by being raw, honest, and vulnerable. You don’t have to share journal entries or bring out skeletons in your closet for this to make an impact. Simply sharing some of the ups and downs of your journey is enough. This is especially true for struggles as they relate to your niche. Oftentimes, we are drawn to teach skills that we have struggled with. You’re an expert in your niche because you’ve been there. Sharing about the struggles will show that you’ve really gone deep in your area, and are more knowledgeable because of it.

4. Create Instagram polls that are related to your posts

This is a simple yet effective technique and also means maximizing creative output from content you’ve already created. Instead of just sharing your new posts on your stories with an invitation to read the caption, add the option for your viewers to engage! Share a question related to the caption or the reel and let your audience contribute by either voting in a poll or responding to a sticker.

5. Invite connection through your email list

Consistency with your email list is usually high on the list of strategies for engaging an audience. One way you can increase engagement, even more, is by ending each email with a question or prompt. Make it heartfelt, and let your readers know that you genuinely want to hear from them. This can be as simple as ending the prompt with “What do you think about that [first name]? Hit reply and let me know, I’d love to hear from you!”

People are more likely to share more (and feel more personally connected to you) when they’re talking to you directly. If it feels like a lot to answer the emails individually, then aim to invite responses once a month or when you know you have a little extra space in your schedule to respond.

6. Do a Q&A

Doing a question and answer is a great way to show your audience that you want to hear from them and that you have a lot to offer without them needing to make a financial investment. It can also imply that if you’re offering so much value for free, imagine how helpful your course or downloadables are! This builds trust and also gives you insight into what your community may need some extra support with. You can do this by posting a question sticker inviting your audience to send in their questions and then answer them on your stories, answer them in a live stream, or take a few to answer in a newsletter.

7. Community spotlights

Increasing engagement has everything to do with building a sense of community, and that’s a two-way street. It’s not just about your connection with your audience, but also your audience’s connections to one another. Creating space for people to relate and engage with one another is essential. You can choose someone each week or each month to highlight. This could be about their growth as it relates to your niche, something they’ve accomplished or created, or the ways in which they’re contributing to the community. You can share the spotlights on your email list, Instagram stories, or whatever online space your audience tends to hang out the most.

8. Show don’t tell

While informational and “how to” content can be very helpful, it can also feel dry or boring if that’s all you post. A great way to increase engagement is to appeal to your audiences’ emotions. Instead of talking about procrastination and ways to overcome it, show it. Depict yourself doing things in a way that your audience can see themselves in and relate to. This will catch their attention right away and naturally lead to the question of how to shift it, and that can prompt them to enter deeper into your world and learn from you!

Engaging with your audience in a sustainable way

As you work to increase audience engagement, remember that you don’t have to implement everything right away, and that not all strategies will work for all audiences! Experiment to find what resonates with your people, and know that the ones that don’t work aren’t failures, but rather are information about what your audience likes and doesn’t like. Just like with the process of creation, it takes time to find what works and doesn’t work for your particular niche. Keep going and have fun with it!  

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