Social Media

12 Ways To Skyrocket Engagement Using Social Media Comments

How to improve engagement with social media comments

Social media is a facet of your digital presence. It provides advisors with a variety of business and brand-building benefits. For example, 78% of sales associates that use social media outperform peers that don’t. Not to mention, social media is one of the first places customers look to interact with their chosen brand:

Sprout Index Charts Q2 2016-01

Unfortunately, many advisors miss out on these advantages with a passive approach to social media. Social media is not another location to check the box for your content to be shared. Improved performance requires engagement — successful users are social.

This is why social media platforms track engagement as an indicator of your success. So, what exactly is measured, and how do you improve engagement?

Exact measurements depend on your platform of choice, but the most common indicators are likes, shares and comments. The more you receive of each, the better your posts will perform. So how do we start improving each of these metrics?

Shares and likes are relatively passive, we’re all guilty of logging into Facebook, seeing a post, and clicking “like” before scrolling on. Shares are also beneficial but will depend on the type of content. This leaves us with comments.

Comments aren’t the most powerful form of engagement, but they are the most reliable. Unlike likes and shares, comments are an opportunity to engage your audience directly. They give us the chance to actually engage, and we can start to see which engagement metric affects the stats above. Using different strategies, you can generate additional comments, which in turn boosts engagement, providing more likes (and maybe a few more shares).

Before we dive into commenting strategies though, let’s look at a few caveats.

Before Seeking More Comments

There are a few things advisors should be aware of before they implement the strategies below. There aren’t too many factors, but they can make a difference, so let’s take a look.

  1. Keep algorithms in mind. The platforms you choose to use will use different algorithms to measure the success of your posts. Engagement is generally a positive factor on every platform, though there may be differences in the way engagement is measured. For example, social platforms prefer native content (to keep users on the platforms) though some platforms may be more or less strict about how often and where you provide a link. Make sure to familiarize yourself with your chosen platform’s algorithm.
  2. Set a goal and track it. Give yourself something to measure, this way you can track what’s working and what isn’t. Use analytics to track specifics and make adjustments over time.
  3. Be aware of timing. Social media is an incredibly active platform. As an example, Twitter posts are relevant for 18 minutes on average. A post’s relevance influences its performance, so make sure you’re posting at the best time for your audience. If you’re unsure of when that is, analytics can help. And if you’re just starting out, then use the average best starting time for each social media platform to begin.

12 Ways Ways Financial Advisors Can Acquire More Comments on Social Media

1. Comment On a Stranger’s Post

If you haven’t commented on a stranger’s post before, then it’s time to start. A comment on a stranger’s post acts as an introduction and increases the chances they will comment on your posts in turn. Building reciprocity this way can help expand your social network, increasing the chances of additional forms of engagement in the future.

Though not strangers, this post by Mike Kelly demonstrates this strategy in action:

Mike Kelly Twitter

2. Fill In the Blank

A “fill in the blank” post gives readers a scenario and asks them to complete it. These posts can be used to see how individuals react, and depending on your audience, can help you better understand their perspective and approach.

For example, Sara Grillo uses this strategy to see how advisors might approach a common client-advisor challenge:

Sara Grillo Twitter

3. Reshare Trending Industry Topics

Part of building your brand on social media is showing your expertise. By resharing industry topics, you show yourself as informed, as well as an information source. The kicker here is to comment on the topic or to ask for opinions, depending on the context. By choosing a trending subject like this you’re already guaranteed to attract traffic, but by adding commentary you invite others to engage your perspective.

Jeff Levine uses this strategy to inform users while also demonstrating expertise.

Jeff Levine Comment Example

4. Offer Something in Return

Do you use gated content on your website? Social media can be used in a similar fashion. Create a post that highlights what you’ve created, then offer it to users for free, all they need to do is leave a comment. Then, reach out to them with a direct message and a link to their content.

This example from Samantha Russell shows how gating content can help attract comments.

TOT CNBC Comment Example

5. Get Users To Tag One Another

This sort of post is often a simple statement asking users to tag their friends. The statement is typically positive, making it easier to tag users. The idea here is to tap into your network’s followers. The post may not initiate a conversation, but it does result in comments, creating the same results while attracting new users.

Dave Zoller uses this very strategy to close out a post.

Dave Zoller Example

6. Ask a Question

Asking for your network’s opinion is a great way to start a conversation in the comments. Posts like this can be anything you want, so feel free to get creative. Many start with a story or a lesson, asking readers to comment with a similar experience or their opinion.

Michael Kitces uses a question to ask users what they’ll be reading for industry info, showing what users are interested in, while also attracting comments.

Michael Kitces Twitter Example

7. Take Advantage of Hashtags

Hashtags are a great way to filter your post and make it searchable. They’re also often a way to enter your post into an ongoing conversation. Just make sure you’re using popular hashtags when looking to acquire more comments.

Anna Kareis uses the hashtags well with the custom hashtag “#AccordingtoAnna”, making posts searchable with the added benefit of branding.

Anna Kareis LinkedIn

8. Engage Users That Leave a Comment

Once someone does comment on your post, take it as a chance to initiate an interaction. Open up a conversation and provide a thought-provoking response. You want to keep things going to get the most out of the interaction, and if the conversation continues more may join, creating a snowball effect. Be sure to do this for other users as well!

In this thread, Brendan Frazier engages each commenter by responding to their message. Doing so can continue the conversation and creates a sense of reciprocity.

Brendan Frazier LinkedIn

9. Post Something Relatable

Share a hobby, a personal story, a lesson or your vacation plans. This sort of content can help you connect with your users on a different level. Not only is it more relatable than the specific services of your firm, but it’s often more enjoyable to engage in. Closeout this sort of post by asking users something about your post. For example, if you post something about your hobby and how it helps you relax, ask users what they do to relax during downtime.

Sid Misra uses this type of post to talk about weekend plans. The post doesn’t try to be industry-related or attract attention to a link. Instead, it celebrates relatable topics.

Sid Misra Twitter Example

10. Inspire a Commenting Culture

Your firm’s team is already an asset. Ask them to engage the content you create as well. Even if an employee is not a social media manager, simply commenting on a post can open it up to that individual’s network, establishing the aforementioned snowball effect.

In this example, Samantha Russell shows how a commenting culture can be created by tagging Twenty Over Ten team members in a post.

Twenty Over Ten LinkedIn

11. Create Attention-Grabbing Posts

As mentioned earlier, social media is incredibly active. Posts don’t last very long. Use emojis, imagery and humor to attract user attention. Then, use one of the other strategies on this list to acquire comments.

Other posts in this list use this strategy as well. Though in this example, Chad Chubb attracts attention with not just emojis, but the subject of the post.

WealthKeel Twitter

12. Tag an Influencer

Industry names attract a lot of attention. Creating a post that mentions them or comments on their opinions is a great way to garner attention from other followers, or the influencer themselves. Be sure not to overuse this strategy though, constantly tagging the same influencer can feel like spam and may result in the opposite effect.

Alan Hensley uses this approach well while instilling a  sense of reciprocity by including a product plug.

Alan Hensley Twitter Comment

Wrapping Things Up

Remember, obtaining more comments is all about starting or participating in a conversation. Don’t be afraid to comment on other’s posts as well. Doing so won’t directly affect your engagement, but will garner a sense of reciprocity from others. In turn, these users are more likely to comment on your posts, returning the favor.

And even if a post isn’t immediately successful, there’s always a chance to begin again, so feel free to get creative! Just keep in mind your chosen platform and your audience’s interests and comment and engage as often as you can.

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stuart farst

About The Author

Stuart Farst

Stuart is a Content Marketing Specialist at Twenty Over Ten and enjoys creating content that both entertains and educates. A Game Designer at heart, he can be found pursuing one of his many hobbies during his free time.