As my nine month work anniversary approaches marking the day I changed my career from a project manager to becoming an engagement lead.

I realised a few of the things I’ve been doing can be applied to blogging. Here are a few observations I want to share…

Are your channels promoting to the appropriate audience?

“If you want to grow your blog, use social media”

Was one of the first pieces of advice I heard when signing up to WordPress – some bloggers take this to extremes joining every social media channel going hoping it will find that magic audience hungry to read blog posts.

Doing this will spread your efforts too thin – you’re better to just use one or two, put more time and effort to build the audience of people who are interested in reading what you like to talk about.

Some platforms have advantages to reach certain audiences, so it’s a good idea to do a bit of research before you decide where you want to focus your energies.

Therefore I push back on requests from the team to expand beyond Twitter and LinkedIn. Instagram is good if you’re looking for females 20-25 and have a visual product to sell, but not so good if you’re a writer and are now under pressure to create videos and images!

Photo by Tuur Tisseghem on Pexels.com

Avoid doing too much

Avoid overcommitting with your content – a Twitter growth guide might tell you to tweet eight times a day and post two threads a week, but if you have other responsibilities this can soon become overwhelming, and quality will drop.

That is why I now just post two tweets a day – avoid content for contents sake.

Build your networks

One way of increasing engagement is to build your networks.

In my role I email people with connections, or who it’s useful to develop a mutual beneficial relationship with

This starts with setting up a call, telling them who I am, what I do, and what I can do for them.

I don’t approach these calls expecting anything, but when I need support, it’s easier to ask a favour, and their more likely to oblige when they know you.

Talk to people, ask them questions, – whatever you do, don’t start off an introduction by asking them to do something for you whether it’s to read your blog or retweet a post.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Make your audience feel involved

If you want to increase engagement you need to make people feel part of your movement. You don’t do this by ignoring comments on your latest post (responde to your damn comments!).

You can build connections by asking questions, solving their problems, or observing something you liked about their own work.

It doesn’t seem like much, but two way communication helps the need of people to be acknowledged.

Everyone starts of as a passive reader – it’s what you do next that will establish if they continue.

Share their success

You can increase the connection of your audience to you, by sharing their hardwork without having to be asked.

It’s always nice when someone likes your content so much that they want to share it within their own networks.

When doing this approach with the attitude not to expect anything in return.

Start with ‘why’ in mind

When I first joined as engagement lead I had several requests for blog articles and tweets to promote our work.

The question I asked was “Why?”

Like the Simon Sinek famous TED Talk starting with why, looking at why will help you think about the reason you’re approach your engagement a certain way.

  • Why do you need to engage?
  • What message are we wanting to say?
  • What are we asking people to do?
  • What do you want to achieve?

Asking these questions is of relevance to my line of work because jumping straight to the sexy stuff like splurging out a load of social media content isn’t always the answer.

Putting together a strategy will help you think who you need to reach. Sometimes the best answer could just be something as simple as an email or a QR code printed off on a staff notice board.

It wouldn’t hurt bloggers to ask these questions – by establishing the why you can start to develop the how (we’re going to do it) and the what (specific actions do we need to take).

Conclusion

I’m still new to my role, I’m enjoying it, but recognise I have so much to learn.

It’s a challenge, but every day I remind myself how blessed I am that I have been able to expand a hobby into a career where I get to put in strategies, plan, and think about communications and engagement (and yes I also get to write a few blog posts too!)

What do you think about my observations?  How do you engage with your audience?


Copyright © 2022 James M.Lane perfectmanifesto.com

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10 thoughts on “A Few Observations On Engagement And Blogging

  1. I learned quickly that having too many social media accounts was a pitfall. I had little time to spend on those platforms, so social media never worked for me. When I cut back to two social media platforms (3, if you count WordPress as a social media channel), I had more time to spend on those platforms and gradually saw success. Twitter is my favourite social media platform and has rewarded me well with the time I give it.

    Likewise, I like studying some of my stats, especially to see which posts do the best. I can then give the subjects of those posts more of my time.

    Thanks for the insight into your new role, James.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A lot of my advice on social media is how I apply it to personal use 1/2 tweets a day, one wordpress post, spend about 30 mins max on engagement – not overwhelming around other commitments!

      Stats are always good, comments really help me identify how people receive things though.

      Thanks for your comment Hugh.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. As a writer I realized that Instagram wasn’t my platform, as you said, it entails creating content specifically for it. I prefer to have my RSS feed published and shared on Twitter and LinkedIn. I put my RSS feed on my Amazon Author page and my Goodreads page. When I think about it I’ll share the latest batch of posts with my Pinterest.

    Since my time is more limited, I prefer to spend time chatting with other bloggers. I don’t stress over stats, because It has a way of taking care of itself.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’ve got to play to the audience you want to reach – if you’re selling clothes, or fitness supplements Instagram is your place. Writers have to go where they can demonstrate their writing!

      I’m a bit of an analytics nerd so stats have always been something I’ve over obsessed over – particularly ‘beating’ the last year.

      For happiness there is something to be said for the quality of connections made than quality.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I totally agree. I was so caught up with stats when I started, and when I paid for advertising or sponsorship I’d be crushed if the needle didn’t move very much. Then I was astounded to see that in the weeks I didn’t pay for anything my stats would go up.

        I’ve disengaged myself from the stats and purely focus on the writing and sharing now, and I’m not stressing out about it like I used to.

        Peace of mind is worth far more to me now that I’m just focusing on the “why”.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. It’s a good call – I would focus on beating page views every year. I had gradual growth, but this year is looking like that won’t happen, it seems a good time to let this comparison go.

        Like you say peace of mind is worth far more!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Sometimes we just need to let go of as much self imposed or societally imposed stress as possible! Stress reduction is a big part of improving our mental and physical health!

        Like

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