Engage (verb) As defined by Webster’s Dictionary: a : to hold the attention of; b : to induce to participate. If we want to be heard, if we want to reach out, if we want to network and make a name for ourselves, that’s exactly what we need to be doing. Engaging is a big part of today and tomorrow’s world. Social media is the driving force behind many a things in today’s world. If you want to find a job, meet new people, want respect, learn new things and interact with people, it can EASILY be done through engagement. Physical confrontation is taken down for the time being. So if you’re a shy person you have a chance to make yourself known. I’m not saying that you still don’t need to engage in person, text can only go so far. For now, lets stick to social media engagement.
Lets start with Facebook. Facebook in itself is a little harder to engage with. Anyone famous, writers, authors, brands, celebrities are most likely fan pages. A fan page of course is something you like and don’t follow you back. Once you like it all you really can do is read updates, see any media posted and post comments to them yourself. For the most part, these pages are monitored in real-time and DO like and want to hear from you, so speak your mind. Don’t think they wont respond. If you’re on the other side of the fence, working for a brand or client, you can respond to those posts, whether positive or negative. It really helps create a face for the brand and shows they care about their fans and like to Engage with them.
Twitter is a great tool for Engagement. It allows you to follow anyone you want, no friend requests, and it’s not a fan page. The person you’re following can you follow you back. The thing is, they may not follow or respond back if you’re someone insignificant to them. I’m not saying they won’t. I’ve seen celebrities wish friends happy birthday before (Amy) because multiple people made comments to them about. That’s a part of engagement. It gives you a fighting chance to make yourself known. Follow those you want to learn from and engage with. Once following, pursue a conversation. If they post something, mention them and comment back. They may or may not see it. If they do, if its interesting enough, they may write back or follow you in return. Sometime it takes persistence, like with the birthday wish. Retweet, if someone says something interesting, retweet it back. They’ll again have a chance to see you’re mentioning them, and others will see that as well. Content is king, so say something meaningful and interesting that people will be interested in hearing. If you see people asking questions, answer, offer advice if you know the answer. Lastly is introductions, introducing people. I’ve been using Hashable. It’s still in beta, but it lets you put in multiple twitter accounts and well as emails of those people you think should know each other.
Media is an amazing way to share content and Engage. YouTube is amazing for that. Create videos if you have the resources. Make it interesting. Again, content is king. Talk about whatever it is that interests you, show it, show how passionate you are about that thing you do. Remember, it’s going out for other people to see. Ask people to comment on your video and pictures, to share and pass them on. People like to see passion about what you do. One great example I came across is through a friend request on Facebook. After being accepted for a friend request of a girl I met through Twitter (great for networking in your niche. She’s in social media as well and a speaker.) I found myself tagged in a video from her. I was lost at first. The video turned out to be an introduction to herself. It was an amazing way to engage her followers in a professional manner. She simply stated how hard it is to keep in contact with everyone she follows and would to try as much as possible and thanks for the follow. That’s why she’s made it as far as she has. You need to think of great ways to engage people. Engage
If you have the time, there are plenty of other reading materials on engagement. My favorite is Engage by Brian Solis. It’s a great book for those interested in social media management or those already in the industry. It’s a not a beginners book by all means, you need to have some knowledge of branding, marketing and social media before diving in. Apart from that, just search for blogs on the internet,books through amazon and those people on social media sites. There’s a lot to learn, but it’s not complicated. Have fun and enjoy it.