Wake Your Audience Up! How To Boost Low Or No Engagement

Tired of speaking to a virtual empty or uninterested room? You’ve got 10,000 people on your email list. You’ve got a Facebook group with 3,000 members. You’ve got 2,500 followers on Instagram. Yet nobody is engaging with you. What do you do? That’s the purpose of this post. To give you pointers on how you can change that.

The first question to ask is: WHY aren’t people engaging?

To correctly answer this question you’ll need to analyze your numbers and metrics from the back-end. That would mean checking through the analytics for the email platform you’re working in (Active Campaign, Ontraport for example) and for the social media platform(s) you are on. Thankfully everyone of those platforms has an analytics module where you can pull up the numbers you need.

As you go through the numbers, it’s important to track them vis-a-vis what your industry averages for engagement are, so you know where you lie on the scale of things. That’s how you know if your efforts are working or not and if there’s room for you to improve. However, try not to get too bogged down by industry averages, especially if it looks like your numbers are not meeting up. The goal here is to be constantly improving and not staying stagnant or working backward. 

So what number should you be tracking?

For your email list, for instance, you want to be looking at your open rates, click-through rates, unsubscribes (don’t worry too much about these, but it’s good to know what they are in case you notice any substantial changes), and the number of conversions- from the list to offers.

The most important is your open rates. It’s one of the easiest metrics to track along with your click-through rates, engagement, and unsubscribes. So typically, with a healthy and engaged list, you’ll see anywhere from 20 to 40% open rates. 

Anything above 40% or more open rate to your master list is exceptional. Anything below 20% may be an indication that there’s room for improvement, but not necessarily. There are a number of factors to consider first. For instance, the longer people are on your list or the bigger your list gets, the chances are your numbers are going to widen that margin. 

Personally, I have a really small list and every single email I send gets a 40% open rate. But for people with larger lists? They’re going to have people that have been on their list for a really long time as well as people who are really new. So, as their messaging changes and possibly their consistency shifts, they may have a wider gap of 20 or 30% open rate

To track engagement in Facebook groups, you’ll need to be looking at the Group Insights tab (located in the left sidebar menu of your group) Note though: demographic information will not be available for groups with less than 250 members.  From Group Insights, you can easily see members’ activities as well as growth rate and the all-important post engagement. Make a note to check industry averages here too as you analyze these numbers.

Tracking engagement on Instagram is a little different from the other platforms we’ve discussed so far in that numbers are actually not at the back end but in full display for the world to see. Here again, you might want to look at industry averages for engagement, just to gauge where you are. On Instagram, the number you want to track is the number of followers you have divided by the number of likes, comments, and saves you receive on a post. There are tools and apps that can help with these calculations if you would rather not do them yourself.

I can’t stress enough the importance of remembering that the aim of analyzing your numbers (stats) is not to be in competition with others’ numbers but to continually improve on your own. Better numbers indicate better engagement which regardless of industry averages is a good thing where you are concerned.

So now you’ve checked the numbers and have noticed that your engagement is either very low or is going down- What are some actions you can take right now to improve them? Here are two suggestions:  

1. Survey your audience

You can do this by either an automated campaign or personal outreach.  For an email list, for instance, you can send out an automated email blast that asks people to fill out a quick survey. In the survey be sure to ask what kind of value do they want to get from you and where they are at so you can create value that meets their needs. It’s better not to assume. Sometimes people think they know what their email list wants and what their pain points are only to find after a survey, that they were off-base! 

If you are doing a personal outreach you could even choose to reach out to the people that aren’t engaging and ask them why what isn’t resonating with them and what you can do better. 

2. Test, test, and test

Test different kinds of content, different formats the content can be delivered, and in what contexts. In terms of content, Is your audience responding more to emotionally-driven copy or story-based copy? Are they responding more to quick tips and tricks of the trade? 

How about the format? How are you delivering the content? Facebook lives? Long or short static posts? Infographics and quotes? Test out the different formats to deliver your content so you can see what kind of content your audience most engages with. 

Testing within context is when you test out your content in cycles, seasonally, certain days or even times of day. It is thinking about where people are at right now in their journey and posting content in context to that. For instance, a spiritual coach may want to test posting around spiritual holidays or spiritual seasons. Or as a personal development coach, you may want to post in those seasons in people’s lives where you know your audience is wanting to have breakthroughs in their personal development.

Surveying and testing. Simple but very effective. Do these and watch them do wonders for your engagement.

As you go through the numbers, it’s important to track them vis-a-vis what your industry averages for engagement are, so you know where you lie on the scale of things. That’s how you know if your efforts are working or not and if there’s room for you to improve. However, try not to get too bogged down by industry averages, especially if it looks like your numbers are not meeting up. The goal here is to be constantly improving and not staying stagnant or working backward. 

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