Good community management can help you build a loyal following and a strong engagement rate.
Since brands want to work with creators who have an engaged and loyal audience, these are two important things to work on if you want to secure brand collaborations. So what are the best practices for community management, to optimise your results?
In our latest ‘Instagram School’ Instagram Live, we chatted with Vamp creator @biancabeers and discussed the dos and don’ts of community engagement. Bianca was the perfect person share her secrets, as she recently held her own art exhibition, which proved her community engagement online was just as strong offline. Her Instagram community came to support her in real life, because she’d engaged with them on her profile.
Growing a community
Bianca told us that, as an artist and creative, she’s an extravert and chatting to her audience comes more naturally to her, although she does suggest ‘chiseling in time’ each day, to engage with your audience. This is important especially if you want to grow your relationships and turn your following into a more community based environment. However, she does recommend “being mindful of how much time you’re spending on social media.” Avoid community management during your personal time off. Keep it during working hours.
When it comes to daily community management, things you should include in your strategy are: replying to comments, answering DMs and engaging with other people’s content. Bianca does this to ensure she isn’t just posting content and expecting engagement. “I like to give back to my community and share the love.” To help manage her often-full-DMs, Bianca likes to leave them unread until she has the time to reply. This not only helps as a reminder the next day, but you won’t be leaving people hanging for an answer.
Bianca’s top tips
If you’re someone like Bianca who gets lots of people asking the same questions, use your time to create content around specifically answering these FAQs. Use IGTV, Story Highlights and longer captions to answer these questions in depth. Once you’ve posted this content, you’ll have the ability to direct any future questions to these pieces of content. This will achieve four things:
#1 In replying to that follower, you make them feel welcome and valid in your community, which helps build that relationship.
#2 Save yourself time. No need to repeat yourself with a long and in-depth answer each time.
#3 You know your followers are already interested in this topic, so you’ll get great post engagement.
#4 Filming piece-to-camera video content on topics you are passionate about, helps your wider community trust your advice and credibility as a creator.
One thing Bianca wasn’t a huge advocate for, was asking rhetorical or open-ended at the end of your captions. She said it’s not always necessary to encourage engagement on your posts. Sometimes it’s best to share a quality story, which could then provoke questions asked in the comments. If you do feel as though asking a question in your caption is necessary on a post, ensure the question is relevant to the content and you care about the answer. I.e. ask which post your audience likes best from a carousel album. Asking your audience what they want to see more of is also a great tool to help you understand if the work you’re putting out is aligning and resonating with your audience.
Watch our Instagram Live with Bianca
Upcoming Instagram Lives:
- 9 July 6pm AEST: How to grow your Instagram following with @romeosfashionfix
- 14 July 6pm AEST: How and why to use the Paid Partnership and Branded Content tools with @iansangala
- 16 July 6pm AEST: How to create engaging video for Instagram with @nickehfilms
In case you missed last weeks Instagram Live with @benback_, here are his best tips for building engagement through Instagram Stories.