How to Become a Micro-Influencer: Engaging Your Audience

If you’re reading this blog post you’re one step closer to becoming a micro-influencer. If you haven’t read the first installment of this series about finding your niche, I suggest you take a few minutes to check it out. If you’ve figured out the type of content you’re looking to produce, and the audience you want to target, the next step in becoming a micro-influencer is building engagement with your followers, or community.

Engagement: What Does it Mean?

The good folks over at Adweek define engagement as: the number of interactions people have with your content (i.e.: likes, comments, shares, retweets, etc.) If you’re using Instagram as your main channel for social media, the comments, replies to your story, and your sent posts to others are top level engagements. You may be getting a good amount of likes on your content, but liking a post is a very passive form of engagement. You want to create content that connects with your audience, while also persuading them to join the dialogue themselves. Some easy ways to boost engagement is to tailor your post captions to include a CTA , or ‘call-to-action’. It can be as simple as asking your followers what their favorite color is, or what color purse would go well with your dress. I’m going to show you the difference between a highly engaging caption, and one that doesn’t implore the audience to comment and provide us with feedback.

The caption for this post starts out with a question, which prompts the audience to weigh in, making the content interactive.

This second post is similar in the imagery, but with no clear call-to-action, the audience isn’t obligated to join in on the conversation. The first post having twice as many comments as the second, and about 50 more likes. This technique can be applied in a lot of different ways, but by posing a question to your audience, you’re inviting them to become a part of the content you’re producing, letting their voice be heard, providing them with a more interactive experience and ultimately boosting your engagement rate.

The Math Behind Engagement Rate

Instagram’s algorithm rewards content that boasts a high engagement rate. I’m sure you’ve seen an account with a high number of followers, but a low number of likes/comments. These accounts seem popular to start, but once you start to calculate their overall engagement, you realize their audience might be as a good as dead.

To calculate the engagement rate take the total number of engagements (likes + comments + sends + saves) divide it by the number of followers you have and multiply by 100. There are also online tools you can use like Phlanx that will calculate it for you. Here’s a screenshot of what it looks like after you’ve used their calculator:

There are a lot of different ways to calculate engagement and you shouldn’t get caught up trying to crunch the average number of engagements you’re getting per post, but it is a metric that you should be aware of.

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