Interactive Social Media Posts: Engaging Your Audience and Building Trust
- Engaging content can build a connection between your business and your audience, ultimately earning their loyalty and trust
- Evaluate whether your company’s marketing messages are communicating correctly and gain vital insight into your audience
- Discover the best interactive social media posts to build interest and engagement
Unleashing the Power of Interaction
Social media platforms are an active place. Therefore, creating social media content that engages your audience and invites them to interact only makes sense.
In this article, you’ll learn:
- Why you should use interactive content on social media.
- How interactive content can help you learn more about your audience, and whether your marketing messages are sending the right message.
- How interactive content can earn loyalty and trust for your business or service.
- 10 interactive social media content strategies.
Social media marketing is a powerful tool and can provide many benefits to your business at a lower cost than through other methods. Some of the methods we will discuss in this article require only a small amount of time to set up.
Of course, it’s vital to understand how to properly use social media in a way that provides long-term benefits for your business, and certain types of interactive content can certainly do that.
Why use interactive content on social media?
First, let’s define interactive content as any digital content that your audience can actively engage with. For example, participating in an online poll, quiz, live Q&A, contest, or giveaway.
Interactive content is content that encourages your viewer to take some form of action.
The benefit is that rather than having a viewer look at your static post, give it a quick read or glance, and then go away – interactive content engages and holds the viewer to your page (and brand) for a longer duration.
Secondly, interactive content can provide increased benefits and value to your audience compared to static content. For example, a live Q&A provides them an opportunity to get their questions answered in real-time, while also learning through observing the answers to questions other users ask.
How interactive content helps you learn more about your audience
Interactive content, because it asks your audience to engage, can provide your company with more information about your audience.
You can always learn about your audience on social media by their responses to a post. However, you’re more likely to hear from your most vocal followers or from followers a specific post happened to inspire a response from.
Interactive content has the power to engage a larger segment of your audience. Further, in certain ways it allows you to start and control the conversation, as well as get answers to specific questions.
For example, if your company wants to make a certain product or policy decision, you can use a poll to ask your audience what they think about it.
Holding a live Q&A session or AMA (ask me anything) allows you to hear directly from your followers and can be the most powerful form of user feedback. These live chats have a way of loosening up and encouraging the less vocal members of your audience to speak up as well, giving you a chance to hear from them, too.
Are your marketing messages sending the right message?
Because interactive content entices people to engage, it can sometimes show you what marketing messages work and which don’t – faster than static content might.
Ideally, you want to create binge-worthy content. This is content that is either entertaining, fun, interesting, or provides gold nuggets of information that will keep your audience coming back for more.
You’ll know you’re sending the wrong messages when you get either negative responses or are hearing crickets through the silence of no one engaging with the content. Use these responses as feedback to make corrections and up your game.
You may not get things right straight out of the box, and that’s okay. The important thing is to adjust and keep trying. Once you get things right, you’ll have people coming back for more. And that leads us to…
How interactive content builds loyalty and trust
When you see increased engagement, with users coming back to and interacting with your content regularly, that is a clear sign that you are beginning to build loyalty and trust with your followers.
Once you’ve established a track record of providing your audience with interactive content they find entertaining and/or helpful, their view of your company will transform into that of an expert and/or leader in your niche or field. This authenticity builds authority.
Your audience will trust you because you went beyond simply trying to sell them something, and took the time to get to know them, understand what they value, and help them solve their problems. Once your followers trust you, they are more likely to make a purchase and more likely to say “yes,” when you ask them to buy.
It’s always going to be a careful balance of when to ask for the sale and not come off as pushy. When your audience trusts you, asking for the sale at the right time, will come off as helpful.
Building Connections: 10 Interactive Social Media Posts for Your Business
With all social media interactive posts, you should follow these rules of thumb:
- Don’t harp on the same messages or continually push for the sale. (audiences will become deaf to this).
- Always seek to add value for your user (entertainment can be considered value).
- Aim to publish high-quality content for both customers and prospects.
Here are 10 ideas for types of interactive content you can utilize on social media to engage your audience.
“91% of Instagram posts with more than 1000 comments were giveaways, and received 64X more comments and 3.5X more likes than regular posts” – Forms.app 2023 statistics
Giveaways are the easiest way to get engagement. Everyone loves getting something for free.
It’s also an easy way to capture email addresses for your mailing list. From your social media post, link to a sign-up page where the user has to input their email address to receive the giveaway.
Another stat from forms.app: “Instagram giveaways boost followers 70 percent faster than not using giveaways.”
“Facebook yielded a 189% increase in conversions when users were given the option to automatically fill in data from a social media profile.” – Formstack study
Another one of the easiest methods for engaging your audience is to run contests.
Contests usually require more effort from the participants, so the reward needs to be higher than that of a giveaway – something awesome.
One technique many companies use is to ask users to film themselves with a short 15-30 second video of themselves demonstrating or using one of the company’s products.
Other methods include asking users to come up with a tagline or slogan for a particular advertising campaign.
Still, other contests ask for tagging friends, sharing, getting other people to sign up, a photo contest, a creative caption, an opinion, providing what they know or answers, doing something creative, voting on something, participating in a challenge, sharing their story, and more.
There are no doubt other creative ideas you can come up with.
TIP for best practice: If available on your social media platform, use “auto-fill the form” in the contest process to fill in the user’s name and email address from their profile from the social media platform.
Quizzes are easy to set up through free or paid third-party tools that allow you to create and embed them on your page. Simply link to the quiz from your post. Here’s a link to the best 22 online quiz makers.
The most creative quizzes manage to provide entertainment, while slyly gaining an understanding of what your audience might prefer in certain products or services.
Polls are a great way to create fun and entertaining content, as well as learn what your audience likes and wants in terms of products and services.
Polls are a powerful way to collect data from your users and understand and gauge your audience. Polls provide conversation starters, opinion sampling, research, interaction, and engagement, establish thought leadership, and can also promote products or services.
Best practices are focusing on trending topics, and aim to be thought-provoking or entertaining and provide value.
As with quizzes, there are plenty of free or paid third-party tools that allow you to create and embed them on your page.
Here is a link for info on creating polls on 7 different social media platforms.
The allure of games can be hard to resist and that’s what makes them such a great choice for engaging interactive posts.
Word games often work well such as anagrams, Mad Libs, “Would you rather,” guessing games, pop quizzes, crossword puzzles, puzzles, mazes, true or false. GIF challenges that require your followers to post a response GIF are also popular.
6. Fill-in-the-blanks posts.
What are Fill-in-the-blanks posts?
Here’s an example:
- If I could have a superpower, it would be __________.
While you certainly can create a business/product-related or industry-related fill-in-the-blanks post (and should at some point), you might want to hold those back until you built up a little more loyalty and trust with your audience.
Instead, you might want to start with simply some fun random topic or holiday/festive types of posts.
Here are some ideas:
- If I could be anything when I grow up I’d be __________.
- The best gift I ever got was __________.
- The song I can’t get out of my head right now is __________.
- if I could go anywhere right now, I would go to __________.
- If I could have dinner with anyone tonight, it would be __________.
- My favorite thing to do after a long day is __________.
- You get the idea. When you are ready to post a business/product fill-in-the-blanks post, some ideas might be:
- The first [your brand here] product I ever bought was __________.
- When I think of [your brand here], I think of __________.
- [Your brand here] changed the way I __________.
- My favorite [your brand here] product is __________.
7. Viral challenges
One thing that contributes to certain challenges going viral is the sense of community that is built as lots of people get involved (often around the world) in doing the same thing.
While many big brands have the clout and reach to create their own viral challenges, it’s much easier to latch onto something that’s already happening.
Look to the youngest generations to see what’s trending and find a safe, but fun challenge that you can piggyback on to draw attention to your company while driving interaction and engagement with your users.
8. Trending conversations
Use what people are already talking about and are trending to kickstart conversations and ride its viral wave of popularity. There are several ways to find trending topics:
- Google Trends: This will show you what’s trending in the world or specifically by country
- TweetDeck: Monitors what’s happening on Twitter and you can track specific hashtags
9. Live Q&As/AMAs
Live Q&A (question-and-answer) or AMA (asked me anything) sessions are a great way to engage, interact, and provide help and information to your viewers in real-time.
This is one of the best ways to get to know your users and understand their needs and wants. At the same time, it establishes your company as one that cares about its customers.
Popular platforms: include Instagram Live, Facebook Live, Twitter Spaces (for audio-based Q&A), YouTube Live, and LinkedIn Live.
Requirements: You need a stable Internet connection and a device with a camera and microphone. You also need live streaming software or an app. Popular options include OBS (Open Broadcaster Software), Streamlabs OBS, or Restream.
TIP for best practices: Start promoting the event early. Outline the main points and subjects you want to discuss so that you don’t forget to mention them. Consider a moderator. Have someone monitor the chat window that isn’t the main speaker. Set time limits. You may not want to engage in debates or off-topic questions. Test your equipment beforehand to ensure they are working correctly. Make sure others can see and hear you properly at the outset.
Bonus Tips: Make sure to record your live stream. You can post a video and/or transcript that you leave up after one of these events so your followers that may not have been able to attend can still benefit from getting the information at a later date.
10. Share your story
It’s not a bad thing that people love to talk about themselves, take advantage of this by encouraging them to share their personal story.
Your goal should be to invite them to share how your product or service affected them personally and helped to solve a problem. As a company, this creates a powerful testimonial that goes a long way in forging strong relationships with these customers and others.
You can share these personal customer stories in your Instagram Stories or Facebook, as well as in a carousel image post.
The Value of Making Connections
Using interactive content on your social media posts is a win-win, as it provides value and entertainment for users while providing you with key insight into your users, their wants, needs, and desires.
Interactive content can silently provide you with data and email addresses, while simultaneously helping your followers. The benefits you provide ultimately earned the loyalty and trust of your viewers, making your brand and or company an authority in your field.
Interested in Learning More?
Check out our Free White Paper on The Unbeatable Nature of Intent-Based Advertising or reach out to one of our brand promotion specialists! We pride ourselves on being able to bring advertising partners the exact consumers they’ve been looking for.