Article : 5 Great "out the box" guerrilla marketing tactics to boost social media engagement.
Updated: Jan 23
Overview: This article is focused around effective low cost ways that people can organically drive traffic to their channels. Here are 5 great "out the box" tactics you can use to drive social media engagement. This isn't about beating the system and getting 100'000 new random followers overnight, this is about getting really narrow and 'targeting' people of your ideal audience.
1. Quality comments :
One of most under estimated but low hanging fruit on the engagement tree is commenting on posts. We would immediately like you to take note of the fact that the emphasis is on the word quality comments .
This is for a specific reason, because not just any random commenting will do. To implement these tactics successfully will require you to have a focused approach to engaging with posts/content which will produce a quality yield in which people begin to scout your page to see what your about and reach out.
The art is in finding people and posts which harbor chunks of your target audience, as previously stated by emphasizing the word quality; this means that we are being particular about the type of comments that should be left on a page.
The next keyword that is worth paying attention to gain insight to how to approach this is: relevancy. what we're seeing who is that you will need to become narrow in terms of the type of pages you are going to target and the types of comments that you were going to leave.
This really is a hit and miss game and it somewhat dependent on both the quality of your writing skills, your thought process, who your engaging with and chance itself. By increasing the frequency and depth of your input, you better your chances. The right comment, on the right page, at the right time can open you up to hundreds/thousands/hundreds of thousands or even millions of people, and whilst it is somewhat of a game, one must balance this with how inexpensive this tactic is, particularly to anyone with lots of free labour hours but a limited budget for marketing.
2. Tactical Direct Messaging
In the famous words of rapper Yo Gotti, "It goes down in the DM", Direct messaging targets directly whilst replying to a relevant post (ideally a story) can be a huge engagement booster, especially if the interaction leads to the target reposting or sharing your content.
This is another special tactic that can generate unique forms of rapport and engagement, somewhat similar to the quality comments tactic, except your targeting net is extremely narrow, in fact you are essentially narrowing your options from thousands/millions to one person.
So why is this tactic useful ? it seems counter intuitive given that your speaking to just one individual and you don't want to come across spammy right ? Well to quote the title of the now super famous Gary Vaynerchuks book, "Jab, Jab, Hook", stop asking for things through the door and take a value oriented approach to direct engagement. This concept counts here more than ever. Just by offering something of value (be it free service or even just positive input), sounding like a human being and not a cheesy salesman while doing so makes the world of difference.
Yet here is where understanding the process and mechanics of marketing will also help, in this field of work, before a marketer starts promoting a product, what is always done first ? A strategy is drafted up in which one considers "target audience" and the ideal channels to access them.
The purpose of this is to narrow down the amount of prospects and weed out those less likely to convert (buy/subscribe/follow etc) in favour of targeting people that are more likely to be engaged in what your offering. This will lower the amount of time/expenses needed to engage in this tactic routinely and effectively.
We would like you to apply the same principle but specifically as a tactic when dealing with "DMing"(sending direct messages) people, before doing so, "qualify your targets", ensure the people you are taking time out to engage with are valuable targets that share in an interest in your type of product/service. In the name of efficiency, you should only seek to build rapport with people that are qualified for your time.
That does not refer to any snobbery or disregard for anyone, by simply prioritising your time to make sure you can appear consistent to people that actually matter means you in turn waste minimal time trying to convert people that are not qualified to speak with you on what you seek to build rapport about.
In-stream and Search ads via Google Ads. Whilst this is a paid resource, it is disproportionately valuable for the price it's being angled at, we had to mention it and address each independent from each other so you understand clearly what we are talking about. This particular tactic is high value to people who are low on views and engagement and seek to build an 'authority' presence.
There are other Advertising services but as far as building your clout permanently online goes, as of now the most consistent and highly consumed platform on earth is YouTube and naturally its parent company; Google. So building a platform and your SEO (search engine optimisation) rank within Google's framework will serve you in ways that other platforms simply; can't.
To be specific about this point we have divided the types of advertisement into two.
Firstly In-Stream Google ads videos, this is not a one-size fits all formula but these adverts are the videos that people are used to seeing pop up just before a YouTube video starts to play. They are in-fact relatively cheap to run and will give you a special advantage which we will go further into depth once we define the second type of digital advertisement we will recommend. Not any video advertisement will do, if you seek to build engagement figure out some type of video content in which you are providing some type of value. Whether its a cool story, content with a message or sheer entertainment, all of these things are essentially "giving" an experience to your audience.
Focus on doing this and you will find in-stream advertising extremely useful as a means of building views, and eventually organic engagement.
Secondly are Search Discovery Ads. These are the advertisements you see at the top of your search results whenever you type something from Google or YouTube. As simple as they may seem, for the right creative content these can be extremely effective because whilst the advert itself may be more bland than an in-stream Google Ad (in a search discovery you simply see a thumbnail and 3 lines of short text in the search results rather than the video content itself), but because in both formats, you are "paying per click" (hence PPC advertising) in this format, the clicks generally tend to be more reliable than accidental (as is the case with in-stream ads in which people can often click the screen by accident and then click back out).
In this case, the same principle of giving value we mentioned previously is even more apparent here. If you can create a search discovery advertisiment that provides value for people searching (e.g answers a question / provides relevant content they are seeking) this can be an incredibly effective way at building audiences for dirt cheap. Granted its not as cheap as it was 5 years ago, but relatively speaking. There are few that can offer more effective ways that you can build authority.
Why we have recommended this paid service isn't simply because your "running paid ads". It is specifically because of a feature that Google offers which makes it far more effective than traditional advertising in terms of cost and effectiveness at reaching the right audience.
The brutal truth of the social media industry at the moment is that is making a stark shift towards becoming platforms optimised for paid advertising, meaning natural, organic growth is somewhat restricted in comparison to how easy it was to go viral 10 years ago.
Now a large part of going viral is dependent upon making sure the foundations to your content are laid so that you CAN be seen by "the right people" (i.e your target audience). If executed correctly, you can turbo-charge your organic engagement in the long run as general awareness about you increases with time.
Other than our next point, there is nothing more effective than the option we are recommending here in terms of guaranteeing an audience (at the very least).
5. Make allies and friends out of influencers : Notice the keyword here is "allies and friends", that is not quite the same as simply DM'ing people asking them to share your stuff as a "huge favour". Becoming an ally and a friend is something that could only be done and received through genuine actions which the other party values and later that may lead to mutual exchanges.
Why they value it, and how long said actions are carried out will be the key difference between being first an ally and later potentially a friend, but the key thing to pay attention to is the notion of value. It is not always the case but generally speaking, becoming an ally in the world of business usually happens before becoming a friend.
The question to ask is, what is an ally ? Is it a friend ? Not quite, an ally is a person or organisation that shares mutual interests with you, usually in the world of business this rests upon the premise of "mutual benefit".
Now it is key to understand that through becoming ally's, you create a bridge to grow a relationship over time and relationships that forge emotional bonds essentially become "friendships".
With this being the case, if you are approaching an influencer of any type, be it a key person an Instagram/YouTube channel with a large following, consider what has been said above, what are YOU bringing to the table which that person may value ?
Each person is different so you will probably do yourself an injustice by having a one size fits all formula , just pay close attention to what each person values, and a powerful hint is that USUALLY people are always communicating it because that's the very reason of them being on social media in the first place.
For some it's money (which may mean some investment) but for others it's input / sincere comments and engagement, but what you will find in the modern age that for most people it's a fine balance of both, whilst for those who are already successful, money tends to be less of a motivator than a "good feeling" engaging with someone who they believe deserves/values their time.
Influencer marketing is perhaps one of the cheapest, fastest and most effective ways to reach your target audience without having to create an ultra complicated promotional strategy behind it. The thing to consider here are the words "target audience", the effectiveness of the influencer's you choose to befriend will largely depend (after successfully befriending them) on the quality of your creative content and most important to this category, the "relevancy" of your content to that influencers audience.
For example, if you are marketing new school rap music, an influencer that has a YouTube channel focused on cooking food, it may be 'somewhat/kinda' useful to you, but a channel where teenage/Young adult consumers are focused consistently (E.g gaming, music, review videos, popular apps etc) would be likely to produce a superior yield/return.
Bonus Tip : For artists on a budget pay extra close attention to the power of "Micro Influencers", whilst many of those with huge followings in the hundreds of thousands or millions are now accustomed to receiving corporate bucks to advertise, meaning their rates for service start very high. You will find influencers with 5000-100000 followers or subscribers tend to have "no set standard" of what to charge for their services, and many may actively do it for free if you've provided some kind of value to them or their page.
Consider each of these points and how they be applied to your own strategy of trying to bring engagement to your work, be it a small business, film/tv show, Music or any other type of endeavor. The principle remains the same.
Relevancy, Frequency and the quality of your content will be the variables that determine your results and lead to more views, sales or any other type of conversion.
Much love and a big thank you for reading.