How To Tell If Your Content is Engaging

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Many governments have caught on to the fact that, with about 70 percent of the U.S. population on social media, digital content is a crucial way to reach citizens.

Seeing that people are engaging with your posts is one way of knowing that they are getting important information through their social networks and if there is room for improvement depending on the feedback they provide.

But how can governments know whether the public is engaging with the content they create?

One simple way is to take a look at the comments on your content.

Ian Cleary of RazorSocial, a content marketing blog, suggests that engaging content makes way for lively commentary and discussion. If that’s not happening on a Facebook post for example, people can be encouraged to participate if you pose a question and offer a space for feedback.

Responding to comments helps further, Cleary writes. In recent years, Sprout Social has surveyed social media users on which industries they feel are the most liked and most annoying on social networks. Governments didn’t fare well, coming in as the “most annoying.”

“This isn’t surprising when you consider that it takes the industry 10.7 hours on average to respond to consumers,” according to Sprout Social. 

The City of Carrollton, Texas frequently asks questions on its Facebook page. Sometimes it’s a “Did you know?” about a city service or a more pointed question that gets people commenting. They also have fun with their posts and, in the case below, they get people talking about local businesses, too!

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Shares should also be examined, Cleary writes. See how the City of Carrollton got shares on a more serious post— a notice about a road closure:

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Shares = more eyes on important information. For government agencies, that can be a crucial part in getting the word out about advisements that can impact everyday lives. Photos, or links that generate photos in the post, are also more likely to be shared.

Governments often use social media to link back to their websites so that citizens can find more details, important forms, etc. Services like Google Analytics have many tools that help gauge whether content is really reaching people and is being read or clicked on. For instance, it has a tool that allows you to see which social media platform led users to your site. As explained on Granicus, success on a website can be measured in pageviews over a period of time.

Sprout Social also has a comprehensive guide on Google Analytics for beginners.

Stuck on ways to improve engagement on social media?

It’s helpful to create content that’s easy to digest and share, such as infographics, according to Granicus.

GCN Magazine recently shared three ways governments can inspire citizen engagement. They suggest sharing content that has a human touch, adding some fun to the helpful information they share or by posting things people can’t find anywhere else, such as archival photos.

GCN also recommends sharing “snackable” videos that are to-the-point to grab short attention spans on social media. In addition, they advise governments to commit to a “consistent cadence,” meaning to designate specific times followers can expect questions on social media to be answered.