I’ve posted tons of content on social to date, but as you may have experienced yourselves, the engagement levels aren’t always on par with the effort put into creating and sharing that content. Although, in my experience I’ve seen a couple of ideas that pull in much more activity from the audience than others do, and that’s because they either reach more social media feeds or because they are better at catching attention and encouraging more shares.

The following a mix of both and are sure-fire ways for you to increase reach and impact.

1. Recruit employee cheerleaders

Last week I came across this survey conducted by Hinge Marketing. It found that 65% firms reported an increase in brand recall with employee advocacy. IBM has found employee advocacy leads to convert 7X times more often than other leads.

Additionally, people on social media trust recommendations from friends and family over brand suggestions and communication.

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It’s isn’t a demanding venture, not if you find the right platform to manage your advocacy program and find the right person to represent your employees and refuel the enthusiasm when needed.

Every office has that bubbly, ever-excited employee who loves his job.

For motivation purposes it is pertinent to have a gamified reward system of sorts so employees can measure their efforts and the Most Valuable Player can be thanked for his work.

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DrumUp Employee Advocacy Platform has a points system and leader board and allows you to monitor engagement analytics among your employees and the performance of each of their posts on social media.

Also, if you’re worried about how you’ll constantly put up content for sharing, the tool also has inbuilt curation and relevant recommendations that you can add to your company content stream in addition to your custom promotional posts.

2. Engage enthusiastic clients

74% of consumers‘ purchase decisions are swayed by social media recommendations. Happy customers are great for sustaining success.

The big three social media platforms are great for sharing customer reviews – Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

On Facebook you could ask customers to rate your products and services and “check-in” when they visit your store/office. Check-ins appear on feeds as stories and are great for added exposure.

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On LinkedIn, recommendations and endorsements held by employees of a company matter. Request your employees to connect their profiles to the company page, this adds further credibility to your presence.

On Twitter you could write craft a Tweet or hashtag for your customers to Tweet when they’re happy with your services, or you could request them to make their own.

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If you’ve received recommendations on social media or elsewhere associated with one site or a single hashtag, you could also turn them into a collective list using Storify for your fans to view.

3. Incite active fans

After marketing on social media for a while you’ll identify some followers who engage with you more than others. These fans are invaluable, they’re potential brand ambassadors or influencers. Ensure to segment them and touch base with them more often and more directly than you do with your general following.

One method of doing this is via a Twitter list, Facebook group or LinkedIn group.

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Create one with an apt title, set the tone with a few shares and invite your “super fans” to participate. You could drop them opportunities to represent you on social once in a while in exchange for something they’d want, but most super fans would share your content nonetheless.

Twitter lists also allow you to keep track of the activity of a certain set of people, and is an opportunity to do something nice for your loyal fans every now and then.

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These efforts lead to excellent PR opportunities and help you build better relationships with potential customers.

You could use Twitter Counter’s advanced analytics to identify important people to engage with.

4. Create awesome contests and fun activities

Contests mean excitement. But more importantly, they’re also means to engage with your audience, build a large fan base and uncover useful data and content.

The best part about contests for a brand is that they empower your fans to market for you.

For instance, take a look at this contest.

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It’s easy to participate in. Requires a re-tweet and a follow. Every re-tweet is your link and brand name being propelled into at least a 100 Twitter feeds, exponentially increasing your reach.

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This one has been designed to gather content from the audience (audience generated content) that is great for social sharing and invaluable for brand visibility and recall. People love people and empathy is a strong marketing contender.

There are a host of apps you could rely on for contests and campaigns. Woobox works well for polls and sweepstakes. If you’re creating a hashtag based campaign, you could use Twitter Counter to track its progress.

5. Visually compel shares

Visuals are now baseline, they’re necessary. When contending with millions of pieces of content, text minus a visual is no competition to eye-catchy images. Tweets with images = 9X more re-tweets and 12X more favorites.

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It doesn’t matter if you’re not great at design, there are intuitive online tools that you could still use to create compelling visual content.

Remember, the concept also has pull, it isn’t just brilliant design that gets shared.

Share images with statistics.

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Share images with quotes.

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Share photo collages.

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Share simple photographs with emotional value.

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Visual tools like Canva and Piktochart make image creation and editing simple.

Finally, when attempting to boost your visibility on social, ask yourself these questions.

How can I create more shares with my existing resources (employees, customers, fans)?

What can I create with my content to increase engagement and shares?

And you’ll have your next steps.